Selecting The Right Therapist Burnopfield
Counselling is a personal experience.
The relationship between you and your counsellor, is a private one.
Even though the counsellor hears these aspects of people's lives every day, trust needs to be developed between you, before it's easy to feel comfortable. A strong counselling relationship can significantly change your outlook and perspective on key areas of life - it's important to get it right.
Finding The Right Counsellor
A functional counselling relationship, depends upon several key factors:
- Safe - The counsellor's room should feel like a sanctuary, sheltered from the external world, or it's concerns, so that we feel secure enough to speak about our worries.
- Approval - A competent therapist should help you feel unconditionally accepted, no matter your feelings you have about a particular event. With the right help, you'll feel like your therapist is able to handle whatever comes up, no matter how you express it.
- Partnership - Working together with your counsellor should feel like a partnership. As a client you depend on the therapist to lend insight and perspective on the issue you face. Equally, the counsellor depends on you to be as honest and open as possible, or they have nothing to work with, and little progress can be made. A two-way understanding is needed, to enable the change you want, to actually happen.
- Mutual respect - You & your counsellor require a sense of two-way understanding between you, and a respect for each other, in every element of the counselling relationship. e.g. Achieving results too quickly can actually be a bad thing!...if it causes too much discomfort. Be willing to change pace to match your counsellor, within reason. Also bear in mind, that no matter how emotionally painful something may feel in the short term, it's important to trust that the counsellor is leading you towards a comfortable resolution. Once you have developed a few positive experiences with a counsellor, of revealing a small issue, and successfully working through it, trust can grow, mutual respect can widen, and motivation can increase, making further progress easier.
- Interested & Attentful - Professional therapists learn extensively on the art and benefits of listening closely during counselling sessions. Understanding non-verbal communication during a session is often just as important for a counsellor, as words spoken aloud. Other times, the therapist may need you to listen - as they guide you towards seeing something from a different perspective. This can be challenging as we have invested a lot of time and energy in our pre-existing beliefs. We all have our stock responses for certain questions, that have become our usual responses, over the years. But being truly ready to listen to a counsellor's question, afresh, as if it's the first time you've heard it, can yield insights that were not possible in the past.
- Validation - The meanings we give to events, are as varied as human beings themselves. It's important that we feel our meanings are reasonable, given the circumstances. An empathetic therapist hears and understands your issues, but also has the insight to guide you toward an even more helpful perspective.
- Confidence - We don't usually start therapy in a confident place. Many of us try to change everything on the outside first, before finally realising the problem is actually inside, not outside. Therapy work takes time, and is not a quick fix, nor a one size fits all solution. Sometimes getting wins from counselling is a combination of small wins initially, plus a lot of faith of greater future gains. Optimism about the future, and about what's possible, are important in life, regardless of whether you've felt the need for counselling help or not. To build hope from the start, ask your counsellor about their previous successes, in cases similar to yours. They won't disclose personal details, but the general picture they give you can help build confidence that this is a journey worth taking.
- Trust - Knowing that, when we do put forth our concerns, we can trust a counsellor to assist in the most appropriate way, no matter how deep our emotions or feelings, can allow even the deepest wounds to heal. Part of the reason we're often attending therapy at all, is that a part of us knows, that some meaning we have given an event, is not quite right, and is causing emotions and feelings to arise, too often. Working with a counsellor as a neutral observer, can help us access deeper hurts that are ready to heal, as compared to attempting to work with someone we know, or even, on our own. An experienced therapist is equally skilled at navigating both the bigger picture of where the therapy is going, but also the smaller picture of where you're at now. Expect a counsellor to challenge you - that's their job. If you're to get progress from therapy, you'll need new perspective on the meanings you've given to previous issues. The therapist will challenge your opinions, to help you arrive at better perspectives. Our instinct, when we feel attacked in this way, is to retaliate - but be assured that these challenges are well intentioned, and are there for the purpose of helping you heal. A professional with more specialism in your particular area of concern may help here.
- Perception - The counsellor has the acumen, vision, and understanding to help you identify and remedy, areas where a better perspective on the event(s), may help. Judgements are required, often very quickly mid-session, in respect of which values or opinions need to be challenged to improve overall mental health, as opposed to those which can do not contribute so much to the bigger picture, or are secondary to other more important goals. Your long term mental health can make great gains, where these fine distinctions are clearly recognised.
Depression Counselling Burnopfield
There are not many ailments which themselves, make it difficult for us to get professional help to remedy them - but depression is one of them.
Depression can be the result of both unuseful thinking patterns and an ongoing state of helplessness or hopelessness. Counselling can help with both.
Some also look at other options for depression, such as herbal remedies e.g. St John's Wort, or supplements such as 5 Hydroxy-Tryptophan. Always seek the advice of your medical professional, for these items.
There's more info on depression, here.
Or, to enquire about counselling for depression in Burnopfield, contact us direct using the link below.
The root of anxiety is often based in our learned associations - a repeated experience of negative reinforcement with something specific, can become a more generalised problem later in life, without realising.
A counsellor can help you identify how the past contributes to a current day pattern of anxiety in your life, and how to work on it, so that it produces less of an overt reaction in day-to-day life.
Counselling can also help with more specific fears, phobias, or episodes of panic, attached to just one episode in the past.
Deconditioning work can be undertaken with a therapist's help, to help untangle the meanings attached to an original event, and thus feel better about it - and less anxious.
The therapist can utilise a variety of techniques to tackle anxiety, including deconditioning, work on associated past events, or desensitisation, depending on specifics.
Your counsellor is best placed to guide you through the best options for you, that will provides the greatest relief over time.
More info about counselling for anxiety is available on our main page here.
Relationship Counselling Burnopfield
All relationships go through turbulence, no matter who we are. In fact, relationships with those closest to us, like family, are often the most difficult. Differing backgrounds, values, and even age, can all bring conflicting interests into the open, creating situations that are extremely difficult to navigate, without professional assistance.
Relationships with your significant other can be particularly challenging as their upbringing will consistently conflict with your own, in most cases.
Both people in a relationship can benefit, either from acute help for an urgent relationship difficulty, or ongoing work on relationship communication and interaction.
Relationship counselling can assist you both to see where the communication difficulties lie, and how to navigate them.
Sometimes a therapist can assist this understanding by helping you see how current patterns, relate to the past, and the previous episodes in life that each partner brings to the relationship.
Whilst we would all like to be able to improve our relationships without help, a private counsellor has the training and skills necessary to help you make noticeable improvements in daily life.
Get more info on our main page for relationship and marriage counselling, here.
Or, to arrange relationship counselling now, ring us direct on 0191 580 3700, or ask for a callback, on the form opposite. We'll ring you back at a convenient time.
We usually think of a friend or loved one dying, when we think of bereavement and grief. But we all experience loss differently, and to differing degrees, depending on what the loss relates to. A sudden change of routine (as many experienced recently with covid), a friend moving away, or a fall-out between family members, can all result in significant grief, that many would dismiss as irrelevant or meaningless.
It's easy for some to feel confused, or detached, from grieving initially, until the reality of the loss begins to surface in their life. Others are stuck in a longer term pattern of grief which can be harmful in it's own way.
Grief counselling is available to help you begin to process long or short term grief, in a supportive, structured, and safe space.
More information about grief and bereavement counselling is here.
Or, to speak with a counsellor to set sessions up - ring us direct on 0191 580 3700.
Anger Counselling Burnopfield
Anger can be both emotionally and physically destructive, resulting in emotional volatility but also physical expressions, when the emotions are too overwhelming.
If internal beliefs, or model of the world, is too restrictive, it can become all to easy to shatter internal ideas about how the world should be, thus resulting in an angry outburst.
Anger management teaches practical tools and techniques to manage anger or rage episodes in day-to-day life.
Anger counselling aims to help understand the root cause of the anger better, in order to overcome the pattern of angry behaviour and feelings in your life.
Both are appropriate for different individuals, at different times, depending on needs and circumstances.
Find out more about anger counselling here.
Private anger therapy is now available to book. To ask a question or check on availability, you can reach us on 0191 580 3700.
Trauma/PTSD Counselling Burnopfield
A one-off, acute traumatic experience can last only seconds, but the emotional impact can last for years or decades, unless help is sought.
When an event happens in the outside world which goes against our understanding of life, it results in trauma, that is unprocessed.
Where trauma is unresolved, an individual will often experience lack of interest in life, detachment, nightmares, and lack of social interaction.
We often have a fixed idea about what trauma is, with a vision of a helpless person suffering a huge incident.
Multiple smaller traumatic episodes can also result in accumulated emotional difficulties over time, and it can be more difficult to label these issues as in need of acute mental health care, when compared to more impactful, one-off traumas from widely recognised sources.
We work with those suffering from all forms of trauma, including acute one-off episodes, through to PTSD or other more chronic manifestations of emotional trauma.
While attending counselling for the first time can be intimidating, your counsellor has done this many times before. Generally, there is nothing you can say that would surprise them or they have not heard before. The counselling room is the one place it's safe to open up and feel heard.
Get full info on trauma counselling.
To ask about pricing and availability for trauma counselling, ring us direct at a convenient time, on 0191 580 3700.
Addiction to a substance or behaviour, usually happens incrementally, over time, and outside our conscious awareness.
Sometimes, when going through exceptional stress, we adopt a certain way to cope, as a one-off means to feel better.
Repeatedly turning to this one way to feel better, can result in addiction.
This can be a dangerous time - as too much overuse of one coping mechanism can convince us that the level of stress we're under - is ok.
We normally associate addiction with substances like alcohol or drugs, but process or behavioural addictions are now very common, like shoplifting, sex, or food addiction.
Counselling can help you overcome addiction by first understanding the benefit you get, from the substance or behaviour itself. While long term progress takes time, a counsellor can assist you in short term gains by helping you access the right support at times you feel triggered.
If you're thinking of addiction counselling, get your questions answered on 0191 580 3700.
Arranging Counselling For The First Time
How It Works
The first session is usually used to get to know your counsellor, and they you, and set appropriate expectations for your counselling sessions, for example, frequency, how many, charges, etc.
Costs of the first session can be anything from free, to £100 or more in busy areas. Check the specifics with your counsellor. It's worth enquiring in advance as to the exact costs of the initial session, as many therapists treat it differently, depending on their individual circumstances.
Normally when beginning counselling, you and your therapist will agree on the goals and outcome you want to achieve, and set a timeline for treatment, and how many sessions you'll complete together. If this is done at the start of the counselling relationship, it leaves the rest of the sessions to deal only with the actual counselling work, and not the practicalities.
What To Ask A Counsellor Burnopfield
Choosing the right questions to ask before you begin can help find the right counsellor for you.
How likely is it that I don't feel better after counselling?
- Have regular conversations with your therapist to make sure you stay on track toward your goals. Doing this regularly means everyone understands each other and there are no risks of suddenly ending a diet of counselling sessions unexpectedly, and without support.
How many sessions should this issue take, in your experience?
- Understand that this is a question with no one fixed, correct, answer. You're looking here for more of how the counsellor reacts, rather than the content of the answer. In reality, duration will depend on multiple factors:
- What comes up during therapy, that needs to be dealt with, that wasn't anticipated beforehand.
- Many more events than anticipated, are contributing toward a current day pattern, and all need resolution before the pattern dissolves or the client feels better.
- All of us move at our own speed in therapy, with the time taken to evaluate events, find better alternatives, and have appropriate insights, varying from one person to another. Expecting anything different would not be appropriate.
For all these reasons, don't expect a concrete answer to this question - even a very experienced therapist will be giving you their best estimate, before therapy begins - there is no more accurate information available.
In terms of timescales, you both need to allow enough time to open up, access, and feel better about painful long term memories. If the counsellor is under the impression that your sessions are a regular, long-term event, they may help you open up more painful memories or events, with the intention of greater healing possibilities. Events with greater emotional intensity must be managed carefully. A good therapist will make sure there are no emotional loose ends left, at the end of treatment. It's important to communicate clearly throughout counselling sessions, to make sure misunderstandings don't occur.
Do you have research interests, or a specialism in one particular type of counselling?
- Some counsellors can work a lifetime in only one problem area - making them very specialist - and sometimes more sought after. Making sure you and your therapist are a match, upfront, makes sense, and could prevent a costly mistake.
What is your availability?
- Therapists are usually busy people, with little spare time between sessions. Getting logistics sorted out now, will help later.
Therapy Help Burnopfield
Our therapists work independently. Since they travel independently too, our therapists can often arrange local sessions in Burnopfield, by arrangement.
Getting Started With Counselling In Burnopfield
Get an idea of costs, and availability, by ringing us direct on 0191 580 3700.
Our counsellors adhere to the BACP code of ethics and practice.
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