Selecting The Right Therapist Roker
Your relationship with your counsellor, is unlike any other.
Your counsellor will understand you, in a unique way, that few (if any) others, do.
Professionals are used to dealing with life's personal details, but you may not be so used to opening up in this way. The wrong counsellor can mean wasted money and lack of results, as well as reduced motivation.
Finding The Right Therapist/Talk Therapist
A functional counselling relationship, depends upon several key factors:
- Safety - If we don't have an underlying sense of safety in therapy, from the outset, it's unlikely progress will be made.
- 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.
- Collaboration - A strong therapeutic relationship is very much a team-oriented endeavour. Clients need the counsellor to lead the session, set a safe space, and assist with new perspectives needed. 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. If you do not fully reveal the info asked of you, it may take longer to achieve the change you want.
- 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. When you've been able to overcome a few small issues after starting out with your counsellor, confidence can grow.
- Active Listener - Thorough counsellors are accomplished at active listening. A counsellor's silence can often be mistaken by the client as boredom or lack of interest. However, an experienced therapist is often ascertaining more from silence, or how the client fills in that silence - than the spoken word. Likewise, as the client, you need to willing to listen to the context or perspective the therapist is attempting to help you see, even if emotions are high, and focus is difficult. Rather than giving your rote-learned responses to your therapists questions, try to do your own active listening, instead. However, concentrating on the questions asked, and providing answers that are unfiltered, and represent your true thoughts and feelings, will help you achieve results noticeably better, than simply responding with what you think you should respond with.
- Empathy - Everyone, with no exceptions, needs validation in the human experience. An empathetic therapist hears and understands your issues, but also has the insight to guide you toward an even more helpful perspective.
- Enthusiasm - Unfortunately, a lack of energy and optimism are often what's brought us to counselling in the first place. Many of us try to change everything on the outside first, before finally realising the problem is actually inside, not outside. The counselling journey is not normally fast - it is a process. An experienced counsellor can use the minor gains made during initial sessions, to help build your confidence that bigger gains are likely, later in the process. 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. But rather than holding out all hope for fantastic gains of huge magnitude, take faith and joy in the small steps during your counselling journey too, because they point you to other realisations you wouldn't otherwise have made.
- Trust - We have to first feel trust, that the counsellor can handle our emotional baggage, before we have confidence to release it. In counselling, most of us reveal aspects of ourselves and our feelings, we don't reveal to anyone else, even family or loved ones. The impartiality of a third party therapist, can help us open up to heal previous hurts more fully than working with someone we know. Have confidence that your counsellor sees the bigger picture map of where you want to go, but is also adept enough to help you heal the small hurts along the way, too. The counsellor is not there to be your friend, however. Expect your beliefs, values, and opinions, to be shaken up, and looked at closely - this is where much of the healing potential lies. Instinctively, having our beliefs and opinions challenged can feel uncomfortable - and we must be willing to trust that the counsellor has positive intentions, in leading us to a better meaning, and thus, better feelings, about it. Sometimes better results can be obtained by seeking out a counsellor you've already worked with in the past, or someone who understands your issues well, before you begin sessions.
- Perspective - A key reason people attend therapy is they feel - stuck - with a particular circumstance or set of feelings. A counsellor can help you identify practical actions that may help - but more importantly - highlight new perspectives that help you feel better, too. A trained counsellor can tell the difference between challenging you on an opinion or conclusion that may not be worthwhile, as opposed to helping you look differently at an event that can have a positive impact on your overall mental health. Your long term mental health can make great gains, where these fine distinctions are clearly recognised.
Depression is debilitating in that it is one of the few issues in life where the issue itself can prevent us from getting help for the issue - depression can stop us getting the help we need.
Counselling can help identify and deal with the underlying issues and thinking patterns - your counsellor should help you recognise contributing issues and maintaining factors.
Other mental health options beyond counselling such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy have also proven effective for depression and are widely used in the NHS.
Our main page for depression has more information.
Or, to enquire about counselling for depression in Roker, contact us direct using the link below.
Anxiety Counselling In Roker
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.
Techniques used by counsellors may help reduce the serverity of the anxiety reaction you're used to, as well as help you understand how the pattern of anxiety has developed.
One off events in the past can also be the cause of more acute episodes of anxiety, such as panic attacks.
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.
Anxiety can be tackled with a variety of approaches in the counselling room, including EMDR, working on the original trauma, or deconditioning the associated experience.
Long term relief from anxiety can only be gained once your therapist has the information they need. They may ask about how the fear state happens over time, how it manifests specifically, and your current coping mechanisms.
Counselling help for anxiety is available. Call us direct on 0191 580 3700 to arrange.
Relationship Counselling Roker
Relationships can be the most difficult aspect of life to navigate, as they bring opposing viewpoints and models of the world, into close contrast, frequently. We all experience relationship difficulties, because, quite simply, we are all individuals, with unique backgrounds, history, upbringing, and values.
For romantic relationships, issues such as infidelity, differences over children, parenting, money, habits, and simply the busy nature of daily life can decay an otherwise strong and healthy relationship.
Refreshing your ability to relate to each other, in a healthy way, where understanding is clear and meaning is retained, can make real differences for both individuals.
Understanding and anticipating what your partner wants and expects from the relationship, needs daily work, and most couples are not clear on this.
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.
We discuss relationship counselling and marriage counselling options in more detail 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 associate bereavement with the passing of a loved one, or a pet. However, loss can be more subtle, yet just as profound, when it manifests differently. 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.
Many find it difficult to even begin grieving, and feel stuck in a state of dissociation. Sometimes grieving can take over, and dominate the rest of life, in a prolonged state of emotional loss called complicated grieving disorder.
Grief counselling can help you make key distinctions between a grieving process that is appropriate and healthy, as opposed to one that has become a problem.
Find out more about bereavement counselling.
To arrange sessions of grief counselling, ring us direct on 0191 580 3700 and we'll get things moving.
Anger can manifest emotional, or in some cases, physical outbursts of rage, fuelled by feelings of injustice, boundaries being breached, or a personal hurt.
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 classes are popular, and usually suggest a range of practical steps to take, to minimise anger, and manage it when it does come up.
Therapy for anger is quite different - and focuses instead on detective work around past events in life, family life, relationship issues, etc, as a means to get to the root of the anger habit.
Both are appropriate for different individuals, at different times, depending on needs and circumstances.
Find out more about anger counselling here.
Our therapists can normally help with counselling for anger issues. To arrange, ring us direct on 0191 580 3700.
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.
Breaking these norms of experience can result in trauma - and feelings of isolation, loss of appetite, lack of socialising, dissociation and lack of interest in life.
Trauma is usually thought of as one-off, traumatic events, which we typically associate with war veterans, victims of crime, or domestic abuse, for example.
However trauma can also be much smaller, repeated episodes of emotional distress which, while no individual episode could be considered hugely traumatic, cumulatively add up over time, to aggregated emotional distress and difficulty.
Trauma counselling can help with both short term, one-off, obvious traumatic experiences, as well as longer term issues accrued over time.
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.
We have more info on trauma counselling options on our main page here.
To get your trauma counselling questions answered, ring us direct, on 0191 580 3700.
Addiction to a substance or behaviour, usually happens incrementally, over time, and outside our conscious awareness.
It's easy to establish a dependence on some means to cope, in the face of unusually high stressors, or an event we weren't expecting.
But, if we continue using this means to cope, it can become a habit, and the only way we know how to cope with the problem.
Infact, repeated use of this coping mechanism, can result in a belief that the initial problem itself is acceptable, and encourages us not to address this initial problem, at the root.
While most present with an addiction to a substance like alcohol or drugs, an increasing number are developing behavioural addictions which could benefit from counselling, such as collecting or hoarding behaviour, viewing pornography obsessively, or compulsive shopping.
Counselling can help gain understanding on the underlying causal issues behind a pattern of behaviour in life. It can also assist you in developing practical means to cope with the addiction in the short term, while longer term work on the underlying causes continues.
For advice on addiction counselling options, ring us direct on 0191 580 3700.
Beginning The Counselling Journey
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.
Charges & Payment
Pricing varies, especially for private counselling. Most therapists offer a complimentary phone chat, to see if you two might work well. Check if your first meeting carries standard charges or not.
Agreeing On Progress Goals
What do you expect from counselling? Are you looking for the shortest possible fix? Or a longer exploration of underlying issues? Set the right expectations, before you begin. 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 Roker
Choosing the right questions to ask before you begin can help find the right counsellor for you.
What if I don't get results?
- Make sure you stay connected with your therapist, and share the same expectations about the practical elements, throughout. This also helps the therapist navigate your sessions together to be the most comfortable experience possible.
When working with folks with (your issue), how many sessions of therapy does it typically take, to feel better?
- This is a how long is a piece of string question, with no real answer, except the following dependencies:
- Other, emotionally related, problems, that get in the way of treating the main issue, and therefore must be treated first.
- More past events than expected, may be contributing to the pattern of the problem you're experiencing in the here and now. These events take time to process, and feel better about, and can slow the progress of the main issue you went to counselling for. Nevertheless, they are usually necessary to overcome, for best results.
- 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. We all heal at different rates - this is normal.
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.
Remember, part of the counsellor's job Is to help you open up painful memories or feelings and re-process them, A longer time frame commitment from you, gives the therapist greater confidence in opening up longer term issues for work, they otherwise wouldn't do, with only a shorter time frame available. As you might expect, the more events are opened up, the more they have to be closed down, when treatment completes. If you are not open and honest throughout counselling sessions, it can present the possibility of sessions suddenly coming to an end, when emotions are high, and difficult to manage alone.
Do you have research interests, or a specialism in one particular type of counselling?
- Some counsellors have historical experience or specialist qualifications in particular areas of therapy, such as trauma or PTSD, anxiety, depression, etc. Making sure you and your therapist are a match, upfront, makes sense, and could prevent a costly mistake.
How quickly can I begin?
- Counsellors often work across multiple clinics and locations on different days of the week - check if your diaries sync up at the right times.
Therapy Help Roker
Our counsellors are self-employed and independent. Since they travel independently too, our therapists can often arrange local sessions in Roker, by arrangement.
Arranging Counselling Roker
To get started with counselling, or just for an initial chat, we're available on 0191 580 3700.
Our counsellors adhere to the BACP code of ethics and practice.
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