What is counselling?
Counselling should be a safe place where you can explore and express your thoughts and feelings with support and without judgment.
Counselling provides a place where you can learn about yourself, who you are, and how you work. You can explore and come to terms with your past, understand how it impacts on you in the present, and work on minimising any negative effects.
Counselling can be a place where you become aware of how you live life, how you want to live life, and how to bring them closer together. You can learn new skills and other ways of thinking and being.
Counselling is also about a relationship between two people which in its support, understanding, and encouragement, can be healing.
What is the difference between counselling and therapy?
There is no firm division between counselling and therapy; and I move between them depending on the client's needs.
In general, however, I see counselling as usually shorter, more focused on the present and on particular 'problems'.
I see therapy as usually longer, working more on the client's core self, working more with understanding the past's impact on the present, and using the relationship between the therapist and client more deliberately.
I use the more familiar term counselling.
Can counselling help you?
Counselling can be useful for anyone who wants a safe, confidential, accepting place to talk about any issue, big or small.
Some people come with something specific in their life they are unhappy or worried about, and others come because things just don't feel right, or they just don't feel happy.
In the blue strip I have listed the areas in which I specialise. I also work with more general issues.
How do I work?
I work flexibly, drawing on a range of modalities, depending on a client's needs.
I work collaboratively with clients, making sure that they feel in control of the process.
I believe in working with all parts of a person - their thoughts, emotions, body, and spirit. I also help people to see their issues in the context of their environment, and help them make any positive changes they can.
My main goal is that people are happy, whatever that means for them.
What will we do?
When we first meet I will ask why you have come as well as more general questions about your life. I will be trying to get a picture of what life is like for you. You may have questions for me, as you will be deciding whether I am the person you want to work with. I will also be deciding whether I think I am the best person to work with you. If not, I will try and help you find someone more appropriate. Once we have decided to work together we will meet regularly for an hour at a time (usually weekly, but sometimes fortnightly) to work on whatever you want. It is your process.
Sometimes we will talk about things in the present and other times we will focus on the past. As well as exploring past influences we will set goals to change things in the present. As well as talking, I will encourage you to connect with your feelings. Drawing can be very useful in exploring and understanding yourself, however if you are not comfortable doing this that is okay.
People often feel nervous seeing a counsellor. That is natural. After all you are talking about often vulnerable things with someone you don't know. Counselling can be both a challenging and rewarding experience. I will do my best to make it as safe and comfortable as possible.
How long does it take?
Some people only come for a number of weeks, others for longer. This depends on what you are wanting. Working on one specific current issue will be faster than changing your sense of self.
Is it confidential?
When you come to see me what you say will stay with me. The only exceptions are when I need to discuss something confidentially in supervision, or if I am worried about your safety. We will discuss this more when we meet.
How much does it cost?
My rate is $95 per hour session.
Where do I work?Island Bay shops, Wellington.