Welcome! My name is Alison, a Person Centred Counsellor & Psychotherapist and Supervisor.
We ALL have mental health. Just as we all have physical health. I believe our mental health is strongly linked to our physical health. For example traumatic experiences, stress and anxiety can cause issues within the body.
Breaking down the stigma of talking openly about our mental health is key, and I am proud to provide support for others’ well-being.
My Counselling Story
My Dad unexpectedly passed away when I had just turned 21. For the next 15 years my way of coping with this huge loss was to put on a very good mask to the outside world on how I was really feeling inside.
I remember going for my first counselling session:
- I felt nervous
- What am I supposed to say?
- Will it actually help me with the way I am feeling?
Following my own experience of counselling, I fully appreciate how it may be a little daunting coming to see a counsellor. I understand it is not always easy to talk about problems and to express how you are feeling. We will work together towards improving your emotional well-being around whatever has prompted you to seek help.
If you are considering counselling and have any questions, please get in touch.
- I hold a Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling.
- Fully trained therapist in Eye Movement Desensitisation & Reprocessing (EMDR).
- A Certificate in Person Centred Creative Arts.
- A Mental Health First Aider.
- Recognised provider for the following insurance companies:
- AXA Health
- Vitality Health
I have special interest and experience in supporting people in bereavement and loss. Following my own experience in bereavement, it was meaningful for me to begin my counselling journey volunteering as a bereavement counsellor at CARIS Islington Bereavement Service. A charity in my local area providing free support to adults and children.
I believe our mental health is reflected in our physical health. Traumatic experiences, PTSD, stress, anxiety and depression can present in physical symptoms in the body.
I am fully trained in Eye Movement Desensitisation And Reprocessing (EMDR) working with distressing or traumatic memories. The theory behind EMDR is that many psychological difficulties are the result of distressing life experiences which have not been stored properly in the memory and are said to be unprocessed or blocked and may need some help to become processed.
I have worked with people who have come to see me for support with the following:
- Low Self Esteem
- Personal Development
- Relationship Difficulties
To keep my skills and knowledge of emerging therapeutic developments up to date I also undertake Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
- An Accredited Member of the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists MBACP (Accred).
- A Practitioner Member of the Association for Person Centred Creative Arts (APCCA).
- An Accredited Professional of the Foundation for Infant Loss.
- Member of the EMDR Association UK.
The Counselling Session
There are a number of therapy approaches that counsellors are trained in, so it is important to consider carefully your expectations of counselling and of your counsellor.
I follow Carl Rogers’ Person Centred Approach to counselling. You are the expert in your life, therefore following this approach my aim is to offer a safe, confidential and non-judgmental space which is just for you to talk about those things that bother you, or are having an impact on your life and mood.
Your first session enables us to meet and discuss why you are looking for counselling. It is an opportunity to get a sense of how we will work together. If we are both happy to work together, we will meet weekly at the same time for 50 minutes for as long as you feel you need.
If you need me to make reasonable adjustments regarding meeting your needs in sessions, please let me know.
I also offer ways of working creatively in our sessions, if that is something of individual interest.
I am passionate about working creatively in a session. Sometimes it is difficult to express feelings with words. Image work can be a non-verbal approach to understanding the self, our thoughts and feelings that may be affecting our behaviours.
I facilitate small creative, therapeutic group workshops and for a few years tutored the Introduction to Person Centred Creative Arts Course.
What I love most is offering the space for people to be fully themselves to discover insights when re-connecting with their creative self. It is a privilege to be witness and facilitator for this growth and transformation.
For more details, see Working Creatively