We all experience distress at times in our lives and sometimes it can be difficult to recover without help. Maybe you need a safe space to think things through and learn new ways of dealing with difficulties with an experienced and highly trained but compassionate and caring professional.
Most of the struggles we face in life can be traced back to difficulties in our early relationships and to difficult or traumatic events we have faced growing up. I specialise in treating the underlying traumas and identifying the unhelpful patterns of behaviour that people tend to have developed to cope with those experiences.
I use an integrative approach drawing on a wide range of therapy models. However, I have a strong preference for combining Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) to target the majority of mental health problems that people present with.
It may be that you have struggled with your mood or anxiety over a long period of time. You may even have been for counselling or therapy before, but the problem just seems to keep coming back, or doesn’t even shift at all, no matter what you have tried or how many times you have been in therapy. Perhaps you have a sense that there is something underlying your difficulties that keeps you stuck in the same old patterns and you feel as though you really need to get to the bottom of it and sort it out once and for all. Perhaps you are only too aware of the underlying issues but have not yet had the opportunity to really work on them.
Psychological therapy with an experienced Clinical Psychologist can help you gently explore the underlying issues, learn new skills for dealing with them and fully resolve them, freeing you up to live your best life and become the best version of you.
EMDR stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing therapy. It is a form of psychological therapy used to treat the unprocessed trauma memories that often underlie our current difficulties. It is recognised by the World Health Organisation and the UK’s National Institute of Clinical and Care Excellence (NICE) as a valid, evidence-based, therapy. Briefly, it involves using eye movements or other bilateral sensory stimuli to facilitate rapid processing of distressing memories. We do not really know precisely why or how it works and there are a number of theories being tested out, but the evidence for EMDR as a valid, effective and safe form of therapy continues to grow.
ACT stands for Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. It is a mindfulness-based therapy aimed at learning new skills to unhook yourself from unhelpful thoughts, open up to your full range of emotions, and direct your life towards your most deeply held values. ACT takes the stance that the present moment is the only moment we have where we can make a difference, so we have to embrace the present moment, accepting whatever the reality of that moment is, and take small steps to move in the direction of what makes life meaningful for us.
Therapy can be a difficult process and requires serious commitment if it is going to be helpful. It is fair to say that things can, and often do, feel worse before they feel better as you begin to explore your difficulties and learn new ways to deal with them. I have many years of experience of helping many hundreds of people navigate their way through the difficult process of therapy.
I will be there supporting you, and sometimes challenging you, to think and act in new, more effective ways, as we process the past and learn new skills to take forwards in our work towards a brighter future.