How long will therapy take?
The number of sessions needed varies depending on the issues or concerns a client wishes to explore. For some, a single session is enough, but a realistic average is 10-12 sessions. There is, however, no limit and the decision is really down to you, or us, to decide together. After approximately 6 sessions, or so, I will review with you if therapy is still proving beneficial for you and that we are progressing toward your desired outcome.
Why do people go to therapy?
People seek counselling & psychotherapy for all sorts of reasons. For example, you may feel you want to talk to somebody in confidence about a personal issue, or to change patterns of unhelpful thoughts or behaviours. Our initial appointment is to determine whether a therapeutic relationship is developed between us and that you are happy to work on your issues with me.
Do you offer a sliding scale?
No, unfortunately I do not offer a sliding scale, however if you would like to contact me to discuss your situation, please get in touch.
What if I cannot make it to a session? What is your cancellation policy?
I would ask you to provide me with as much cancellation notice as possible. You can rearrange or cancel appointments up to 24 hours without incurring any fee before the appointment time. If you are unable to give 24 hours' notice or you miss the session without giving notice, payment for a full session will be incurred. If you are unable to visit the office, for example due to travel or weather conditions, I will be available for an online session or will be happy to reschedule.
Does what we talk about in therapy remain confidential?
I may keep brief notes from our sessions, and these will be stored in accordance with GDPR regulations (2018). The content of your sessions will remain confidential within Lifeworks Therapy Lounge. I may also discuss our work together with my clinical supervisor; however he/she will not be able to identify you. There may also be times when I will need to share information about your sessions with appropriate people, which may mean breaching your confidentiality. For example, if what you share indicates that there is clear and imminent risk of harm to yourself or another. Or you have explicitly consented for me to do so. Or if there is a legal obligation for me to do so. If I feel there is a need to breach your confidentiality, I will always seek your consent first. However, there are times when this may not be possible. I appreciate that this may feel very scary to you, however, please be assured that this situation is rare, and I am more than happy to answer any questions that you may have about this.
What if I don't want to talk about something?
You are under no pressure to speak about anything you don't wish to disclose. These are your sessions, and you can go at whatever pace you like. It may well be that you just require a little further time. If you choose never to speak of something, that is your choice, however, I would ask you to consider why you may be choosing to withhold something and whether this is truly beneficial for you.
When can we have a session?
After your initial enquiry, via text, telephone or via email, we will arrange a mutually convenient time for a free 10 -15 minute telephone conversation. Following a brief chat, I will ask if you wish to book an initial session. I currently work on Thursdays and Fridays.
How will I schedule my appointments?
After the initial session, I will leave you to consider if therapy is right for you at this time, and will not put any pressure on you to make that decision right away. If you decide to go ahead, then contact me to arrange a further session, we will then book in at a mutually agreeable time for us both. From there on, we can book sessions as we go along.
What are your qualifications? MA Counselling – University of Manchester.
Post Graduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapies – University of Bolton.
BSc. (Hons) Psychology – The Open University.
Foundation Year in Systemic Practice and Family Therapy – Leeds University.
Postgraduate Certificate in Counselling – Salford University.
Certificate in Online & Telephone Counselling - Counselling Tutor.
Member of the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP).
Accredited by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
Member of the British Psychological Society (BPS)
What experience do you have?
Before training as a counsellor and psychotherapist, I worked for almost twenty years as a Biomedical Scientist specialising in Microbiology for the NHS. Nowadays, in addition to offering private practice sessions at Lifeworks Therapy Lounge, I also work part-time as a counsellor with the emergency services. Prior to this, I worked in a variety of settings, and with a wide range of individuals. I have experience working with the Samaritans, Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Trust, NHS IAPT services providing counselling to children and young persons, in a Lancashire Drug and Alcohol service, in a variety of charitable sector settings and in a Tier 3 NHS weight management service.
I have worked therapeutically with a diverse group of individuals, from diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, and who have been struggling with anxiety, family & relationship issues, depression, panic attacks, work-related problems, self-harm, sexual abuse, bereavement, anger, low self-esteem, loneliness, trauma, suicidal feelings and more. Although your issue/s may fit in to one or more of these categories, I do believe everyone’s problems are unique and prefer not to use medicalised labels unless you want me to.
What about ethical practice?
There are various professional bodies (also known as member organisations) in existence that have taken on the role of self-regulation of counselling/psychotherapy. Whilst counsellors and psychotherapists are under no legal obligation to become a member of a professional body, membership will mean they have met certain requirements set by their professional body and must abide by a code of ethics and complaints procedure. I am a member of a variety of these organisations (BACP, BABCP & BPS) and abide by the Codes of Ethics of each. This means that you can be assured of a high standard of practice.
I also carry Professional Indemnity and Public Liability Insurance. I regularly undertake individual supervision, and to the prescribed levels recommended by the various bodies to which I am a member. I also participate in on-going personal and professional development.
What approach do you take?
I provide a warm, human and professional service, in a safe and supportive, non-judgmental environment. I value your worth as an individual, which is expressed through my continued efforts to build a trusting, therapeutic relationship. I believe that this therapeutic relationship is a collaborative process, in which we work together to best meet your individual needs. I work as an integrative counsellor, and I am a fully qualified Cognitive Behavioural Therapist (CBT). This means that I can combine ideas and insights, drawn from different counselling theories, in order to tailor sessions that will best support you. This approach supports my philosophy that each person is unique and that no single approach suits all. At no point will I tell you what to do. By offering you understanding, respect and acceptance, together we can explore the issues that are important to you, so that we can work towards a more positive future. I have a straightforward, honest and caring attitude. My style of counselling, put simply, is about supporting you to gain perspective and understanding of how you think, feel and behave, how you approach difficulties in your life, and how you can feel more in control.
Is there somewhere to park?
There is a small, free gravelled parking area to the front of the building. If it is full on your arrival, there is plenty of free street parking in the surrounding areas.
How do I pay?
Payment is due, via bank transfer, prior to online or face to face sessions. If you prefer to pay with cash, this is payable during each session.
Is there disabled access?
Unfortunately not, the building is gravelled to the front and there is a set of stairs to my first floor office.
Is there a waiting room?
Unfortunately we do not have a waiting room. Please arrive at your appointment time. Should you choose to bring someone along with you, sadly they will need to wait outside the building. It is therefore recommended that you attend on your own.
Anything else? Please just ask.