North Devon Talking Therapies

About Me

I trained with WPF in London as a Psychodynamic Psychotherapist. WPF is recognised as a centre of excellence for its rigorous training. I have extensive experience of long term, open-ended therapy and counselling. I also have NHS experience of delivering short term focused psychodynamic therapy and counselling of six to twenty sessions

I further qualified in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and an honorary clinical post gave me considerable initial experience in delivery of CBT which I now use regularly.

I offer supervision of fellow therapists and counsellors and those studying counselling.

Psychodynamic Psychotherapy<

Psychodynamic Psychotherapy stems from the psychoanalytic tradition and focuses on making links between past experiences and relationships and our current feelings and relationships.
As a Psychodynamic Psychotherapist that I consider the way in which experiences and relationships in the past may unconsciously be recreated in present day emotions, behaviours and relationships. These experiences may include those from infancy, childhood and adolescence. These difficulties may be such things as depression or serious illness in the family, cruelty and abuse or possibly very demanding or rejecting parents. If our experiences are painful we may try to forget and ignore them but such experiences inevitably colour our lives. For instance we become depressed ourselves or set ourselves impossibly high standards or withdraw from relationships.

In therapy I will invite you to talk about yourself. I am interested in your past and your present. I work with your dreams and your fantasies.
As we talk together it may seem like a conversation but one in which it really is 'all about you'. We will gradually reflect on your emotions and behaviours, exploring the recurrent patterns in your life and the things that cause you distress. And surprisingly happiness and pleasure! Occasionally I may even gently challenge your perspective on things.

What is gained from Psychotherapy?

During Counselling and Psychotherapy attention is paid to the role the unconscious plays in shaping current thoughts and feelings as well as your behaviour and relationships in everyday life. The aim of therapy is to help you truly 'know' your own mind. Counselling and Psychotherapy provides a space to develop greater self -awareness, alternative perspectives and perhaps different meanings. These insights can empower you in making changes to your life.
After a 'Good Therapy' one usually emerges as the best version of oneself! There is a true understanding of oneself and a less critical and destructive relationship with oneself. In turn there is a better, more generous, understanding of others and it's easier to make and sustain healthy relationships with others. Others can be family, friends , partners and work colleagues.
Psychotherapy doesn't mean difficult events never happen in life but one is better equipped and resilient enough to deal with them.

What is Counselling >

Counselling is similar to therapy but the focus is on the 'here and now ' and present day concerns and problems. There is more of an emphasis on resolving and finding solutions to specific, current problems and difficulties.
Counselling provides a supportive and reflective space to think and talk through difficulties personal dilemmas or a particularly stressful situation. It can be immensely helpful during life changes and reflecting on life events.
Counselling is usually from 6 to 24 sessions.

What Happens in Practice?

We meet once a week for fifty minutes. This time is totally uninterrupted and confidential. What is said in the counselling and therapy room stays there! I, in turn, will quietly listen and gradually and gently draw attention to recurring patterns in your life and thoughts. I will support you in exploring these thoughts and life patterns and consider more helpful ways for you to move forward.

In both therapy and counselling I do not give advice but give you the insight , tools and resilience to make the best decisions for you.

What about Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)?

CBT is a type of counselling. It is a 'Talking Therapy' but different from psychotherapy. It works on the basis that how you think affects how you feel, and consequently, how you behave. Thoughts are seen to be helpful or unhelpful, often experienced as depression and anxiety. If we always think in a negative way about ourselves then this will give us a negative self image. During CBT Counselling the therapist helps people to recognise links between their thoughts, feelings and behaviour. Clients and counsellor focus on practical strategies and skills to enable the client to change their thoughts and improve their emotional state. CBT counselling is very much based on what happens in the 'Here and Now' rather than examining previous emotional states.

CBT is an effective approach for some problems such as issues of depression, anxiety and phobias. It has particular success in addressing problems which have recently arisen and are not entrenched.

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