Counselling is a relationship between people – the client and the counsellor – formed when a client is experiencing difficulty in their life and they approach a professional counsellor for help. A counsellor is different from a friend or family member as a person to talk to as they are impartial and will not offer advice or tell you what to do but help you make the decision that is right for you. People often get conflicting advice from well-meaning friends or the advice they receive just doesn’t feel right. Often people want to protect their family and friends from how they are feeling because they don’t want to worry or upset them and sometimes it is too difficult to tell other people because there is a chance they will be judged.
There are different types of counselling and different types of counsellors. Different counselling approaches suit different people and it is important that you find the right counsellor for you. I trained as a person centred counsellor as I felt that was right for me and hopefully it will be right for you too.
Person Centred counselling can be misunderstood as a passive approach lacking in theory. Having spent many years studying and working with person centred theory as a counsellor, supervisor and trainer I disagree, however it is an approach that I don’t find easy to explain. Carl Rogers is the grandfather of person centred counselling and it is sometimes referred to as Rogerian counselling. Rogers himself did not like this term because he believed that Person Centred counsellors should not be clones of him but should develop their own style and way of being whilst staying true to the basic theory which includes the belief in an individuals actualising tendency and that by being offered the necessary and sufficient conditions in a counselling relationship a person can find their own internal locus of evaluation. He believed that the authenticity and realness of the counsellor in an equal relationship with their client is an important requirement and so do I . The counsellor is not the expert in the relationship, the client is. It is the role of the counsellor to facilitate building a co-created relationship that is sufficient and real enough to give you, the client, the space to explore your internal world, to find the answers to your own questions and to find your own realness. Having said that I do not sit and smile and nod and repeat back to you what you have just said to me. I will listen first and foremost to understand your world to the best of my ability and I will encourage you to reflect on things you have said looking for signs of incongruence and connections. I will let you know what I see and hear with empathy, no judgement and honesty.
Counselling with me will follow your pace and agenda. I appreciate that there are things that are difficult to talk about and I will not have any expectation of you or have an agenda of my own. You tell me what is going on for you when you feel comfortable enough and have developed the trust in me to do so. My part in that will be to offer you that safe space, I am a gentle person but not passive. Everything that you tell me is confidential. I will be empathic to you and will not judge. I will also be honest and will endeavour to offer you these ‘core conditions’ in equal measure.
My role in this is to use my own realness to help you find your own. I have spent many years discovering my own internal locus of evaluation and it would be an honour for me to help you discover yours. Please contact me if you would like to talk more.