My aim is to understand you and your needs and to use the tools and knowledge I have to help you achieve your goals for therapy and counselling.
The purpose of this page is to orient you to the ways I work and what to expect. This can be helpful for making the most of therapy.
"What does a session look like?" While every session is different we will usually:
Start with whatever situation and challenge or troubling symptoms you want to work with.
We then explore what is happening and make some sense together of what might be causing this distress.
From here we may then continue to talk about what is happening, create a plan or problem-solve, or we may move towards body awareness and see how the body might be a useful resource for dealing with what is troubling you.
We may consider some exercises that you can do during the week to support the work we have started in the session.
We will often end by reflecting briefly on the session: what we covered, what you want to take away.
Whether you are coming for individual or couples counselling or trauma therapy sessions we follow a similar format but use different tools to support change.
"What is you role as the counsellor and therapist?" I see this work as a collaboration. We are working together for your well-being. You are bringing your challenges and dreams, your knowledge of yourself and all the resources and strengths you have developed over the course of your life.
I am seeking to understand you, help you access your strength, wisdom and resources and to bring my experience and knowledge to be an extra support for you as you find your way.
This means that I am an 'expert on tap, not on top'. I am an expert in what I have trained in and how it can help, but you are the expert of you. I want you to always feel you are in the driver's seat with me here to help you. This means that:
You choose what you want to work on.
You can choose whether to follow a suggestion I make or not.
Your feedback of what is working and what is not is both welcome and crucial.
You choose how often you come and when you are ready to end the work or move on to another practitioner.
"How do I know if it is working?" I employ three levels of assessment when considering whether the process is working:
How are you feeling about sessions? Do they feel helpful, constructive, supportive?
How are you feeling about your life? Are things changing in the ways you hoped for?
"How long does therapy or counselling take?" There is no easy answer to this. It takes what it takes to get you where you want to be. It is helpful to consider:
What do you want, where do you envision yourself being? Having a clear goal - even if just for a session - can help bring focus to the work.
What can you commit to this? The more engaged you are with your own process the greater the outcomes. Like the gym or any other skill or change.
How can you hang in there with yourself and with the process of therapy? It is sometimes a winding road.
What else will help? Counselling and therapy are often one piece of a larger change.
"How can I know if this is the work for me?" We will have an intake conversation or spend time in the first session getting a sense of what you are bringing and ensuring that it is within my scope of practice.
From here if we agree to work together then I suggest just trying it out. Sometimes we can't know if something is right until we step into it and give it a go.
I am a member of PACFA and work by its code of ethics. For more information on this please follow this link: https://www.pacfa.org.au