What is Counselling?
Psychodynamic counselling or therapy, provides a completely confidential, impartial and non-judgemental space for sharing thoughts and feelings. A counsellor cannot advise, mentor, or provide answers, but a counsellor can be an enabler for that exploration and discovery.
Counselling is not always easy, it can bring up some difficult feelings; it can take courage to self-reflect and to face change if change is the desired outcome, but it can also be immensely rewarding and can have a positive impact on relationships and many areas of life. Counselling is offered here on an open-ended long-term basis or as 6-12 sessions of time-limited.
Who is it for
Some will come to counselling because there has been an event in their life that has been distressing or difficult or that has brought up feelings from the past. Some may come because they have an underlying feeling of dissatisfaction. For others it may be feelings of isolation or depression, anxiety, problems coping with stress or an issue at work, or perhaps ongoing or recent relationship problems. For these and many reasons people will come to counselling.
There is no right or wrong reason and people do not need to be in or close to crisis to come. Even with the most supportive family and group of friends, sometimes it can be easier to talk to someone completely independent.
I practice in the Psychodynamic approach which as well as providing a supportive space to be heard, also allows for the opportunity to explore repeating patterns in relationships and where helpful, to look at how the past may be effecting the present.
It's in our childhood that we lay down our most embedded dynamics or patterns of relating or behaviour. At the outset they may all have served us well, but later in life and in new circumstances, less helpful aspects can sometimes emerge, perhaps making us unhappy or maybe preventing us from fulfilling our potential. Counselling can help enable with identifying these patterns, with exploring them and understanding their place in our history.
There is often a misconception that the Psychodynamic approach stops there, in the past, when in fact the model has three equally active lenses that the focus can shift around during the work. One lens looks at the history of long-standing patterns; a second at the present, at what is going on in life right now, often what brought someone to counselling; and a third looks at the relationship, the 'dynamic', with the counsellor.
By uncovering the patterns locked within these dynamics, noticing the links and perhaps understanding their meaning, the unwanted patterns can actually become redundant and space is made for creating new, more helpful patterns of relating or behaviour. This is often where the real works start because an important part of counselling is the continuing support and work that can be done while change is implemented for the future.
Work related issues