How does On With My Life therapy and counselling work?

The main sort of counselling and therapy I offer to help you overcome your stress, anxiety, depression or other form of unhappiness is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). At its heart, this approach to therapy is based on helping you develop your self-knowledge and emotional intelligence to build your psychological and mental strength.

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is a powerful mindfulness-based therapy (and coaching model) which currently leads the field in terms of research, application and results.

I will work with you to build genuine happiness from the inside out by:

  • Developing mindfulness (without meditation) skills. These are psychological skills to help you understand why we all suffer from anxiety, self-doubt, and low self-confidence - and how you can effectively cope and deal with these painful thoughts and feelings o that they don’t get in the way of enjoying and appreciating your life. I can help you transform old patterns into new more helpful habits.
  • Helping you to clarify what is truly important and meaningful to you – i.e your values – then use that knowledge to guide, inspire and motivate you to change your life for the better – even when times are tough.
  • Emphasising the crucial nature of self-care and giving you tools and techniques to help you to develop self-compassion and treat yourself kindly.
Is my work with you confidential?

Your confidentiality in our therapeutic relationship is paramount. Under certain circumstances, however, in which - like any ethical counsellor - I may need to break confidentiality in order to protect the life and health of yourself and / or others and to work within the law. Wherever possible, I will advise you in advance that I must do this, but this may not always be possible. These instances may include if I feel you are at risk of suicide, or if  I believe you may be harming others, especially children.

Sometimes I may also wish to consult with another health professional about your treatment, such as your doctor, and I will always seek your written consent to do this.

As a Registered Member of BACP I am required to have regular clinical supervision and need to discuss aspects of my work with a supervisor on a regular basis. My supervisor adheres to the same BACP code of confidentiality.

You can find my full business contract and privacy statement here

What happens in the first session?

During our first session the focus is on understanding your story: what brings you to counselling, why now, and what you want to get from your counselling sessions. 

If you are seeking telephone or video counselling we will look at the suitability of this kind of counselling approach for your needs. I may also ask you to complete a simple assessment that asks questions about your current experience of anxiety and / or depression. This may sometimes lead to me suggesting that a different kind of help may be more appropriate for your needs - for example a psychologist or your GP. 

We’ll talk about whether you want to meet again, the sort of work we can do together and likely number of sessions. I’ll answer any questions you may have about my service and what I believe I can provide for you

Where will my therapy take place?

I will be offering face to face counselling from my office in Stone from September 2021, and I will continue to offer telephone and video counselling. Some clients prefer to flexibly 'mix and match' their sessions according to the demands of their life  - for example, the majority of their sessions may take place by video but every so often they may choose to meet face to face.

I recommend that our initial session be face to face where possible. 

When can I have my counselling session?

I recognise how important it is for your therapy to fit around your work, childcare and life commitments so I try to offer a flexible diary. You can choose when and how often to have an appointment. You can book a therapy session at a time to suit you throughout the week, including evenings – Saturday morning sessions are also sometimes available and these cost £65 per session.

How much does a session cost?

A 55 minute session Monday to Friday costs £50.

(Saturday morning sessions are occasionally available and cost £70 for 55 minutes.)

Some clients enjoy the freedom that an extended session lasting 1.5 hours gives them. The cost of a 1.5 hour session is £75.

How will I know if you are the right counsellor for me?

It's really important that you get the right counsellor - one that you feel comfortable with and able to trust. There are many of us available to choose from! As a therapist I strive to be direct and challenging if it feels helpful for you, but never judgmental; warm, open minded and always alongside you while you explore your options in life. I do not diagnose or 'pathologise' and I will always be respectful of you as an individual and your choices. For a free 30 minute telephone or face to face consultation to help you decide if I am the right fit for you, why not call me on 07957 234 950 and you can ask me any questions you have and get a sense of how we would work together. Or fill in the contact form and I will call you within 48 hours.

How many counselling sessions will I need?

The type of therapeutic approach I use is proven to be effective in just a few sessions. To start with, I would normally suggest a minimum of 4 weekly sessions - this will ensure you get a good feel for what therapy can offer you and if it is right for you just now.  After 4 sessions we will have a discussion and agree a way forward that you are comfortable with. You may decide not to continue, and that is absolutely fine. You will never be pressured to have more sessions than you want or need.

Can I have telephone or online therapy from you?

Yes. I provide telephone counselling and video counselling. If you are unsure whether this might be right for you then we could try a short 20 minute session using either phone or video - this can help you decide.

What happens if I need to cancel a session with you?

I understand that life is busy and things happen and if you need to cancel or re-arrange within 24 hours notice there is no charge. However, I charge £20 for sessions that are cancelled with less than 24 hours notice or missed.