The Initial Session will give you the opportunity to talk about your concerns and ask questions. This will help you decide whether my way of working is right for you. There is No Commitment at this stage.
Association of Integrative Coach-Therapist Professionals Just click here
British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists Just click here
British Association of Coaching Just click here
Association for Coaching Just click here
Transition is a psychological process in which we gradually accept the details of the new situation and the changes that come with it.
Life Transitions The Gulbenkian Foundation's "Transitions in Later Life" identifies the following transitions:
retirement; moving home; becoming a grandparent; relationship breakdown; becoming a carer; bereavement; acquiring a long-term health condition; entering a care environment; preparing for the end of life. click here to find out more.
Mindfulness Jon Kabat-Zin's book "Full Catastrophe Living", is one of the first books to introduce mindfulness meditation as a practice to manage stress, anxiety, and to live in the present moment. In it he says: "We are all subject to old age, illness, and death. The real question, and the real adventure, is how do we live our lives while we have the chance. And how do we work with what comes our way in ways that are healing, that nourish us deeply, and make use of the full spectrum of our experiences, the good, the bad, and the ugly...?" There are various mindfulness apps on the market, however the one I found very user friendly is Headspace. click here to find out more.
Psychological Trauma and Dissociation Trauma is a result of terrifying, stressful life events that impact on your sense of security and overwhelms your existing coping mechanisms. Carolyn Spring, Director of PODS (Positive Outcomes for Dissociative Survivors) click here says: " For a traumatised individual, the event continues to be experienced as 'present', as 'still happening', because the brain has not been able to integrate the whole experience .... In order to cope with this the traumatised individual may then try to shut off from the 'now' experience of trauma by numbing and avoidance. " She describes Dissociation as "an entirely normal response to overwhelming trauma ...a way of surviving something that otherwise would be unbearably painful...." Sounds, smells or situations can easily trigger the recurrence of traumatic memories or overwhelming feelings associated with the traumatic event. In therapy you will learn how to manage strong emotions, begin to build trust with others and process the trauma associated with memories and feelings.
The Silence of Therapeutic Listening
How hard can listening be if we as therapists do it all the time? How do we listen? What are we listening for? Are we aware when we stop listening? How do we know we are being listened to? Why do we listen differently from one person to another?
Therapeutic listening is a complex and difficult task that takes time to gather in feelings, thoughts and the unspoken, silent, visceral experiences shared by the client and the therapist. Therapists not only listen to silences but may also use silences to convey empathy, facilitate reflection, challenge the client to take responsibility, facilitate expression of feelings, or take time for themselves to think of what to say, while also evaluating the client’s silence.
The philosopher and psychologist, Peter Wilberg writes about therapeutic listening as “an active form of silent inner communication with others”. This type of listening is different from ordinary listening where, for example, the listener is trying to relate the other person’s experience to their own, or thinking of responses to carry on a conversation. Therapeutic listening goes beyond verbal and nonverbal listening skills. It engages all of the therapist’s senses and perceptions to fully experience the emotional essence that the client is expressing between sentences and words.
There are rhythmic changes in the way we listen. Attention moves in and out of silent listening. One moment we may hear the client’s narrative told at a slow pace, then within seconds, the pace may quicken and the tonal quality changes. All important clues to the client’s shifting emotional self state. In the therapeutic ‘room’ of not-knowing, therapeutic listening becomes a transformative space that allows clients to discover how they make meaning of their place in the world.
As therapists, we listen for meanings. Listening involves a balance between a psychotherapeutic theoretical framework and the therapist’s own subjectivity. Therapeutic listening has the potential to capture a word that pinpoints the client’s feeling or thought, while also resonating with the therapist’s own intuitive felt sense.
The therapist’s intuitive strength rests with their ability to sense connections between the client’s past and presenting issues. There may be subtle inexplicable shifts and unexpected, emotionally charged responses, which frequently yield moments of authentic listening.
As therapists, we strive to become more attuned to the moment-to-moment ‘being with’ the client, which is a vital component of listening. This therapeutic ‘presence’ involves bringing the therapist’s whole self into the encounter with the client, and being completely in the moment on a multiplicity of levels, physically, emotionally, cognitively and spiritually. The silence of listening is at the very heart of therapeutic presence.