Counselling can make a difference. When you feel overwhelmed by your difficulties, counselling offers a safe space in which to explore your feelings and thoughts. Sometimes, just feeling understood may be enough and can help to alleviate some symptoms. However, counselling is also a space where I can help you make sense of your experience so that you gain a greater clarity and understanding of what is happening to you. This leaves you feeling more in control of yourself and your life which helps give you the confidence to make positive change.
People ask me for help for many different reasons and situations. Maintaining confidentiality is paramount so I will describe just a few general situations here.
Loss and Bereavement
There is no right or wrong way to grieve. It is a very individual and painful experience. When someone close to you dies you may feel shock, numbness, devastation and sadness. These feelings can be overwhelming and leave you with thoughts of blame, guilt and punishment. Perhaps you also feel angry. Asking for help may be difficult at first but I will support you through your grief and help you to cope with your emotions.
Low self-esteem and sense of identity
In the past you may always have put others first and your friends often turned to you for help. Generally, you tried not to think too much about yourself and perhaps you kept yourself quite busy. But now things have got on top of you and have left you feeling down or slightly depressed or anxious. There doesn’t seem to be anybody to turn to as friends all seem to be too occupied with their own lives to listen. You may feel ignored or unloved, judged against or judging, and you are left feeling alone and isolated.
Counselling can help to reduce the anxiety and make sense of the confusion so that your distress can be thought about in a considered way. This leaves you feeling more in control of your emotions which brings about a greater clarity and understanding of your needs and expectations. Life can then feel more manageable.
You may feel very anxious and depressed and perhaps there has been trauma in your life which has left you feeling mixed-up and overwhelmed. Through the emotional turmoil, it feels difficult to make sense of what is happening to you. Maybe you feel suicidal or sometimes wish you were dead. Taking that first step to phone may feel pointless or a sign of weakness, In fact, it shows courage and an acceptance that you have some difficulties you need help with. What happens from this point is an individual thing. Perhaps you just want to pour out your story even if it doesn’t seem to make any sense to you. Maybe you need to take it a lot slower and only share your thoughts when it feels comfortable for you to do so. The important point here is that there is no right or wrong way of being in counselling. From the start, we will go on a journey together which may have twists and turns along the way. We may go through a few dark tunnels but I will always be there supporting and encouraging you. As you emerge into the light, life can look quite different – perhaps more colourful and encouraging – leaving you with hope for the future. This journey can be as short or as long as you wish until you feel strong enough to walk on your own.
The examples above are not fixed. In reality, they overlap. It is just a way of putting into words what you may be feeling.
Also, they are not the full picture as there are many other circumstances in which counselling can support and help you through times of distress. If you would like to take that first step, then please get in touch.