Will counselling take away all my problems?
As a qualified Humanistic and Integrative Counsellor, I often get asked things like, ‘Will counselling take away all my problems?’ or ‘Will counselling heal me or and make everything better?’ or ‘Will counselling ‘fix’ me?’ Although I earn my livelihood as a counsellor, my answer to such questions is that no promises can be made about how effective counselling can be; there is not a simple equation to be made from what can emerge when someone trusts the therapeutic process.
In essence, what I have learnt from working with many clients, and from my own personal therapy is that there are no easy fixes or easy solutions to the complexity of being human. Moreover, I have experienced how clients find new self-awareness and different ways of being and relating with self and others.
What might I consider?
Choosing the right therapist for you can feel hard and when searching online through the many different faces of counsellors offering services it can feel confusing.
I offer the following list of questions as a guide that might help as you choose your counsellor:
1) What experience does the counsellor have?
2) Is the counsellor qualified?
3) Where did the counsellor complete their training?
4) How long did their training take to complete?
5) Did the counsellor have personal therapy as part of their training?
6) How does this counsellor work?
7) Is the counsellor a member of a professional organisation like BACP?
8) Where is the counsellor geographically located?
9) How much does each session cost, and can I afford it?
10) Do I have the time to regularly attend sessions?
11) Do I feel ready to talk about my difficult lived experiences?
12) Do I feel ready to explore my beliefs and behaviours, and consider how I may need to change?
13) Is it the right time (emotionally) for me to start counselling?
What happens if a Counselling session is cancelled?
If I have to cancel a session due to illness or something unexpected, you will not be charged.
If you need to cancel, please give me 48 hours notice and then you will not be charged for the missed session.
If either of us is going on holiday, this can be planned for and no charges will apply.
Are the sessions confidential?
Everything you say during your counselling session is confidential. However, I may need to break confidentiality if I feel that you could be at risk to yourself or others. I will always endeavour to inform you before doing this.
As part of my ongoing professional development, I will need to discuss my work with you with my supervisor, who is also bound by confidentiality.
My work complies with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements and I will provide you with a copy of my GDPR privacy notice if you chose to work with me as your counsellor.
How do I pay for my sessions?
We would have already agreed how much you will pay for each counselling session during the Initial Phone Call. People generally pay by BACS and some people pay by cash. In future, my intention is to have a mobile payment terminal to allow people to also pay by card or using their mobile phone. There is an expectation that you pay for your counselling on the day of your session. In some circumstances, people pay at different intervals, but this will need to be agreed during the Initial Phone Call.
What happens if I don’t pay for my sessions?
In the event that your financial circumstances change and you are not able to pay for your sessions, please let me know at before the next session. If you let me know then we can discuss how we might be able to manage this situation, but I do explain this further during the Initial Phone Call.
There is an expectation that you pay for your counselling on the day of your session. If you stop paying me and do not let me know, then your counselling will be paused or brought to an end.
What happens if I stop attending my sessions?
Due to the high demand for counselling, if you stop attending your sessions and do not let me know then your sessions will be put on hold or brought to an end. During the course of your counselling, if you do not attend two sessions, then your counselling will be brought to an end.
What happens if I want to stop attending my sessions and want to continue counselling later?
Although I am not able to keep someone’s sessions open if they do not attend, I am happy to agree to pause counselling and then start at some point in the future. It is not uncommon for some people to take a therapeutic break and return to counselling later, and this can be agreed at a planned ending session. Once you are ready to resume counselling, we can re-contract and discuss the available session times and the best option for you.