Why use Therapy?
I use an integrative approach to counselling and psychotherapy. This derives from my academic training and my own world view. I have studied other traditional psychoanalytic theories, but always return to what I feel is right, an integrative approach. My integrative/existential training has provided the background I needed for my own personal growth and self development. I am more self accepting, self aware, genuine, authentic and confident to be myself. I also integrate aspects of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Solutions Focused applications.
From an existential perspective I focus on freedom of choice in shaping the client’s life. I explore by means of clarification and description the meaning of life and existence. I find it more important to ask how or what the client is experiencing as opposed to why questions. In contrast to this I intend to integrate Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which I believe to be an extremely important development for the extension of existential thought and practice.
I have never needed a professional front, but am now confident to be myself and to project similar freedoms for my clients. The existential approach significantly underlies my work. For example I never think how can I treat, change or cure a client, but how can I develop a therapeutic relationship with this individual for them to use for personal growth and development. I believe that clients are unique individuals with their own particular strengths and possibilities.
I do not judge what is right for my client nor do I wish to take responsibility. At the same time I see that I have a responsibility to my client. I firmly believe that if a client is treated with warmth and respect, that person will value him or herself and become confident and therefore more able to function effectively. Underlying strength will begin to re-assert it’s self in useful positive choices allowing the client to be able to find inner strength and establish her or him self in the world once again.
I never impose my values, opinions and expectations onto my clients. I view myself and others as a unique individual, and because of that understanding I have come to see others for what they are. That is a unique individual with their own world view, hierarchies and belief systems. I try to be informed about the historical background, traditions and values of my client. In areas where I feel that I am lacking in certain knowledge I will seek resources to assist me in this and I regularly monitor my functioning through consultation and supervision. I consider it vital that I maintain an open mind to the presence of gender, racial, cultural and socio-economic diversity and to be aware of unintentional bias that could greatly influence the counselling process.
I know that I relate well to people at all levels of society. My practice is varied and my clients are multi-cultural. This adds a huge amount of interest and challenge. I felt the best way to work multi-culturally and to ensure the incorporation of non-discriminatory into my practice would be to work within the code of ethics of all counsellors according to the ukcp anti-discriminatory practice.
In addition to this my understanding of the dynamics of oppression, racism, discrimination and stereotyping enabled me to work with people from different cultures and backgrounds. This also includes people from different age groups, sexual orientation, physical and learning abilities and social economic status.