Accredited Psychotherapist, Life Coach and Supervisor
I am an accredited Psychotherapist (UKCP) and Supervisor. I have worked and practiced throughout a broad range of psychological services; from the fast-paced, high volume caseload of a typical NHS setting, through various charitable organisations and trusts, as well as my own private practice which is based in Exeter, Devon and London. I practice as an Integrative Psychotherapist offering both, brief and long term psychotherapy and counselling.
How do I work?
In my practice:
I draw upon a broad spectrum of psychotherapeutic knowledge and experience, and I adjust my approach to match the unique set of needs that each individual client or couple/family I work with deserve and require.
Is rarely one dimensional and often requiring more than one method or solution, and it is the careful weaving and application of the many approaches that for me, is what it means to be an integrative psychotherapist so that I may best meet the needs of each individual client.
I am flexible and collaborative in my theoretical approach depending on each client’s particular needs. I can draw upon the most effective tools and techniques from a number of schools and traditions including:
Psychodynamic theory and principles are used to understand our early life experiences, our often complex life stories and provides the deep insight into understanding our triggers, and moments of emotional dysregulation that are often the driving factors that form our eventual thinking patterns and moods. Psychodynamic theory allows us to explore the likely unconscious structures that have formed the the fabric of our patterns of behaviour.
Cognitive Behavioural (CBT):
CBT is used to work with a multitude of emerging mental health and wellbeing difficulties. It is particularly useful in organising the thoughts and feelings that often overwhelm us. Whether you are struggling with feelings of anxiety, depression, phobias or compulsions CBT can help define and understand the ‘here and now’ aspect of living. CBT is a very structured and engaging intervention seeking to understand the relationship between our thoughts, feelings and behaviours and how we can analyse our cognitions and behaviour to help us better understand the decisions we make. Not always an easy task but its ability to break down and challenge our diffculties in a solution-focused way supports our often complex choices. CBT is a an approach that goes beyond the therapy space and into the world with us and is a very popular choice for clients wanting a very practical approach and becomes an effective problem solving tool.
Humanistic (Gestalt & Person- Centred):
Humanistic approaches in psychology are used to understand and own the choices in front of us. In order to make some of the brave decisions that lie ahead of us a Humanistic approach helps us to stay central within our narrative and seeks a deeper understanding of our qualities, potential and the important role we have to play in our transformation. It can move us beyond the place of discovery and into the position of action, whilst holding the deeply important aspect of finding compassion for who we are. It is a vital approach when seeking to gain confidence and take some ownership of your next steps. The person centred aspect ensures the brave decisions you will make are considering your own sense of self-care and finding the compasion so often needed for the vulnerable parts so often present during moments of significant change.
Existential and The Transpersonal:
An Existential and Transpersonal approach will provide you with the space to further understand life’s big questions… and there are many!
What is life?
What is true freedom?
How can I find deeper meaning in my work? My family? My marriage/relationships?
…and why do these questions hold such weight?
Using Existential & Transpersonal approaches we can seek new or additional perpsectives that bring a greater sense of agency, insight and a felt sense of increased satisfaction.
Using Dream Interpretation:
Carl Jung describes our dreams as the ‘gateway to the unconscious’, and I always encourage my clients to write down any dreams that they may have as these often point to a hidden part of the Self which is important for you, the client, to be aware of and understand at a greater depth. There may be messages located in the unconscious, or hidden parts of yourself which you have suppressed but now need rediscovering in order to move forward, and my way of working is therefore designed to help you reveal these parts of yourself in a contained and safe environment.
All of these theories, techniques and skills are designed to help you better understand yourself, some of the theories suit specific moments and different kinds of challenges. In longer term psychotherapy you may experience using nearly all of the above mentioned theories and for some of the more brief and targeted goal-focused work we may be just working with a very succinct and efficient method and model.
Other ways I can help:
Not all of the challenges that come into psychotherapy are appropriate for psychotherapy as an intervention or solution, or maybe psychotherapy is not yet indicated as the first stage of your recovery and transformation. My broad range of experience will allow me to conclude assessments and our work with recommendations to other services and I have a vast list of local and national contacts that may be better suited to provide you with the support you require for your next steps OR even work side by side your time in therapy.
In these circumstances I could be:
Referring you to a GP
Writing to your GP to ask for a referral to your local Community Mental Health Team
Referring you to another more appropriate local service which could include interventions that provide very specific and tailored support for issues such as; eating disorder clinics/current domestic violence support/drug and alcohol addiction support/housing and social servcies
I could be signposting you to national websites and other useful online resources
Making recommendations for a different kind of practitioner and referring you to a colleague or peer I think may be more suited to meet your specific needs.
In all cases where another service may be indicated I would be discussing this with you in depth and any requests for further support would only happen with your express instruction and consent. Devon Psychotherapy and Counselling cannot contact other services on your behalf without your written consent.