Finding the right counsellor
Updated: Sep 12, 2020
Tips on how to feel confident in your choice
Choosing who you work with is an incredibly important decision, it is a relationship that requires you to feel safe and comfortable, to be vulnerable and bring painful parts of yourself. Counselling much like our emotions can be a complex mix of joy and pain and all that is in between.
“It is in the space between inner and outer world, which is also the space between people–the transitional space–that intimate relationships and creativity occur.” D.W. Winnicott
Respectfully and competently handling that complexity so that you can begin to move forward, feel that you have gained a greater awareness of your own emotional responses and behaviours and are able to build meaningful and healthy relationships and feel more confident in yourself, is key. It is therefore especially important that you take some time in deciding who you can work with.
Some of my tips for finding the right counsellor are:
You want to work with someone with a speciality,
You want a style of counselling, or want to avoid one,
You want to work face to face, online, telephone or a blended mix,
You can easily get to their location,
You have any other preferences.
Check the BACP find a therapist directory or one of the other governing bodies [NCS or UKCP are the other main regulatory bodies]. We are not all registered with all of them, but if we are with one of them you can know
We completed an Accredited Course or,
We passed a Certificate of Proficiency.
We are committed to continuing professional development,
We work within an Ethical Framework,
When we renew each year, we recommit to the requirements of the registering body, and can be audited.
Read their website if they have one
Read about them,
Look for someone who ‘speaks to you’,
Consider their ‘style’ and whether you think it will work for you.
Consider starting with a short phone call
Ask them any on top questions, practical and issue specific,
Get a sense of what they are like.
Have a first session
Ask any more questions you may have,
Consider agreeing some more sessions to feel it out if you do not want to jump to a conclusion,
Do I feel comfortable/safe?
Do I like their manner towards me?
Could I be open and vulnerable with them?
Did you feel able to agree a way forward?
Do not continue with a counsellor if it does not feel right. It is your counselling and needs to be right for you.
I’m happy to talk it through with you, help you decide if I am the right counsellor for you and if we can work in partnership together.
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