I have been set up in Private Practice, working with adults over the age of 18, since August 2019 and am enjoying this work enormously. I constantly reflect on the sense of satisfaction working as a counsellor brings me and I feel very lucky to be doing something I enjoy so much.
As part of my face to face counselling training, I was privileged to work with clients with a range of issues. Often a key focus, was looking at a wide range of losses, such as relationship breakdowns, a lack of suitable housing and work options, a lack of a clear sense of purpose, sometimes leading to a sense of hopelessness. These experiences at times, led to strong feelings linked to a loss of identity and a real sense of uncertainty about life. Stress, depression and anxiety, were also often a factor; within the complex nature of the struggles, people were trying to work their way through.
During the completion of the Diploma in Online Counselling, I was able to work experientially with my peers and use all of the different mediums; as well as learn about best practice standards, for this way of working. This was important, so I would know what it feels like to be the person accessing counselling this way. Since qualifying in this and throughout the period of Covid-19, I have been able to use these new skills across all of the different online modes and can say with confidence, that these services continue to meet clients needs very well.
Please note I am only able to work with individuals resident in the UK.
Previously I had a 20 year career in nursing, so worked with people in distress, due to a range of health conditions. During this time I completed a degree in Gerontology (care of the older adult), as I had a special interest at that time, in working with older people. This complemented my work with older people with Dementia and their families and was the focus of my dissertation. I also completed a District Nursing qualification and worked in the district, providing a wide range of services to meet the needs of patients with long-term conditions and often terminal conditions and their families.
The knowledge I gained through my educational activities and within nursing as a career; I believe, is transferable to counselling practice. I feel this enables me to relate to people's experiences, a little more easily.
I then spent 10 years in education, working in a further education college, supporting students on Health and Social Care courses and Apprenticeships. This often involved supporting students with emotional difficulties, as well as their course requirements. Anxiety and stress were understandably, frequently issues experienced and helping students achieve qualifications, despite these challenges, was rewarding.