Person Centred Counselling

Person Centred Counselling is similar to other types of talking therapy in that it is;

  • Confidential (within the usual legal requirements)
  • Practised in weekly or fortnightly one hour sessions
  • Based on therapist and client talking about the client’s problems or emotional discomfort
  • Regulated within a strict code of ethics – in my case the *BACP Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions

Person centred counselling, though, has its own unique features which are not found in other forms of therapy. Developed from Carl Rogers’ research on what is most effective in the therapy room a person centred counsellor works with Rogers’ three main ‘Core Conditions’;

  • Non judgemental acceptance of the client and their issues
  • Deep empathy with the client’s feelings
  • Congruence – emotional honesty

When a counsellor consistently works within these Core Conditions the client is able to build trust in the therapeutic relationship and the willingness to share painful or shameful memories will deepen.

Person centred counselling goes beyond the surface layers of events and personalities. It reaches to the core of our discomfort and offers lasting relief and self-acceptance. It builds a sense of self based on our true nature, and expands the possibilities for the future.


Individual Counselling 

One to one counselling is about developing a particular kind of relationship between the client and the counsellor based on trust, respect, empathy and care for the client. It seems that someone really taking the time to listen is becoming a rare event in our modern lives and we underestimate how important it is as a part of caring for each other.

Building trust and rapport is an essential part of the early stages of the therapeutic relationship and this will happen at the pace that is comfortable for you. I will give you the time and space to get used to this new kind of relationship and how person centred counselling works.

I understand how important confidentiality is when you are wondering how much you can say. A key part of the ethical framework within which I work* states that, as far as possible, whatever you disclose in the counselling room is held in the strictest confidence. I also know how risky it feels to start talking about painful or shameful events which you may never have spoken about before. I will listen without judging you or what you are telling me. This is what person centred counselling is about; being given the time and support you need to tell your story.

Couples Counselling

When a couple comes for counselling it usually means that they have lost the ability to communicate properly with each other so need a third person to help that process.

Often the situation has built up over months, maybe years and there are patterns of behaviour and thinking which keep couples ‘stuck’ in a loop which neither can see a way out of. Sometimes one or both have a history of poor relationships in their family background which is affecting their ability to relate to their current partner.

My skill in working with couples is about treating both people with equal care and respect, allowing contradictory positions to be equally valid and gently untangling the misunderstandings and assumptions which so often keep relationships in unhealthy patterns. Relationships can be a source of great joy but also great pain and I know how important it is to care sensitively for people when they are most vulnerable.

Working with relationships is some of the most demanding but most rewarding work I do. To see a couple become more loving and open to each other is always a moving experience.”

shamanism, cumbria, counselling, wigton

Telephone and Skype Counselling

Sometimes it is simply too difficult or time consuming to come for face to face sessions so I offer counselling by telephone or Skype. This can be used either to bridge a long gap between face to face sessions or a purely telephone or Skype counselling arrangement can be agreed. Much of what has already been said about face to face counselling applies to this kind of counselling. Having someone take the time to listen to your story with care and compassion is a transforming experience in itself. Once a counselling relationship has been developed the method of communication ceases to be important.

Supervision for counsellors and other caring professions

As part of the *Ethical Framework, all counsellors are required to have monthly supervision with another counsellor who has been additionally trained as a supervisor. This essential support helps counsellors to continue their work and remain emotionally open and healthy. Supervision is important too for clients as a more detached onlooker can offer a different viewpoint. I have my own supervisor who supports my work and I also offer this service to other counsellors or related professions.

Humans are naturally empathic, so caring for people in crisis is a difficult experience. If we have this experience repeatedly without being cared for ourselves, we run the risk of becoming disconnected from our emotions, becoming too well defended or alternatively we end up overwhelmed by our own and other people’s emotions. Either outcome is emotionally unhealthy and ultimately will cause us problems, physically or psychologically.

Caring for the carers is one of the most important tasks, and caring for ourselves as carers is part of our responsibility to ourselves and others around us.”

I can offer you my experience as a counsellor and supervisor to give you the space to release the backlog of emotions and help you learn how to manage your emotional health so that your work can continue in a balanced and sustainable way.BACP 009794_logo

*The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions