Frequently Asked Questions


How can talking therapy help me?

Talking about your thoughts and feelings can help you deal with difficult times in your life. If you worry about something over and over in your mind it can make things worse. But talking about it can help you work out what is really troubling you, and explore what you can do about it. Your therapist can then help you work out where your negative feelings and ideas come from and why they are there. With this understanding you can decide what positive changes you can make, and take greater control over your life.

How do I find and decide on a therapist to help me?

I often think it can be a bit mind boggling to work out who would be the best person to see from Person-Centred, Humanistic, Cognitive, Psycho-dynamic, Integrative etc. Always check first that the therapists are registered with an approved body such as the British Association of Counselling & Psychotherapy or the United Kingdom Register of Counsellors and Psychotherapist (UKRCP).
I then suggest that you talk to a few therapists before you make a choice, to ensure that you feel comfortable speaking to them and that their way of working makes sense to you. I provide a 30 minute free no obligation consultation so that you can see where and how I work and whether this would be suitable for you.

What is the difference between counselling and psychotherapy?

Counselling tends to focus on a specific current life problem, while psychotherapy tends to deal with more deep seated and enduring personal issues. Psychotherapy, therefore, tends to go deeper than counselling.

Do you have to rake over the past?

No – some therapies do want to look at past issues in detail, however, I am interested in how your past and behavioural patterns are influencing you now and what strategies you can adopt to provide a more resourceful way forward

How many sessions does it generally take to make a difference?

I work across a number of different therapeutic approaches – see Therapies Used page. These are all focused on finding solutions to the client's challenges. Very little time is spent analysing problems or discussing past history. Instead, exploring what works and how this can be built in to your everyday life will start the shift to a resourceful resolution from the first session. I normally work with my clients up to a maximum of six sessions (one hour per session) by which time my clients have developed positive changes and have tools and techniques that they can use for life. I also provide notes for my clients and downloads to listen to in-between sessions. See my case studies and testimonial page

What about confidentiality?

All qualified therapists take confidentiality very seriously and will follow the guidelines set down by their professional body such as the one that I am a member of - British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy. I will not refer to you by name outside of our therapy sessions and also any notes I take will be coded so that they cannot be referred in any way back to you.

What does it feel like to be hypnotised?

Everybody experiences trance differently - it is a unique experience, but the client is always in control. In general a hypnotic trance is a pleasant, relaxing and tranquil experience. While hypnotised you will be aware of all physical sensations around you, perhaps even noticing sounds you wouldn't otherwise be aware of. After a traumatic incident such as a car accident or violent robbery, a subject under hypnosis may be able to recall with extreme accuracy, car numbers, details etc that their subconscious mind has remembered but their conscious mind has overlooked. When you are fully aware again you may be able to recall everything that happened while you were in your trance, depending how deep your trance was.

Remember way back to this morning when you were half awake and half asleep? You couldn't be bothered to wake yourself up properly but because you weren't really all the way deep down asleep you could appreciate all the comfortable feelings that go with being snuggled down in your bed. Well that's pretty much how it feels to be hypnotised. You're not asleep but you're not awake either. Hypnotherapy is rather like being in a daydream, it is a state called "trance". It might be a deep trance or it might only be a light trance. Whatever level you achieve it's absolutely the right level for you at that moment. With hypnosis there's no right or wrong way to experience it, there's just different ways and they're all good. Many people experience a trance like state while driving a car - the journey is often made on "automatic pilot" mode, the mind being totally occupied by other matters. How many times do you "switch off" in the middle of a boring conversation or lecture, and daydream?

How is Hypnotherapy different to other therapies?

Hypnotherapy is a brief strategic therapy - one that is aimed specifically at finding a resolution to your problem as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible. It is not a long drawn out method of solving a problem. A skilled hypnotherapist will have the ability during a case study to ascertain whether you need to regress back to find the root of the problem, or whether it is more applicable to use future progression techniques to change tomorrow.

Hypnotherapy utilises hypnosis, a state of altered consciousness in which the therapist can help you to access the deeper levels of awareness, to which you are usually oblivious in your normal day-to-day functioning. More often than not, what you are experiencing as a problem, whether emotional, psychological or psychosomatic (i.e. actually producing physical symptoms) is only a surface EFFECT of a deeper underlying mental/emotional CAUSE. It is at these deeper levels of consciousness that we as hypnotherapists work with you, to bring about change in the way you feel, think and behave. A skilled hypnotherapist will always work with your co-operation and in the most caring and nurturing manner.

Does everyone respond to hypnotherapy?

According to the British Society of Clinical Hypnosis (BSCH), it is estimated that 85% of people will respond at some level to clinical hypnotherapy. Some individuals are more likely to respond to hypnotherapy than others and having confidence in the technique helps. Believing change from hypnotherapy is possible is important and if an individual is personally motivated to change, hypnosis is often more likely than if the individual relies completely on their hypnotherapist and doubts whether they have the ability to access their subconscious and make changes happen.
It is important to recognise that it is not possible to hypnotise an individual against their will, and even if an individual is hypnotised, they can reject any suggestion that is not beneficial to them. Hypnotherapy is therefore natural and safe, with no harmful side effects.