What is Counselling?

Who looks outside, dreams Who looks inside, awakes. – Carl Gustav Jung

We all are trying to understand our life experiences sometimes, often in times when we actually loose the understanding or direction. Life and its experiences just become difficult, confusing, emotional, sad and overwhelming or even hard to live. Or we experience continues never ending stress, demands or we find ourselves living someone else’s life than the one we pictured for ourselves. Outside circumstances pushes us into difficult decisions or we lose not only people on the way but as well places, experiences, feelings, things and these trigger feelings within us what we might have not feel ever before. We have to transition to new environments, cultures, places or in between jobs and careers. Sometimes we might experience maltreatment from people we love or trust and this takes a high toll on us influencing our everyday life triggering a lot of feelings such as shame, anger, sadness, confusion or we just become numb to things and experiences.

Maybe you are experiencing stress or depressive feelings, maybe you just don’t feel being yourself lately. Maybe it seems as there is no one who listens or is just too hard to share. Maybe you might feel lost or reached a point in life where direction feels very blurry or non-existent. Maybe something significant has changed, you moved, lost someone, are on a crossroad and suddenly it feels harder even much harder than ever before.

In these moments you might hear advises from people around such as…

‘Maybe counselling would help you.’

‘Have you thought of talking to someone about this?’

Maybe your initial reaction to these words is that they might think that something is wrong with you. Such reaction is natural and likely might be coming from societal negative thinking about mental health issues. As a society we have engraved believe that negative feelings should not be felt and if someone ends up seeking counselling for their mental state they are considered weak and not strong enough to deal with them on their own.

This can’t be more farther from the truth. We are complex beings who experience wide range of emotions on both sites of the spectrum as positive so as well negative. All of these feelings are natural, but often we are not thought how to guide them or allowed to feel them. So our coping mechanism to fit in such environments is to push them deep deep down. They don’t disappear and as everything is transformed into something else, so are our feelings and emotions staying within our bodies. Yet we feel comfortable enough to see professional help for our physical body issues but often we deny the same to our mental body, yet they are interconnected and part of our self. Sometimes our friends and family don’t know how to help us and their advices might not feel right for us.

Counselling is a process where you become aware. A professional creates a space for you to feel and express whatever is needed within agreed boundaries. The therapeutic relationship is build between you and the therapist and this relationship offers healing benefits. It is not one way journey and the therapist is not source of advice, but rather it is cooperative journey side by side where you can feel heard, not judged and allowed to express what you need to express finding your own way within the problem you are trying to understand or within life itself. If you are honest and willing to put in some work therapeutic process can be very beneficial process even lifechanging event.

Counselling can happen in various ways. It can be traditionally in a counselling room where you talk to your therapist and they offer you their observations or maybe coping tools or solely a space for you to express your thoughts, emotions and feelings. This depends on therapists theoretical background for their work as it depends what personality you are and what issue you are bringing into the room. Not every therapist might be a good fit for you as not every approach will be good fit either.

There are other therapeutic ways which can be helpful. Such are art-therapy, where without previous artistic practice or knowledge you can use artistic tools to express your emotions or help you to understand yourself and your situation better. Another way to do similar as face to face therapy is walk and talk therapy. This is done outside in green places and offer another beneficial level to the process as outdoors and walking have a profound proved benefits to improve mental health.

Outdoor environment can offer relaxation from often perceived as ‘formal’ in counselling room therapy and as well add another level to the therapeutic process as there is possibility to ‘interact’ with the environment such as weather changes, different impulses from different walking paths etc.

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The ways I offer in person are traditional talking therapy, additional arty and creative tools within talking therapy and walk and talk therapy in outside green spaces of (at the moment) Edinburgh. Besides in person therapy I offer online counselling from your preferred space meeting ‘on the screen’. But you might find different ways from other therapists as well.

As mentioned before going to counselling can trigger anxious feelings and nervous response. This is very natural and we can work with that.

If you are in UK and you would like to undertake therapy with me please schedule directly an ‘initial consultation’: