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self care

august 9th 2017

The picture next to this blog entry is of my office in Caversham today. Therapy comes in many different forms, and I sniffled my way through 3 sessions today all of which were very different.

First session was play therapy based, this is a fantastic type of therapy aimed at children however when I was training we regularly took part in adult play therapy and it opened up so many avenues to talk about. Play therapy does a variety of things; it opens doors for adults and children to talk about, making the session more relaxed and positive. It also allows children to explore and talk during play (something which they are comfortable with).

Second session was talking through attachment styles and why past relationships shape present ones. Something i am passionate about, our relationships we hold as children and teenagers majorly effects the relationships we crave and attach to in our adult life. For example, my own attachment style is dismissive-avoidant. This means that I am comfortable without emotional relationships because I crave independence and security from myself. In the past I  would often avoid relationships all together because distancing myself from rejection hurt less. During training I learned all this about myself and becoming self-aware of this made my life harder at first because I had opened a can of worms, but then I was able to change that part of me who didn't want emotion from anyone. I realized that by not having emotional relationships I was also doing myself out of support which I did need as a single mum of two children. Why did I have this attachment style? Because as a child my parents had a rough marriage and so me and my brothers became self sufficient, I was so used to not having that emotion from my own parents that I now felt like I never needed it. It felt alien to be emotional, it felt strong to be on my own, it felt strong to only depend on myself.

Third session was person centered. An approach which gives the client the lead in the session. It is full of silences and word splurge, but these things are needed when first starting therapy; a) so i cant get to know why you've come to me and b) silences mean you are processing what you have just said in a healthy safe way.

So there you have it therapists also have pasts, some not so good. We are just as human as your are, but if you want to find out why you end up in the same relationships then book a session and lets find out.

The type of therapy I am using myself this evening is; Green tea, a film of my choice and a little bit of me time. Self care is a huge type of therapy and I challenge anybody reading this to go and book some in.

Here are some links to trusted professionals who can help you with self care.  for a fantastic cardio based yoga class. for several types of massage from sarah. 

Both of these lovely women and their businesses are based in Caversham/Emmer Green.

Why is counselling better than talking to a close friend?

august 7th 2017

Today I've made 6 peanut butter sandwiches, porridge, pasta, breakfast cereal, a picnic. I've walked the dog, showered the children, hoovered the house for it to be messy 5 minutes later. I've washed up four times, put a load of washing on and hung it out to dry. I've replied to approximately 10 emails and organised play dates for this week. I've answered to 'mum' god knows how many times and wiped far too many bums for a Monday.

Why am i telling you this? Because this is the type of rant that I will purposely ring my friends to tell them about, after I've finished ranting I'll think to myself 'why do they even answer my calls and texts, I'm so annoying'. And then in the next breath I take the same friend also rants for about the same length of time on almost the exact same topic. 

'Ahh' and I relax, 'this is why they don't block my calls'

My friends are fabulous therapists in the fact they listen and they reassure me I'm not the only one going completely insane. So why do we pay for counselling and Psychotherapy?

Firstly in the counselling room, there are no emotional attachments, there is no need to feel guilty for talking about yourself too much, this time is yours and yours only (how amazing!!!). There is no need to feel as though you owe your counselor anything emotionally (Its our job, and i'll tell you a secret, we actually love our job. In fact we've spent a lot of money and time training just for the privilege of guiding you through tough times.) 

Counselling is a safe place to express any emotion you feel at that time, we are professional, confidential and unbiased.  Let me break that down, professionally we will work together to set up safe boundaries that we both are happy with, including what happens when see each other in public? Confidential means, there is no chance of Chinese whispers or your deepest, darkest secrets being leaked. Unbiased, we are not here to judge you, we see many people everyday who have many different problems. You are our client and our best interest is within you. We aren't interested in your mum or your friend or your ex-husband. We only are interested in helping you create better relationships and guiding you through accepting yourself, situations and emotions.

When you air certain information or feelings with people close to you, they hold a stake in your life, we don't. We allow you to explore complicated emotions and then you are free to carry on the rest of your day as you please.

We are armed with a tool box full of helpful techniques to harness relaxation, help you sort out tangled emotions, tangled relationships and more. 

I wonder if you've had negative relationships in the past, because counselors are role models for how relationships should be conducted and we can help you create your own boundaries in order to keep your mental health safe.

A huge difference in counselling and talking with a friend is that, a counselor won't tell you what to do, they encourage self reflection and decision making. This may seem hard at first, but in the future your decision making skills will improve for the better because of it. 

And finally the most obvious reason, is that a counselor is trained with the knowledge of how each circumstance you've been in could be effecting your present.

If this hasn't convinced you to see a therapist rather than tell all your friends then feel free to contact me with any questions.

Just to make you aware, whilst writing this the minion film has been replaying the background on Netflix, my children have asked for more food, My dog has barked repeatedly at my cat and I've realized I've left the jacket potatoes in the oven too long. I'm just as human as you are. Time for some self care for me.