People find themselves coming to counselling for many, many different reasons. It can be, at least at first, an uncomfortable experience. This results in most people wanting it to be over as fast as possible and sorted, done, dusted. Clients or loved ones often ask:
Can you fix this?
How long till I feel better?
How many sessions will it take?
Parents, in particular, when bringing children and young people have all their hopes pinned on you: you are the chosen one, one waft of your magic wand, an enigmatic smile and all will be better and brighter (I know, as I have been that parent.)
Grown-ups or adults sometimes expect me to be some mad mix of a kickass heroine such as Xena Warrior Princess and a Fairy Godmother riding to their rescue over a rainbow on an equally kickass Unicorn….
Yup, about that…
I would so love to be that kickass heroine. Most counsellors want to help people, they want to make the pain go away… why else would they do this, eh? But I don’t have any magic powers. I often lament my lack of crystal ball, time machine and said magic wand. But then again, we’re in to the realms of sliding doors, butterfly and ripple effects resulting in parallel universes… Oh, the What If’s! The would’ve, should’ve, could’ve….
Anyhow, back to our heroine… or rather lack of one. There’s, well, just me! I am me, from Crewe, with a slightly northern, slightly Stokie accent. Quite tall for a girl, a bit plump, a lot of dark hair, pale skin and wears a lot of purple (all descriptions that clients have been known to say).
So, no Magic Powers or Super Hero Capes: what I can do is offer you a safe, confidential, professional space that is yours and yours alone. You can turn off the filter, and say it how it really is. I hope that by providing you with a space that is yours, is confidential and where there is no need for filters will assist you to be able to sort through what is bothering you. I hope that we will be able to look at what you choose to bring in a calm, supportive and gentle manner. I hope that by being alongside you I will be able to make it so that you feel able to really get to grips with your thoughts and feelings and it is my sincere belief that you do have the answer within yourself and you just need some time and support to put your hand on it.
Rather like Marmite, person-centred counselling isn’t for everyone (though it is for more people than Marmite). It can be painful: shining a light at some parts of your life may not be pleasant. However I find myself privileged both as a client and as a counsellor to have witnessed the positive after-effects of person-centred counselling sessions. Clients have been surprised by how different they feel, how their outlook has altered and often small, subtle changes have in fact made big differences.
So, no Super Heroes, magic, fairy dust or sparkly unicorn poop here… although we do do Gremlin Taming… We chase down feral, ankle-biting Gremlins: but that’s a story for another day. We’re starting to hit TL;DR territory.
Image by Jo Litchfield for Neroli Counselling