About Me

Here you are welcome to read more about the experience I have to date, and my journey in becoming a counsellor.

My Experience

Through my studies at the University of South Wales and additional specialised training (please see Home for further details), I have been academically taught and given the chance to experientially practice working in the following therapeutic approaches:

  • CBT

  • Existentialism

  • Gestalt

  • Person Centred 

  • Psychodynamic

  • Transactional Analysis

I have volunteered with several charitable organisations (YCS, Women's Aid and New Pathways), and am currently working as both a private practice and a sessional counsellor for New Pathways, a Lecturer in Counselling at Cardiff and Vale College and provide online support with Hope Support Services.

Through my diverse working life, I have gained experience in counselling individuals with the following issues:

  • Abuse

  • Addiction

  • Anxiety

  • Autism

  • Bullying

  • Childhood trauma

  • Chronic Pain

  • Depression

  • Disability

  • Domestic Violence

  • Grief and Loss

  • Health issues

  • Low self-esteem

  • Perfectionism

  • Relationship difficulties

  • Sexual violence

  • Suicide

  • Trauma and PTSD

I have studied with passion the neurological effects that trauma can have on our minds and bodies, which is a continually influencing the way I work. 

My Story

As you sit across from me you may feel curious, or even uneasy at the thought of knowing so little about me when I'm likely to learn a great deal about you. It's a very important part of the process for the balance to always tip this way, but I appreciate that you may need to know just enough to feel comfortable that I'm human too. I make just as many mistakes and poor judgements as you; none of which I can bring myself to regret however, as it has led me to the unending privilege of listening to the unfiltered lives of others. 

I began my career as a teacher in a multicultural secondary school in Wales, and quickly came to the conclusion that each pupil I taught was a universe; a unique combination of societal norms, generational influence, choices made, or not made, and outlook on life. Sometimes it would be significant political events that would illuminate the difference between us all, or sometimes it would be simple questions, such as "what is your favourite day of the week?". Both big and small differences alike made working life enjoyable and were a cause for celebration, until they were not.

 

Looking at a classroom full of individuals, it became apparent that we all roll a dice when we're born. We can be born to a loving family and live in a safe home, or we could have abusive parents, or find that we need to seek refuge from a war torn country at the age of eight. Does this make it our fault? Of course not, but we have to live with the result in whatever way we possibly can. 

I became simultaneously very curious and frustrated at the idea that our formative years create deeply entrenched beliefs about ourselves; this is great when we're constantly told we're good enough, but the consequences are terrible when we're told we're bad or unworthy. Even though I primarily work with adults now, this is the very reason why I am eternally ready to decipher the emotional codes that are created in childhood, if that is where you would like the sessions to go.

The decision to change careers was gut wrenching; it took nearly a year of travelling and working in completely unrelated jobs to pluck up the courage to ask myself the question "what else can I do?". The truth is that counselling was always there, I just needed to finally challenge an assumption that I'd made long ago about my ability to do it. I learnt during this time that there's a gulf that lies between simple and easy. I still find my confidence drains away from time to time, but I've slowly learnt to make friends with this unusual superpower. Feeling not good enough is a universal experience that can be used as a signal to keep checking in with ourselves; if I'm truly not doing a good enough job right now, what would be good enough?

In the summer of 2017 I embarked on the journey of becoming a counsellor, telling myself that even if I only lasted a few weeks, I would still learn something that I was sure would help me personally. And that turned out to be very true, but not quite as easily as I'd hoped. You don't get to passively learn how to be a counsellor; you have to allow yourself to be every inch as vulnerable as your future clients will be. 

So, when I sit across from you and listen to your story, I too have a story that will have led to the point where we meet. And I cannot promise you will "be fixed" as I do not believe you are broken. I cannot promise we will find all the answers you're looking for. But I can promise that we'll muddle through it together.