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We specialise in working with children, young people and families, but also provide counselling for adults

Adult Therapies

Person-Centred Counselling

Our service is founded on the principles of Carl Rogers and the Person-Centred Approach and all our psychotherapists/counsellors embrace and work within these values. Person-centred therapy focuses upon the power of the relationship between the therapist and the client to affect change. Given the right relationship the individual has within themselves the capacity for growth, change and development. Counselling is a collaborative effort, offering confidentiality in a warm, safe environment. By providing compassion, understanding and acceptance it enables the client to express their true feelings without fear of judgement. “The desire to be understood – truly and deeply understood – is a universal yearning. It is part of our human hunger for contact and for relationship”. (Erskine) We specialise in working with children and young people but also provide counselling for adults. When working with children and young people we initially focus on developing a therapeutic relationship in order to provide a “secure base” to promote safe self-exploration. As we know one way of working does not fit all therefore from this “secure base” the psychotherapists/counsellors work in an integrative way to establish, with the young person, what the best approach is in order to meet their needs.

Transactional Analysis

Transactional Analysis was founded by Eric Berne (1970). It is a theory of personality, communication and child development. The theory explains how we as individuals function in society using transactions to connect and respond with self in relation to other.

This type of psychotherapy focuses on the therapeutic relationship being respectful, non -judgmental and gives equal value to both the client and the psychotherapist creating an I’m Ok-You’re Ok relationship.

Transactional Analysis explains how our adult pattern of life originated in childhood. The terminology used in the theory is written for all to understand and clients are often encouraged to be included in the theoretical models used. This enables us to develop insight into our inner most thoughts, feelings, behaviours towards self, others and the world.

It is only when we gain awareness of how we are in relationships that we can then start to re-decide, and change the beliefs we internalised in childhood. These beliefs can be positive or negative and impact our daily lives which at times can be destructive to self and our relationships whether professional or personal. Dealing with our past experiences can allow us to get needs met as adults, that in childhood were missed.

Psychotherapy supports growth and change intrapsychically for all psychological disorders. As well as a method of therapy for use with individuals, groups, couples and families.

Using the key principles

— people are OK,

— everyone has the capacity to think

— that people decide their own destiny, and these decisions can be changed

Using Transactional Analysis with psychotherapy can facilitate the client’s capacity for self -actualization and healing by learning to recognize and change old, self- limiting patterns of behaviour and attitude. Individuals can then create and maintain effective relationships which are meaningful and enriching.

Gaining autonomy, awareness, spontaneity, problem solving and intimacy so that we can own our thoughts, feelings and behaviour appropriate for the here and now situations.

“The ability to be in the present moment is a major component of mental wellness”

Abraham Maslow

Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)(Trauma Therapy)

“I can honestly say the therapy is the best thing that has ever happened to me”

“Through the therapy I’ve learned to look at things differently and with a new confidence in myself” (Statements by Service Users)

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a recognised and well-researched therapy for overcoming Trauma, Stress, Anxiety and Phobias. When bad or unpleasant things happen you may experience such strong emotions that your brain can become overwhelmed. When this happens the brain does not process the information as it should, by separating the event from the emotion, it stores it in the original ‘raw’ format. The effects of this are that when remembering the event, or a similar event or an association with the event, it can trigger a flash back, panic attack or a total re-traumatisation and can therefore be very distressing and unbearable. It can affect a part or all of your life, including the ability to work or study.

EMDR does not rely on a ‘talking’ therapy, as often talking about the problem can cause re-traumatisation. However it is not a stand-alone therapy; it is essential that a therapeutic relationship is established in order to acquire trust, both in the therapist and the process, and to feel safe and held when working through the issues brought. EMDR involves working with how the brain works, on a conscious and unconscious level, by stimulating the natural information processing tendencies of the brain, resulting in a decrease in symptoms and gaining a different perspective allowing for new associations, insights and better functioning in life.

EMDR is highly effective, preferred by clients and generally of shorter duration than other therapy methods.

Comprehensive Resource Model (CRM) (Trauma Therapy)

Symptoms, addictions, relationship problems, behavioural challenges are the presenting problems that bring people to therapy and GP's doors. These are considered defense responses that follow the profoundly difficult emotions that are too much to experience. Terror, grief, rage, shame, pain and disgust are the feelings that we try to avoid feeling throughout our lives. Our mind buries these feelings. Our defence responses, or symptoms, not only protect us from feeling this intolerable pain, but provide us with the information about the true cause or root issue resulting from the truth of our life. The truth of our life is: What happened (to us), What didn't happen that should have happened, Conflicts and paradoxical feeling about needing/loving/trusting people that hurt us, How our life has been influenced by these things. These truths create emotional pain, fear or threat that can be intolerable or unbearable. Because our nervous system cannot allow us to feel that pain that fully and completely our brains make sure that we have ways to avoid those painful feelings and we call these defence responses. They are actually the symptoms mentioned above that bring us to therapy and are driven by the need to fight, flight, freeze, hide, avoid submit or dissociate from those experiences and the pain that goes with them. In the CRM process we are guiding the client to access within themselves the resources of their mind, body and spirit that makes feeling painful feelings possible. When we can feel the most painful things completely and step into the pain fully, the need for our defence responses (symptoms, addictions etc) are no longer needed. Our nervous system does not need to avoid, fight, hide or bury the things that have influenced how we have operated and related to ourselves and to others.

Inner Child Therapy

Adults have a tendency to disregard or belittle their childhood experiences, often appearing reluctant to acknowledge that their difficulties and struggles are anything out of the ordinary, and certainly nothing remarkable. Denying what has happened in this way works as a powerful defence mechanism, minimising childhood experiences and blocking out any pain or suffering that may have been experienced. However by denying their experiences they are also denying their Inner Child, leaving it abandoned, isolated and unacknowledged in its role as survivor. Research suggests that many physical and emotional ailments are as a result of us disregarding our childhood experiences. Therefore by locating the Inner Child and no longer denying the difficulties the child experienced can assist in improving and developing self-compassion, self-confidence, self-esteem and feeling physically and mentally healthier.

The approach we use is a combination of the non-dominant hand technique, a method promoted by Lucia Capacchione, alongside working in a person-centred way in exploring childhood memories. Helping the client to stand in their child’s shoes and experience their childhood from that perspective. Capacchione suggests that our non-writing hand has withered from not being used and has not developed from the early years. Using this hand can allow us immediate access to the primarily non-verbal right brain, responsible for our emotional expression and intuition as well as governing our visual/spatial perception. Irrelevant of whether a person is right or left handed it appears that this phenomenon holds true. By using the non-dominant hand the client is able to express their feelings more frankly and powerfully, tapping into the instinctive and emotional memory necessary for healing the Inner Child. The idea is to write a dialogue with the non-dominant hand representing the Child, and the dominant (writing) hand representing the adult self (or sometimes the Inner Parent) therefore communicating with both hemispheres of the brain and encouraging understanding, acceptance and empathy.

Adoption Counselling

Adoption is an arrangement for the upbringing of children whose parents by birth are no longer able to care for them. It is an arrangement which is socially recognised and regulated and, as such, reflects the current values of society. Adoption evokes strong emotions, touching as it does ideas and feelings about the family, belonging, parenting, separation, attachment, loss, heredity and environment. These emotions are not only experienced by the adoptee but also family and friends of both the birth and adoptive family.

The Adoption and Children Act 2002 requires that counselling for anyone whose life has been affected by adoption i.e. adoptees, adopters, adoptive family members, or birth family members, must be carried out by a registered adoptions counsellor. At Time to Listen we have counsellors trained and registered to provide adoption counselling.

Funding grants successfully awarded from the following have enabled Time to Listen to thrive and grow as an essential therapeutic service despite the COVID-19 pandemic. This funding has enabled Time to Listen to continue being responsive to the needs of our local communities.

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