Counselling is for everyone....
My counselling philosophy is founded on a belief in the healing power of relationship. A belief that emotional, psychologically based, suffering can be healed by an appropriate therapeutic relationship. A relationship that is compassionate, non-judgemental, empathic, open, honest and trustworthy. A belief that is evidenced by neurobiological research on the response of our neural pathways to a different relational experience. An experience that can move us from anxiety and fear to confidence and fulfilment.
When we feel that we cannot cope with life for whatever reason, at whatever age and to whatever degree it is usually also as a result of relationship but a relational environment that has somehow let you down. For example a child when it is born is vulnerable; it only knows fear and for a very good reason: without fear our pre-historic brain would not have responded to threat: our survival chances would have been very low. New born babies need comforting: a consistent and positive relational experience that is responsive to the babies’ physical and emotional needs.
They are not born with the benefit of experience: their only experience of life comes from the response that they receive. If a baby does not receive that comfort in the form of a positively responsive love then fear and lack of trust can remain into later life. Our infant growing brains respond to this form of love and that comfort lays down our neural experience and expectation of and for life.
As adults we can feel more or less secure and find ourselves affected to greater or lesser degrees by our experiences. It may be that our early life left us well equipped to deal with later life but that for some reason current experience is leaving us shaken and doubtful. The neural pathways continue to regulate us based on past experience and present environment. The brain while significantly shaped in early life continues to register and retain experience.
The counselling relationship is intended to enable a different experience and to create just that safe environment which may have been absent in the past or is now missing in the present. This different experience, research shows, will create a more certain inner world from which to be the person you want to be, feel comfortable being, and to be who you truly are. This could include a more existential ‘meaning of life’ exploration if that is helpful to you.