I have 20 years experience, offering caring, non-judgemental counselling to help you discover ways to manage and heal the things in your life that cause you unrest.
I work with adults (individuals and couples), and teenagers, covering all general issues including:
I enjoy working with couples to help them develop the skills to find their own solutions for their relationship. For many couples this entails improving their communication skills, to learn how to talk and to listen in a way that leads to better understanding without escalating conflict. As couples learn to listen and talk effectively they are more able to hear each other without becoming defensive. This leads to a much clearer understanding of each others wants and needs, and a deeper respect for one another’s vulnerable parts. A new found respect and understanding results in both people feeling more cared for in the relationship, and the couple finds themselves much more able to come to joint decisions about their lives.
People who want to extend themselves and make life work better for them will find counselling for personal growth very rewarding. Taking time to fully understand their life helps them to reach a more grounded place, from which they are able to manage the tougher times when they come along without being overwhelmed. Some people come to see me when they find themselves yet again in damage control mode. They are in a mess that has a familiar feel about it, and yet they find themselves carrying out knee jerk reactions – doing what they’ve always done and become disillusioned with the results. By this time they are usually feeling hopeless and helpless, because they’re down the same path again, and they don’t know what to do differently.
Counselling can bring people back to connecting with a stronger sense of who they are. They become more intimately aware of all the parts of themselves, and by understanding who they are they can tap into being able to trust in themselves. Clients often tell me they are surprised by the huge changes they achieved in their life as they become more aware of the things they need to put in place for them to be happy. People find that the relationships they develop with other people are much easier to be in. They become more skilled at maintaining appropriate boundaries with family, friends and colleagues, and this in turn encourages more respectful and considerate behaviour towards them from others. Many of these things can be gained by learning practical skills in counselling such as assertiveness and mindfulness.
For some clients personal growth comes through examining the painful and upsetting things that have happened in their life. Sharing our story can release years of tension and help us to settle inside ourselves. Getting an objective response from someone who wasn’t involved can give us a new perspective on our past, and allow us to move on in a new way.
Some people talk of having tried many diets, only resulting in them perhaps losing weight initially, and then putting even more back on. Some talk of spending hours in the gym doing exercise, losing little or no weight, and not being able to keep this effort up. Others talk of the daily battle they have when their lives have been taken over by an eating disorder. If any of this is familiar to you, I can support you in learning ways to manage your relationship with food, instead of it managing you. You can learn to nurture all aspects of your life in a sustainable way, and to develop a balanced lifestyle that supports the health and wellness of both your mind and body.
I have found it very important for people struggling with anxiety, stress, and depression to have a place where their issues can be heard and acknowledged. Having their thoughts and feelings really listened to helps to bring a sense of calm, that contributes greatly to the persons capacity to get the most out of their counselling. Anxiety is very treatable. I like to focus on helping clients to learn skills that will enable them to manage their symptoms and regain a sense of control that the anxiety has stolen from them. Even a small skill that helps someone change what is happening for them, gives them a feeling of being able to manage it better. This generates hope and turns on the light at the end of the tunnel, which for some people has been extinguished for a long time. As people panic less, they are more able to think their way through things clearly, and manage those situations more positively.
There can be numerous reasons for any one of us to suddenly find ourselves experiencing grief and loss. It is a process full of a wide range of emotions, and is an individual experience for everyone. Some people work through this process quite quickly, while for others, it may take years.
It may be the breakdown of a relationship, or the death of a partner / parent / child (including miscarriage or termination) / friend, the death of a treasured pet, an inability to conceive, it may be caused by the addiction of a loved one to drugs or alcohol, or perhaps you have been made redundant. Whatever your grief and loss is about – I can offer you a safe and confidential place to share your pain, and support you non-judgementally within your process so you can begin to make sense of it in your own time, which in turn will gradually help you find a different perspective and move on with your life.
I am very experienced counselling abuse victims to become abuse survivors. Sadly people who have been abused, often find themselves moving from one abusive relationship to another, which can leave them losing hope that they can change their lives. I can support you to grow a stronger sense of self value and belief, to enable you to move from victim to survivor. Further I can help you discover and learn about the parts of yourself that have unintentionally allowed others to treat you disrespectfully. This recognition, combined with learning new skills and tools, is the key to people being able to change things such as body language, and other habits learned during the period of abuse. Break the abuse cycle. Whether it be in life partnerships, friendships or work situations, I can help you find more respectful, happy and fulfilling relationships.
I’m also registered with ACC to work with people who have experienced sexual abuse in their lives
I have a broad life and work experience and relate readily to a variety of people. Alongside motherhood, I spent some time in the motor trade selling spare parts, followed by 20 years working in the corporate world. Since retraining and moving into the helping professions I have worked for three years as a crisis intervention worker for Victim Support, and for the past 20 years I have worked as a professional counsellor in private practice, at the Waiuku Family Support Network, Youthline, and Counselling Services Centre Papatoetoe.
I use a range of methods depending on the needs of individual clients. These include: