20 Apr Who am I?
A question asked in many an interview, throughout my counselling degree. One question that always felt too big to answer and also too exposing.
This is an answer I’d like to now share with you in this blog.
Within therapy self- disclosure is a tool we have to be mindful of, to make sure that we consider it’s appropriateness to share, that it’s only done with hope for a deeper connection with the client or at least the intention being for the clients benefit- providing an understanding on a new level.
So if any of you reading this know me as a counsellor, this is the time to consider ‘Do I want to know more about my therapist?’, ‘Will this benefit me in anyway?’ If not, here’s the permission to stop reading if you need it?
I’ve always been the person who people confide in, turn to for advice or feel able to be their real selves with whether friend, family or stranger at the bus stop. This has always felt a privilege and an incident where I helped a stranger in distress while on a night out led me to seek out the training to become a counsellor.
Finding the training facility I felt most comfortable with opened my eyes to what I needed and felt more comfortable with. The Sherwood Institute is a smaller environment, cosy where you know all the staff, tutors and the rooms are comfy and informal . The rooms are horse shaped which felt more inclusive, home from home and safe enough for me to go back to learning which was important for me.
During 3 years of rigorous training which included personal therapy, written assignments and counselling placements that was a lot of experiential work. We had to discover ourselves, open ourselves up to the experiences we would be asking our clients to.
Whilst, this was not easy it was an essential blessing that I can now on reflection see the benefits of going through the discomfort, sometimes painful experiences or memories when working with another therapist. How this can change the feelings we had about that experience and grow as an individual because of the therapeutic process of rupture and repair it allowed me to become more accepting of myself as a person, therapist and mother especially.
As a therapist my aim is to help you to feel more supported in finding your own answers, in control of your own life/ emotions/ relationships – that may be feeling more like they are controlling you?
And starting your own journey of self discovery- being curious about why you do things a certain way or react this way to triggers and accept what is yours and what you may have absorbed from another’s journey that you can put down as it may not fit with you, your life choices or expectations of yourself.
Sometimes you may also be seeking support with something you are feeling powerless over that may have happened/ or be happening to a loved one? Physical changes, mental, psychological, emotional or you coming to terms with a new diagnosis.
I love the Holland poem to show examples of this (https://images.app.goo.gl/XhozvRzRGp7nnEXh9) whether it’s a metaphor for life it’s going great (the planning and packing for Italy in the poem) then bam something, someone change happens (and in the poem you’ve arrived in Holland) completely unexpected, unplanned and unprepared for this!
Therapy is (staying with the suitcase you originally packed example) like taking things out one by one like your original expectations, hopes and dreams and re-evaluating are these still possible? Do I want them anymore? Does this still fit with who I am? and How I feel now?
If yes, we work with helping get you back to feeling more you. If not, then together we help find your new plan, goals and hopes to work towards.
Working with clients for now for over 7 years I decided a couple of years ago to continue my training and also provide supervision for other therapists (which is mandatory for every therapist to have monthly to comply ethically with our awarding bodies). It is just as much a privilege to watch other therapists grow into the practitioner they want to be for their clients , as much as being alongside clients as they grow and change in the best version of themselves they want to be.
Whilst completing the hours and the assignments necessary to complete this qualification it has led me to recognising my own learning style (I am a more visual learner), understanding myself more (accepting my strengths, challenges and things I cannot do) and working towards my own neurodivergent discovery (or diagnosis some prefer to identify it as).
In my next blog, I will be sharing my own neurodivergence, journey with you and I also further plan to discuss my journey as a parent of 3 children who have each have their own unique personal journey with neurodivergence.
So if you feel you’d like to read about this further, keep an eye out for the next one!
I hope to see you next month!
Sam from Your Elementz