WHAT IS THERAPY AND WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT?
WHAT DOES THERAPY INVOLVE?
During sessions you do not have to discuss anything you do not want to. It is important that you feel comfortable, as a safe and trusting environment is essential for positive change.
You are not tied into further sessions and there is no obligation for you to continue with treatment. There are 2 stages to sessions: Assessment and Treatment.
The assessment phase usually lasts 1-2 sessions and this is where we will discuss your difficulties, how they started, how they affect you, any past treatment and a some general background information. You will also be asked to fill in some questionnaires to help us understand your difficulties in more detail and will allow us to track progress.
The treatment phase is when we take all of the information gathered and develop it into what we call a formulation. This is how we make sense of your difficulties by linking them to psychological theory in a way that helps you understand why they started and what keeps them going. This would then help us discuss together what the best therapy option would be for you. Sometimes people feel that a formulation has been enough to help them understand and manage their difficulties.
We will use our skills and knowledge along with professional best practice guideline to ensure that you are offered the therapy that not only best meets your needs but which also has a sound evidence base.
Psychological therapy is a collaborative treatment. That means it is not something that is “done to you” but it is a way of helping you understand yourself and explore alternative ways to manage distress. You will be doing all the hard work and much of this will take place between sessions! This means that progress is not limited to the time in sessions you will see benefits that will continue to last after therapy has ended. It is usual to feel a bit uncomfortable and anxious about coming to see a psychologist for the first time. We understand how much of a first huge step this can be.
We will always try to put you at ease and make the session as informal and relaxed as possible. We believe finding the right therapist for you is essential, and evidence shows that this relationship can have a significant positive impact on outcomes.
If we feel that we are not the best people to meet your needs, we would not offer further input although may be able to signpost you to an alternative practitioner.
Once you are happy to proceed, we will ask you to agree a contract. This is not a legally binding document, but is a way of ensuring that all parties are clear regarding the terms and expectations of therapy. This will include the fee you will pay, the number of sessions initially agreed and will explain confidentiality issues. The contract can be negotiated at any time and you are not bound to continue with therapy if you do not wish to.
We run a strict cancellations policy requiring all clients to give a minimum of 48 hours’ notice. The full fee is payable if sufficient notice is not given.
We am unable to see people who are in crisis or who at high risk of harming themselves. If you are looking for urgent support, there are local and national services available.
NHS 24 (24 hours)
Samaritans (24 hours)
Telephone 116 123
Breathing Space (6pm - 2am Mon to Thurs; 6pm - 6am over weekends)
Telephone 0800 83 85 87
If you require an ambulance