with Nicky Vallance
Counselling in Milborne St Andrew, Poole, and Dorchester in Dorset, which is easily accessible from Blandford, Bournemouth, and Weymouth.
As an experienced counsellor I offer a natural, non-invasive style that helps bring new perspectives, release trapped emotions, and in turn, bring healing. I blend person-centered counselling with existential counselling techniques for anxiety and depression therapy.
Some things feel almost impossible to move on from, but trust me it is possible with the right support.
As a person-centred counsellor I see my clients as unique individuals, I'm interested in my client's potential just as much as I am interested in understanding their problems, distress. Counselling is not about diagnosing (although I have referred to PTSD, anxiety, and depression as they are commonly used), because emotions such as fear and sadness are natural reactions to life events which have got stuck, if you like, and taken over. They can feel like quicksand - impossible to escape from but during counselling my clients find ways to get out of the quicksand that work for them.
Anxiety & depression therapy.
Anxiety and depression are naturally occurring feelings (fear and sadness) in response to life experiences but can become overwhelming, affecting every aspect of life. Anxiety keeps the body in a state of alert, and overtime neural pathways in the brain change and become increasingly sensitive to external stimuli to create a vicious cycle of negative thoughts and feelings. The good news is that the brain adapts well and can form new neural pathways that can successfully control the automatic fight/flight/freeze responses. Counselling will help you tune into your emotions and use them as a guide in the future.
The physical sensations attached to memories of traumatic events cause intense emotions that take their toll on the body and mind. Symptoms include flashbacks, a constant state of alert which causes rapid breathing & heart rate, heart palpitations, sweating, sleep and eating problems, feeling on edge, and avoiding anything that acts as a reminder of the event. Some feel distant and numb as if they are not connected to the rest of the world. The body relives the trauma keeping the fight/flight or freeze responses, experienced at the time, in operation in the present. Many people feel scared talking about things that upset them, they fear being overwhelmed, and breaking down that's why we work at a pace that feels safe and is non-directive, so you won't have to talk about anything you don't want to. PTSD treatment can work even without talking about what happened. Traumatic memories can stimulate the fight/flight/freeze response, whereas working creatively can help express complex emotions and process them safely. Hence, like life coaching, many find imaginary, metaphors both insightful and a comfortable way of exploring difficult feelings during PTSD treatment. However, it's not for everyone, but the nature of person-centred counselling allows you space, time to express yourself at a pace and style that suits you.
Whatever is going on in your life and the lives of those around you, it has a knock-on effect on the relationship between you. Stresses of daily life such as financial, work, and health problems, as well as other relationships, can collide, and put a strain on your close relationships. Some feel under pressure to fit around other's needs, but at a cost to their well-being. Carers have to juggle the physical and emotional needs of others, often having little, if any time, to themselves. Some relationships are abusive and strip away your confidence, self-esteem, and rights leaving people feeling confused, anxious, and depressed. Every relationship is complex and unique, but with the right support, you can improve your communication, self-confidence, relationships, and make choices that work for you.
Losing a loved one can be a devastating and lonely experience. Grief is often complex involving feelings of anger and guilt, which can take people by surprise. Others feel numb, unable to get in touch with their feelings and, feel at a loss as to why. Some people talk of feeling anxious all the time, crying all the time, or unable to cry. Grief can affect have a physical effect with many experiencing loss of appetite, disturbed sleep, or sleeping too much, which can affect work, relationships, and daily life. Some experience grief years after their loss for a variety of reasons. Whatever your experience, grief is normal and can feel overwhelming. It can be difficult to talk to those closest to you for fear of upsetting them. Feeling depressed and anxious at this time is normal for many and will pass in time but can spiral into a deeper depression without the right support. Bereavement counselling will help you process your emotions and support you through this difficult time.
I take the view that everyone is capable of personal growth and change, given the right support. Carl Rogers developed the theory describing it as a seed. Seeds can grow even in the toughest of terrains, but they may not be as strong, resilient, or reach their full growth. However, given the right conditions and nurturing, the seeds can flourish. That support needs to be non-judgemental, yet honest and trustful. Rogers therapeutic process about psychological change is firmly grounded in the empirical data. There is plenty of compelling evidence that person-centred counselling is an effective approach for overcoming emotional distress.
My role as your counsellor is to help you understand yourself better, separate past experiences from the present, establish personal boundaries and make new connections that will help you feel in control and able to manage your feelings as they arise.
The relationship is at the core of person-centred and existential counselling, so it is important that you feel comfortable with me as your counsellor. It’s also important that you get the most suitable support for your situation, so if I am unable to help, I will happily put you in touch with a therapist that is more suited to your support needs. We can explore this further should we need to.
If you are experiencing suicidal thoughts right now, please contact the Samaritans on 116 123, your GP, or your local support centre for immediate support.
Getting the right support during difficult times helps minimise the long term effects on your mental well being. Therefore, if you need bereavement counselling or relationship counselling in Dorset, right now, or are experiencing stress, depression, or need anxiety counselling, please contact me to arrange an initial chat.
The aims of counselling
Sexual Identity and Orientation Counselling
Email to book your
free 1/2 hour phone session
It is important that you feel comfortable talking to me. My style is not for everyone hence why I offer a free introductory phone session so you get an idea of how I work before you decide to arrange counselling with me.