Call or email me – 0203 051 1303 , Longcroft House, Victoria Avenue, Bishopsgate, EC2M 4NS

I have been working as a counsellor for over 15 years providing effective

counselling solutions for many different issues including:

 Stress

 Anxiety

 Giving presentations

 Self confidence and self esteem

 Anger management

 Relationship problems

 Depression

 Post traumatic reactions

The main approach that I use in my counselling work is Cognitive Behavioural

Therapy or CBT. CBT is the therapeutic approach most widely used in the NHS

and it is a method which provides clients with a range of strategies that they can

use in order to overcome their difficulties.

Although CBT is at the core of what I do, I am trained in several other approaches

including psychodynamic counselling and Eye Movement Desensitzation

Reprocessing or EMDR. I will use these approaches with some clients when I feel

that they are the methods most likely to bring about positive results.

How does CBT work?

The starting point for CBT is helping the client to understand what is causing

their difficulties. CBT theory suggests that there are a number of different factors

that lie behind problems like stress, anxiety, low confidence or depression.

Firstly there are the things pressures and triggers that we have to face –

problems like having a huge workload or not being successful in a job interview.

How we think is the second key factor. CBT counsellors argue that excessively

negative thinking lies at the heart of psychological problems and a fundamental

idea here is that how we feel is actually driven by the thoughts that go through

our minds. People often have recurrent negative thought patterns that have been

with them for many years, and another aspect of CBT is to look for the

experiences earlier in our lives that put these negative thought patterns into


The third factor looks at the way in which our behaviour might be contributing

to how we feel. People who are stressed, for example, often isolate themselves

and stop seeing their friends. But socializing with friends is actually something

that might help to alleviate stress. CBT counsellors help their clients to recognize

how what they are doing is affecting how they are feeling, showing them that

often their behaviour patterns are actually making their core problems worse.

A fourth area, and one that is often neglected, is how psychological problems

affect us physically. Stress and depression mess up your sleep and leave you

feeling exhausted. Headaches, digestive problems, colds, flu and a range of other

physical issues can also be problems. Feeling physically run down only serves to

reduce your ability to deal with your problems and is the fourth important area

to look at when trying to understand a mental health problem.

CBT argues, then, that there are four key areas that drive our mental health


 The pressures that we have to deal

 Our negative thought patterns

 Unhelpful behaviour patterns

 Our physical reactions

CBT then looks for solutions to their clients’ problems by proposing a series of

strategies that will bring improvements in each of the four areas. Basic to CBT is

the idea of giving the client a toolkit of strategies in order to overcome their


When it comes to the pressures, the counsellor will look at the changes clients

can make to ease the pressures they face. People often assume that there is little

that they can do to change their situations, but usually there is much more

potential for change than we realize. CBT counsellors help their clients to see

what can be changed, and to better come to terms with the things that can’t be


Working with thoughts is the second vital strategy in CBT technique. Clients with

mental health issues usually have constantly recurring negative thoughts, and

these thoughts are also usually unrealistic and excessive in their negativity. CBT

counsellors show clients how to block the constant thoughts so that they are less

intrusive, and they show clients how to challenge their excessively negative

thoughts, and to replace them with thinking that is more realistic and more


With behaviour the key question is to look at how what the client is doing is

affecting how they are feeling. CBT counsellors are skilled at spotting the

behaviour patterns that are fuelling clients’ problems and helping them to

replace them with more helpful ways of living your life.

Finally CBT counsellors will help clients tackle the physical impact of mental

health difficulties, for example by showing them effective relaxation techniques

or looking at ways of improving health, diet and physical resilience.

By working with these four key dimensions, CBT counsellors provide their

clients with a personalized set of strategies which help them to tackle their

difficulties. These strategies will usually take some practice, but the aim is that

the client becomes able to resolve their problems on their own so that after a

while they no longer depend on their counsellor. Because of this, CBT counselling

is typically a short term kind of therapy and most CBT work will not exceed 20