Addressing Career-related issues with psychotherapy and Counselling

In: Featured Home, Individual psychotherapy

What kind of career-related issues do we encounter?

Work can be a place and process of true personal realisation. Our work is an expression of our vitality and values and helps us contribute to the welfare of our families and to society.

It is precisely because work is so important in our lives that the problems that relate to it can be so debilitating. And in the same way that rewarding work helps create the conditions for a better private life, problems at work always “spill over” into the time we reserve for our leisure, our friends and families.

The most common example of such an overspill is the degradation of work-life balance because of overwork.

The most frequent problems that can appear at work are:

  • stress
  • anxiety
  • loss of motivation
  • loss of self-confidence
  • significant lowering of performance
  • blocked progression or career
  • deficient leadership
  • work relationship problems such as bullying or harassment

How can counselling and therapy help with work-related issues?

These problems reveal themselves because one notices (or is told of) a change in one’s behaviour, or in other people’s. Sometimes it is clear that they are the consequence of events in the workplace, which are beyond one’s control, such as disciplinary procedures, redundancy, company-wide restructuring or performance problems. Sometimes the link is less obvious: a problem appears at work but it is harder to see what is causing it.

Wherever the causes of the problem, its resolution requires skills, knowledge and support that are not available at work.

My business background and qualifications, as well as my experience of one-to-one coaching for professionals including senior business leaders have given me in-depth knowledge of the problems affecting professionals on the workplace and the approaches that are most successful to support those who are affected by them.

I suggest an initial contact for you to:

  • describe your current circumstances and concerns
  • receive immediate, emotional and practical support
  • find out about how I can provide further help

After this initial contact, you may want to opt for further counselling consultations. These consultations are a safe, containing and supportive environment in which to develop deeper insight into patterns of behaviour, and get support to try out concrete changes.

In my experience, focused work such as this can be very powerful. I have also found that, sometimes, my clients choose to engage in longer-term work when they feel that they need more time and support to get to the bottom of the issues that they are facing.

How we could feel like a fish in water at work...
By: Cedric Tags: , , , ,
Couples therapy and counselling helps untangle those knots!

Relationship and couples counselling & psychotherapy

In: Couples psychotherapy, Featured Home

What makes for a well-functioning, ultimately successful relationship? It’s up to every pair to find out what works for them. This “finding out together” is a vital part of being in a relationship. One could even say that it is the relationship.

However, sometimes communication and intimacy get lost, and situations become stuck. Any deadlock can affect both partners and perhaps children or dependents, and often threatens the existence of the relationship.

Conflicts are a natural and healthy occurrence in every relationship and offer great opportunities to learn about each other and to make it stronger. When the relationship does not seem to allow for this learning, then it is worth investing in a space, where this inquiry can start and live.

For this, it is appropriate to consider:

  • relationship counselling and psychotherapy for each partner
  • counselling and therapy for couples
  • a combination of both individual and couples or relationship therapy. This solution is particularly effective.

Individual counselling and psychotherapy for relationship problems

In relationship counselling, the primary aim is to understand the patterns of behaviour that affect the functioning of the couple, how they have come about, how this affects the client, and how to correct them.

In my experience, clients who come to see me for relationship counselling or relationship therapy also experience anxiety, depression or stress, and may require help with anger management. It is very common for the two types of work to progress alongside each other.

Couples counselling and therapy for couples

Couples counselling or therapy is a space for the relationship to become clear and conscious. It helps the partners to:

  • begin or improve communication
  • see things from the other’s perspective
  • make informed choices about how to engage with each other.

Couples counselling is particularly effective when the problems that the partners are experiencing are due to a recent and sometimes unexpected change of circumstances in their relationship. For example, this may be due to:

  • problems conceiving
  • issues with sexuality
  • infidelity of one or both partners
  • the birth or adoption of a child
  • a change in professional circumstances such as a promotion, an expatriation or a redundancy

Couples therapy is effective when partners notice that, over time, the quality of their relationship seems to have diminished, and that the meaning of their being together is no longer evident.

I have experience in both couples counselling and couples therapy, and have helped many individual clients who came to my London practice seeking help for problems related to their couple.

By: Cedric
Depression can indeed feel like a bottomless pit

Counselling & Psychotherapy for Depression

In: Depression, Featured Home, Individual psychotherapy

Depression is the most prevalent of mental health problems. Studies have shown that it occurs in 1 in 10 adults or 10 per cent of the population in Britain at any one time, (Healy, 1998, Hale, 1997). It is quite common to experience a depressive episode as a reaction to an event. It also happens that depression sets in “out of the blue”, and does not seem to go away by itself.

This experience can be deeply painful; poet John Keats wrote to a close friend: “I am in a temper that if I were under water, I would scarcely kick to come to the top”.

This experience can be deeply painful; poet John Keats wrote to a close friend: “I am in a temper that if I were under water, I would scarcely kick to come to the top”.

It is part of life’s requirements that we should be able to tolerate periods of low mood, and it is to be expected that sometimes we find ourselves challenging the value of things and of life itself. Psychotherapist D.W. Winnicott (1958) wrote of John Keats that:

“[he] was someone who took the risk of feeling things deeply and of taking responsibility. […] If we look at depression this way, we can see that it is the really valuable people in the world who get depressed.”

If however we have an entrenched feeling of futility and find ourselves disempowered and persistently disengaged from life, this is probably something worth attending to.

How can therapy and counselling help with depression?

In my experience it is possible to understand and successfully to address depression through the process of psychotherapy and counseling. The aim of this process is to allow insight to emerge and to use the therapeutic space as a “springboard” to reconnect with oneself, with others and with the world.

What happens when we get better
By: Cedric

Counselling & Psychotherapy for Anxiety

In: Anxiety, Featured Home, Individual psychotherapy

Anxiety is one way to respond to an external event that we see as a threat. In a state of anxiety, some of our physical and mental functions are heightened so that we are able effectively to confront what is threatening us, or to escape it. This is referred to as the “fight-or-flight response”. As such, it has been essential to our survival as a species, and continues to serve us in situations of severe danger.

However we find that we often experience it in situations that don’t really call for it.

What is anxiety for?

In itself, anxiety does not teach us anything about its causes. It does not tell us anything about the best way to resolve a problem. It does not tell us how to be less anxious. It just prepares us for a very simple response – fight or flight. We may even find that, in a state of anxiety, we are less able to act, as a situation really requires – in these cases, anxiety clearly “gets in the way”!

So, paradoxically, anxiety can end up decreasing our quality of life, sometimes to the extent that it becomes intolerable. It is estimated that about one in six adults experience levels of anxiety that they feel are excessive and debilitating, with 1.5 to 3.6% of these being diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder (Carter RM, Wittchen HU, Pfister H, et al, 2001).

How does counselling and therapy for anxiety help?

People who have come to see me for psychotherapy and counselling at my London practices have wanted help with finding out why they were excessively anxious, and what they could do to change this. It is therefore my aim to help my clients:

  • better contain and express their anxiety
  • understand the cause(s) of their anxiety
  • develop ways of responding more appropriately to their environment
  • make decisions concerning the causes of their anxiety

It is through our understanding of the root causes of our anxiety that we can see clearly how we could change certain aspects of our lives. It is my aim to support my clients in developing this clarity and making essential life changes.

By: Cedric Tags: ,

Addressing social anxiety through psychotherapy

In: Anxiety, Featured Home, Individual psychotherapy

What is social anxiety?

Most online and offline publications will define social anxiety as the excessive fear of social situations. People who have come to see me for help with this problem have also often described that they may feel discomfort in any social interaction, even if this is with “just the one person”. Because of this, I prefer to define social anxiety as the discomfort that relates to the experience of any relationship.

«In every contact, we communicate a bit of ourselves to the other, and the other is there to receive it, for better or for worse. In that respect, every social situation is significant, because it says something about us.»

Why does it happen?

We form our person and our character in the context relationships – to the family we were born in, to the community around us, to school, to our chosen communities of friends, spouses and children, to our communities at work. These relationships are not just a backdrop to our lives: by interacting within them, we evolve through them, and them through us.

It is perfectly healthy to feel a measure of trepidation in all forms of contact with other people, whether it is a brief exchange with a waiter, a discussion with a headmaster, or a presentation in front of the board of a company. After all, every personal contact, no matter how brief or apparently shallow, is an  experience that engages our person, consciously and unconsciously. In every contact, we communicate a bit of ourselves to the other, and the other is there to receive our communication, for better or for worse. In that regard, every social situation is significant because it says something about us.

«Psychotherapy, to be effective, must include two aspects at least: reflection on oneself and action on one’s environment.»

When does it become a problem?

However, for many, this creates a level of discomfort that can feel difficult to bear, which may lead some to assuming that all social contact will be painful, and therefore to avoiding certain social situations, and sometimes, most, if not all, social situations. This can be extremely distressing and debilitating.

Addressing the issue

It is my experience that psychotherapy, to be effective, must include two aspects at least: reflection on oneself and action on one’s environment. This is especially true when the concern that needs addressing is social anxiety. Action alone, which can be, for example, challenging one’s assumptions about other people’s thoughts about us and changing the way we interact with them, is not enough to create a deep-seated sense of safety in a social setting. Similarly, reflection alone will not help the person to “land” the insights acquired and create new and more helpful behaviours.

Therefore, I encourage my patients to:

  • take a historical perspective on their experience of social interactions
  • examine the feelings, thoughts and sensations that they associate with them
  • get a deeper sense of who they are as a person, and what sort of social existence they are really meant to live
  • observe in detail what they go through as they apply their insights and progressively approach life with others in different ways

The quote by St Francis of Assisi sums quite well my approach to helping people address their social anxiety, as it reflects its progressive nature and the surprises that can arise out of the process:

«Start by doing what’s necessary. Then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible»

By: Cedric Tags: ,

Professional psychological help and support in the heart of London

In: Featured Home

We live in a time, where constant change is fast becoming the norm: change in society; change in work conditions and circumstances; change in the key relationships that shape our private sphere. This can have a considerable bearing on how we feel in ourselves. It is no surprise that sometimes, the constant demand to adjust to seems to be more than what we can manage with what we know. In my experience, it is beneficial to recognise this and to seek help to find in ourselves the resource we need to live fully. Psychotherapy and counselling helps to engage with the problem with the professional support of a qualified and experienced practitioner.

Addressing Anxiety through Psychotherapy

In: Featured Home

Anxiety is one way to respond to an external event that we see as a threat. In a state of anxiety, some of our physical and mental functions are heightened so that we are able effectively to confront what is threatening us, or to escape it. This is referred to as the “fight-or-flight response”. As such, it has been essential to our survival as a species, and continues to serve us in situations of severe danger.

Read more

By: Cedric
Couples therapy and counselling

Individual psychotherapy for relationship problems and couples psychotherapy

In: Featured Home

What makes for a well-functioning, ultimately successful relationship? It’s up to every couple to find out what works for them. This “finding out together” is a vital part of being in a relationship. One could even say that it is the relationship.

However, sometimes communication and intimacy get lost, and situations become stuck. Any deadlock can affect both partners and perhaps children or dependents, and often threatens the existence of the relationship.

Read more

By: Cedric
Counselling in London for depression

Addressing Depression through Psychotherapy

In: Featured Home

Depression is the most prevalent of mental health problems. Studies have shown that it occurs in 1 in 10 adults or 10 per cent of the population in Britain at any one time, (Healy, 1998, Hale, 1997). It is quite common to experience a depressive episode as a reaction to an event. It also happens that depression sets in “out of the blue”, and does not seem to go away by itself.

Read more

By: Cedric

Psychotherapy for Work-Related problems

In: Featured Home

Work can be a place and process of true personal realisation. Our work is an expression of our vitality and values and helps us contribute to the welfare of our families and to society – whatever the size of the fish or the pond.

It is precisely because work is so important in our lives that the problems that relate to it can be so debilitating. And in the same way that rewarding work helps create the conditions for a better private life, problems at work always “spill over” into the time we reserve for our leisure, our friends and families.

Read more

By: Cedric