Talking to a professional counsellor can help with (among other things):
- stress & anxiety
- anger & frustration
- loneliness, sadness
- grief & loss
- adjusting to change
- relationship difficulties
- interpersonal communication & conflict resolution
- work-related issues
- intimacy & sexual issues
- family separation
- roles and parenting
- re-partnering and step-family/blended family issues
- life transitions
- personal growth & self-improvement
Counselling is effective for people of all ages, all sexual persuasions, and from all cultural backgrounds and can be sought at any time of life.
Children and adolescents can benefit from talking to a professional counsellor to help them gain a better understanding of who they are and what they are thinking and feeling as they grow, evolve and develop as individuals.
Creative therapies applied in counselling can be particularly useful to help children and teenagers to explore their feelings in a non-confrontational way (eg: through the use of reflection cards, drawing, journaling, creative writing, and other relevant activities).
Counselling has proven very helpful to support children and adolescents through times of change such as family separation or parents re-partnering, offering a safe and non-judgmental environment for them to work through the array of confusing and overwhelming feelings in a supported way.
Many children and adolescents experience symptoms of anxiety and depression. Through counselling, the child or adolescent is able to learn new coping skills and different ways of relating to the world around them.
Adults come to counselling for a myriad of reasons, but primarily they feel that they need some support to get through a difficult time.
Commonly, clients come to counselling feeling overwhelmed by their emotional experience saying things such as -
- “My relationship is in trouble”
- “I don’t know what’s wrong with me, I just can’t stop crying”
- “I’m feeling really stressed and burnt out”
- “I lost someone close to me and things haven’t been the same since…”
- “Everything feels like it is out of control”
Whatever the circumstances are, counselling can help to identify key issues, problem solve, learn new coping strategies, enhance communication skills, improve relationships and restore a sense of well-being.
Depression is a common experience for many clients seeking counselling. Often times, it is the discomfort of the symptoms of depression that brings a person to counselling. Depression can include any or all of the following:
- lack of energy
- sleep problems
- changes in weight, appetite and eating
- feeling sad, guilty, upset, numb or depairing
- feeling angry or irritable at the slightest thing
- can’t be bothered doing everyday tasks
- not doing things you used to enjoy
- cutting yourself off from other people
- feeling alone even if you are in the company of others.
When a person feels depressed, they may feel negative about themselves, about the world and about the future.
Research tells us that negative thoughts play an important role in depression. The way you think about things affects the way you feel, which affects the way you behave. It is difficult to change the way you feel, however, evidence shows us that when we change the way we think we directly change how we feel and react in any given situation.
This is the basic premise of Cognive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and has been proven to be effective for people who are experiencing mild to moderate levels of depression.
Likewise, the debilitating affects of anxiety are what often brings people to counselling. Anxiety is most commonly experienced in the body as:
- stomach aches or churning stomach
- heart racing
- dizziness or lightheadedness
A surge of adrenalin instigates a ‘fight or flight or freeze’ response in the body, alerting it to a ‘perceived’ threat.
The question is….is the situation really a threat, or is it the way the person is perceiving it?
Like depression, negative thoughts also impact on the way a person will feel and behave. In learning the counselling concepts of CBT and applying the tools and strategies, clients are able to gain a deeper understanding of how their thoughts play a role in the physical symptoms they are experiencing.
Mali Farnell has worked with many clients experiencing anxiety and depression with great success. Equipping her clients with self-help tools and strategies has enabled them to grow in confidence in dealing with anxiety and depression and return to enjoying a quality of life they so desire.