Existential psychotherapy and coaching, philosophical counselling
I believe that in order to make sound decisions and start moving towards goals you first need to clarify what really matters and resolve major ambivalence, so I work with both inner exploration and problem-solving to:
• clarify your values, ways of thinking, assumptions, hidden contradictions
• give you the opportunity to talk things through and grapple with your inner life to find the way forward
• help you to take the next steps and work on stumbling blocks
Philosophical counselling is an exploration of the concepts and values that implicitly or explicitly make up our worldview, and aims to clarify what really matters in life or examine the different aspects of a moral dilemma, with the aim of living a meaningful and flourishing life.
As well as the above disciplines, my approach has been influenced by Solution-Focused Brief Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, which uses mindfulness skills to manage our inner experience so we are better able to move in a valued direction however we may happen to be feeling. My precise approach depends entirely on the client and issue.
I have experience of working with ambivalence issues both through my work in the drugs and alcohol field and from a philosophical perspective, as I have particularly looked into topics such as moral dilemmas, ‘weakness of will’ and self-deception.
I work flexibly and offer one-off consultations, short-term or longer-term work. I’m based in Bristol.
I originally trained as an existential psychotherapist at Regents College London, with Emmy Van Deurzen and Ernesto Spinelli. I then worked as a drugs and alcohol counsellor for many years, during which time I developed more cognitive and practical ways of working (such as Solution-Focused Brief Therapy), focusing on helping people to resolve their ambivalence and move towards appropriate goals, looking ahead to counter any obstacles and dealing with relapses.
Later I studied philosophy and I was involved with the philosophical counselling movement since its early days in the UK. Together with my colleagues Tim LeBon and David Arnaud I went on to develop a distinctive approach to it. I have always had a particular interest in decision-making.