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What is Psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy offers you a safe and confidential space to explore what may be difficult, painful or confusing in your life. The intention of the therapist is to support you in working towards a better understanding and identification of your feelings and overcoming problematic thoughts or behaviours. The therapeutic relationship is central to the process, and I believe that trust and feeling supported and affirmed are essential components to creating a positive therapeutic experience.
What is the difference between movement psychotherapy and traditional verbal psychotherapy?
Often there is a preconception that movement psychotherapy is only about moving and dancing. This is not the case. Verbalising thoughts and feelings is as important as it is in traditional verbal therapies. In addition to talking about your thoughts and feelings in a safe and non-judgemental environment, movement psychotherapy also offers the opportunity to bring greater awareness to the body and it's response or affect on how we think and feel.
How much movement will be involved in a typical session?
This will depend on you and what you feel comfortable with. It is not uncommon that there is little or no movement at the start but as the relationship develops and greater levels of trust are established, so more movement and creative exploration becomes possible. Even if there is no evident expressive movement in a session, there is still always the more subtle everyday motion of body language - breath, gesture and posture as we shift in response to what we think and say. Movement psychotherapy brings awareness to the body, helping to notice the felt response of thoughts and feelings, which can be a very subtle process of attention and mindfulness. So, whether in stillness or motion, awareness of felt responses integrates with psychological understanding to invite a more embodied state of being and knowing yourself.
How long is a session?
A therapy session is one hour.
How frequent are the sessions?
For continuity and depth work weekly sessions are recommended.
How much does a session cost?
The cost of a session depends on the location and the time of the day as well as your financial circumstances.
If I have private health insurance, will my therapy sessions with you be covered?
At the moment movement psychotherapists are not affiliated with any private health insurance companies. The Association for Movement Psychotherapy UK (ADMP) has submitted an application to enable its members to become registered with the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). Once this happens it will allow movement psychotherapy to be a covered therapy option within private health care insurance.
What if I need to cancel a session?
I need a minimum of 24 hours notice to cancel a session. I will offer alternative times to reschedule your appointment, however if you are still unable to attend you may be charged. I will also endeavour to give you 24 hours notice in the event I need to cancel a session.
What is your theoretical orientation?
I receive many enquiries from students regarding my theoretical orientation, asking mostly if I work from a psychodynamic perspective. Although my predominant theoretical orientation is humanistic (with influences from Gestalt and Attachment and Development Theory), I do work with the processes of transference and countertransference both in therapy and supervision. I have also had experience of working within psychodynamic multi-disciplinary teams both at Springfield Hospital and National Deaf Services.
How long will I need to be in therapy?
Together we will decide whether your needs would benefit from a time-limited framework or an open-ended approach. The minimum amount of sessions we would agree on is six, in order to give time for our relationship to develop and the possibility of shifts to be explored and integrated. We would regularly review our work together to help us to reflect on how the therapy has been beneficial and to consider when ending would be appropriate. Ending therapy can be an important aspect of the therapeutic process, so where our relationship extends past six weeks I would encourage a minimum of three sessions to work towards closure.
Why is there an assessment?
The assessment is our initial face to face session where we can meet one another and get some understanding around what each of us may bring to the therapy. We will look at what has prompted you to feel that therapy would be helpful and what you would like to have greater understanding of in your life. It is an opportunity for me to gain some insight into your background and how the issues you present affect your life. I can then assess whether my therapeutic approach and professional experience would be helpful to you. It is equally an opportunity for you to ask me questions about the therapeutic process and to see if you feel comfortable with me. If we decide that we would like to commit to working together we would look at what goals we could agree on that would support and frame your therapy. This helps us to know what we are agreeing to work on and to be able to reflect in the future on how things may or may not have changed for you.
What can I expect from a typical session?
Although the content of each session is as unique as the individual, generally the format of the therapy hour consists of an initial verbal exploration, followed if appropriate, by a movement and or creative experience and closing with a verbal integration.
Are the sessions confidential?
The sessions are a safe and confidential space for you to bring and explore all your thoughts and feelings. I will not share your information with anyone else except in the following circumstances:
a) With my clinical supervisor who is bound by the same code of ethics as myself.
b) If I believe you are a risk to yourself and/or to others, I reserve the right to break confidentiality to an appropriate agency or organisation (for example GP, police or social services) in order to prevent harm. However, I would always try to discuss with you before taking any action.
c) If I am required by a court of law to give evidence.
Where can I see you?
You can be seen at my private practice in London or in East/West Sussex. Please see the 'Locations' page for further details.
Do you hold group psychotherapy sessions?
Specialist groups, at times with different co-therapists, run in London and Sussex at various locations. Please see the groups page for details of current and forthcoming groups.
Does movement psychotherapy work in conjunction with other therapies?
I recommend that you are in therapy with only one psychotherapist at any particular time. This minimises the possibility for a conflict of approach from different psychotherapists and offers your primary therapeutic relationship the opportunity for depth and development. In the case of alternative therapies, such as acupuncture or reflexology for example, which if found useful, can work along side movement psychotherapy usually without conflict.
If I have mobility difficulties could movement psychotherapy still be beneficial?
Movement psychotherapy works with your individual body. What movement is used and how it is used will depend on you and what would be most helpful to you in context of what you are exploring in the therapy. I believe that our bodies are a fundamental part of our lives and no matter how we move they should be included in our therapeutic journey.