Simon completed his doctoral research at Regent's College in London where he currently lectures. He has worked in adult mental health within the NHS and a number of community organisations. He has particular expertise with social anxiety, panic and addictions.
As human beings we are not static entities but constant works-in-progress. I endeavour to help people discover alternatives to their fixed ways of perceiving themselves, the world and others, and to break free from ingrained patterns of living and behaving – both of which may be causing them to feel ‘stuck’, or consumed by present difficulties. A fundamental shift in perspective is often what’s needed to allow people to move forward again.
More often than not this process of ‘reframing’ allows you to see that there are now some very clear choices facing you. Along with that may come a daunting sense of responsibility at having to act on those choices. This is seldom an easy process, and my role in the therapeutic relationship is to help you to sustain your commitment to making the choices that feel right to you.
While I work using CBT Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, existential and person-centred therapies, far more important than any approach is the process of building a non-judgemental, trusting therapeutic relationship based on mutual honesty and respect: this is the vital foundation of any successful psychotherapy.
Each of my clients is unique, and so therapy never follows a totally predictable path. This requires a fluidity and flexibility, and the skill and experience to tailor my approach to suit each individual, recreating therapy anew for each client rather than restricting myself to one particular technique or theoretical perspective.
It’s endlessly rewarding working with people who have taken the daunting decision to pursue therapy. Sharing time with clients who are experiencing difficulties and helping them to find positive paths through them is certainly a challenge, and yet it’s often immensely exciting, especially when people arrive at discoveries that lead to significant positive change in their lives.
My special interest is in researching what it feels like to be in therapy and how individuals may vary in their experience of the therapeutic process. I don’t think we yet fully understand this. In particular, my current doctorate thesis examines the stigma often felt by individuals seeking therapy, and the effects this may have.
Image credits Collection Hein