Tuesday, 19 March 2019

The Importance of Supervision for Counsellors, Hypnotherapists and Coaches

The Importance of Supervision for Counsellors, Hypnotherapists and Coaches

I believe that supervision is one of the most important aspects of personal and work development. That is why I have trained to be a supervisor and I have supervision for my counselling, hypnotherapy and coaching practice.

So what is supervision? 

According to the Cambridge Dictionary supervision is

'An act of watching a  person or activity and making certain that everything is done correctly, safely etc.'

So is this picture demonstrating supervision? The answer is it might be because the man might be supervising the people learning to swim. In the world of counselling, hypnotherapy and coaching supervision is very different.

Professional supervision for counsellors, hypnotherapists and coaches is different because the supervisor and person supervised usually talk about practice as the supervision is rarely happening at the same time as the practice. Most counsellors, hypnotherapists and some coaches work alone and their relationship with their client is confidential, so someone sitting in the room and watching the person at work would not be ethical or practicable without explicit consent from the client.

So what is professional supervision?

Lets start with what it isn't...

It's not a cosy chat with tea and cake, but you could include those niceties!
It's not counselling the person being supervised even if they do have personal issues that need to be addressed.
It's not teaching, but it will help both the supervisor and the supervised to learn and develop practice.
It's not necessary to have an expert in the field as a supervisor, although many supervisors are experienced and considered experts.
It's not a day out, although people undertaking supervision will need to plan their day to take time out.

Professional supervision is:

  • Regular, pre-booked time, contracted and usually one hour in duration.
  • Respecting confidentiality of the client and others so names and identifying factors are not used.
  • Professional support for the person being supervised and helping them with any worries or stresses related to practice.
  • Enhancing problem solving skills and making better decisions.
  • Checking the safety and well-being of the client and the people around them.
  • Reviewing policies, procedures, ethics and the law together.
  • Reflection on practice for the supervised person.
  • Consideration of any charity or employer obligations.
  • Checking the relationship between the client and the person being supervised.
  • Developing new knowledge and skills.
  • Meeting the requirements of the Professional Body that the supervised person belongs to.
Professional supervision is usually with one supervisor and one supervisee, however group supervision and peer supervision is also possible. These days remote supervision is becoming more popular via Skype, so distance is never a problem when looking for a suitable supervisor.

I provide face to face and group supervision in Bournemouth, Dorset or Skype supervision to people further afield. 

Contact me if you would like supervision or want to know more.

Kind regards
Awaken the Change

Monday, 18 March 2019

Stress and anxiety: Are your emotions keeping you in a spin?

Are you feeling stressed and anxious? 

Life is hard at times and everyone feels stressed and anxious at at different times in their life, its a natural response to demands and pressures of life. But when it continues and is significantly impacting on your life it has got out of hand and you get caught a vicious circle.

The more you get emotional so the more you develop irrational thoughts and behaviours. The more you think about things then the more anxious you become.

Everything becomes opinion based related to irrational beliefs rather than based on facts.

So how do you know that stress and anxiety has got out of hand?

Maybe you shout at the kids a lot when they are naughty. Maybe you argue with your partner over silly things. Or you might get irritated with things and people at work easily. Life might feel like a slog. Some people who are stressed and anxious get get aches and pains, headaches, more coughs and colds and feel tired all the time. Sleep patterns maybe affected or diet and the digestion may change. If it continues then some people have changes in mood and may become depressed. Its always a good idea to have a check with your doctor if you are getting lots of health problems as sometimes other things can cause anxiety.

So unravelling this circle of stress and anxiety is important or it can lead to ill health.

Awaken the Change is a caring, evidence based service to help people with stress and anxiety issues and offers both counselling and/or hypnotherapy for people who are feeling stressed and anxious.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or CBT as its often known (a type of counselling) helps you to get out of this vicious circle by helping you to identify and change negative thought patterns, unwanted emotions and behaviours that keep you stuck and spinning. This counselling is a partnership that helps you to review the 'here and now', make sense of it and change. CBT an be quite brief therapy so six sessions could be all you need but it depends on you and any other contributing issues.

Hypnotherapy can also help stress and anxiety by giving you positive suggestions to change and re-frame issues. Its nothing like stage hypnosis. You are in control and you won't do anything that you don't want to do. Hypnotherapy also helps you to relax so you can release tense muscles that might be contributing to aches and pains and headaches. The number of sessions vary but typically clients may need around three sessions. At Awaken the Change you also get taught  self-hypnosis so that you have tools for life to help in stressful situations in the future.

Whatever you do to reduce stress and anxiety can only be good, however as the saying goes 'A problem shared is a problem halved.'  Talk to trusted people around you or get professional help. Stop suffering and find an easy way to feel better.

So if you are feeling stressed and anxious get out of the spin and enjoy life again.

Awaken the Change provides face to face or an online service for some clients who are experiencing stress and anxiety.

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Learning about hypnosis

Learning is an essential ingredient of life. We learn as a baby to demand food from our mothers. We learn behaviour that gets us things when we are a child and we learn when we go to school or university. But learning never stops there. The problem is that we think we know things until something goes wrong in life or we feel unhappy.

Hypnosis is not magic or scary but it can help you to learn amazing things about your abilities and feelings in life.

Hi I'm Linda, a hypnotherapist. I'm proud of what I do because I an help people to learn how to use the power of their minds to make change. And all this is done through suggestion. This can be self suggestion or suggestions given in certain ways from others such as a hypnotherapist.

Positive suggestions can help people to learn how to stand up and give a speech, how to get that sense of achievement and confidence back or how to help the body to look after its self.

But as a hypnotherapist my job is also to keep learning. I do this through attending conferences, reading and other professional development activities. I also have professional supervision and I'm a supervisor myself. Sometimes I also need to learn from myself and reflect on what I am doing and how I am feeling. That's important when I meet so many people with problems. This is about my self care.

This weekend I went to the UK Hypnosis Convention in London. It was a great way to mix with like-minded people and learn. Now my toolkit of helpful techniques is much bigger I'm sure I will be able to help my clients to learn more and deal with their issues.

So if you want to learn more about hypnotherapy contact me. I offer free sessions either in small groups or one to one explaining hypnosis and how I work. You could learn something amazing like I did when I first learnt about hypnosis.


Wednesday, 31 October 2018

The Importance of feedback for good mental health and development

Hi I'm Linda. I help people to stop the pain related to too much stress and anxiety and help them to get on with their lives.

One way I do that is by acknowledging the importance of feedback.

Getting and giving feedback is essential to our development, it's part of of what humans needs.

Today I would like to talk about lots of areas that we need feedback especially if we are feeling anxious or uncertain in life.

Feedback is about communication. In the communication loop someone sends us information, we receive it and send back a reply. This is feedback.

Many people who come to see me have low confidence, low self-esteem or are feeling anxious or depressed so feedback is an important acknowledgement to recovery.

Our bodies give us feedback. So if you are depressed or feeling anxious your body language often portrays this. Some people look sad. Some people dress in dark colours and don't bother with their appearance. Anxious people often breathe quickly or fidget, or have darting eye movements as they are on alert for danger. People who lack in confidence and self-esteem can make their body look small or less noticeable.

We also give feedback through our speech. This could be the volume. Depressed people may speak quieter. Anxious people may be frightened to speak out so they say nothing. This may happen to people who have a fear of public speaking or feel anxious in social settings with strangers.
The tone of the voice is a way of getting feedback as well. Maybe some depressed people have a monotonous tone of voice. A very anxious person may have a higher pitch of voice. If an anxious person is suddenly confronted with their fear or phobia, such as with a fear of spiders, they may scream. This is all feedback to others.

We all give ourselves feedback. Some deep thinkers, depressed and anxious people or people with a problem will keep telling themselves negative things in their head. Its our critical self that talks about things you should or ought to do. This has been called our mind monkey working. The problem with giving ourselves this negative self talk is that it may not be true. This is because we assume some things. For example, if you keep telling yourself all the things that you think other people are saying about you then you are mind reading. The truth might be that the other person is thinking positive things about you or thinking about someone else, but you continue to give yourself this negative feedback. There are many cognitive distortions that are giving you the wrong feedback.

Lots of people tell me negative things about them which I often work out are not true either. In these cases people who are anxious or depressed say that they aren't very good at anything but with prompting I can usually find lots of positive things about them. Its how they are feeling that allows them to keep telling themselves negative things.

Receiving feedback can be difficult for some people even if the feedback is complementary. This maybe because the person hasn't had positive feedback much in the past or because they have the belief that they don't deserve it.

But we all need to know when we do something wrong or positive feedback when we have done some thing right. Its part of learning. I love to help people to learn so I would like to give you a few tips on how you can give people some positive feedback.

Firstly notice the good things. If you have a work colleague or a friend that has done something well stop and say thank you but make sure that you say what is pleasing you and why so they can accept the feedback. You could even send a kind email and acknowledge hard work. As long as the feedback is genuine and not every day this will help the person to grow.

Secondly notice peoples body language. If someone doesn't look their usual self then politely enquire if they are okay and if there is anything that you can help them with. Everyone has an off day but is there a pattern emerging? Acknowledge any problems or difficulties that they maybe experiencing but refrain from giving lots of advice especially if you are not an expert in the subject, rather signpost them to people that can help. If its a health related problem getting a check up from a doctor is always a good idea.

So feedback is something to think about. Its always important for our health, well-being and development.

Awaken the Change

Thursday, 25 October 2018

How has your day been?

I've  had a good day working today. Many people complain about work but I feel privileged to be able to work and help people.

I help clients who are struggling with stress and anxiety or bereavement and loss to reduce the pain and feel so much better.  This means that I see adults from all backgrounds with many problems from work or personal stresses, fears and phobias, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), worries, relationship problems and much more.

Today I helped a lady who needed to talk after the loss of her dog as pet bereavement counselling is also an area that I want to help with. I'm a great animal lover and so I know that losing a pet can be very painful.

Sometimes I work late catching up with paperwork or marking students assignments; that's OK because I can then focus more on clients during the day rather than the paperwork. But I got a shock this evening when I suddenly realised that I was being watched!

This is Mini my dog. Perhaps she felt she needed a bit of attention too but she didn't say a word!

If you want to reduce stress and be happier in your work I might be able to help.

Bye for now.

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Things people say who feel anxious

Over the years I have heard people describe anxiety in many ways. It can be different for different people but here is a list of things people commonly tell me when they have been diagnosed as suffering with anxiety.

I'm posting this as I want other people who are feeling anxious to know that they are not alone in having one or more things on this list. Of course there are other reasons why you might have these things so you should get a health check to rule out other causes.

The list is not exhaustive but I hope it highlights that anxiety can involve lots of negative thoughts and feelings.

  • Feeling a disappointment
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Feeling stupid
  • Feeling unable to speak up
  • Feeling stupid
  • Feeling shy
  • Feeling criticised
  • Resenting yourself for not knowing
  • Trying to read other people's minds
  • Thinking that everyone is judging you
  • Worrying about everything
  • Wanting to be perfect at everything
  • Feeling unable to walk into a room of strangers
  • Thinking you might be going insane
  • Looking fine but feeling terrible on the inside
  • Feeling passive, not assertive
  • General caches and pains for no reason
  • Blushing easily
  • Tummy problems like Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • All or nothing thinking
  • Feeling panicky or trembling
  • Feeling exhausted
  • Denying anything is wrong
  • Feeling unhappy
  • Relationship problems
If you think you are suffering with anxiety now is the time to do something about it to feel better. Talk to someone today.
Kind regards

Monday, 1 October 2018

Reduce Anxiety with Horses

I am always searching for new ways to help people to reduce their stress and anxiety because everyone is different and we all need choice and information to make the right decisions to change.

This weekend I visited an equine assessed therapy centre in Somerset.

For me a persons mindset or beliefs are always important to consider. So if you don't like horses and don't believe that they can help you then quine therapy may not be for you. Yet having some hypnotherapy could be the first step to banishing any fear of horses because once you have got past that barrier it will be easier.

Horses have been utilised as a therapeutic aid for many years.

The purpose of my blog today is to help you realise the value of horses in reducing anxiety.

Going to see an equine therapist involves going outside and walking in nature. That process in itself has been shown to help people feel grounded and reduce stress and anxiety. Mindfulness or meditation could also be incorporated.

Then just like going to see a counsellor or psychotherapist you will be assessed to find out more about you and the problem that you want to change.

Then you meet the horses. It can be an experiential learning experience when you watch and connect with the horse. You may notice the horse's behaviour or feel the breath of the horse. Sometimes you might be invited to carry out tasks with the horses such as grooming, leading or feeding. Some places may even allow you to ride the horse. Throughout this time you can talk if you want to or just enjoy the time. The therapist observes you and guides you to connect with the horses to help you to feel calmer. Nothing is rushed and therapy practice is developed to meet the needs of the individual.

So if you have a fear of horses contact me and find out how I can help. And if equine assisted therapy appeals to you then contact me and I would be happy to direct you to this amazing place in Somerset.

Kind regards