What is Counselling?

Find out what counselling is, and how it can help.

What is counselling?

Counselling is a type of talking therapy that provides a safe and confidential space for you to talk about the things you are struggling with. Your therapist will be trained to help you explore your thoughts, feelings and behaviours so that you can improve your understanding of yourself and others around you. 

Counselling is about helping you to find your own solutions so that you can make changes in your life and find better ways to cope with your problems. 

What difficulties might counselling help with?

Counselling has been found to be effective when treating a range of mental health and wellbeing difficulties. It can be useful to people who experience difficulties with:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Low self esteem
  • Eating disorders
  • Coping with a physical illness or condition
  • Bereavement
  • Breakdown in a relationship
  • Work-related stress

How does counselling work?

Counselling works by asking you questions about the things you are struggling with so that you can clarify what the issues are and explore different solutions. Your therapist will help you to solve problems and to develop your longer-term problem-solving skills. Therapists remain impartial. They do not tell you what you should or shouldn't do, instead, they help you to find the solution that feels right for you. 

What's it like to receive counselling?

  1. You will firstly meet with a therapist who will determine if counselling is right for you. This is done by asking you some questions about your circumstances, the things you struggle with and by completing some questionnaires. 
  2. If counselling is right for you, you will be given a therapist to work with who will be trained to deliver this type of intervention. You will meet with them regularly - this can vary from person to person but is usually around every two weeks. 
  3. The Therapist will help you to explore the things you struggle with. This might be through general discussions or by completing specific exercises. You’ll be asked to try out new approaches and skills at home, and to feedback in the sessions as to how this has worked out. 
  4. The therapist will also regularly discuss with you how you are finding the sessions, so that your therapist can adapt the sessions so that you get the most from your treatment.