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Merivale Psychotherapy and Counselling is a boutique psychotherapy and counselling practice in Merivale Christchurch specialising in both short-term counselling and psychotherapy and longer-term psychotherapy to restore and support mental Wellbeing.
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Emotional wellbeing is promoted by attending to our inner feelings and asssociated emotions. Good emotional wellbeing will contribute to increased self-awareness, lessening of anxiety and better relationships with ourselves and those around us. Emotional wellness is promoted by looking at, expressing and dealing with our feelings and emotions in the safety of the therapeutic relationship to support understanding, emotional regulation, healing and growth.
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Psychotherapy is a clinically proven, research based model with demonstrated effectiveness. The aim is to support the growth of a sense of ‘self’, increased self-awareness and the opportunity to integrate and process difficult emotions and feelings and/or trauma while also recognising our own implicit strength. It supports emotional regulation, lessening of anxiety, improved mood and better relationships with ourselves and those around us . We may be facing multiple stressors, trauma or loss in our current environment and/or our difficulties may have their origins in previous experiences and relationships. At times in our lives these feelings or thoughts may feel overwhelming or self-limiting, and we may understandably be motivated to avoid, dismiss or deny these feelings or thoughts in the hope they will go away. Or we may have developed ways of coping with these feelings which were once protective and adaptive that are now no longer useful to us, driving the difficult feelings underground and potentially increasing suffering such as depression or anxiety. Modern psychology and neuroscience research suggests that avoiding unwanted thoughts, feelings and memories actually increases suffering, symptoms and distress – whereas engaging with distress (when it feels safe and appropriate to do so), allows cognitive and emotional processing to support our wellbeing. “There is no letting go without first allowing honest space for what we feel” Yung Pueblo.
Psychotherapy provides a therapeutic frame from which you can begin to explore your internal and interpersonal experiences and environment. The human brain is a social organ, safe and supportive relationships are the optimal environment for integrating and processing psychological difficulties. Talking within a context of professional, sustained and reliable support and acceptance promotes healing, a sense of self, self-awareness, self-acceptance and agency.
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Counselling is often shorter-term work and provides a safe therapeutic frame from which you can begin to attune to and explore your internal and interpersonal experiences to support understanding and growth. My counselling practice is guided by Roger’s Person Centred Model which is an optimistic and empathic approach which believes in the unique potential of each client. By providing the necessary therapeutic conditions of acceptance, genuineness, empathic understanding and empathic-attunement counselling can assist with personal growth.
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I am a Registered Psychotherapist and Counsellor having spent seven years studying and qualifying in both. I am a Member of the New Zealand Association of Counsellors (NZAC), Member New Zealand Association of Psychotherapists (NZAP) and have over 10 years of experience working with individual clients in navigating difficulties, trauma and mental health issues, and have a particular interest in and experience of working with anxiety, interpersonal trauma and women. I view Psychotherapy and Counselling as an integral part of self-care – like going to a gym to support your physical health, seeing a Counsellor or Psychotherapist to support your mental health. You may have identified patterns/beliefs/thoughts/behaviours that are not supporting your Wellness i.e. avoiding, dismissing or denying your own feelings or accomodating to others, self-limiting beliefs and thoughts. You may be managing symptoms such as anxiety, low mood, stress. You may be dealing with a major adjustment; change of career, a new baby, the loss of a relationship, a traumatic event or your difficulties may have their origins in your early environment …or it may be that things have got out of balance. Talking within a therapeutic relationship offers opportunities for new understandings about ourselves and access to experiences that can be talked about in a safe therapeutic space to support cognitive and emotional integration and regulation. It enables a more authentic relationship with ourselves and others, allowing us to live in more confident and compassionate ways and supports the capacity and resiliency needed to skillfully navigate emotional difficulties as they arise.
My work is underpinned by clinically proven Psychotherapy and Counselling theories and I am committed to ongoing professional development. My experience of working as a Counsellor at the University of Otago and Psychotherapist and Counsellor at the University of Canterbury Health Centres and in many schools throughout the Canterbury region, allow me to confidently and skillfully help clients navigate psychological difficulties. I am qualified in The Conversational Model of Psychotherapy which is among one of the best clinically validated of the relational psychotherapies, and am also qualified in Person-Centred Model of Counselling with training and experience in the use of Short-Term Dynamic Interpersonal Psychotherapy (STDIP). I am also a qualified Registered Nurse and take an holistic approach to Wellness.
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how psychotherapy and
counselling can help you.
Psychotherapy is an intimate, personal journey towards self-acceptance and self-understanding in in the company of an attuned other. Life and relationships can bring difficult, painful, traumatic experiences that we are not always prepared for or equipped to manage. Psychotherapy and Counselling will support your self esteem, self-awareness, growth, healing and wellbeing via talking in a safe therapeutic setting. Psychotherapy and Counselling will provide you with professional support to navigate your feeling states, support integration and regulation of difficult feelings and emotions which up until now have been anxiety-provoking and/or avoided. It will enable a more authentic relationship with yourself and others and support the capacity and resiliency needed to skillfully navigate emotional difficulties as they arise.
Some of the emotional difficulties clients may bring include:
- Anxiety and panic attacks
- Trauma – emotional abuse and/or neglect, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Low self-esteem
- Body image difficulties
- Difficult relationship with food
- Grief and loss
- Relationship difficulties
- Pregnancy / motherhood / parenting
- Managing life transitions and change
- Abortion and miscarriage
- Work/life balance
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what you can expect.
I understand that making contact with a Psychotherapist or Counsellor can be an intimidating and potentially a vulnerable experience and so am very aware of making it a welcoming, safe, compassionate space so that it is as easy for you as possible.
Using clinically validated psychotherapeutic principles we will work with feelings and emotions to support growth and understanding and the capacity and resiliency needed to skillfully navigate our feeling states to lessen the impact of stress, anxiety and other difficult experiences.
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costs and fees.
Interested in working together, or have further inquiries about Merivale Psychotherapy and Counselling please feel free to get in touch below. Sessions are 50 minutes long and I charge $130 per session incl GST. There is eftpos onsite . WINZ subsidies available.