Working professionally, confidentially and safely underpins my approach. I am an Accredited member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and adhere to their ethical framework for good practice. My practice is overseen by a qualified Clinical Supervisor and I continually refresh my counselling skills and knowledge through Continuing Professional Development.
I value the use of creativity and embracing different forms of expression which can make the counselling process more personal and effective for each individual.
My degree is in Person Centred Counselling which means that I aim to work with warmth, understanding and without judgement. The development of a trusting relationship is fundamental to the effectiveness of our work together.
I have worked in a University counselling service, counselled with the Teens and Toddlers project and volunteered for The Listening Centre (a low-cost adult counselling service).
Before qualifying as a Counsellor, I trained as a Cost and Management Accountant and worked as a Management Consultant implementing large I.T. systems, as an employee and then employer.
I'm Elena. As a Counsellor, I help people to find ways of overcoming or managing the obstacles that are preventing them from being the person they aspire to be.
With almost 20 years of working as a Counsellor, I have successfully worked with clients in many areas including:
Lack of motivation/purpose
Miscarriage & premature birth
Transitions (especially for students)
Grief and loss
Whilst this list conveys a general description of a condition, it does not explain the unique way in which each person experiences an issue. This is something that we explore as we work together.
Ways of Working
Hearing ourselves say out loud things that may we have kept hidden inside can bring about release and relief. When this takes place within a relationship in which you are respected and accepted as you are, then change can happen at a pace that is comfortable for you.
Sometimes, people find talking difficult – especially in the early stages of therapy. There is no expectation of what should be talked about. Some days people wish to talk about the issue that has brought them to counselling and sometimes about something entirely different.
For people who do not feel at ease talking, then BrainSpotting or Person Centred Art Therapy provide alternative ways to begin.
Person Centred Art Therapy is a simple yet powerful way, using imagery, of conveying feelings and experiences that can be difficult to access or express in words.
You do not have to be good at art to do this and no judgement is involved.
Starting with the idea of a word, a description or using guided imagery, people are invited to choose from a range of art materials to convey their own interpretation. A short period of time is used to create whatever comes from the subconscious. We will then sit together to explore the choice of materials, colours, positioning and symbols. Afterwards, there is an opportunity to reflect on how this relates to the issue that has been brought to counselling and how this knowledge can be used going forward.
I am a practicing BrainSpotter and this internationally recognised method of working is particularly effective with trauma which may have resulted from a single experience or ongoing chain of events. BrainSpotting can also be used to help overcome anxiety and blocks in the creative and performance process.
We begin with the feeling in the body that is triggered by thoughts about the issue you wish to work on. A combination of eye movement, (which activate a specific memory known as Brainspots), bilateral sound and counselling facilitates the processing of memories. The aim is to gain access to the sub-cortical parts of the brain which control both emotions and the body. This allows the release of deeply held trauma and pain in a safe and non-confrontational way.
What to expect
I offer a 15 minute Zoom phone session, before an assessment is booked, when we can discuss any questions you may have.
First Appointment (Assessment)
Our first appointment usually lasts around 1.5 hours. This is a time to understand what brings you to counselling, to consider your aspirations and goals and how often you would like to attend. It is very much an exploratory session and an opportunity to find out how we feel working together.
Sessions usually last an hour unless you prefer otherwise. BrainSpotting sessions typically last an hour and a half.
Effective counselling requires commitment from both of us. My preference is to agree a block of sessions at the same time and on the same day for several consecutive weeks where possible. However, this does not suit everyone and so we would discuss your preference and availability during the Assessment.
The ending is important because it allows time for reflection on what you have achieved or discovered during our work together. It allows time to think about what is important to you and to consider what your next steps may be. This is something that we would review periodically and which would form the basis of our final session together.
All aspects of the work we do together are confidential. Exceptional circumstances which may require confidentiality being broken are discussed during the Assessment.
Fees & Contact
I am available 8am-7pm Monday to Thursdays and on Friday mornings. I also work occasionally on Saturday mornings.
My fees are £55 per hour, payable by bank transfer within 48 hours of the session.
I offer appointments by phone or Zoom
For people who prefer to meet in person, I work from The Practice Rooms Summertown
If you would like to find out more and decide whether you feel comfortable working with me, please call me on 07869 693882 or use this form to get in touch. We can then arrange a mutually convenient time, of up to 15 minutes free of charge, to connect with each other.