I model my practice on procedures developed through research and promoted by leading practioners of CBT. The key process in CBT is known as "guided discovery", wherein the client learns to respond to life's challenges in a more effective way.
if you want to consider CBT, you may contact me yourself at the address, telephone number or email address listed on the Contact page. Or you can have your General Practioner or other health care worker refer you to me, in which case a letter is the usual means of referral, although telephone or email are useful for preliminary enquiries
My Experience as a Mental Health Clinician and CBT Specialist.
Thirty years of working within the NHS mental health services in North and West Wiltshire and Bath areas, ten of which were as co-ordinator of a community mental health team and community psychiatric nurse, has given me a good foundation for the role of cognitive behavioural therapist. For instance, I have acquired a good knowledge of psychiatric medications and mental health and social care systems.
When the British Association of Behavioural Psychotherapies, as it was known then, introduced its criteria and vetting system for the accreditation of cognitive behaviour therapists in 1995, I was among the first wave of successful applicants. This means that I can say with confidence that there are few, if any, therapists working in the region who have been accredited by the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies, as it is now known, as long as I have been.
Having worked for seventeen years for Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust (AWP) as a CBT specialist, I can also say with confidence that there are few therapists in the region that have done as much CBT as I have been privileged to do. Most of this work has been within the AWP's secondary mental health services, but recently I have done some therapy within one of the trust's primary care psychological therapy services.
As AWP's only CBT specialist in NW Wilts and Bath areas, I am often asked to see clients with complicated, enduring, and 'hard to treat' problems, such as mood disorders, interpersonal difficulties and self-harming, complex post-trauma disorders, depersonalisation and disassociation, obsessional, hoarding and habit disorders, and body image problems. Often, my clients have suffered a combination of these types of problems and met diagnostic criteria for two or more psychiatric illnesses.
Throughout my career, many of my clients have had problems that are often known as "psychosis", i.e. the experience of distressing voices and beliefs. So, again, I can safely say that there are few therapists in the area, if any, that have worked with these complex psychological difficulties as much as I have.
While my clients have come to me because of psychiatric problems or mental illnesses, many have had other complicating difficulties, such as alcohol and/or substance abuse, physical illnesses and/or chronic pain, social and/or economic deprivation, or problems of social marginalisation or prejudice because of their ethnic or racial background. All these problems need to be considered in the formulation of the clients' mental health problems and addressed in the treatment plan.
While most of my therapy has been done in the orthodox format of individual therapy in interview rooms in primary care or mental health centres, I have often worked in other formats and settings. For instance, I have provided CBT in group programmes designed for specific problems, such as depression, anxiety or anger, and for people with heterogeneous or different problems. I have also worked with clients whose difficulties are best treated by including a spouse, parent or friend in sessions and I have done CBT-based family work when that has been recommended, as in cases of "serious mental illnesses" (as if there is such a thing as 'humorous mental illness'!), such as psychosis. And I have done CBT in a variety of settings, when it is indicated, such as in the client's home or car, in residential homes or acute psychiatric in-patient units, and in public places, e.g. supermarkets, cafes, even swimming pools.