What to expect at your first Session
Once we have made initial contact (phone or email) we will arrange a convenient appointment to meet at the conculting rooms , currently Caerphilly and/or Cardiff .
When you arrive at the consulting room you will either be met by myself or one of the centres reception staff. For fire safety sake we will ask you to sign in (and out) of the centre, for Reason you can simply state 'to see cath' . Generally, it is a good idea to aim to be at the venue 5 minutes before your appointment time. There will be minimal, if any time waiting, but time enough to show you the waiting area, toilets and fire escape etc. You will be shown into one of the three consulting rooms.
After initial introductions I will outline the way I work, my qualifications and the good practice guidelines which as a registered counsellor I work within. If you have any questions at any time you are encouraged to ask them. I will then ask you to briefly outline what has brought you to counselling - many people are self conscious and nervous to begin with, this is normal, it is good to remember that the difficult bit was the initial phone call and email....once you start to talk it soon becomes easier to do so. You are unique so what you tell me is as individual as you are , but there are many common themes which cause upset and emotional trauma, so please do not feel embarrassed or shy about speaking openly and honestly about how you feel and the reasons you feel that way. You will not be judged or criticised, the benefits to be gained from therapy depends on you being honest with yourself and with me. I am likely to ask some questions to clarify things as you outline your issues, I will listen, and may occasionally write a couple of things down to aid my understanding and memory of what you say, you are free to see these at anytime.
It can be surprising just how fast that initial hour will fly by, before the session ends I will provide you with my understanding of what you have told me and let you know what the next steps are likely to be - in the majority of cases I would be able to tell you whether I feel counselling will benefit you, whether I feel my skill set matches your needs, or if not suggest to you another form or therapy/therapist etc. Only if you are happy will we arrange to meet up again and discuss an initial length of contract , as you can appreciate the length of contract varies with each unique case, and is open to mutual negotiation as sessions progress. Any questions you have I will endeavour to answer through out the session, and obviously, as we progress. All being acceptable, we will arrange to meet again, booking an appointment slot with a view to also planning a couple of weeks in advance to make our meetings of a regular nature. I will give you a copy of the 'contract' and a receipt for any fee's paid, for your personal records or for you to provide to an employer if they have agreed to pay for your sessions. If you/we have pre-arranged with your employer that they will pay the fees, they will have been invoiced accordingly and you will not be require d to pay, however a receipt of attendance can be given if you require it.