Although empathic listening is an important part of the process there is so much more to counselling than that. Our work together may help you to see things from a different perspective, explore possible changes, coping strategies and options, helping you to move forward in the way you want to.
So what happens in the first session? The first appointment is in a slightly different format to subsequent sessions - an informal discussion rather than a counselling session. In this session we won't delve deeply in to what's on your mind but you will have the opportunity to tell me a bit about what you're struggling with. I will gather some background information and ask what brings you to therapy. It is always helpful if you can prepare for the first session by thinking about what you want to get out of counselling.
We will spend a few minutes talking about the terms and conditions of counselling such as confidentiality. At the end of the first session we decide whether we can work together. You are under no obligation to continue after our first meeting if you don't want to but if you do decide to go ahead we would normally expect to meet weekly, at least initially.