Please arrive not more than a minute or two before your appointed time. I may still be with a previous client until then and an interruption could be disruptive. Also, I do need time to write up notes between appointments.
Please be punctual. We may still need to end at the given time even if you have arrived late.
Please come alone - unless of course we are doing relationship counseling and it’s been arranged that both you and your partner are to come together. Unfortunately, I do not have a waiting room for guests.
Please keep your appointment. If you need to cancel or rearrange it, I ask that you do so at least 48 hours before hand. Failing to do this will mean that you will still be charged.
Please bring with you details of your GP and also any medication you are using.
If you are wishing to discuss an issue that could possibly have medical implications, please first visit your GP so as to get a professional diagnosis and so eliminate any physical causes that I may not be able to treat. (If you have not already managed to do this by the time of your first appointment, I may require that you do so before the second.)
It is important that you to have an understanding of the work we will be doing together and also that you are comfortable doing it. To aid this, please look at any relevant articles from the dropdown menu above and particularly consult the frequently asked questions section.
It would be helpful if, before your first visit, you draw up and bring with you a timeline of your life. It does not matter too much what format you choose to do this, but it should include the important events that have taken place. It should particularly list those occurrences that may have had a significant impact on you either emotionally or in terms of altering the course of your life. Such a timeline will assist me in getting to know you a bit quicker and help me to get a better understanding of the issues we will be treating.
Our first appointment together will largely be a simple fact-finding one. The chances are that, unless we are dealing with a critical issue, we will not manage to get to any actual hypnosis, or other remedial work. Before we begin our more formal therapeutic work together, it is of course essential that I first get to know you, and also get to understand the issue or issues you wish to bring to me. Taking this time to establish a good understanding and build a trusting therapist/client relationship can in itself be of value. Indeed, many clients have found it most beneficial to start off by sharing their personal story in an environment that is non-judgmental and supportive.
For the work we do together to be effective, it is necessary that we gain each other's trust. For my part, I adhere to a strict policy of confidentiality, and I shall endeavour to be truthful, accepting and non-judgmental. It is my aim to create a safe, friendly, professional environment - one in which you can feel comfortable, even when discussing the most sensitive of issues.
Appointments tend to last for at least 50 minutes (although they may sometimes end up going on for 90 minutes or more). During these sessions, I prefer to focus on accomplishing the work that has been planned, than on watching the clock. I also like to allow for a degree of flexibility, so as to be able to deal with those things that may come up unexpectedly. There are, of course, some restraints to this way of working, particularly if I am expecting the arrival of my next client. Also, it might of course be helpful for you to let me know quite early in an appointment should you have a need to leave by a particular time. Doing this will help me to work around your own time constraints.
Whether we are using NLP techniques or hypnotic trance to achieve an outcome, you will always remain completely in control of the process. Although you might well go into a state of hypnosis, you will find it a bit like driving a car while I sit in the passenger seat gently guiding and directing you. You will always have the choice to either follow my suggestions or disregard them. My aim is to empower you rather than to take away any of your control.
Everyone is able to go into trance, although some people naturally go both deeper and quicker than others. I tend not to make too much of a big deal of the depth of a client’s trance. For the purposes of the work we are likely to do together, a light or medium state of trance will usually be as effective as a deeper one. There are however certain techniques that can be employed to help a client deepen a state of hypnosis in those rare situations were it is becomes helpful to help a person go down further. Interestingly, clients tend to find that their hypnotic experience naturally deepens with practice over the period of time we work together.
Just occasionally I do not accept a person as a client. This is sometimes because the person concerned wishes to see me for the wrong reasons. Other times it is because I feel I am not able to deal either ethically or effectively with the person concerned or with the issue presented.
Good feedback is crucial so that I can hone our sessions together and tailor future ones to you and your individual needs. At the end of each session I will therefore ask you about what you experienced and how you felt. I will again ask for feedback when we next meet so as to find out how our previous session affected you and your situation in the intervening time.
Depending on the situation, I may well give you homework to do between our sessions. This could take the form of self-hypnosis (if you’ve been taught to do it), listening to a recording of a session or perhaps performing some other activity such as completing a goal worksheet. Please take homework seriously. It will prove to be beneficial and may even reduce the number of sessions we will need together.
I will frequently record a session while we are doing it together. I also sometimes record a separate session when you are not with me. In either case, these recordings are made for you to listen to as a part of your homework. It is beneficial to do this regularly (as suggested by me at the time). There is great value in repetition with hypnosis – both in terms of practicing the actual process of hypnotic relaxation and also in reinforcing the specific suggestions made during the particular session.
A hypnotic recording should NOT be listened to while driving a car, working with machinery or doing any other activity that requires your full attention. Instead, you should find a quite place to listen to it, where you are unlikely to be disturbed. It is also best to listen to it while sitting comfortably in a chair.
Recordings are usually e-mailed to clients. Please let me know if you have any technical problems with this, Should you do, I am able to burn them to CD instead and put them in the post to you.
Any recording sent to you is copyrighted and for your exclusive use.
It is my goal for you to become more empowered by our time together rather than reliant on me in any way. I do not wish to have unnecessary appointments with you, so I shall strive to help you resolve your issues in as few sessions as in comfortably possible.
Although the tools I use in the practice can be very effective, I am of course not able to guarantee their success for you. It is you who will remain in control throughout the therapeutic process and you who will make the changes yourself. My role will be that of facilitator and guide.
Please note that I am not able to counsel over the telephone. If anything important crops up between appointments and you feel you can’t wait for our arranged one, please rather try to bring your appointment forward.
It is often easier to just pretend not to recognise each other outside the therapy room. Understandably, you might not want to have to explain me away to whomever you may be with at the time. For reasons of confidentiality, I would also not wish to feel the need to tell a third person how I know you.