Working with your counsellor- Client booklet
We have put together our latest client booklet so that when you start counselling with us you can have everything you need to hand.
The booklet covers
- Emergency numbers and links to useful resources
- Frequently asked questions, also listed below
- How we care for your information and confidentitalty
- Your client rights
- How to give us feedback
Frequently asked questions
1. What is Counselling?
- Sometimes things in life can be scary, get us down make us distressed, anxious or confused. Sometimes family or friends can give us the support we need – sometimes
- Counselling gives us a private space to talk through what is difficult with someone who is not
- A counsellor will not tell you what to do or judge you, but always try to understand things from your point of view and support you to find your own
2. What kinds of Counselling do you offer?
Solution Focused Brief Therapy
This kind of counselling works quickly to help you find solutions to your problems. It helps you to discover what strengths you already have and how you can use these to make changes. It is an approach that doesn’t focus a great deal on your problems but more finding strategies to help you cope.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
CBT is a well-known Counselling Approach. It explores how your thoughts affect your feelings and influences your behaviour. CBT helps you to notice problematic thinking styles or behaviour patterns so that you can feel better. CBT uses a various strategy to help you make those changes in the here and now.
This approach to counselling uses lots of different approaches to help you explore your difficulties and find ways forward. Often this approach will allow the counselling to be tailored to the client and what they need.
Person Centred Approach
Person Centred Counselling offers a space for clients to explore their difficulties and discover their own solutions. This kind of counselling is very much let by the client and is non-directive.
This approach to counselling will explore your difficulties and how they might relate to and be triggered by experiences from your past. Through this understanding your current difficulties can be resolved.
The Gestalt approach focuses on how your issues impact on you in the present. It invites you to explore your experiences/issues and experiment with understanding and experiencing them in a different way.
3. What happens at the Assessment session?
- At the Assessment you will have a chance to discuss what has brought you to us, find out a bit more about us and for us to decide whether we are the right service for you or whether you may benefit from other
- If you are happy to take up counselling, we will arrange another appointment for you, this will be with someone who will be suited to your
4. Are your Counsellors Qualified?
- Our counsellors are Qualified, DBS checked and a member of a professional body.
5. What Ethical Framework do you follow?
- We are an organisational member of the BACP and abides by its’ Ethical Framework for Good Practice in Counselling and Psychotherapy and Professional Conduct
- A copy of BACP’s ethical standards can be found on their website at bacp.co.uk
6. How often will I see a counsellor?
- Counselling sessions usually take place at the same time every week or fortnightly.
7. What if I don’t get on with my counsellor?
- You will have the same counsellor throughout your counselling. If you feel uncomfortable with your counsellor, we can allocate you to another one. This may mean a short wait although we will endeavour to make the change as quickly as possible
8. How long is a counselling session?
- A counselling session is up to 50 minutes With CBT and Solution Focused approaches there may be multiple shorter sessions combined with work to do outside the sessions.
9. What if I need to cancel an appointment?
- If you need to cancel a counselling appointment, please give 24 hours’ notice. If your counsellor needs to cancel an appointment with you, they will also ensure that they give you 24 hours’
First Cancellation: we will offer you another appointment.
Second Cancellation: At the discretion of the counsellor, we may offer you a further appointment.
Holidays: Your counsellor will give you two weeks’ notice of any holidays they intend to take. We would be grateful if you could give your counsellor two weeks’ notice of any holidays you intend to take
10. What if I do not attend (DNA) a session without letting my counsellor know?
- We do not pressure any individual into coming for counselling.
First DNA: we will offer you an immediate second appointment.
Second DNA: we will contact you asking you to contact us within 1 week, if you would like to re-engage with your counselling, if you do not contact us, we will discharge you from the service. You can always use our service when you feel more ready.
11. What if I am late for an appointment?
- If you are late for an appointment, it will be at the counsellor’s discretion if they will see
you, as the counsellor may have another client booked in following your appointment.
12. When are appointments available?
We are open for appointments: 10 am – 8 pm 7 days a week, although your counsellor may work certain hours only. Let us know if you can only attend at certain times and we will do our best to match you with a counsellor that best suits your needs.
13. How many sessions can I have counselling?
- The number of counselling sessions you have will be something you discuss with your counsellor. Most people have between 3 and 6 sessions, some have more.
14. Do I have to come to counselling?
- Counselling is entirely voluntary. If you do not want counselling, you do not have to have it even if someone else may be pressuring
15. Will I feel better straight away?
- Counselling is different for different people. Sometimes people find that counselling helps them to feel better and achieve their goals very
- The outcome of counselling may not always be what you expect, but hopefully it will be positive.
- Sometimes the first sessions can be quite difficult, but we encourage you to persevere to complete the whole course of sessions.
- Counselling is a collaborative process where you and your counsellor work together; it is not something that can be done to
- Equally if you feel that counselling is not working, talk to your counsellor about this, counselling may not be for
16. What if I need to complain?
Should you wish to make a complaint or comment about our work together please speak to your counsellor or alternatively contact the Operations Manager on 0121 314 7075 or at the address or email below.
- Is there a charge for counselling/therapy?
Counselling for those living in the Birmingham area and registered with a GP practice based in Birmingham can normally access short term ‘IAPT’ therapy thanks to our Partnership with Living Well Consortium, Forward Thinking Birmingham and the NHS
- What Information is collected & why do we need to collect information?
- We will keep your
- name / address / phone number
- information about your physical and mental health in the past and now
- your family circumstances
- All counsellors keep notes of counselling sessions. Counselling notes may record:
- background information
- key issues worked on in the
- It is in your interest and our interest to collect this
- We collect this information so that:
- we can provide you with the best possible
- our service can be well run, and we can follow all the rules that we need
- we can offer you a safe and professional