Can’t Get There In Person?
Online Counselling Provides Safe, Secure Support

Are You Cut Off From The Support You Need?

Has the situation with COVID-19 left you feeling isolated and down, or anxious with all the changes and uncertainty?

Perhaps recent intensive, prolonged time with your family has been a real pressure-cooker. Tempers may have flared, or long-standing tensions bubbled to the surface, while you’ve been stuck at home.

Maybe you live in a remote location and feel very alone with your problems.

It could be that it’s hard for you to access professional support, due to mobility issues or a hectic schedule.

Maybe you’ve been battling for some time with difficulties in yourself, and just when you decide you need to talk to someone, you find therapists aren’t seeing anyone in person.

There Are Times We All Need A Helping Hand 

Online counselling by secure video and telephone, online therapy, online psychotherapy

Human beings don’t flourish alone. We function best and achieve most as part of a supportive community. But the comfortable structures and nourishing relationships we envision for our lives often don’t materialise as planned. There are times when we look around us and realise we are isolated, overwhelmed… and cut off from the support we need.

There can be any number of reasons for this, from hectic work schedules and unpredictable shift patterns, to mobility issues, or living in a location far from friends and family. And of course COVID-19 has left huge numbers of people feeling lonely and disconnected.

The combination of stress and isolation can be toxic. Emotions that might be contained in a more supportive environment can begin to spill over. It’s easy to find ourselves becoming strained and edgy. Depression and anxiety may loom large, and relationships can begin to fracture.

Online Video Counselling: The Solution When You Can’t Attend Therapy In Person

The good news is that with the help of a compassionate, experienced therapist you can find your way through all this. And you don’t have to miss out on therapy just because you’re unable to see someone face-to-face. With online video counselling you can get the support you need, whatever your situation.

Video counselling has other advantages, too. You can be in control of your own environment. You can have your own things around you to help you feel calm. And there’s no long or stressful journey to and from a therapist’s office.

What To Expect From Online Counselling

Online counselling by secure video and telephone, online therapy, online psychotherapy

Online therapy is similar in many ways to in-person therapy. It’s still a space where you can express yourself at your own pace and without fear of judgment. We’ll still work together to help you achieve the changes you want to see in your life.

There are differences, too, of course. One is that you will need to prepare your own safe, quiet space for your session. This may mean making sure you won’t be disturbed by pets or family members. You might want to get yourself a glass of water or a hot drink, and check you have tissues to hand. Using a device with a larger screen, where possible, will help things feel more natural and comfortable.

It can also be really helpful to think about creating a clear break between your session and other activities. Try to free yourself up a little in advance of each session, so you have time to gather your thoughts. Afterwards you might get up and take a walk, or make a cup of tea, before you return to other screens and people and conversations.

Today’s modern video platforms are easy to use. I send you a web-link by email. You just click on the link to access your private online waiting room, and I meet you there at our appointment time.

Using video to talk about very personal issues can feel a little strange to begin with. However, most people find themselves adapting to it surprisingly quickly and comfortably.

Maybe You Still Have Some Questions About Online Therapy…

Online counselling by secure video and telephone, online therapy, online psychotherapy“Is Online Counselling Really Effective?”

We all know that video calls lack the same sense of someone’s ‘presence’ compared to being physically in the room with them. Many people therefore worry that online therapy will be somehow ‘less than’ in-person therapy.

However, studies consistently show that conducting therapy online doesn’t seem to impact its effectiveness. Online therapy has been extensively researched and validated as being equally as effective as face-to-face sessions. We may both miss the human element of being in a room together, but online therapy can still help you find the right path forwards in your life.

“Is Online Video Secure?”

I take security and confidentiality very seriously. I like Zoom for video calls, because there is no ‘electronic trail’ of our sessions within the app. This means there’s no sensitive data that could be lost or hacked. And I always use the maximum security settings during calls, so our conversation can never be interrupted by anyone else.

“What If I Don’t Have A Private Space To Talk From?”

Many people struggle to get enough privacy when they’re confined at home with others. And for psychotherapy and counselling, having a safe and private space from which to speak is absolutely vital.

There are several things which can help with this. You might wear headphones or ear-buds, to make sure you’re the only one who can hear what I’m saying. You could also ask those you live with to turn on some entertainment in another room, to avoid your own words being overheard.

Online counselling by secure video and telephone, online therapy, online psychotherapy

And, don’t forget to consider ‘alternative’ private spaces. I have worked with people speaking from a garden shed, in a car on their driveway, or in their attic. As long as you can still get a phone or Wi-Fi signal, then we can have our session.

“I’m Just Not Comfortable With Technology!”

Technology can feel really uncomfortable if you don’t use it often. But you don’t have to be a techno-wizard to do online therapy.

If you would like to try video sessions but are nervous of how it all works, I will lead you each step of the way. I’m happy to arrange a ‘test drive’, for you to get used to the technology and make sure it’s all working OK before our initial session.

“Will My Therapy Stay Online If It Starts Online?”

One of the challenges we are facing at present is that we don’t know how long we might be asked to socially distance ourselves. If you are starting online therapy with me during the COVID-19 lockdown, then I will certainly invite you to come to my clinic in Hay-on-Wye for sessions as soon as we can safely do that. But your location, your health, or your own schedule or preferences, may make it more convenient to continue to meet with me online. We can work that out as the time comes.

Taking The Next Step…

“I can’t thank Sarah enough for the lasting and positive contribution she has made on my life… I now feel that although I will still have down days, these will be few and far between and I am equipped with the tools and skills to cope with whatever comes my way.”

Feedback from a client

Online video counselling has been part of my therapy practice for many years. I have helped people recover from depression, find relief from anxiety, overcome trauma, and navigate difficult life events – all online.

I will help you get past the initial awkwardness of getting started online, and soon we’ll be on our way. Just contact me for further information or to book a first session together.

Struggling during lockdown? Here’s some simple tips:

For further information, or to book an initial consultation:

Counselling and Psychotherapy, Hay-on-Wye, Hereford, Brecon, Builth Wells, Kington, Leominster, Talgarth