Your Questions Answered:
What is Gestalt?
Gestalt is about working in the present but does not exclude the past. As a Gestalt therapist, I ask questions that encourage you to connect to your internal wisdom. I enjoy looking at patterns, stuck loops of behaviour and I believe by raising self-awareness this can lead to having more choices and thriving in life. There is no fixed method or one size fits all solution. My approach will look at identifying parts such as your angry self or inner child in order to see what needs have been met and which have not. Gestalt focuses on noticing body sensations and tensions and by raising awareness of the body we can become better equipped to self-care. Here is a link explaining more about Gestalt.
How do I know if I need therapy?
Ask yourself are you living authentically? If not why not? Therapy space encourages you to be more present in your life and be more fully you. Often, by the time people have booked an appointment they can be very distressed. It really needn't take such a level of suffering to access a supportive space. Only you can decide if you need therapy. Mandy Saligari - therapist discusses process of Denial in 7 minute clip. She also has a 18 minute Ted Talk about feelings, Handle Them Before They Handle You
What happens next and if I become reliant on you?
First step is to contact me for Co-Assessment, this is an opportunity for both of us to see if we can work together. You can tell me if you would like to work short term or long term. I offer reviews as a process to see what is going well and what isn't going well and encourage you to have a sense of autonomy. I welcome feedback and emphasise you are the expert on your life.
During the initial stages of therapy it is normal to feel a sense of urgency and dependency. I strive to empower you, we will work together to develop a set of skills that works for your personality and lifestyle post-therapy. One of the main goals in counselling is to develop the language of self-responsibility and to build up a tool kit of strategies that include body awareness, establishing boundaries and improved emotional language. You are unique and you matter.
How do you not take work home with you or be able to separate your stuff from what a client brings?
I attend supervision, peer support, CPD workshops and this enables me to process the work, attend to any blind spots and ensures I am working ethically. I practice good self-care and I find the work incredibly powerful, life affirming and rewarding. It is one of the few places authentic dialogue can happen. I witness change happen and that is a privilege to work with on a daily basis.
Isn't counselling advice giving?
Think of a time someone has given you advice or you have given it. Was it helpful? I recognise that reassurance and advice are temporary fixes to what can be deep seated issues that require time and empathy. Therapy space is collaborative, creative process and i also offer the opportunity to work with movement and drawings.
What do you work with or do you have a speciality or area of expertise?
I really enjoy the variety of my work which includes loss, anxiety, creative blocks and relationship difficulties. I have found a client may initially want to focus on loss and actually we travel to many other places. There is no such thing as a silly question, so please email if you would like to know more.
"Umaa is warm and friendly and instantly put me at ease. She is compassionate and empathic."
J - 33 sessions
"She listens attentively and a space where I was able to reconnect to my creativity. Highly recommended."
V - 53 sessions
"Umaa listens carefully and what she picks up; she feeds back in a gentle, caring manner"
M - 12 sessions