What is mental wellness?
All feelings and mental experiences are normal. Though sometimes we experience them intensely or they get out of balance. When our inner functioning is at its optimum and we effectively use all of our innate potential, in our work and the rest of our life, we are at our peak “mental wellness.”
Mental wellness shows itself when we demonstrate:
- awareness of our own emotions
- embracing change and the unknown
- purposeful attention
- inner motivation
- having insights
These are all inner abilities that can be developed. You can improve your mental wellness with a proactive approach – just like going to the gym.
Therapy: How does it work?
We have two minds: one that thinks and one that feels. We see this when, for example, we say we’re over our ex, as our eyes well up with tears.
Evolution grew the brain from the bottom up and its biological development today still roughly follows this course:
- The instinctive “brainstem” develops first: it regulates basic functions like breathing.
- Next comes the emotional centre: it learns and remembers.
- Then the thinking, rational brain develops – this part let’s us use logic, plan, and have thoughts about our feelings. Culture and civilisation come from our thinking brain.
Our thinking brain and emotional brain are strongly connected. Studies of patients with damaged emotional centres show flawed decision-making despite a stable IQ – feelings are necessary for rational decisions. They need to work together harmoniously. Crucially, emotional memories and reactions can bypass the thinking brain and form without any conscious thought at all.
Emotional memories imprint the strongest. They can affect our reactions in the future. Many are formed in the first few years of life. This is when the thinking brain is not fully developed but the emotional centre is close to formed. In this way, life’s earliest experiences form potent blueprints.
Our individual blueprints – from birth through all our experiences in life – are explored in therapy. Really, therapy is just talking – but using skilful techniques it uncovers our emotional memories and our patterns of thinking. In doing so we grow aware of their influence and – ultimately – can choose to take charge of them.
Which is right for me - counselling or coaching?
Our questionnaire will recommend which approach is most likely to be right for you based on your answers. Here are some of the key differences between the two:
|Counselling and Psychotherapy
|Trained in human development and mental health
||Trained in helping clients move forward in life
|Asks “Why?”: Looks at the underlying causes of unhelpful or repeating feelings and behaviours
||Looks at your unhelpful behaviours and teaches skills to cope or modify them
|Helps you understand how you think and feel and work through emotions
||Focus on your thoughts
|Helps you look at your experiences to understand and change the present and future
||Helps you see clearly where you are today and find ways to move towards your goals
|Helps you recognise and solve things for yourself
||Helps you set and achieve goals
|Takes a bit longer: 3 – 12 months is recommended
||Generally a more short-term approach
|Extensive regulation and training (a minimum of 450 hours over three or more years) and study in human thinking and emotions, followed by training under close supervision.
||Training varies: Coaches must do many hours of coaching before being eligible to register with the different coaching associations. Unregulated at present.
What kind of counselling does The Circle Line offer?
Our therapists are trained in a wide range of approaches. All have a Certificate/Diploma/Degree in one (or more) NICE recommended therapy for adults. The most common are integrated, psychodynamic, person-centred, psychoanalytic and cognitive behavioural. You can read more about the different approaches here. Our questionnaire will help you find the right therapist for you.
However, we think you are the best judge of who you want to work with. We believe the precise therapy model is not something to worry about in advance, and many therapists integrate a range of approaches. Ultimately, you know best what you want, who you feel comfortable working with and who you feel will get the best from you.
The first step is to have a chat and whilst doing so simply ask yourself – ‘Can I talk to this person?’
Does therapy really work?
Many studies have shown that it does. 28% of the British population has talked to a therapist at some point. Therapy is not new. “Talking cures” have been around for decades (even centuries, depending how you look at it). Since 1900 modern techniques have been empirically developed and therapy continues to be increasingly popular.
How many sessions should I book?
This is totally up to you and want you want and expect to achieve. Some people are looking to do some short term work, some are committed to a longer, deeper process. We would recommend having a series of at least 6 sessions with the same practitioner as a minimum. Ultimately, it’s up to you.
Can I change practitioner?
Yep. We’ll match you with 3 people that our matching technology suggests are suitable for you. You can change to any of them if you feel the sessions aren’t working for you for whatever reason. You can also change your answers to the questions to get new suggested practitioners.
Can I get a refund?
Only if you cancel your session with at least one week’s notice in advance. Once you’ve booked your session your practitioner will commit to that session and keep their time free. Therefore we feel it fair to honour their time and commitment.