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Counselling is a therapy in which the client & therapist enter an open & honest relationship in which the client can explore any issues they feel are causing them problems. Your counsellor is
someone who will listen to you & help you to talk about life events (past & present), feelings, emotions, relationships, ways of thinking & patterns of behaviour. Counselling involves working in ways that acknowledge individual differences, without oppression or discrimination.

Counselling is a relationship based on trust & acceptance. A counsellor will not tell you what to do but will respect your right to choose the focus of your counselling sessions. Your counsellor will help you untangle your feelings & worries & look at the options open to you so that you can make your own choices & put them into action.

Counselling consists of an agreed number of regular sessions lasting for an hour. This depends on you, the counsellor & the problem. While deep rooted problems may need longer (on hour a week for several months) short term counselling for a specific problem may take only a few weekly sessions. Individuals tend to come into therapy when problems overwhelm them but counselling & psychotherapy are useful aids to self-awareness which can help us to lead a more fulfilling life.

The most important professional body for counsellors is BACP (British Association for Counsellors & Psychotherapists) www.bacp.co.uk