Supervision for Counsellling and Psychotherapy, St Austell, Cornwall.

01726 70300 or 07733366644

Counselling Psychotherapy Supervision.

I have over 30 years experience as supervisor and trainer in various settings and I am qualified as both. I supervise counsellers and psychotherapists both individually and in group supervision.

Values and beliefs that underpin my supervision practice.

My most treasured value is humility. By accepting ourselves and others we can create a space devoid of shame from which we can grow unencumbered by ego. Integrity and equality further a working relationship that can thrive on trust and honesty. A supervisor should be an ally.

I approach each piece of supervisory work with curiosity and desire to explore the vast palette of possibilities for learning and developing my own understanding and that of my supervisees. This manifests in a willingness to share my own experience and an invitation for my supervisees to be open and transparent with theirs. In service of my own continued growth I am forever learning from my clients, supervisees, peers, supervisors.

Whenever I come across something new and interesting I will research, discuss and debate. I have a diploma in supervision and I continue learn and embrace new perspectives. Human beings have a propensity to label, categorise and define in a way that is limiting and often prejudicial. One of our greatest failings is to assume. I embrace the position of ‘not knowing’ which creates a space to accept knowledge and perspectives which are often lost in the expediency of assumption. I believe the purpose of counselling supervision is the growth of practitioners’ expertise in the service of our clients and of our therapeutic community. I both support and challenge my supervisees to be the best they can be by exploring possibilities, outcomes and alternatives.

A secondary gain is growth of the supervisor both in terms of experience and from sharing another’s perspectives and methods. Supervision should be a place of sanctuary, safety and nurture. I treat my supervisees with love and respect and pride myself in never purposefully or knowingly shaming my clients or supervisees. I share my “mistakes” openly and view them as learning opportunities to be grasped with humility and often good humour. I work holistically with my own clients. I encompass an eclectic mix of theory, interventions and philosophies. I work with the whole client – body and mind and encourage my supervisees to do the same by exploring, questioning, challenging and learning.

Underpinning my philosophy on working with both supervisees and clients is what I believe to be a sound ethical viewpoint. I quote Eric Bern’s central principle, “Above all do no harm.” As a long time accredited Bacp member I work within the ethical framework. From the ethical principles I particularly hold dear the idea of “Justice and Self Respect.” These principles fit my belief that we should work as equals for the greater good, as well as our individual growth; with integrity, honesty and above all humility.

The knowledge base that informs my work with supervisees?

My core model was Transactional Analysis (TA). TA is an integrated psychotherapy. Its’ origins are in Psychoanalysis, with a strong developmental tradition. TA incorporates Gestalt in many of its’ interventions and has theoretical concepts with based in cognitive and behavioural philosophies. More recently TA has developed a strong emphasis in relational psychotherapy.

As well as a sound understanding of my core model, I have studied Body Psychotherapy, Meditation, Gestalt and EMDR. I have a working knowledge of several disciplines which allows me to work with a variety of different therapists and find common language. With my training background I can utilise a knowledge of learning styles, which helps me to adapt my presentation to the needs of the individual. For example, therefore whenever there is need for educational repair, I will use case studies or stories to give a practical application to any needed learning.

As a supervisee I have had the honour of working with renowned and accomplished supervisors in the fields of TA, Body Psychotherapy and EMDR. The modelling I received has informed my philosophy and their methods stay with me today. As a supervisor, Clarkson’s 7 level model best fits my approach and philosophy. The levels can all form part of supervision.

As well as working with case material, my work with supervisees may include identifying their own personal (not professional) development. Are there any areas of their own personal development that need addressing? While these are unlikely to be addressed directly in supervision, we may identify areas for exploration/development that may impact on the supervisees work. These can then be explored further, outside of the supervisory relationship. I also work with the professional development of the supervisee. How do they wish to grow their business? What new skills might they need? In what way might they specialise?

I like to have an overarching contract with my supervisee that relates to their direction and development

When working with case material I like to consider some of the following. (Not always in this order and as it fits for the supervisee and their client work).

Contract with Supervisee (What do they want).

Method of Supervision (Verbal report, role play etc).

Client Background/History (social factors, childhood, current relationships, values).

Client Presentation (body language, appearance, emotional expression, energy/pace).

Therapeutic Contract (Overall and/or sessional).

Diagnosis and Treatment planning.

Safety & Moral/Ethical considerations.

Sessional Reports, Interventions & Progress

Therapeutic Relationship (Transference, ego states, trust.)

Supervisee learning & Growth

Outcomes & Future Therapeutic direction.

We gather knowledge from study, research, experience, observation and interaction. By developing our knowledge base and integrating it into practical experience we can grow our effectiveness as practitioners. I have been a supervisor for 30 years’ in the commercial world, in statutory provision of mental health services and as a therapeutic supervisor. This experience is enhanced by my philosophy as described above.

Humility to avoid assumptions and keep an open mind, along with an endless enthusiasm to learn, keeps my work fresh and new.