A confidential space to explore the thoughts, feelings and challenges in your life
Life brings many challenges, and it is understandable that at times we might look for support in facing them. As a counsellor my role is to provide space and guidance to help you on your journey of self-discovery; to enable you to examine your life and make new, meaningful choices within it.
I offer a chance to reflect on the difficulties or problems you are experiencing in a safe and confidential environment, with someone from outside your day-to-day life. Together we can explore your situation in a way that leads to fresh perspectives - and perhaps a new understanding of yourself. Counselling isn’t about giving you solutions or advice, but empowering you to make your own changes.
I work with people from all walks of life and backgrounds, coming to me with a diverse range of problems. As a fully-qualified counsellor I am a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, and abide by their code of ethics.
Counselling takes place in a safe space, where you can meet with someone who will listen with sensitivity and empathy - and without judgement. In the therapy space thoughts and feelings can be expressed freely and in confidence.
Trouble with a relationship; anxiety or panic attacks; mood swings or depression - many people face difficulties in their everyday lives that can be hard to get on top of. Counselling gives us a set of tools we can use to help gain a better understanding of what’s causing these problems - and how you can move towards managing or resolving them.
Working together I can help you gain greater insight into the difficulties you are facing, help you understand why you act or react to them the way you do, and see how you can start to make better, heathier choices moving forward.
People come to me for help with a wide range of problems. Here are a few of the more common difficulties that can be supported through counselling:
Feelings of stress or anxiety
Grief, loss or bereavement
Problems with addiction
Trauma and post-traumatic stress
Problems with confidence or self-esteem
Issues relating to sexuality
Difficulties at work or in retirement
Problems with family or school life
“I was nervous about starting counselling and a little scared at what I might find myself saying! Jane was a supportive and understanding guide through therapy, and her trust and solidarity were very important. I would recommend her highly as a counsellor.”
Richard, Online Counselling
“Jane is a very warm and understanding counsellor. She helped me explore different aspects of my life and relationships without hurry, and let me take things at a pace I was comfortable with. I am so grateful for our work together, and for having her as a guide.”
“The opportunity to express myself and explore my thoughts and feelings in a safe space was so valuable. It helped me better understand the place I was at emotionally, and to make a clear decision to move on from there.”
I work from private offices located in L35 0LB, and see clients from central Bristol and Redcliffe as well as the surrounding St Paul's, Southville and Bedminster areas. I will provide location details when we arrange our counselling sesisons.
In addition to providing face-to-face therapy, I also offer telephone counselling and online sessions for clients in the North Somerset area and beyond via Zoom or Skype. Contact me to find out more about how online therapy works.
Counselling sessions for individuals last 50 minutes, usually taking place on a weekly basis, and cost £60 per session. I also provide a limited number of spaces for those on low-income or for students; contact me to enquire about availability. Initial assessment appointments last around 75 minutes.
Note that if you want to cancel an appointment I require 48 hours’ notice; otherwise you will still need to pay for any sessions missed. I accept payment in cash, by cheque or by bank transfer.
Many therapists tend to view Counselling as ‘short-term’ work; when someone has a problem that can be looked at and discussed in a clearly-resolvable way. This work often requires undertaking sessions for a certain number of weeks, to explore, discover and clarify a way forward. Therapy is a word used more to describe ‘long-term’ work; discussion that tends towards substantial issues and things that might be life-changing on a deeper level.
Whether counselling or therapy work best as a short- or long-term option depends on the client though, and the difficulties they are facing. In some cases counselling can prove helpful as a continuing, longer-term option, or therapy can help resolve an issue in just a few sessions.
There’s no fixed or ideal length of time for the counselling process; it varies from person to person and will often depend on the depth of the issues they are facing. While I can work on an open-ended basis with clients, I find it is helpful for us to both agree before we start on undertaking a certian nunebr of sessions and reviewing where we are at once we reach that point. You are able to decide how long your therapy willl last, and in return my aim is to make sure therapy continues for only as long as it is of benefit to you.
This depends on what your needs are. Some people find that after only a very few sessions they have some clarity and focus and are ready to end the therapy. Other people value the ongoing support and relationship with me and will continue to come for weeks, months, or even years. There is no 'one-size-fits-all' when it comes to therapy.
My aim is to offer you a first appointment, known as an assessment session within 1-2 weeks, this is once we receive your completed client pack back. However, waiting times will vary according to pressure on our resources, your own availability and the service you seek.
An appointment to our short term counselling, which is not subsidised, can be offered within about one week.
Confidentiality is one of the main ways in which therapy differs from many other forms of helping - for example, talking to friends or family can rarely offer the same degree of confidentiality as talking to a counsellor. Because of this confidentiality, you will find that - as you get used to coming for therapy - you are freer to talk about whatever you wish to.
No therapist can offer 100% confidentiality: there are some situations where the law requires disclosure of risk (e.g. certain child protection issues) and in common with most other therapists, there are some situations where I may not be able to keep total confidentiality. In particular, if someone tells me that they are thinking of harming themselves in a way that I believe puts them at serious risk, or if someone tells me that they are doing something that could put others at risk, I may not be able to keep such information confidential. However, breaking confidentiality is rare, and only happens after talking to the person concerned.
When you come for counselling it's important that you feel free to talk about whatever is important to you. Sometimes, you may not be clear what those issues are. Having a friend or family member with you is not usually helpful because they may have their own agenda for you. Even if this is just that they want to be supportive, or want you to 'get better', this agenda can prevent us opening issues up. When you come for therapy, you may need to explore thoughts or behaviours about which you feel ashamed or embarrassed and you may censor yourself so as not to hurt someone, or you may find that what they want you to talk about is not really what you need to discuss.
Sometimes, family/friends can even be part of an underlying issue which needs to be aired and discussed. Usually, people who ask this question are nervous about coming for a session alone, or they are anxious for the person who is thinking about arranging sessions. This anxiety is quite normal, and you will not be forced to talk about anything you feel uncomfortable about - but you do need to be able to talk about whatever is important. For this reason, I do not see clients accompanied by friends or family
©2021 Jane Lucas Francis