my personal journey towards emotional health
I grew up near forests and lakes in Scandinavia, a sensitive, bright child who loved songs, books and animals. I was an outdoorsy child who liked bike rides and climbing trees.
We had a family dog, a dachshund called Pia, who was always watching over me.
Growing up, I also had budgies, and one of them learnt to talk!
My grandmother was an important figure in my life. She was the one who taught me how to read when I was 4 years old. She did this by pointing at the words as she read aloud to me, starting with the short words. That was it - I had entered the wonderful world of books!
Though I had longed to start school, it turned out to be a disappointment. To my dismay, I had to learn the letters one by one. I was often bored in class, as I had quickly completed the tasks. I was also bullied, and I this made me feel very upset as I thought that there was 'something wrong with me.' This feeling stayed with me into adulthood, until I learnt about high sensitivity and giftedness - and then a big light bulb went on!
I've always had an interest in foreign languages and cultures, and in my early 20s, I went travelling in Europe and Africa. I also spent some time living in Germany and France, before coming to England to study Psychology.
I went on to train as a teacher and worked for several years in education. Over time, I became increasingly interested in children's emotional well-being, and that's when I decided to follow my dream of becoming a psychotherapist.
For my MA dissertation I researched the topic of shame. Shame is the wordless belief that you are flawed or defective. I looked at how the therapeutic space can be a healing container as we get to reflect on our early experiences and reassess our life story in the light of making sense of past events.
I'm now on a mission to demystify therapy as I believe that it can be a truly life-affirming experience. During my training, I completed no less than six years of therapy myself. This was an invaluable experience, which now helps me to work at relational depth with my clients.
I discovered that if you are met with compassion, you can begin to value your personality
traits for the beautiful assets they are. You may realise that your sensitivity is a gift. That you feel deeply, and that it's nothing to be ashamed of. Your creativity and giftedness may become your greatest treasure, something that you can share with the world.
I also write regularly on LinkedIn to create awareness around the topics of early relational trauma, giftedness, and high sensitivity (HSP). Feel free to come and follow me there.
Qualifications and experience
- BSc Psychology (3 years)
- PGCE (Qualified Teacher Status) (1 year)
- Foundation Certificate in Counselling Skills (1 year)
- Certificate in Therapeutic Communication Skills for Work with Children (1 year)
- Certificate in Therapeutic Counselling with Adolescents (1 year)
- Advanced Diploma in the Therapeutic and Educational Arts (1 year)
- MA Psychotherapy & Counselling (3 years)
- Advanced Diploma in Integrative Psychotherapy (2 years)
In addition to my private practice, I gained several years' clinical experience working with adults aged 25-69+ at Mind UK, and with young people aged 14-25 at the Terrence Higgins Trust Youth Counselling Project. Prior to this, I have also worked with asylum seeking families, and with dementia patients in the Swedish NHS.
As a qualified teacher I also bring a wealth of experience from my many years in education, working with children and young people aged 4-19 and their parents and carers.
I have consistently attended additional training, especially in Internal Family Systems (IFS), polyvagal theory, and sensory integration, as well as the field of trauma.
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