Sarah Devine Counselling Swindon

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if you are the right counsellor for me?
Counselling is a personal journey and each person is individual. Our first session will be your time to ask me anything that may put you at ease. This could be questions about my qualifications, my experience, the type of counselling I offer and how this may benefit you. If you then feel comfortable to move forward we will do this together. If however, you do not feel that I am the right person for you then you are under no obligation to continue.

How do the sessions work?
The first session is the initial consultation. This is my chance to gain insight into your problems or difficulties. It is also a chance for both myself and you the client to gauge whether we can work together therapeutically.
Each session after this will be your time to explore your thoughts and feelings about your problems or difficulties and together we will look at the best ways forward for you. There may be times where you will be given tasks to do outside of the sessions, this is because sometimes strong emotions are in the here and now and trying to remember what you were feeling or thinking at that moment may become difficult by the times you arrive at the next session, by completing tasks outside the session means that we can gain a deeper understanding of exactly what was going on for you at that time.

How many sessions will I need?
Every individual has different needs. The number of sessions you will need will be dependent on your problems or difficulties. After 6 sessions we will do a review where we look over the past 6 sessions and renegotiate your counselling goals. This is done every 6 sessions and it is to ensure that we both are the right path heading in the right direction.
I work short term and long term with clients. Short term can range from 6 to 20 sessions. Long term can be anything more than 20 sessions.

What if I can not make a session?
Life sometimes can be unpredictable and may not always go to plan. If you need to cancel a session this will not be charged if it is cancelled within 24 hours. If it is less than 24 hours, 50% of the session fee will be charged. Your next booked session will remain available for you the following week. If there are any sessions that you can not attend please let me know at the earliest opportunity.
If sessions are continuously being cancelled or missed this could be due to what has been explored in counselling and your feelings towards what may be happening to you. It is worth talking through this together to decide the best way forward.

What happens if I want to end my sessions with you?
If at any time you feel you want to end your sessions with me, then you can at any time as you are under no obligation to continue.
I do however like to work towards a planned ending as I believe this can add great therapeutic benefits to not only myself but also to you the client, especially if you have experienced difficulties in endings within your past.
Ending can evoke strong emotions and during our time together we will discuss ending each time we renegotiate after every 6 sessions.
A good ending could go a long way to making up damage caused by other previous endings in your life.

Where does my personal information go and how long is it stored for?
I keep brief, factual notes from each of our sessions which is stored in a personal file. The files are securely locked in a cabinet held within my office at home.
I also hold a copy of our contract, an emergency contact form and the completed assessment from our initial assessment session.These are held for 7 years after Counselling has end. This is in accordance with my insurance policy.

Please read my privacy policy for full details about your personal information and your rights. Link to this is at the bottom of the page.

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