Managing your self-esteem on social media

Blonde woman, in white vest top and sunglasses taking a selfie.

Managing your self-esteem on social media

As part of World Mental Health Week, Meghan Markle’s been sharing her thoughts on social media. Specifically, how to make it, “Safer, better and more positive.” And it certainly sounds a worthy ambition. Because although social media can be fun, the facts remain that it’s frequently harmful to mental health and self-esteem. Recent research, carried … Read more

Cuffing Season and your self-esteem

I bought a copy of Red magazine yesterday, to read in the bath. It’s a small treat, after a bad week beset with IT issues, migraines and arguments. And as I looked at the front cover, I thought, ‘That’s odd.’ Because instead of the usual fashionably dressed, slim hipped model adorning the cover, there’s a … Read more

Book review: Self-Made

While I was training as a therapist the idea of ‘self’ was front and centre. We discussed it constantly in the classroom, and throughout counselling placements. In fact, I’d guess, I’ve spent hundreds of hours reading, theorising and considering the concept of identity. But, it wasn’t until the birth of my son that I really … Read more

Woman in black hat, sunglasses and brown coat next to an Autumn tree with brown leaves.

3 tips to picking a counsellor who’s perfect for you

The leaves are turning orange, the weather is considerably cooler and just yesterday I spotted a woman wearing both Ugg boots and a plaid shirt. She wasn’t yet kicking the leaves as she walked, but Autumn is definitely here. And, for some reason, this season always coincides with a massive uplift in enquiries from clients. … Read more

Woman with black hair in a bob, and crisp white shirt sitting against a wall. She looks stressed and is holding her head with her hand,

The pressure of perfectionism

Last month I wrote an article for Liz Earle Wellbeing magazine about the pressure of perfectionism. It explored how chasing impossible, unattainable standards can cause significant damage to our mental health. As I interviewed my case studies, I heard multiple accounts of how the drive towards perfectionism led them towards sleepless nights, panic attacks and … Read more

Counsellor with long brown hair and white shirt half smiling at the camera.

Can counselling work for everyone?

This week I received an email from a woman asking whether I believed counselling can work for everyone. She wrote that she’d tried therapy, a few times, and found it ineffective in helping her unpick her own feelings. Throughout her email I picked up on a tone of sadness and frustration. The type we’re all … Read more

Picture of the book Brave Not Perfect, with ha red cover and white, looping writing against a sunset.

Book review: Brave not Perfect

After a lovely, long August away I am back; feeling refreshed, and ready to return to my counselling practice. Everyone knows a good book is as essential to that holiday feeling as a cocktail on the beach. And I got lucky with my summer read: Brave Not Perfect by Reshma Saujani. I found the writing … Read more

Blonde woman by the sea, with her eyes closed and her hand on her heart.

Heartbreak and your sense of self

There’s not much in life that’s harder than heartbreak. Specifically, the heartbreak that happens when a romantic relationship ends. It may explode in an instant, like a gunshot. Or run its course – failing to be revived over many years. Both ways can be painful, and have a massive impact on your sense of self. … Read more

The best time to seek counselling

Here’s a secret that every counsellor wants you to know. The best time to seek counselling is: Now. As soon as you possibly can. And especially before things get really bad. So, from the very first moment you have a feeling, or a half-formed fleeting thought that something’s not right, don’t delay. Find a counsellor. … Read more

Woman standing in bikini, in blue sea in front of rocks,

Beware the beach body narrative

Even writing the term beach body gives me waves of nausea. It feels retrogressive. Like I’ve time travelled back to 2005 and the thin, blonde women from The Hills and Hollyoaks are the only beauty ideals in town. It reminds me of a time when women’s magazines promoted rapid weight loss diets (Reveal a Goddess … Read more

Mother holding a young child in a lavender field,

Childcare and your Summer holiday self-esteem

Drum roll please – in just two short days the summer holidays will begin. And for six long weeks mums (and dads) across the land will be spending more time with their little darlings. How do you feel about this? Excited, pressured, anxious or just full of dread? Whatever your initial emotions, let me reassure … Read more

Picture of the book The Selfish Romantic, with its pastel pink and blue front cover, surrounded by red rose petals.

Book Review: The Selfish Romantic by Michelle Elman

Sometimes, as a counsellor, a book ends up in my hands and I want, desperately, to throw it across the room. Not because it’s boring or badly edited, but because I wish I’d written it myself. And this is the case with The Selfish Romantic by Michelle Elman. It may be a sign of the … Read more