Charlotte Clements - and Adults in Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 5NF
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How does the weather affect our mood?
Making a memory jar when someone special has died
Another fab poem from the Counsellor's Collective workshop
Beautiful poem from the Counsellor's Collective Workshop
Counsellor's Collective Event


Being in private practice
Continuing Professional Development
First Blog
Thought for today
Ways I sometimes work
What works for me
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Continuing Professional Development

Another fab poem from the Counsellor's Collective workshop

Autobiography in five short chapters by Portia Nelson

Chapter One
I walk down the street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I fall in
I am helpless
It isn't my fault
It takes forever to find a way out

Chapter Two
I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I pretend I don't see it 
I fall in again
I can't believe I'm in the same place
But it isn't my fault
It takes a long time to get out

Chapter Three
I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I still fall in - it's a habit
My eyes are open - I know where I am
It is my fault
I get out immediately

Chapter Four
I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I walk around it

Chapter Five
I walk down another street

Beautiful poem from the Counsellor's Collective Workshop

I thoroughly enjoyed the workshop I attended on the 27th September; 'The therapist's journey', where we were able to look at what shaped us as therapists and reflect on, explore and share our journey so far.
Alison read what I thought was a beautiful poem, which really resonated with me, so I wanted to include it on my blog. 

About School - R. Nukerji

He always wanted to say things. But no-one understood.
He always wanted to explain things but no-one cared.
So he drew.

Sometimes he would just draw and it wasn't anything. 
He wanted to carve it in stone or write it in the sky.

He would lie out on the grass and look up in the sky 
and it would only be him and the sky and the 
things inside that needed saying.

And it was after that he drew the picture. 
It was a beautiful picture.
He kept it under the pillow and would let no-one see it.
And he would look at it every night and think about it.
And when it was dark and his eyes were closed, he could still see it.
And it was all of him.
And he loved it.

When he started school he brought it with him. 
Not to show anyone, but just to have it with him like a friend.

It was funny about school.
He sat in a square, brown desk like all the other square brown desks.
And he thought it should be red. 
And his room was a square brown room. Like all the other rooms.
And it was tight and close. And stiff.

He hated to hold the pencil and the chalk, with his arm stiff and his feet flat on the floor, with the teacher watching and watching.

And then he had to write numbers. 
And they weren't anything.
They were worse than the letters that could be something if you put them together.
And the numbers were tight and square and he hated the whole thing.

The teacher came and spoke to him.
She told him to wear a tie like all the other boys.
He said he didn't like them and she said it didn't matter.

After that he drew. And he drew all yellow and it was the way 
he felt about the morning. 
And it was so beautiful.
The teacher came and smiled at him.
'What's this?' She said.
'Why don't you draw something like Ken's drawing?'
'Isn't that beautiful?'
It was all questions.

After that his mother bought him a tie and he always drew 
airplanes and rocket ships like everyone else.
And he threw the old picture away.
And when he lay out alone looking at the sky it was big and blue and 
all of everything.

But he wasn't anymore.
He was square inside and brown, 
and his hands were stiff,
and he was like anyone else.
And the thing inside him that needed saying
didn't need saying anymore.
It had stopped pushing.
It was crushed.
Like everything else.

Counsellor's Collective Event

Looking forward to tomorrow's workshop  with the counsellor's collective.

The Compassionate Mind - Paul Gilbert

Reading a fantastic book at the moment called 'The Compassionate Mind'. It really resonates with what is going on for me and a lot of people around me at the moment.
I'm literally going to copy the blurb on the back....

'In societies that encourage us to compete with each other, compassion is often seen as a weakness. Striving to get ahead, self-criticism, fear and hostility towards others seems to come more naturally to us.
The Compassionate Mind explains the evolutionary and social reasons why our brains react so readily to threats - and reveals how our brains are also hardwired to respond to compassion and kindness.
Research has found that developing kindness and compassion for ourselves and others builds our confidence, helps us create meaningful, caring relationships and promotes physical and mental health. Far from fostering emotional weakness, practical exercise focusing on developing compassion have been found to subdue our anger and increase our courage and resilience to depression and anxiety.'

Really fascinating and so useful for understanding why we (some of us) constantly beat ourselves up.

I've only just started reading it and haven't got to the exercises yet but hoping they'll be helpful in sessions with my clients.

Near Death Experience and Trauma

It's that time of year where I've had to submit my Continuing Professional Development Form and decided it might be quite a good idea to blog about it.

I joined the Taunton Association for Psychotherapy a while back and in May went to an amazing talk by Penny Sartori called 'What near-death experience can tell us about life'. Penny has worked as a nurse in the Intensive Therapy Unit of a major hospital and has undertaken a five year research project into near-death experiences. As the talk was back in May, I cannot remember it too clearly but I know it gave me goose bumps and as she told us; confronting our own mortality can empower us to live life to the full. I would highly recommend 'googling' Penny and seeing what she has to say.

I have also attended a trauma workshop given by Angela McCormack who was so warm and engaging and made the space feel very safe. I was amazed to hear it was the first talk she'd given on the subject.
I think the main things I took away from the day is that 'The body remembers what the mind forgets'. Trauma is often forgotten/denied in the mind and impossible sometimes to put into words but the memory of it is held in the body and it is the body we should work with. See Babette Rothschild for further reading on the subject.
She also suggested Post Traumatic Stress is not a disorder and the D should be dropped from PTSD, which I wholeheartedly agree with. As she wrote on the top of every sheet she gave us - 'Trauma is a normal response to an abnormal situation.'

The next CPD I have in mind are some workshops run by William Bloom on Spiritual Development, Developing Ourselves and Transforming our World.
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