Posts in Category: NEWS

Themed Supervision & CPD Group – 2016/17

This group is for psychotherapists who are pre-qualification or just qualified.

10 monthly groups meeting on Fridays to deepen and strengthen their understanding and practice of psychotherapy. Learning with and from each others, and using the group to support learning needs.

First Theme:
Ethical awareness in all areas of our practice

Content: This will be decided by the group members, but could include…

• Client and clinical issues
• Exploring different supervision styles
• Exam preparation, concerns, mock oral exam, theory gaps
• Theoretical concepts and practice, open minded discussion
• Ethics exploration and discussion
• Article debates, e.g. TAJ, UKATA, IARTA, Therapy Today etc
• Practice building and maintaining, ideas and challenges

Time: 10.30 am -4 pm

Location: Chichester, West Sussex

2016: 30th September, 28th October, 25th November, 9th December
2017: 27 January, 24 February, 31st March, 26th May, 30th June, 28th July

Fee: £50.00

Group Size: 5-8

Facilitator: Helen Davies PTSTA(P) experience psychotherapist, supervisor and tutor

For more information please email or call on 07976 605949

#TA101: The Official Introduction to Transactional Analysis 2016-17

Come and experience the Official Introduction to Transactional Analysis – The #TA101.

Transactional Analysis offers some wonderful concepts for understanding how as humans we communicate and relate to each other and ourselves.  These will be delivered in an interactive and lively way, with many opportunities for personal reflection and experiential learning. The course will offer insights for everyone, both personally and professionally. And is offered in an intimate, confidential setting to ensure maximum learning.

Over the two days you will begin to understand many concepts that have become part of everyday modern language. Including:
– the structure of personality
– Transactions – our options for communicating with others
– Time Structuring – how we stay in and out of contact
– Psychological Games that we play to repeat familiar feelings, and avoid intimacy
– Life Scripts – how we decide so early our path
– The development of Parent, Adult and Child Ego States

If you are considering studying #Transactional_Analysis further this introduction will help you decide if it’s the route for you.

Whether you’re wishing to add to your tool box, or try before you invest in further training, come and enjoy the concepts of Eric Berne MD and the founding mothers and fathers of Transactional Analysis in an intense and enjoyable weekend.

Dates: 22-23rd October 2016, and 3-4th June 2017.

Location: Chichester, West Sussex

Fee: £160.00 for the two days

Hours: 9.30-5 pm both days, with break times included

Assessment: None

Tutor: Helen Davies PTSTA(P) experienced psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer

Certificate: TA101 certificate recognised by EATA (The European Association of Transactional Analysis)

Contact Helen Davies on to find out more and book your place.
Contact: 07976 605949

Working Relationally Online


I’ve been reading and listening to the work #Dr_Aaron_Balick, and reflecting on implications for #therapeutic_relating with #clients_online.

I’m also interested in his concept of the #Tinderisation of everyday life, and it’s impact when working with younger people who’s world of relating is often quick, virtual, and can end as suddenly as it starts.

How do these pieces of research effect my awareness and ability to be with my clients ethically and emotionally?

I’m currently putting together a #workshop on working_remotely_and_the_challenges_for_psychotherapist and psychotherapeutic counsellors. Please contact me if you think there is something you’d like to see in a workshop like this.

In the meantime, I strongly recommend catching up with him and his work where you can.

If L S Lowry were painting today – what would we see?


                                                                                                            L S Lowry


I was recently told  by a good friend of mine who is a teacher of food in schools that the government intends on axing #Food ALevel from the curriculum. I hope Sue won’t mind me saying that she’s in her mid 50’s and head of a department at an all girls independent school. She cut her metaphorical teeth at some challenging inner city state schools from the early 80’s onwards, and from then to this day she knows what her students are reading, listening to and wearing. At a time when I might be saying ‘turn that racket down’ or ‘are you really going out in that?’, she’s full of the latest and greatest on the youth scene.  Her passion for them and food has created thousands of well-informed young people’s interest in a healthy diet: the buying, storage, preparation and cooking of meals that will then inform these women’s lives and the lives of those who they bring into the world.

Today I read the article in The Guardian 17th August 2015
‘Huge rise in UK diabetes cases threatens to bankrupt NHS, charity warns’, and I am reflecting on the link between these two national news stories.

This is no surprise to me. Nor should it be to anyone who looks around them.

#Obesity and #overeating are a national concern, and something that effects many clients who engage in therapy with me.  I have worked with those presenting with issues related to both  #Type I and #Type II Diabetes. They are very different, and yet for both they are fundamentally about a physical health condition that can seriously effect their quality of life,  and so their mental health. As #Jung suggested, the body is the bridge between the mind and the soul.

When Lowry was painting, his images reflected the stark reality of life in North East England. Manchester was portrayed as a cold place, with thin people and bleak expectations. When I look at his images I can almost feel the hunger of his Swinton subjects.  So what would Lowry paint today?

In 2015 england, our afflictions are more likely from too much choice and a desire to feed ourselves beyond our bodies need. Bizarrely our bodies  create a backlash; they start to attack us back. Enough they cry.

So where to from here?

Certainly it is my experience that shifts happen when clients start to take seriously their relationship with their bodies.  This often comes through understanding our unconscious beliefs about our bodies. And/or our relationship with food, along with some confusing internal messages between our minds and our physical selves. In becoming conscious we can choose how we want to proceed, and understand the choices we have.

#Diabetes Types I and II are certainly manageable where there is a good Adapted Child – hence the success of multi million pound companies like Weight Watchers. However there are also lasting results found where clients develop good access to Parent, Adult and Child Ego States, and realise they have options.

The governments Why Weight initiative has some benefits, but like many short term approaches it doesn’t get close to the stronger psychological problems that have led to #obesity, or #maturity-onset diabetes. Or both!  And the cost of #bariatric surgery is high with some serious health implications, not least as many have found ways of  continuing to overeat at an even higher risk to their health.

It’s my belief more is needed to be done by us as individuals to understood how we get to this position in the first place. And certainly a stronger and more powerful message is needed in the early education of our children to help us combat this tidal wave of ill health.

So I’m all for keeping A Level Food. Indeed with todays news surely there is  an argument to make it compulsory.

What do others think? To comment please click on the title of this article.

#Passion and #Relationships: A Psychotherapist Reflects


 “If you meet somebody and your heart pounds, your hands shake, and your knees go weak, that’s not the one.
When you meet your ‘soul mate’ you’ll feel calm. No anxiety, no agitation.” 

Source : Unknown


When recently asked about #passion I was struck by my internal response; cautious. I’m thinking about #passion as depicted by popular American movies or the media. For example those selling perfume; so often #passion is portrayed as instant, instinctive and a sudden ‘passionate attraction’. Passion of the type we are fed by the PR machines, or propaganda to give PR it’s original name.


As a psychotherapist my consulting room is full of individuals or couples who have fallen ‘passionately’ in love, married or set up home, and then ‘things’ start to go wrong. The Games that we were completely unaware of when we meet gradually heighten and we realise that we can feel hurtful, or helpless with our significant other. As we all know, long-term, passion of a heightened nature is not sustainable. So how did that happen?


In #Transactional_Analysis_Psychotherapy (#TA) the founder #Eric_Berne has been quoted as saying something along the line of:

        ‘if you’re eyes meet across a crowded room, get the hell out’

In his studies of human behaviour #Berne noticed many of our relationships are based on intuition not intimacy. By intimacy he meant sharing conscious thoughts, feelings and behaviours, which could include sex, without fear of the others response. This naturally takes time.

How can you fall in love with someone you don’t know?

#Eric_Berne proposed that it’s an intuitive attraction to someone who will play our favourite psychological Games with us that excites us. I believe he meant that it’s this which feels like #passion, leading to a notion of ‘the one’. In #TA, #Game_Theory proposes that a Game requires two people who take up different and complimentary positions and then proceed to engage in a series of exchanges with each other. This continues out of awareness until one person switches their position in relation to the other, and both parties end up feeling hurt or hurtful. This can be in a moment or over years before the ‘switch’ occurs. #Eric_Berne proposed that we are probably in some form of a psychological Game with many different people 80 % of the time.

So now what?

Well the good news is that anyone can come to understand their #Game(s) and how they play them; or how they misunderstood #passion. The goal of #Transactional_Analysis is to develop and heighten your capacity for intimacy, spontaneity and awareness. What I’ve come to understand is that this is much more rewarding, and certainly longer lasting than the notion of passion we are fed.

Helen Davies is a UKCP registered Psychotherapist, Supervisor and Trainer. She runs a private practice working with adults, couples and groups in West Sussex and North West Surrey. She is a visiting lecturer in #Transactional_Analysis_Psychotherapy at various colleges. Helen supervises trainee and qualified practitioners of varying modalities including complimentary health practitioners.
For more information:
07976 605949


zahz hadid

Credit: Phaidon

#Psychotherapy and #Supervision are about creating #Simplicity from complex thoughts, feelings or behaviours.

#Psychotherapy may be feared: but what’s to fear? Supporters which include Alain De Botton and The School of Life, often advocate therapy as an emotional ‘check-up’ or ‘MOT’, a bit like you might go to the doctors for a physical check-up.

Here is a quote from The School of Life, which might shine a light on why Psychotherapy and Supervision (a super-view) may be useful and necessary.

“We’re discovering the big meaning of simplicity in our lives. In the past, there were times when no one wanted simplicity. Few people had enough, stimulation was in short supply, dull routine was the norm. Simplicity could look like deprivation, boredom or lack of opportunity. Now it’s so different. We’ve got too much to do, we’re constantly assailed by demands and offers, we’re brought up against too much complexity all the time. We’re realising we positively need simplicity: it’s a guide to a better life. Simplicity is in short supply. We need a lot more of it.”         The School of Life

For the full article, go to:

Body Image: some of my recent reflections


From time to time I am asked to contribute to articles on other professional websites about issues that I have some understanding around. Here’s a recent item on body image and dieting.



So you think you’re #alone….as #students begin their new lives.



A student colleague of mine from a former life recently published his autobiography. In his brief reference to #college days he mentioned that he felt he was quickly disillusioned by the course and it’s content. He felt he didn’t fit in, and that he was misunderstood by tutors and others who were not from his region of the country. That many of us were disillusioned and disillusional about our ability, with reference to our regional accents.

My immediate response could’ve been to take offence – but when I thought about it some of what he had said was right. We were all pretty unsure of our course of action, and many met this in the other with bravado and idealism. Nothing wrong with that – except they were clearly just that. However, on top of that we were busy attempting to make sense of this ‘new family’ (it was a very small course). We all responded differently to the different #cultures that surrounded us, making #judgements along the way to keep us ‘safe’, or so we thought. As an #introvert I withdrew, and spent time with very few people, many of whom seemed to leave the course.

In this biography the inference could be that he alone felt this way. But evidence and student counselling rooms are full of these sorts of thoughts and feelings. The difference now is that young people are more aware that help is there – if they can navigate their way through their feelings and thoughts to a place and space to understand what is going on for them.  The sense of confusion, newness, loss and pressure all come together in one space, whilst often far away from all that they know.

So as term starts and all that ‘freedom’ and ‘opportunity’ is offered to students, take a moment to consider what these young people are attempting to come to terms with. A confusing time and so many new experiences to deal with can be a difficult challenge for the most experienced of us.

Loneliness is not uncommon, and indeed to be able to be with ourselves is a bonus.  But being #alone and #feelinglonely are two very different experiences. As any introvert will tell you.

So what is an emotion…?

I can’t really add anything to this. Oliver Burkeman offers the best explanation, to the point and succinct.

What do you think?