Steve Barker Counselling and Psychotherapy in Bournemouth,
Poole & Christchurch

How We Work. How We Work Bluebells

As an integrative practitioner, I draw on the best practices from Counselling, Psychotherapy, Hypnotherapy and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) to help you live the life you want.

Sessions - Online or In Person

I aim to get my clients to a good level of change in 5 to 7 sessions.

Sessions with me are longer than with most therapists and counsellors (typically 70 to 90 minutes rather than the traditional 'therapeutic hour' of just 50 minutes). We will also agree a plan of exercises and challenges so you can continue the work between sessions and accelerate the changes you seek.

I work intensively for you in a strategic and systematic way to help you achieve the life that YOU want - to YOUR standards and by YOUR definitions.

If you are in the area we can work face-to-face at Pelhams House in Bournemouth. Or you may prefer the comfort, ease and convenience of working with me online via Zoom video messaging. I work with clients all over the world and help them achieve amazing results and I can help you do the same.


How We Work. Neuroplasticity 1

Neuroplasticity

Anxiety, depression, limiting beliefs, phobias, post-traumatic stress disorder, sexual dysfunction, anger mis-management, inadequate or erratic weight management... these are all patterns of behaviour that are run from neural pathways; brain cells (neurons) that have become linked together as a result of experience over time.

And yet, our amazing brain has a property known as neuroplasticity; the ability to re-order itself to better suit changing circumstances. The work we do in session will effectively 're-wire' your brain with new, more helpful neural pathways. As you begin to use these new neural pathways, the old, less helpful neural pathways will be dissolved through a natural process called neural pruning.

By working in session with me - and following your agreed plan of challenges and exercises outside of sessions - the changes you seek are assured. Its fun, its engaging - and no surgery required!


How We Work. Hypnotherapy 1

Hypnosis

Hypnosis is a great tool to help us achieve both remedial and generative change. Hypnosis is simply a state of detachment from our surroundings that allows us to focus on the changes we want to achieve. Hypnosis enhances neuroplasticity because it is an amplifier of experience.

Hypnosis is NOT sleep and is all about YOU staying in control throughout. If you've ever day-dreamed, become engrossed in a good book or film or been able to spend time exclusively focussing on a problem or a project you've already experienced something very close to hypnosis. Its my job to maintain that state with you and guide you through.

Hypnosis is the learning state; its where we find our creativity, our greatest strength and its the best way to deliver just about any of the therapeutic interventions.

I don't offer 'quick fixes'

Yes, I have removed phobias, removed years of anxiety and even massively debilitating PTSD in a single session, but to achieve lasting remedial or generative change we have to consider the brain as being like a muscle. If a muscle has atrophied it may need to be carefully built up through repeated action. If a muscle is to be made stronger it has to be worked harder still.

Change is dynamic - so lets get moving

I work with you in a dynamic way, which means that we will engage and unite your mind and body in the process of change so you can make more rapid progress. Sometimes we'll work with you sat down, sometimes standing or walking around.


How We Work. Target State

Target State:

This is where it all starts: defining what you DO want rather than what you DON'T want anymore. I use powerful techniques to help you identify your goals along with the feelings & emotions that will confirm you have achieved them. Defining and becoming familiar with our chosen target state is the foundation of change and will start you feeling more confident and positive straight away.

How can I change?

Sometimes we get so used to the anxiety, fear, habits, phobias or limiting beliefs that have been holding us back for so long that it's not easy to imagine our life without them. Understanding the process of change is the key to unlocking our true potential, and that is embodied in the concept we call 'threshold'.


Threshold:

In order for us to change, we must be able to honestly and congruently say the following three statements:

Something has to change
It has to be NOW
It has to be ME


For example: Anxiety is a big problem for many people. No-one wants to feel anxious, so of course 'something has to change' when we have anxiety problems.

But the thought of challenging our anxiety can become so overwhelming that we keep on avoiding doing something about it. The 'it has to be now' becomes 'maybe I'll change tomorrow... or next week... or next year...perhaps'

And Anxiety often demands reliance on, and co-operation from others around us; we tend to rely on others to accommodate our anxiety. The 'it has to be ME' all-too-often becomes 'it has to be THEM' who have to change.

Helping clients get to threshold is often overlooked by therapists, or its used as an excuse for when things don't work. Maybe you're already at threshold, or maybe you have a way to go; If its at all possible - I'll get you there so you can make the changes you want.

I cannot 'fix' you - but I CAN help you live the life you want.

Some people believe that contracting the services of a professional like me is an out-of-the-box or 'turn-key' solution; that I will do all the work so they don't have to. For people who are truly at threshold, yes - I have helped people get over a life-long fear of spiders or other unhelpful, limiting beliefs in a single session. I have relieved many people of years of anxiety and doubt in minutes, but that is because they congruently know:

Something has to change
It has to be NOW
It has to be ME


So what is it that has to change in your life? Why is the time right now - and what can and will you do right now to begin that path of change that will lead you to the life you truly want?


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