The benefits of a local online counsellor
One of the main benefits of online counselling is that you can choose a counsellor in any part of the world, but having an online counsellor closer to home also has a number of advantages. Some clients like to move to face-to-face, in-person counselling sessions and this is impossible if your online counsellor lives far away. I offer walk and talk therapy in the area of West Oxfordshire which includes Burford, Witney and other locations in the Cotswolds and this is something you might like to try at some point.
A local online counsellor will also know about other support services in the area and have local contacts who could benefit you, which can be really useful. Another factor is the cultural similarities that you and your counsellor might share simply by living in the same area.
I offer online counselling sessions to clients across the UK, but I also offer online counselling for those living in Burford, Carterton, Witney, Oxford, Cirencester, Swindon, Cheltenham and the surrounding areas.
What is online counselling?
Online therapy is engaging in a counselling session via an online platform, be that Zoom, Microsoft Teams or one of the various other platform providers around. Currently I use Teams, as I find it an easy to navigate platform for clients and myself.
Online counselling sessions will be for 50 minutes and can be conducted from wherever you feel comfortable and have privacy. Online counselling offers the same level of support, confidentiality and empathy as traditional face-to-face sessions.
I also offer counselling sessions via the telephone if you would prefer that to using a video calling platform.
Is online counselling effective?
There are several studies from around the world that suggest that online counselling is just as effective as face-to-face work for clients, especially longer-term.
Online therapy has many benefits around accessibility and convenience. Being able to access support from the comfort of your own home or from another easily accessible place has many benefits for people. One is the time saving aspect – if no commute to a therapist’s office is needed, you maybe able to access therapy on your lunch break at work etc.
Some people can also feel more able and comfortable to open up about their concerns and issues through a phone or behind a screen, enabling them to explore problems more comfortably.
Is there any research on the topic? What does it say?
In a 2014 study published by the journal of affective disorders found that online treatment was just as effective as face to face treatment for depression. And a 2018 study published in the journal of psychological disorders found that online cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is, effective, acceptable and practical health care. The study also found the online therapy was equally as effective as face-to-face treatment for major depression, panic disorder, social anxiety disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.
Do I need any special equipment to have online counselling?
No, you don’t need any specialist equipment to have online counselling. It can be done via a laptop, tablet or mobile phone. For comfort for your hands it can be easier to have a mobile phone on a stand or propped up against something to save you having to hold up to your face for 50 mins, but that is personal choice.
What happens if we get disconnected?
If we get disconnected, I will usually wait a few minutes to see if we can reconnect, if not I will call you on the telephone number you have provided and we can continue the session via the phone. If this is not possible, we can discuss rescheduling the session.
Can I change to face-to-face sessions?
The main face-to-face option I offer is walk and talk therapy in West Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds. Walk and talk provides a lovely way to receive counselling while also benefiting from being in nature.
If you would prefer to sit and talk inside it is something that we could definitely discuss. Potentially we could switch to indoor face-to-face sessions providing I could find a suitable location and time that suited us both.
How do I pay for my online session?
I ask for payment to be made to my bank account within 24 hours of confirming you would like a slot booked for you. I provide my bank details in the contract that I send over for you to read and sign.