Online and Telephone Counselling - An Introduction

Online and Telephone Counselling follows the same fundamental principles as face-to-face counselling. The confidentiality and security of your therapy remains central to all parts of the process. You may find the process of communicating from your own protected safe space very helpful in itself. Some clients say they actually find it easier to talk about some things when they're not the in the same room as their therapist (although this may not be the case for everyone). Some people feel more at ease with speaking in their own familiar surroundings and prefer this way of working. Some clients prefer telephone counselling and they may feel it easier to speak when they are not being seen. It also saves time with not having to travel to the counselling practice.
Preparing for your online counselling session

Plan your session for a time when you know you can have privacy. Ideally find a quiet comfortable private room away from any distractions so that you do not need to worry about noise or being overheard or interrupted during your online or telephone therapy session. Our work together is confidential. I ensure that all information is kept safe and protected.
 
Good quality internet connection means that your online therapy session won’t be interrupted. To help improve your internet connection and network speed close down all other applications on your PC. This will also prevent you from being distracted by any PC notifications, messages or pop-ups during the session. Tips on setting up your connection for Doxy.me or Zoom are given before the session.

It is important that I can see you clearly during your online video sessions. It can be helpful to be in a bright room or have a desk lamp close to your laptop or device to improve lighting quality around your face and upper body. Good quality lighting can enhance the communication and connection between us and allow for a better sense of eye contact. Using earphones or headphones will greatly improve the privacy and quality of our conversation for both of us. They will ensure that we can hear each other clearly and helps drown out any distracting background noise. Wearing earphones can help keep you more focused during sessions.

Clients want to get the most out of their online or telephone therapy session so it’s important that you can really talk openly and let your therapist understand your world. Therapeutic relationship building is an essential and important part of effective therapy. Your session times are important and this is your “space”. Being prepared is an important part of therapy. Ensuring that you are comfortable, having a safe and private space to work from is important. All sessions are 60 minutes long. Find yourself a comfortable space to sit for the session, whatever works for you. Some clients use diaries or notebooks for note taking and sharing during sessions. It may help to have your session in your car if you do not have a private space in the house. If possible have a chair that you can get up from at the end of the session as if you are leaving the counselling room. Therapy uses energy and can bring up a range of emotions. From being immersed in the session you are instantly back in your normal life with whatever feelings and demands it had before. Ensuring that you have some time for yourself after a session can be helpful.

Part of the therapy process involves regular reviews between yourself and your counsellor. This is to ensure that work is progressing and that you are still getting what you need from the sessions. All therapy comes to an end at some point. Regular reviews help with appropriately planned endings as this is an important part of the therapy process.

Online and Telephone therapy are talk therapies and are not prescriptive. I work in a non directive way but I will ask questions to help you to explore your situation and feelings. The first few sessions are about you having the space to talk openly and freely about your circumstances so that both we can explore and get a better understanding of the situation or problem before any coping strategies are explored. Talking and expressing yourself is therapeutic and healing and is a large part of the therapeutic process. We may agree on some homework to be done between sessions.


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