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Looking for a Counsellor in Peterborough? Read this First!

It can be such a minefield choosing a counsellor, especially if it's for the first time. Here are some things to think about:


What are the problems you are looking to work on? It makes sense try to find a counsellor who specialises in this area. The best way to find this out is to look at their CPD and experience. You could search by symptom (e.g. anxiety or depression), or by event (e.g. bereavement, relationship difficulties).

There are some charities that offer free or reduced price counselling for specialist issues. For example, in Peterborough, Choices offer counselling for victims of childhood sexual abuse and Cruse offer support for bereavement. It might be worth seeing if anything exists locally for the issue you are looking for support with.

Looking at the past

Do you want to look back at the past to help you understand the present? Or do you want to just problem solve in the here and now? Counsellors work differently so have a think about what might work best for you. There are a lot of different types of counselling styles, but anyone who is talking about solution focused or CBT for example is going to be mainly working in the present. Psychodynamic, psychoanalytic or relational therapists will likely look more at how your past impacts you now. The BACP have a helpful guide to understanding types of therapy. Click here to take a look.

Qualification & experience

What level of qualification does the counsellor have? Is it important to you that the person has a degree or masters? Or is it more important that they have lots of experience and continued professional development (training completed after qualification)? Or are you happy with someone with less experience/qualifications to help keep costs down?

Low cost options

There are some low cost options for counselling in Peterborough, and generally (although definitely not always!) the therapists they have are students or recently qualified. One example of this is: Evolve.

Equally, many counsellors offer concessions, so if budget is a concern (and let's be honest, it's an issue for lots of people at the moment), then ask about possible discounts.

Ways of working

Are you open to working with the body? To working creatively? With nature? Some of these alternative ways of working can be so helpful because they bypass certain parts of our brain that can sometimes get in the way of making progress. Or perhaps this all makes your toes curl and you're more comfortable just talking. There's no right or wrong! Take a look at how the counsellor describes their work.

Accrediting body / professional membership

There are lots of professional membership organisations, but in general BACP and UKCP are good places to start. If a counsellor is a member of one of these then it means that their training meets certain standards. Do note though that there are different levels of membership, depending on a therapist's experience.

Gut feel

Ultimately gut feel is one of the most important factors. You have to feel comfortable with your counsellor because the relationship is pretty much the most important factor when it comes to therapy outcomes.

It's generally quite difficult to gauge your gut feel until you've met the person or at least had a call with them. So if someone seems like the right fit on paper, make contact and see how you get on.

Ask ask ask!

Do not be afraid to ask any thing you feel you need to. For example, what the jargon on their website/profile means, when the therapist qualified, what training they have, where the operate from. A good counsellor or psychotherapist will be fully transparent about themselves and their work. No question is a silly question!


Directories are a great place to search. Here are some ones that I use (but there are many others!)

BACP (British Association For Counselling & Psychotherapy)

UKCP (UK Council for Psychotherapy)

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