In 2009 I retrained in CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) and to this day continue to work as Senior Clinician in same service I trained with. Here I treat clients who have experienced traumas, a range of anxiety disorders, depression, low self-esteem, as well long term health conditions including chronic pain. I also supervise a number of other therapists delivering this work.
In 2015 I trained in EMDR (eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing therapy), a therapy whose profound power to work through both trauma, anxiety and self-belief by targeting both body and mind opened my eyes to the possibility of helping athletes.
I am accredited in both CBT and EMDR and follow the ethical conduct and professional guidelines of my accrediting bodies, ensuring I offer the highest standard of work to all my clients.
To expand my skill set to give Psychology to Succeed my best I have trained as an NLP Practitioner (neuro linguistic programming) and NLP Sports Practitioner, as well as a Certified Mindset Coach.
As an athlete, I understand what it takes to train and compete, and ride the rollercoaster of highs and lows that goes alongside.
Growing up, my self-esteem was pretty low. In terms of sport, I regularly rode horses and helped out at our local stables, swam, and competed as a track athlete for my school. Life moved on and sport took a side-step but I never lost the joy of feeling fit and healthy but still didn’t feel great about myself.
The benefit of training as a therapist and coach is that you also get to benefit from therapy and coaching!
With renewed self-esteem and confidence, in 2005 I started to run again and completed my first half marathon whilst living and working in New Zealand.
Since then I haven’t stopped and it was running ultras distances and 24 hours events when I started to recognise how many of the mindset tools I’ve used with my clients over the years I was using myself and how important my self-belief and confidence were in what I was able to achieve.
I also noticed that not everyone had those tools and, though physically fit and able, many of my peers would hit up against mindset barriers which prevented them from achieving their full potential.
From here, Psychology to Succeed began to grow…
Formally established in 2017, I’ve had to privilege to work with a growing number of athletes and sports people, helping them to develop self-belief and confidence, overcome sports slumps and blocks, remove mindset barriers, and recover from the impact injury and traumatic events have on their performance.
I also work with athletes who are experiencing repetitive sports performance problems (often called yips, chokes, blocks, or targeted anxiety) as this is where the combination of mindset coaching and therapy really comes into its own!
One client even nominated me for the 2019 Ely Sporting Hero award for the work we’d completed. What an honour!
My year of learning to swim and first triathlon season
My passion comes from my own experiences of sport not being smooth sailing. Most notably my fear of swimming prevented my from transitioning from running to triathlon. The truth of the matter was that swimming front crawl terrified me, not least the thought of doing it in open water.
Underpinning this fear was an experience I had at school where I was swimming crawl in a swimming gala and, after taking in some water, had an asthma attack.
Thanks to my trustee inhaler, teachers, and friends I was physically fine and no medical intervention was needed so I thought nothing more about it. Except my mind and body never forgot. I stopped swimming and, as an adult, used to simply say I couldn’t.
It was during my training in EMDR I decided to finally tackle the issue. Through processing the original traumatic incident alongside a CBT-based exposure programme I was back in the pool and taking lessons ready for the half-iron distance triathlon I’d entered without being able to swim front crawl.
And you know what? I did it!
My technique wasn’t great and I was slow but I believed in myself, I wasn’t scared and I finished the event with a big proud smile!
By practicing what I preach I’ve faced every challenge my sport has thrown at me as an opportunity for growth and with a smile. This is what I want to share with you, let there be no barrier to what you want to achieve.
Alongside sports mindset coaching, as a therapist I am experienced in treating:
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Low self-esteem
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Social Anxiety
- Health Anxiety
- Stress related difficulties