About my approach

As an integrative therapist I draw on a range of knowledge. My work is based on a deep respect for the uniqueness and autonomy of each person and a belief that people have the capacity to grow and change. At the same time I understand that people are shaped — and very often shackled — by the past, with experiences in our early years being particularly significant.

These ideas are backed up by neuroscience which shows how our experiences – particularly in early attachment relationships – literally shape how the brain and nervous system get wired. And how because of the brain’s plasticity and capacity to create new neural pathways, we do not have to be slaves to the past. We can learn and change and do new things until the day we die.

Raje Airey - portrait photo

How I work

I tailor my approach to suit each person. I use a combination of conversation, creative interventions, mindfulness, body awareness techniques, psychoeducation and self-help strategies. My first aim is to establish safety and a strong working partnership that is grounded in the here-and-now. This partnership – the therapeutic relationship – provides a secure base from where we can reach back into the past and look forwards to the future.

Everyone has a right to have a present and future that are not completely dominated and dictated by the past.

Karen Saakvitne

About me

After graduating with an English degree, I began my career in children’s book publishing. Despite my wonderful job and friends I felt a growing sense of dissatisfaction that I did not understand. I took a career break and went to India. Here I discovered meditation, group therapy and started to paint. A new world opened up. And the idea of becoming a therapist was born.

Returning to the UK, I worked freelance whilst pursuing my dream of becoming a therapist. In 2002 I completed a diploma in person-centred counselling, a decade later I qualified as an integrative psychotherapist. I relocated to Gloucestershire to take a fulltime job as Counselling Coordinator with an NHS frontline service.

For relaxation I am painting again and enjoy being out in nature as well as socializing with friends and family once we get beyond Covid! I enjoy the beautiful countryside and the slower pace of life in Stroud where I live with my partner.

Experience

For nearly 20 years I have offered a combination of counselling, psychotherapy and supervision to adults and young people in a range of settings: a school for Looked after Children, MIND for Young People, various NHS adult services, occupational health and work-place counselling. I have taught on counselling courses and am an internal examiner for a counselling diploma. I now work part-time in a University Counselling Service as well as private practice.

"Therapy helped me to understand myself...

..I have stopped blaming myself for my problems."

"Counselling has helped me calm down...

..I feel more secure in myself."

"I feel more confident about the future...

..I have learned some better coping strategies."

"It has helped me...

..deal with problems in my relationships."

Qualifications

MSc Integrative Counselling & Psychotherapy         

BSc (Hons) Integrative Counselling

Certificate in Theory & Practice of Supervision

PCE-CfD Practitioner Certificate

PCE-CfD Supervisor

Diploma, Person-Centred Counselling

BA (Hons) English

UKCP UK Council for psychotherapy
BACP Registered Member 12137 MBACP (Accred) - Professional standards authority - accredited register