“I had spent years having one health test after another because I always felt exhausted and sick. All the tests came back negative – doctors thought I was making it up. I thought counselling was only for mentally ill people – my symptoms were physical. But I attended some workshops that Alison was running in Cork for people with chronic fatigue and in the first session I had a light bulb moment! I could suddenly see how stress had been gradually eating me away – and I could trace back all my symptoms to a time when my long-term relationship broke up and two weeks later my mother died. In the workshops we learned about the mind-body connection and how to manage stress, also things like mindfulness and breathing. My headaches and stomach problems have gone, my energy levels are way up now. I feel like me again.”
“When I first came to see Alison, I was finding it difficult to leave the house due to panic attacks and I’d had to give up my job. I was able to trace back my panic attacks to a time when I was bullied at work. In the first counselling session we did the rewind technique and I started to feel better and after a few sessions, the panic attacks completely stopped. I now feel so calm and so good about myself and I’m now looking for a new job.”
“I had thought that my abusive childhood would always haunt me but Alison provided a safe place for me to unravel the mess of emotions that had built up over the years. I know I can’t change the past but I have now come to terms with it and I’m enjoying life in a way I never have before.”
“I knew I was drinking too much and it was affecting my job and my family. My self- esteem was at rock bottom but I knew I had to do something. Alison was able to break things down into do-able pieces and helped me to set goals that were achievable. I haven’t had a drink now for 6 months. Her way of helping you see the positive things you have done and the progress you are making helped me to be less hard on myself. I felt that if she believed in me, then I could do the same.”
“I had a fear of speaking in public and I needed to give presentations as part of my job. I’d never been to a counsellor before but I felt comfortable with Alison from the start – we always shared a laugh during the sessions even though we talked about a lot of serious stuff. Learning a bit about how the brain works means that I have a deeper understanding of why I think and feel the way I do and learning a few simple techniques like how to slow down your breathing meant that I can now go into a meeting or presentation feeling confident and in control.”
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