How I Work As A Counsellor

My Counselling Philosophy

I believe that each person has the potential to live an authentic and meaningful life. What I love about counselling is that it gives me the opportunity to participate in each person’s journey of self-discovery. As a therapist, it is a privilege for me to be able to facilitate this journey and to be a witness to each person’s blossoming.

Change can only occur when you feel safe. I believe the therapy relationship is sacred and this is why I practice with great attention to CONFIDENTIALITY, RESPECT, and ACCEPTANCE of who you are and where you may be in your life.

Counselling is a collaborative process that allows you to explore your issues in depth and to find new ways of handling them. You are the expert in your own life and I will always encourage you to make your own decisions based on what you know to be best for you. I maintain strong client-therapist boundaries and am always mindful of my role as your therapist.

Counselling With Couples

Counselling with couples

As a relationship counsellor, I work from a position of respect for each partner and for the relationship. I listen carefully to each partner’s perspective in order to develop an understanding of the dynamics occurring in the relationship. I listen for what is getting in the way of authentic communication between partners.

Through couples therapy, I work with you to develop a better understanding of your selves, of what you each bring to the relationship, and how this impacts on your ability to communicate effectively with each other.

I give you feedback about what I observe and using specific therapy techniques, I coach you on how to talk to each other in a non-blaming way. I also coach you on how to really listen to what the other is saying so that you both feel heard and understood.

I focus on what occurs in the therapy session between the two of you. Through the process of couples therapy, I help you each clarify your experience of “who am I in this relationship” and “who I want to be.”  I work with you to learn how to be yourself in an emotionally satisfying relationship whilst maintaining integrity and self-awareness.

Counselling With Individuals

In my work as a therapist, I work from a position of respect where I listen carefully to the issues you bring in order to really understand what it is you are struggling with. Counselling is a series of conversations about you and your life where I ask questions and provide feedback as we explore who you are.

I use the relationship we create as client and therapist to explore and clarify the themes, patterns, dynamics and conflicts you are experiencing so that you can be happier and have a more fulfilling life. As your counsellor, I work with you to sharpen your awareness about the choices you are making in your life and how you are ‘being’  in these choices and relationships.

I practice therapy from a holisitic approach, which means I take into account the whole of YOU: the way you think, how you feel, your dreams, values and beliefs, the impact that family issues have on you, both past and present, job stresses, cultural background, migration experience, health issues and anything else which might be significant.

I am committed to working with you so that you can move towards creating balance in your life and feel greater life satisfaction.

Counselling Approaches

Psychodynamic Theory

A psychodynamic approach to counselling uses the therapeutic relationship we develop to explore the themes, patterns of interacting, reactions and responses you have to better understand how you operate in your relationships with others. Research has shown that a successful counselling experience is often the result of the positive relationship you have with your therapist. I am committed to developing a safe and trusting therapeutic relationship with you that will enhance your ability to grow and develop.

The Developmental Model of Couples Therapy

This model of therapy was developed by Ellyn Bader and Peter Pearson from The Couples Institute in California. It is based on the premise that couples’ relationships evolve through normal, predictable developmental stages. When partners have difficulty progressing through these stages, problems or symptoms arise. Couples learn how to manage the anxiety that comes from risking either greater intimacy or potential emotional separation.

Person-Centered Therapy

Carl Rogers pioneered this approach to counselling which is based on working with you at whatever point you may be in your life’s journey. Whatever it is you want to explore, this is the starting point for our work together. Unconditional positive regard or accepting you completely for who you are is paramount in the counselling process. As your therapist, I will pay attention to your strengths and potential and help you see and accept them.

PSYCH-K™

PSYCH-K™ is a unique and direct way to identify and change subconscious beliefs that perpetuate old habits of thinking and behaving that you would like to change. It is a simple process that helps you communicate with your subconscious mind so you can change beliefs that limit your self-esteem, relationships, job performance, and even physical health. Our subconscious beliefs form the basis for our actions and reactions to each new situation in our lives. The ability to perform effectively is affected by our positive beliefs; in the same way, holding limiting beliefs about ourselves contributes to not being able to achieve our potential.

PSYCH-K™ is a process which helps you to quickly and easily communicate directly with your subconscious mind, and – while using methods of whole-brain integration – change old self-limiting beliefs into new self-enhancing ones that support you.

EMDR: Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing

This is a therapeutic approach developed by Francine Shapiro. It is a highly effective technique used primarily to resolve distressing life experiences and for treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

CBT: Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Aspects of this approach are used for working with depression and anxiety. We explore your thoughts and behavioural patterns and gently challenge these in order for you to manage them more effectively.

Are you ready to move forward in your relationships with yourself and others?

If your answer is YES, please call me today on 0423 932 200 or email me on lauren@laurensokolski.com.au to set up a FREE confidential 10-minute phone consultation.

Lauren Sokolski is a Melbourne therapist, couples counsellor and registered social worker who helps singles and couples with relationship problems and those struggling with issues of grief and loss, life transitions, depression and anxiety. She has offices in Bentleigh, South Yarra, and Caulfield North.

Lauren Sokolski

Lauren Sokolski

BA, BSW, MAASW, acc

Therapist/Counsellor

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