NHS Psychotherapist / Counsellor
I have also worked in the NHS as a Psychological Therapist, Psychotherapist and Counsellor, in and around Edinburgh since 2003.
When I moved from Findhorn to Edinburgh in 2003, I initially obtained a post as a Psychological Therapist in the Clinical Psychology department of NHS Lanarkshire Primary Care Trust (based at Hartwoodhill Hospital, Shotts) and started working in Lanark & Carluke. This was a 6-month maternity locum position, extended to 9-months, working with about 60 people in south Lanarkshire, referred for counselling and psychotherapy by doctors and psychiatrists.
This also involved me working in a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy mode, in a very large and formal organisation, and in a deprived area of the central belt of Scotland - all very different from my previous experience. Out of this work came my first book, published as: "Help Yourself Towards Mental Health" (Karnac, 2010).
Since then, I have also worked as a counsellor and psychotherapist in Edinburgh, for NHS Lothian, in Ratho, since 2004; and also in NHS Forth Valley, for 6 months, in the dept. of Clinical Psychology (Larbert) as a psychotherapist, helping to reduce their waiting list; and also (another short-term contract) for a year with NHS Lothian in the dept. of Clinical Psychology in Inchkeith House, Leith, Edinburgh.
In these years, I have been referred about 1,500 clients - mostly GP referrals, but also some psychiatric out-patients - working with them (supposedly) in a Cognitive Behavioural 'mode', but really trying to find the best ways to help people through their (often quite severe) difficulties. It has been an incredibly rewarding, educating and enriching period, and has expanded my clinical work immensely.