Counselling, Psychotherapy and Psychology Blog
Our latest article is published in the Chiswick Herald, please read below or click here.
On The Couch: Is Your Relationship In The Best Of Health?
“In relationships, believing that we understand our partners and that they understand us is the single biggest cause of trouble” says Chiswick based Couples Psychotherapist and Counsellor Nicholas Rose. In this article Nicholas explains how to keep your relationship in the best of health.
Understanding between partners’ comes from a desire for both security and vitally, safety – often closely associated with the idea of loving or being loved. If we feel understood, we are more likely to trust in our partner. Ultimately partners are the people most likely to be relied upon in an emergency and in emergencies nothing is more important than clear communication – it is nothing less than a need born out of a need for survival.
Potentially it all starts from birth – if understanding does not exist between us and our primary carers then we risk death – therefore the first thing a baby does is learn how to communicate with its primary care givers. How this is done depends upon what is learnt in the attempt to gain attention – is it more effective to be noisy or quiet, happy or sad, laugh or cry, well or sick, tidy or messy, dependent or independent, creative or practical - the list is endless. Therefore what we learn in the early days is the closest we come to have an approach to life and relationships that is “hardwired”. Simply put, we are good at doing or being in ways for which we have felt understood.
The implication is we need to challenge our assumption we understand and are understood around the most basic of concepts. For example, love. How love is expressed varies enormously across cultures, communities and families. Just ask your friends how love was shown to them as children and you are likely to get a wide variety of responses from food, fun, talking, not talking, sharing, giving, taking, education, discipline, fairness, holidays the list is endless.
Another prime example is how people are looked after when sick. In some cultures it is common for everyone to visit sick friends and relatives, in others the patient is cared for by being protected from visitors. Neither is right or wrong but someone who is used to visitors when sick will feel neglected and uncared for if their partner tells everyone to keep away as they need rest!
As adults we acquire the ability to enter into relationships on equal terms. Fundamentally a shared language and status provides us with all we need to build and maintain healthy relationships and understanding. It sounds basic and the principle is, however the skills are something to be learnt and developed. Here are some basic rules:
1 Words like “love” are short cuts – use them at your peril. Instead never assume that the word means the same to you and your partner.
2 It requires commitment from both parties to develop an understanding. (At the extreme, the presence of physical or emotional abuse in a relationship suggests that the commitment does not exist).
3 If you feel hurt by something that your partner does or says then (as long as it is not physically or emotionally abusive) it is likely that your defences and theirs are revealing a conflict of understanding. Do not assume that the intention was to hurt you, instead say how you felt and ask if that was what had been intended. Remember relationships often breakdown due to the conversations that have not been had rather than those that have.
4 Never underestimate the possible impact of change, difficult times and stress. Anything that changes your routines or patterns can bring stress that triggers defences – at difficult times in life you might find it difficult to recognise each other. Look out for bereavements, fertility issues, children arriving and leaving, career changes, health challenges and traumatic events.
Posted by: Nicholas Rose on October 1st, 2016 @ 10:12 AM
Tagged with: chiswick herald counselling couples counselling couples+counselling london extistential therapy london psychotherapist psychotherapy psychotherapy jobs relationship therapy relationship+counselling relationships+counseling weekend counselling west london counselling west london psychotherapist
This article appeared in the Chiswick Herald. Please click here or read below:
Our latest article has been published in the Chiswick Herald, please click here or read it below.
- State the fact/s
- Say what your response say how you feel and think (never say you make me feel / think because that will escalate conflict)
- Explain why this matters to you
- Share the problem you now have and ask them for their input
- I said we would need to leave at 9am but you have arrived at 9.45am
- I feel upset, angry and under pressure
- I want to be a good parent and being late means to me that I am failing but being late also means I end up under pressure
- Now that we are 45 minutes I do not think we can do what we had planned, I need help in deciding what to change. Do you have any thoughts?
Posted by: Nicholas Rose on July 27th, 2016 @ 6:01 PM
Tagged with: anxiety brief therapy Child Psychotherapist chiswick herald cognitive behaviour therapy counselling couples counselling couples+counselling london existential analysis extistential therapy family therapy london psychotherapist marriage guidance mindfulness psychologist psychotherapy relationship therapy relationship+counselling relationships+counseling west london counselling west london psychotherapist
Our latest article on trauma, anxiety and the EU Referendum has been published today in the Chiswick Herald, please click here or read it below:
Posted by: Nicholas Rose on July 11st, 2016 @ 09:29 AM
Tagged with: anger management anxiety chiswick herald cognitive behaviour therapy counselling couples counselling couples+counselling london EU Referendum existential analysis extistential therapy family therapy Gay Counselling london psychotherapist marriage guidance mindfulness psychologist psychology psychotherapy relationship therapy relationship+counselling relationships+counseling west london counselling west london psychotherapist
Our latest article on anger management has been published in the Chiswick Herald, please click here or read the full article below:
Here is our latest article from the Chiswick Herald reviewing a Yoga retreat and Yoga approach. Please read below or see it here on the Chiswick Herald site.
Moving from the couch to the yoga mat
Many of my patients are often already practicing or take up “physical” activities such as Pilates, Tai Chi, Qigong or Yoga. Over the years I’ve tried yoga on a number of occasions but not been able to find one that I’ve wanted to continue. So when I heard of a form of yoga where the underlying assumption is about uncovering or more accurately rediscovering the innate expertise we have to live a healthier life, an association I make with therapy - I wanted to explore further.
Fairlie Gibson teaches this yoga in London but also runs holidays to teach this approach, she told me “the yoga holidays I offer are based upon an approach practiced and shared by Vanda Scaravelli. Vanda didn’t want to give her style a new name but it has become known as Scaravelli inspired yoga. We set the holidays in either beautiful mountainous Andalucia or on the gorgeous turquois coast on Southern Turkey. The aim of these holidays is give the participants, no matter what their experience of yoga, the chance to experience this, as yet, little known approach”.
By way of some background and before I talk more about the potential interplay and complementarity of this yoga to therapy I want to go back in history as I think it provides some basic and helpful context. The word disease has its origins in 14c. coming from Old French desaise and it was an holistic term covering the experience of both physical and emotional distress. It is simply the opposite of ease so the experience of “dis”ease. As medical science has found treatable causes for many sources of distress the word disease has become associated primarily with the physical. With “ill at ease” being used instead of disease but also having the connotation of some minor discomfort. In the same way the word patient has its origin in patience meaning someone that endures pain and suffering.
The importance of all this is recognition that the physical and emotional are in fact inseparable. If you feel “dis-ease” then do see your doctor but remember that when you reach the limits of what current medical science can provide you will need to access your own resources to treat or manage any remaining “dis-ease.”
The relationship I build with patients aims to bring a sense of safety and relaxation as we spend time together. That sense of relaxation or comfort enabling us to look again at how life is being lived and identify misunderstandings, unhelpful thinking, unhelpful habits, automatic responses and physical actions that have become fixed when in reality in any given moment and in any situation a range of options will be available. In short our way of living or being that was helpful in the past may not be the most helpful now.
So now back to the yoga. The experience of many who have trained in yoga is the need to learn new moves, push the body, stretch to the limit in other words to add more instruction and to have to work harder – all at a time when they have been drawn to a physical activity because they want to make life better. Resulting struggles to achieve the pose, remember the sequences, to practice regularly combined with physical injury, negative thoughts and feelings can all lead to the exact opposite of what was hoped.
Scaravelli is known to have said “if you are kind to your body, it will respond in an incredible way”. My own experience of the yoga was first and foremost one of kindness, creating space, allowing, appreciating and only then to move the body in ways that are known to result in greater flexibility, strength and sense of well being.
Fairlie told me “It’s about coming home to yourself rather than learning something new or put another way, about unlearning and then being with ourselves in a different way”. She continued “We have become so absorbed in the need to achieve. In yoga visuals of practitioners bent double in seemingly impossible stances have resulted in a lot of pressure to achieve whereas it is more about experiencing freedom in the body. The pace of the practice is such that there is great emphasis on creating space and allowing time for the body to find its optimum”.
As the week progressed I found myself feeling very at ease in positions that felt wonderfully natural only to realize I was actually adopting positions that I would have anticipated requiring a huge amount of effort. I’m not saying it is easy, its not about whether its easy or hard its more about what can happen once you have let go of trying. Fairlie called this “effortless effort.” And I find myself concluding that the space this yoga creates and the freedom it generates to allow for change is indeed very therapeutic. This is a form of yoga I am interesting in continuing to practice.
Details of upcoming yoga holidays can be found on Fairlie’s website www.freeingthebody.com
Posted by: Nicholas Rose on June 17th, 2016 @ 6:38 PM
Tagged with: anxiety brief therapy chiswick herald cognitive behaviour therapy counselling extistential therapy london psychotherapist mindfulness psychologist psychology psychotherapy relationship therapy west london counselling west london psychotherapist yoga yoga holidays