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Welcome to Andy Merz Counselling
A confidential space to explore the thoughts, feelings and challenges in your life
Welcome, and thank you for visiting Andy Merz Counselling.
My name is Andy Merz and I am a qualified male counsellor offering private face to face and online counselling in the Mersea, Colchester, Tiptree and Maldon areas.
We all experience times of difficulty in our lives, when events or relationships feel overwhelming, or we can feel a loss of direction or purpose. Talking to a trained professional helps us make sense of those challenging times and offers a way through them, moving towards a better understanding of ourselves and our feelings.
One of the main bodies overseeing the accreditation and registration of counsellors in the United Kingdom is the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). I am a BACP Counsellor, which means I have met their criteria for qualified and experienced therapists and work in accordance with their ethical framework.
Counselling takes place in a safe space, where you can meet with someone who will listen with sensitivity and empathy – and without judgement. In the therapy space thoughts and feelings can be expressed freely and in confidence.
Trouble with a relationship; anxiety or panic attacks; mood swings or depression – many people face difficulties in their everyday lives that can be hard to get on top of. Counselling gives us a set of tools we can use to help gain a better understanding of what’s causing these problems – and how you can move towards managing or resolving them.
Working together I can help you gain greater insight into the difficulties you are facing, help you understand why you act or react to them the way you do, and see how you can start to make better, heathier choices moving forward.
Life brings many challenges, and it is understandable that at times we might look for support in facing them. As a counsellor my role is to provide space and guidance to help you on your journey of self-discovery; to enable you to examine your life and make new, meaningful choices within it.
I offer a chance to reflect on the difficulties or problems you are experiencing in a safe and confidential environment, with someone from outside your day-to-day life. Together we can explore your situation in a way that leads to fresh perspectives – and perhaps a new understanding of yourself. Counselling isn’t about giving you solutions or advice, but empowering you to make your own changes.
My approach to therapy is an integrative one. This is a non-judgmental way of working, where the counsellor creates the right conditions to help someone increase their self-awareness; to move towards – and reach – their fullest potential.
People come to me for help a wide range of issues. Here are a few of the more common difficulties that can be supported through counselling:
Feelings of stress or anxiety
Grief, loss or bereavement
Problems with addiction
Trauma and post-traumatic stress
Problems with confidence or self-esteem
Issues relating to sexuality
Difficulties at work or in retirement
Problems with family or friends
I am based in the United Kingdom. I work from my private office located in Mersea, and see clients from Colchester, Tiptree and Maldon as well as the surrounding area.
In addition to providing face-to-face therapy, I also offer phone or text counselling and online sessions for clients via Zoom or Microsoft Teams.
My office is open 10am-10pm Monday to Friday. Counselling sessions for individuals last 60 minutes, usually taking place on a weekly basis.
All sessions are bookable online.
Note that if you want to reschedule or cancel an appointment I require 48 hours’ notice; otherwise you will still need to pay for the session missed.
Phone or Text Counselling
For those experiencing financial difficulties a reduced fee is available. Contact me to discuss this.
Counselling is usually a good way to help with a current problem; something that can be discussed and – hopefully – resolved within a limited number of sessions. Over a certain number of weeks the understanding of the problem improves and away forward becomes clear. Therapy often describes work that goes a bit deeper, towards more substantial life issues and problems having a deeper effect on the client’s life. Therapy often requires a long-term approach, so the number of sessions can be open-ended.
Which option is most suitable depends on the client and the difficulties they are facing. In some cases counselling works well as an ongoing, longer-term option – or therapy can manage to resolve an issue in just a few sessions.
Everything that is said within the counselling room is private – this is one of the main ways counselling and therapy differ from talking to a friend or relative. Once you are comfortable with the format of weekly sessions and the safe space they provide, you will find the freedom to speak in confidence is of great value.
Note that there are some situations where you may be a risk to yourself or others, and there the law requires that I notify an authority; in these cases I may not be able to keep total confidentiality. Breaking confidentiality is very rare though, and only happens after the person concerned has been informed.
Usually I am asked this question by people who are nervous about entering into counselling, or when they are looking for support in coming to see a therapist. This anxiety is understandable, but a key aspect of therapy is that you should feel free to talk about any issues you feel are important to you. Having someone else with you who can be connected those issues makes this opening-up more difficult, so for this reason I do not see clients accompanied by friends or family.
You can book online and choose an available date from my calendar straight away. The first session would be an assessment to see if counselling is suitable for you and whether I am the right therapist for you. Then we would arrange a set number of counselling sessions to take place at the same time every week.
How long a period of counselling lasts will vary from person to person and depend on the depth of the issues they are facing. For some people a couple of sessions helps to bring their problems into focus, and they feel ready to move forward; other problems may require more of an open-ended approach.
Before we begin any work we will agree on the number of sessions we’ll undertake, and at the end of that number review our progress. As long as we both agree further therapy will be of benefit to you, sessions can continue.
©2021 Andy Merz
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