Therapy is an exciting and challenging process that can transform our experience of the world and ourselves in it. It can provide support in times of crisis, and enable us to make the best of our lives when sometimes things don’t go to plan. Therapy can help us to understand ourselves better, to change patterns of behaviour that no longer work for us, to find solutions to challenges we may be facing and allow us to process and move beyond experiences that might be holding us back or bringing us pain. In these ways we can take charge of our lives.
Feelings of confusion, sadness, anger, or being unable to feel at all, how we deal with a specific issue such as a bereavement or relationship breakdown, or simply how we find a sense of meaning and richness to life… these are some of the many reasons why we may decide to start therapy.
I offer humanistic psychotherapy (using the term ‘therapy’ for convenience). I am interested in the whole person: their mind, body, feelings, life circumstances, family history and cultural background. We are all unique, and I believe that each person is the best judge of what is right for them, so the therapy has to respond to the individual. I want everyone I work with to feel safe enough to explore any issue they need to in a non-judgemental and confidential environment.
‘Working with Claire was my first experience with therapy. I have to say that making the decision to try therapy was not an easy one and I remember being very apprehensive at the thought of first meeting a therapist. I came across Claire’s profile by chance and I am so incredibly grateful that I trusted my gut feeling and contacted her. I worked with Claire for a total of about four years, and I can honestly say that she is one of the warmest and most gentle people I have ever met. She made me feel safe and accepted and heard in a way I had never experienced before. I believe that what I was able to accomplish with her help and support was some of the most important work I will do in my life, and I don’t believe I could have chosen a better person with whom to embark on such a difficult but ultimately incredibly rewarding journey. She has my heartfelt thanks and eternal gratitude.’ AR
'I was at my lowest point when I decided to seek therapy with Claire. Our sessions covered several aspects of my life: relocating to a new country; struggling with dysfunctional family relationships; managing conflict in my marriage and at work; dealing with the pain of social rejection and feelings of low self-esteem. With no support system in place, I confided in Claire, who listened with kindness, understanding, and empathy. Despite moving our sessions online due to the pandemic, I continued to reap the benefits. Claire and I only met a handful of times, but the transformative impact of her therapeutic practice has been life-changing.' MA
‘Some years ago my late wife was diagnosed with a terminal illness, and as we talked about what it would mean and how we would cope with it, she suggested, quite insistently, that I should have a therapist to talk to, to help me through what was obviously going to be a very difficult and upsetting time. At first I was reluctant, but I made an initial appointment to see Claire Spooner and discuss it. There was something about the mixture of care, understanding and detachment in her approach that gave me the confidence to continue, and I came to value our weekly sessions very much indeed. It didn’t matter whether I came feeling angry or miserable or cheery or fretful, I found talking led to more talking, and always to a greater understanding of myself and my world. Claire, I realised, was very adept at encouraging our conversation down productive paths, never judgmental, able to press me to think harder sometimes, to follow my thoughts into a degree of self-realisation that I found illuminating and extremely helpful. So much so, in fact, that when I reluctantly decided to end our sessions, after three and a half years, I found that though I missed them and the space of calm reflection and (not always so calm) self-examination they offered, I was left with a new kind of inner resource, a sort of inner Claire-voice. It’s still working for me, and I shall always be grateful for it.’ IP
'Claire and I worked together for just ten sessions and still (six years later) I think back to the things we talked about and how valuable that time was. I was looking for a therapist for the first time after going through a messy breakup, and found Claire so easy to talk to it was like going to see friend. We started with the relationship but soon moved on to much more interesting and positive things - talking about my career, family, how I see myself, and how I relate to others more broadly. Claire challenged my thinking in a really gentle way, and the body work we did is something I still talk to friends about today. It was fascinating, and made me aware of how self compassion could lead to a healthier outlook on my life. Some months after our sessions my dad passed away from a long-term illness, but because of the work we’d done I was so much better prepared in supporting my family and in processing things myself. Our conversations charged me up creatively too - my work as a designer really developed afterwards because of the confidence I gained. I’ll always be grateful to have had the chance to work with Claire, and for my first experience of therapy to have been such a positive one.' AB