Brighton and Hove Psychotherapy started after Mark and I decided it was time to get our own premises. Finding the right work environment wasn’t easy. We spent years practicing from other clinics, never quite satisfied with the therapy rooms we used. Although, arguably, good therapy work can take place almost anywhere. A warm and welcoming therapist certainly contributes a great deal towards making her/his client feel comfortable. After all, therapy is a meeting of hearts and minds, and this matters more than the walls it takes place in, right?
There is no right or wrong answer to this, except that the environment I work in matters a great deal to me. It is to do with my wellbeing and that of my clients. If I feel stressed, distracted or uncomfortable it will invariably impact on how present I can be with my clients.
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Of course there is no perfect place to work in. There will always be a certain degree of intrusive noise, which sometimes can be used for some interesting and positive therapeutic explorations. However, there are certain vital qualities that I need from my environment in order to get into the frame of mind that I wish to be in to work well.
In order for me to enjoy my work and do it well I need to be open, present, attuned and ideally relaxed. To get myself in this receptive frame of mind I make sure I engage in a self-care routine which involves attending carefully to my physical and emotional wellbeing. I see the space I work in as a reflection of how well I care for myself and for others. A significant amount of my time is spent in the therapy room, thus it needs to have the sacred qualities of a welcoming home: light, air, comfort, beauty and silence. And finally, our space is gladly shared with other therapists who value themselves, their work and the space they work in as much as we do. In my opinion, it shows we care for ourselves and the people we see.