talking therapy in london

Talking Therapy London Guide

If you’re suffering from stress, anxiety or depression, you may be thinking about talking with someone who can help you feel better.

Friends and family can be good listeners, but sometimes it’s easier to speak with a trained therapist. You’ll be able to talk about anything that’s on your mind in a safe and confidential space.

Types of talking therapies in London

There’s many types of talking therapies available in London. They range from group therapy and family therapy to one-to-one sessions, with just you and the therapist.

In all the different types of therapy, you’ll have a chance to talk about your feelings and thoughts, and look at how they’re affecting your behaviour. You’ll learn to recognise patterns in the way you think, and how that influences the way you relate to others.

Once identified, these patterns can be assessed to see if they’re accurate, or if they’re causing problems.

Within one-to-one therapy, there’s quite a few styles, each suited to a client’s particular temperament, or to different issues. Although they’re called talking therapies, they can cover much more than just talking and thoughts. Your therapist might encourage you to become aware of feelings in your body, or how to connect more fully to the present moment.

Talking therapies can be referred to as counselling, therapy, psychotherapy and other names. Have a look at the Choosing Therapy Guide for more details on each type. Every therapy should offer a safe place where you can explore what’s going on for you, without the fear of judgement.

Who is talking therapy for?

Talking therapy is for anyone who finds themselves struggling to manage or cope for any reason. You don’t have to be at a crisis point to come to therapy, it can be helpful to speak to a therapist early on to help you stay on track. It’s for people of all backgrounds, ages and life situations.

You’ll have your own reasons to come to therapy. Some common issues include:

Which talking therapy is right for you?

There’s a lot of talking therapies, and there’s a lot of crossover between them. It’s typical for a therapist to train in one approach and then pick up skills in other areas after their training.

Or they could be integrative therapists, who have been trained in many approaches from the beginning. There’s also specialist therapists for particular issues, such as eating disorders or OCD.

As well as the sort of therapy you think might suit you, think about how long it will take and whether it works for your budget. You might also particularly want a male or female therapist, or someone from your racial background.

Choosing a talking therapist in London

The one most important aspect of therapy is your relationship to the therapist. There’s evidence to show that this is a crucial factor for success in therapy, despite the type of therapy.

You have to have a good feeling about them and trust them to be able to be open and honest in the sessions. You should feel comfortable enough to be able to speak about personal issues that you may not have spoken about before.

A good therapist will offer you a calm, safe space for you to explore your feelings. They’ll listen to you without judgement, and help you to learn about yourself so you can make better decisions about your life.

There’s also some more practical steps you can take before choosing a therapist. Check that they are qualified, and with a professional body such as BACP or UKCP. They might have other skills and experience that would be good for you – feel free to ask them about this.

The NHS Talking Therapies Service in London

The NHS Talking Therapies service is a resource in London that aims to increase the availability of talking therapies to people experiencing common mental health problems. Under this initiative, the NHS provides therapies that are approved by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) for treating conditions such as anxiety and depression.

The Talking Therapy’s core service offers Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), which can be very effective for various mental health issues. CBT helps you understand your thoughts and behaviours, equipping you with practical strategies to manage your mental health more effectively. There are also other types of psychological therapies available under the IAPT service, depending on your specific needs and circumstances.

One of the significant advantages of the IAPT Service is that it allows for self-referral, meaning you don’t necessarily need to go through your GP to access the service. While this makes improving access to psychological therapies easier and more accessible to anyone needing help with managing their mental health, there tends to be waiting lists of several months.

Private therapy

You might choose to pay for a private therapist. Most private therapists offer an initial consultation at a reduced rate, where you and the therapist can meet and see whether you’re a good match. A good therapist will always have your interests at heart. If they think you’ll be better with another therapist, they’ll tell you, and refer you to someone more suitable.

The initial consultation is a chance for you to get a feel for how comfortable you feel with the therapist. Sometimes you’ll connect with them straight away, but if you don’t, it’s fine to try other therapists until you meet someone who you think you could trust and work with.

How I can help

I’m an integrative psychotherapist, drawing from many therapy approaches to tailor treatment specifically to your needs. I offer private therapy in Central London, and take a person-centred approach, meaning that I’m non-judgemental, see clients as equals, and collaborate with you on your healing journey.

If you’re experiencing anxiety, depression, or there’s anything on your mind, don’t hesitate to book an initial consultation. You don’t have to prepare for this, just come as you are and we can look into how I might be able to help.

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Daren Banarsë MBACP

I'm a licensed psychotherapist and counsellor, with a private practice in Central London. I treat anxiety, depression and relationship issues with trauma-informed therapy. I have a background in music and the arts.