About me

The decision to start seeing a therapist is an important one - finding the right person to work with is key

Who am I?

I know that therapy can help us towards being happier, more fulfilled and much more compassionate to ourselves and others. A good relationship with a trained and experienced therapist provides a space in which we can heal and learn about ourselves and our relationships with others.

I completed a four year training at the Edinburgh Gestalt Institute. The Diploma training in Gestalt Therapy at EGI was a long-standing and well respected Masters-level training regulated by GPTI and UKCP. Based on learning about awareness and the use of self in relationship for the growth of the client, the training was rigorous and taught by extensive practical and creative exploration geared towards building an understanding of what really works in therapy.

Ongoing training is a really important facet of any therapist's professional development. I have continued to attend regular training since the completion of my diploma including most recently becoming a Certified Trauma Focused Therapist, completing a Diploma in Supervision of Psychotherapy, a Certificate in Trauma-Informed Mindfulness and a Certificate in Group Counselling skills.

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I have a particular commitment to and significant experience of working with gender, sexual and relationship diverse clients. In addition to my private practice I have managed the counselling service at LGBT Health and Wellbeing since June 2016 and delivered training and teaching for amongst others Relationship Scotland, Edinburgh Gestalt Institute and Physis Scotland. Each year I run a fixed membership therapy group.

Prior to working as a therapist, I was a journalist for 15 years. I've also worked as an academic and spent some years after my undergraduate degree completing a Masters and then pursuing further postgraduate study.

If you'd like to learn more about therapy, visit my About Therapy page.

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Why Gestalt?

Most therapists, no matter what approach they have trained in, work in their own way. And all research points to the relationship between therapist and client as being the key factor in therapy feeling successful. Gestalt places great emphasis on understanding and working with the therapeutic relationship. My priority is always to find a way of being in a relationship with my clients that allows me to be present and authentic, open to feeling and understanding how it is for them to be with me and in relationships more generally. This approach allows me to support you to do the work you really want to do. I chose Gestalt therapy because it has a focus on the here and now, it's flexible and creative and it emphasises the importance of the relationship that exists between client and therapist.

Awareness

What we will explore together is what is real and significant in your life at this moment:

How do you understand what's going on for you?

What is in your awareness, but also what might you be missing?

What is shaped by patterns of behaviour which are so ingrained you don't notice them anymore?

What supports you?

What do you want from being in therapy?

Change

Through compassion and respect, authenticity and creativity, I know that therapy can give us opportunities to feel understood and accepted, to make different choices and change our lives. I am committed to reflective, ethical practice and to my own personal and professional development.

I am accredited by UKCP and signed up to their Ethical Code. I am in regular and ongoing clinical supervision for my work.

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┬ęClaire Black

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