Dr Victoria Galbraith is a Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) Practitioner Psychologist and she can be found on the British Psychological Society's (BPS) Register of Coaching Psychologists. Her current practice is located at the Nuffield Health Hospital, Hereford. However Due to Covid-19, all sessions are now online.
People often enter into psychological therapy because they feel as though they need 'expert' advice. As a Counselling Psychologist, Dr. Victoria believes that all answers lie within you. Many people can offer advice in life - friends, family, partners - but often the reason we find it so difficult to make decisions is because we become reliant on others for their suggestions. The process of psychological therapy is concerned with personal growth and development, therefore, Victoria will facilitate this process by assisting you in reaching your own conclusions. She will not offer advice as she believes that you are the expert in your own life... you are the only person who has lived it! There are a range of psychological models available (see a list of options below).
What to Expect...
Dr. Victoria is trained in modern psychological evidence-based methods to support individuals (adults and young people) through their difficulties and crises. She is an integrative practitioner, which means that she has a variety of approaches in her toolbox and tailors her approach to suit individual clients. The approaches available to her include humanistic therapy, cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), psychodynamic therapy (which stems from Freud's psychoanalysis), eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) and mindfulness based approaches.
Victoria's approach is grounded in humanism, which means that the relationship that you develop with her forms an integral part of the work you will do together. She will therefore treat you with respect and will not judge you in any way but will allow you the space to discuss whatever is on your mind in a safe and confidential environment.
The first meeting is often a huge first step for any individual so Victoria understands and respects the difficulty you may have had in deciding upon making an appointment. She is also aware that you are likely to feel uncomfortable initially because of the things that you are discussing. With this in mind, she will always work at your pace and will never force you to talk about something that you would rather not focus upon.
Note: It is vitally important to choose a psychological therapist with whom you feel safe, comfortable and secure, therefore your introductory meeting will help you to make an informed decision as to whether you would like to continue working with her.
Dr Galbraith uses evidence-based practice and practice-based evidence in her work. This means that she looks closely at the difficulties that you may present with and she will assess for what may be the best way forward in your work together. This will be based upon scientific research evidence and also her own experiential practice-based evidence. In other words, she will take a close look at the literature to see which approach may be most appropriate for your difficulties but in this process she will also consider you as an individual and whether she thinks this will be the best approach for you.
Dr Galbraith has a range of psychological models at her disposal and will often integrate approaches if deemed appropriate. Some of the tools in her therapeutic toolbox are listed below.
Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
CBT is based on the concept that your thoughts, feelings, physical sensations and actions are interconnected, and that negative thoughts and feelings can trap you in a vicious cycle. CBT aims to help you deal with overwhelming problems in a more positive way by breaking them down into smaller parts. You're shown how to change these negative patterns to improve the way you feel.
Unlike some other talking treatments, CBT deals with your current problems, rather than focusing on issues from your past.
It looks for practical ways to improve your state of mind on a daily basis (Retrieved from the NHS Website)
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR)
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) is a psychotherapy model that enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences. Repeated studies show that by using EMDR therapy people can experience the benefits of psychotherapy that once took years to make a difference. It is widely assumed that severe emotional pain requires a long time to heal. EMDR therapy shows that the mind can in fact heal from psychological trauma much as the body recovers from physical trauma. When you cut your hand, your body works to close the wound. If a foreign object or repeated injury irritates the wound, it festers and causes pain. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. EMDR therapy demonstrates that a similar sequence of events occurs with mental processes. The brain’s information processing system naturally moves toward mental health. If the system is blocked or imbalanced by the impact of a disturbing event, the emotional wound festers and can cause intense suffering. Once the block is removed, healing resumes. Using the detailed protocols and procedures learned in EMDR therapy training sessions, clinicians help clients activate their natural healing processes. (Retrieved from EMDR Institute Inc.)
Here is a link to a YouTube clip that you may find informative: https://youtu.be/Pkfln-ZtWeY
Humanistic therapies focus on self-development, growth and responsibilities. They seek to help individuals recognise their strengths, creativity and choice in the 'here and now'.
The humanistic approaches are based on the belief that we all naturally gravitate towards goodness. While of course, difficult life experiences may temporarily block our ability to reach our potential, with the right support, we all have the ability to achieve our goals.
A humanistic therapist will work to create a safe, supportive space where clients will be able to explore themselves and their potential, ultimately working towards developing their own personal growth - mentally, emotionally and spiritually (Retrieved from Counselling Directory).
Mindfulness and Compassion-Based Approaches
Becoming more aware of the present moment can help us enjoy the world around us more and understand ourselves better.
When we become more aware of the present moment, we begin to experience afresh things that we have been taking for granted.
"Mindfulness also allows us to become more aware of the stream of thoughts and feelings that we experience," says Professor Williams, "and to see how we can become entangled in that stream in ways that are not helpful.
"This lets us stand back from our thoughts and start to see their patterns. Gradually, we can train ourselves to notice when our thoughts are taking over and realise that thoughts are simply 'mental events' that do not have to control us.
"Most of us have issues that we find hard to let go and mindfulness can help us deal with them more productively. We can ask: 'Is trying to solve this by brooding about it helpful, or am I just getting caught up in my thoughts?'
Mindfulness is recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) as a way to prevent depression in people who have had 3 or more bouts of depression in the past (Retrieved from NHS Website).
The aim of psychodynamic therapy is to bring the unconscious mind into consciousness - helping individuals to unravel, experience and understand their true, deep-rooted feelings in order to resolve them. It takes the view that our unconscious holds onto painful feelings and memories, which are too difficult for the conscious mind to process.
In order to ensure these memories and experiences stay below the surface, many people will develop defences, such as denial and projections. According to psychodynamic therapy, these defences will often do more harm than good (Retrieved from Counselling Directory).