Karen Stowe Individual and Couples Counselling in Oxford

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My approach

I trained at the Minster Centre in London, one of the foremost integrative psychotherapy training centres in the country. Fundamental to my approach is the belief that we all have the potential to continue to change and grow throughout our lives, and that we can find greater fulfilment and freedom through self-awareness and self-responsibility

An integrative approach recognises the importance of the whole person, valuing an awareness of body, feelings, intellect and spirit. It works with a synthesis of concepts and practices from different traditions – including humanistic, psychodynamic, body-centred and transpersonal. I also offer mindfulness as a tool to help with depression and anxiety, which many of my clients have found useful, and for some, life changing.


Counselling is a journey of discovery

Counselling is a process of collaboration between therapist and client, in which together we explore the issues you have brought at a pace that feels safe and appropriate for you. My task as a therapist is to hold up a mirror to your experience, in a way that helps you see more clearly what is happening, and what part you are playing in it. This creates the opportunity for you to recognise old patterns of behaviour that are no longer useful, to try out new ways of thinking and responding, and thus to make different, more appropriate choices in your life. This process can also enable you to re-connect to parts of yourself that have been lost or denied, and can lead to a profound sense of being more truly your real self.


The importance of the therapeutic relationship

The therapeutic relationship that develops between us is a very important part of the healing process, and research has consistently shown that it is the quality of this relationship, rather than any particular kind of approach which most determines whether therapy is successful. To feel truly seen, heard and accepted in a trusting therapeutic relationship, can, in itself, be a transformative experience. It can also be an opportunity to try out new ways of being, and as part of this I will often share with clients my own responses, feelings and experience of our interaction, mirroring back useful insights.

It is important to understand that therapy is not a ‘quick fix’: it requires courage and commitment. What it does offer is a unique opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your relationships, to discover new ways of being, and to learn to tap into and trust your own inner wisdom.


Some of the benefits of counselling

  • Gain a deeper understanding of yourself and your relationships
  • Face life’s challenges and difficulties with more resilience
  • Improve your sense of personal power and ability to make appropriate choices
  • Recognise old patterns of behaviour that are no longer useful and develop new approaches
  • Become more aware of, and learn to trust, your own inner wisdom and experience
  • Discover what truly matters to you and gives your life purpose


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