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Assessment Process

Free Initial Consultation

Available via telephone, email or skype

Assessment Sessions -  

Available from my home in Downham Market, your own home, or via skype

First Assessment Session -

Focuses on your present situation

Second Assessment Session -

Focuses on your personal history

FormulationDraws together all information and offers you a deeper psychological understanding 

Treatment PlanOutlines suggestions for overcoming your difficulties and moving forward with your life

 

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Assessment and Formulation

I believe the assessment and formulation process to be incredibly important, and it can often be very therapeutic in itself. The assessment offers the opportunity to reflect in detail about the development and consequences of your difficulties, and the formulation offers a deeper psychological understanding of your difficulties and how you may consider coping with them. I believe that this process is worth taking time over as the more that we understand about your difficulties from the very beginning, the more likely we are of creating a treatment plan that addresses all of your needs. As such, following a free initial consultation, I prefer to carry out my assessments over at least two sessions. (However, this is not always necessary).

Free Initial Consultation: I will always offer a free initial consultation in order to give you the opportunity to ask any questions you may have about me or the service that I offer, and to decide for yourself whether I might be someone that you would like to try to help you. During this consultation I will also ask you a few questions about your circumstances to help me to consider whether I am the most appropriate person to meet your needs. I am happy for this consultation to be carried out via telephone, email or skype.

If we are both in agreement that we would like to move forward together, I will then offer you an assessment and send you a letter that outlines important information regarding consent and confidentiality, etc.

First Assessment Session: I will personalise each of my assessments according to your needs, however, in general, the first session will focus on the present. It will be an opportunity for you to talk openly about your concerns; about what you are finding difficult, what impact these difficulties are having and what seems to help or make things worse. Very often I will use psychological questionnaires, as they can help us to be more accurate and specific when thinking about particular aspects of the difficulties. 

Second Assessment Session: Leaving a gap between the first and second sessions allows us both time to reflect on what has been said and what further information we would like to be shared. This is the first thing that we will discuss during our second session, before moving on to thinking about your personal history. Very often I will draw out a timeline to help us to reflect on important events in your life, and a genogram (family tree) to help us to consider your important relationships.

Formulation: Having gathered all of this information I will endeavour to begin pulling it together into an initial formulation. This formulation will be underpinned by the most relevant psychological theories, research and evidence-bases. During our next meeting I will share this formulation with you and explain what I believe may have contributed to your difficulties and what may be maintaining them. Using this formulation we can then discuss a suitable treatment plan that will focus on relieving psychological distress and promoting positive change and personal development in the areas most needed.