Karen Cleland CounsellingCBT therapy in Hamilton, South Lanarkshire

About Me . ARLogo

About me

I started training to become a counsellor in 2008 after receiving therapy myself in 2007. I remember how terrified I was opening up to this complete stranger, who was asking me a lot of questions, but I now know this was part of the assessment process. I felt broken and ashamed. It was destroying my confidence within myself and I questioned everything that I tried to do. I gradually got worse over a period of 10 years, and it took me all that time to realise that my anxiety was controlling me, not me being in control. What my therapist (Ben) taught me changed my life and learning about why I felt what I did gave me some control back. At the end of my first session on my way out the door I remember asking him "Can you help me?". I will never forget how much relief I felt when he said "Yes, I'm going to teach you how to help yourself".

After my own therapy ended my new journey began, and I started to research into how to become a therapist. I wanted to learn how to provide others with the supportive and safe environment that my therapist had given me.

After I finished my counselling skills course I decided to commit to becoming a CBT therapist by doing a diploma course for two years. I like CBT's integrated approach and I also had personal experience that it can work!

About Me . imagine no courage no change

Professional Progression in 2012

I made the decision to become a part time self employed CBT therapist and I haven't looked back since!

Professional Progression in 2013

I started to volunteer as a Tutorial assistant on a CBT course run by the Centre of therapy in Glasgow where I completed my own training. The role is rewarding as I get to see other people going through the same professional training journey I have completed myself and support them along the way.

Professional Progression in 2014

I left my hairdressing job of 12 years to commit myself full time to my trade. I love my CBT job and I get a huge level of fulfilment and satisfaction from supporting other people going through their life changing journeys!

Professional Progression in 2015

I started working towards professional accreditation with the BABCP. This has been very challenging but rewarding as I really enjoy learning and developing my skills as a therapist.

Professional Progression in 2016

I got my own office space in Hamilton (18 Avon street) which was a very exciting and a bit frightening as its a big step. I had it up and running within a few weeks of moving in and I love my therapeutic space. I have it just the way I imagined I wanted it to look.

Professional Progression in 2017

I am preparing to submit my BABCP accreditation project that I started in 2015. It has been a long and challenging piece of work for me but with the support and encouragement from my family and work colleagues I have managed to keep going! The accreditation achievement is further proof of my professional competence to practice therapy so it is something that is very important to me.

I am very excited about becoming a trainee tutor on the COSCA counselling skills course run by the centre of therapy in September. This opportunity will also allow me to work towards becoming an accredited COSCA trainer in the future!

Professional progression in 2018

I moved into my new premises in Haddow street at the beginning of this year and I absolutely love my new work space!! Its a smaller room but I really like the location and I have lovely neighbours which makes it a lovely space to be in as well.

I am excited to say that in September I finally submitted my BABCP accreditation portfolio for marking! Its been a toil emotionally and has taken me time to prepare and submit but I know it will be worth it!! I'm hoping to hear back from the BABCP in January 2019 to see if my application has been successful.

I also started a Tutor training (PDA) course this year and that was also submitted in December so fingers crossed I get a pass as that qualification will open up some exciting opportunities in 2019 for me!

Professional Progression in 2019

I have passed my level 7 PDA training so I am now qualified to create and deliver training to groups! I am delighted and excited about the opportunities this qualification can open up for me! I have also received a provisional accreditation award through the BABCP which I am delighted about. I am currently in the process of applying for full accreditation status.


Professional progression in 2020

I will be training to become a clinical supervisor at some point this year which I'm really excited about! The training was supposed to start in March 2020 however due to the lockdown this has been postponed until we can get back face to face. I will get to enjoy being a student again for a while which I'm looking forward to as I really enjoy learning! I submitted my application to the BABCP for full accreditation and I am delighted to announce that I am now an accredited Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapist! This is a huge celebration for me as I have been working towards BABCP accreditation since 2015!! I also submitted my COSCA trainer accreditation this year and I have been awarded conditional accreditation as a certificate level tutor. My biggest learning curve this year has been moving face to face clients to working online during the lockdown. I have been researching and attending various CPD online events to support my learning (and will continue to do so). I really enjoy this way of working and in June I enrolled in an 80 hour online training course that supports all the essential knowledge for working online with clients . I have decided to focus on offering remote CBT sessions via phone and Online as part of my CBT services even after lockdown ends as it has been such a good additional platform to my way of working.

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