I love a good definition, and if you Google the definition of 'holistic' you'll find this: characterised by the belief that the parts of something are interconnected and can be explained only by reference to the whole.
If you Google the definition of 'counselling' you'll find this: the provision of professional assistance and guidance in resolving personal or psychological problems.
Holistic counselling, then, is an approach that considers the whole human when addressing challenges - things like anxiety, self-doubt, self-hatred, self-criticism, stress, burnout and overwhelm.
This approach recognises the interconnectedness of body and mind and considers your whole human experience when supporting you in your challenges.
Each holistic counsellor has a different set of skills and tools, but let me tell you about mine so you know what to expect if you book a holistic counselling session with me.
I take the view that being human is tricky. However, so much of what can make the human experience tricky is stuff that is kinda 'baked-in' - it's how the human brain and body work. And so, if this is true, then understanding the human brain and body - how they work, interact and respond to the world around and inside us - can take us a long way in resolving our challenges.
I have my own history with self-hatred and severe anxiety. It took me years to navigate to a place of self-acceptance and, eventually, self-love. What I know for sure (now!) is that choosing to love and trust yourself is the greatest gift. And it doesn't have to take you years to get there (though it will become a life-long practice). That's what I'm here to support you to do.
The tools in my tool-box as a holistic counsellor and mindful movement coach are many and varied, but here are a few of my favourites:
Talk therapy. Talk therapy takes many different forms, but at the heart of it is the opportunity to be heard and seen without judgement. I often use techniques and practices from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy in session, but will also draw on other techniques as needed.
Somatics. A somatic practice is a practice that relates to the body. The way I think of this is as a whole-human experience - being present to yourself in a way that takes in your full experience - body and mind. This might incorporate movement or breathing practices to support you in being present, noticing and acknowledging how you feel, and shifting tension and pain.
Nervous system regulation, polyvagal theory practices, and pain-science education. Your nervous system is integral to all of your experiences, but you might find you don't 'know' it very clearly. In session we work together to understand, read and regulate the nervous system for reduced physical and emotional pain.
You are a whole human. Your experiences, pain and challenges are real and valid. And ... you do not have to stay locked in a place of just battling through. There is more peace available to you, and I'd love to support you in finding it.
Want to book a holistic counselling session with me? You can book your first session or start with a free good-fit call to see if you think I'm a good fit for your needs. And if you want to learn more about me - Erica - click here to read more.