Accessible – Available -Affordable
Going to see one’s therapist at their room is so normal we just do it. Make an appointment. Travel to the location. Wait for the start time. Use the service, and then repeat for the next session. Being able to access the safe supportive nurturing counselling service is important for so many. Yet, often, time, geography, physical health issues, family or work commitments make this just impractical. Live too far away, can not get the transport, or the right kind of therapist is not local or working at times to suit? There is another way, and that is On-Line Therapy.
We can now use modern webcam technology to overcome these obstacles providing easy face to face therapy. This puts you and your chosen counsellor together in a way that is accessible, readily available and certainly affordable.
The pioneers in the web-based face to face therapy and counselling were rather nervous. Can it, would it, will it and does it actually work. Could it undermine the therapeutic alliance and diminish effective counselling outcomes. Happily, the research and evidence points to the effectiveness of online counselling. Let’s see how it works for you?
How Does It Work:
We meet for an appointment in the same way we would if you visited the therapy rooms.
The sessions are 50 minutes long. We will use zoom webmeeting software or skype.
Please take time to prepare for your meeting. Going on the zoom or skye websites (links below) and setting up your computer, phone or tablet.
We all prepare for our online sessions by preparing the environment. Make sure we are free from distractions. Have some privacy. Turn off phone ringer. Check background, we do not want to show what we do not want seen!
Have a pen and paper ready to take notes.
Check the audio and video quality along with broadband connectivity.
Zoom is another online face to face software package that is free to use and we can meet here.
We both use Skype: This is video and voice real-time face to face conversations. Whilst not in the same room we are as present as can be.
We agree on a time. Please book sessions as you would any other appointment.
Sessions are booked by appointment as if they were held in the therapy room. The sessions start on time and end on time. The last couple of minutes are held back to book the next session and any other general administration issues.
The sessions are not really any different than if we were in the same room. We are just using technology to connect us.
We both have our Skype set up. (see below on notes about this)
Setting up Skype can be done on a mobile phone, tablet, desktop computer, laptop or can be used on any web browser. The device needs to have a video to video (camera) and voice (microphone). This is included in most phones, laptops and tablets. However, for desktop computers, you may have to acquire a webcam. Here is an article from the Daily Telegraph that can help with choosing a webcam. The Skype website has plenty of simple tutorials on setting up and using the service. As with most things these days, you register with your email address, create a password and then make a skype name for your self. Mine is bill_stevens_redchair . That is how you find me on Skype.
Dot the i’s Cross the T’s
We do not offer the same levels of confidentiality online as we believe that the web is safe, yet not totally safe. So no point worrying about it yet let’s not pretend that all internet data is not monitored by someone or something sometimes from somewhere.
We are not a technical help department for software. Skype on modern systems is pretty easy to set up and reliable to use. However, all tech can have problems. Please do your best to make sure you can use the simple Skype software and we will do the same.
Cancelled appointments. Please give 48hrs notice of intended cancellations as your therapist has this appointment time held for you specifically and costed as such. Sessions not attended are still chargeable. Your therapist will be available on the phone should you be having technical problems and the session can proceed verbally.
Prepare for your online therapy session by making your environment suitable. Remember, you are on camera, so is your environment. Check your background. Check for distractions and noises in the background. Allow for your privacy and time to focus on your session.