Supporting adjustments in counselling

Counselling chair

Many clients may be apprehensive about counselling, fearful that they have to conform to a certain mould in order to “do it right”. Let me reassure you there’s no such thing! This article looks at what adjustments you might need to help you feel more comfortable.

I specialise in counselling neurodivergent folk and individuals with chronic illnesses, but you don’t need a diagnosis to benefit from a counsellor who considers flexibility and tailoring the counselling to suit you.

Counselling room with 2 chairs and a table, looking out over a garden

I’ve thought hard about my counselling room. I’m fortunate to work at home so I’ve made a room that’s calming and, I hope, conducive for my clients to relax and feel comfortable.

Considering sensory needs

Managing our sensory input takes energy. Some of us need additional sensory input in order to concentrate, some of us need to decrease the sensory input from our surroundings in order to feel calm and emotionally regulated. Changing the lighting, being aware of background noise, considering smells and adjusting the temperature is all part of the work I do in setting up my room before a session. If you needed anything different when attending a session, we can discuss the individual adjustments you need.

Stimming can help clients with focus by enabling them to manage sensory input. I have items available for clients to use if necessary, or clients can bring their own. Society can shame this behaviour but, when appropriately embraced, it can enhance a person’s wellbeing.

Making eye contact can be a taboo subject. I’m aware that face-to-face contact for some people can be intimidating, cause discomfort or even pain. The arrangement of my room means looking out the window at the garden can be done with ease.

Session reminders

Supporting you to come to your sessions is my number one priority. We receive reminders for the dentist, the vet and other appointments, why not counselling? I understand some people may have difficulties with organisation and I see it as something we can work on collaboratively.

Flexibility vs the need for routine

Some people need a session at the same time every week and I can provide this. Others need flexibility and I can support this need too, organising each session from one week to the next.

We may also consider how often we meet. Twice weekly can be arranged; fortnightly or monthly may suit you best.

Different length sessions

clock thinking about adjustments

Usually session are 1 hour long. I’m flexible to offer adjustments in this area. Some people take time to process things, this may mean a longer session is helpful. However, other people may find an hour too long due to the intensity of processing emotions or levels of concentration. We can have shorter sessions if that would work better for you.

Communication adjustments

Talking is usually key in the counselling room. However, I understand this may not be possible at times of heightened emotion. If you prefer to draw or write, I will support you to do this.

Some people may have been shamed for the way they communicate but I embrace openness and honesty around these topics.

Embracing specialist knowledge

Do you have a specific field of interest? Do you feel shamed or embarrassed to talk about it? For someone who enjoys talking about a particular subject, it can be helpful to weave this into sessions and we can do this together.

Examples of this include using someone’s love of photography to explore the person’s inner world. Or enabling an individual to discuss relationships using their collected items.

Session location

I support people in the location where they feel most comfortable. If attending my dedicated counselling room in Basingstoke is possible, we will work with this. However, I can also meet you online or arrange a home visit if this would suit you better.


Have you previously been requested to review your sessions at regular, perhaps 6 week, intervals? Reviewing the work is an important part of the process that ensures you and your counsellor are on the same page. I review our work flexibly at a time that’s comfortable for you.

A lot of my clients have fallen through the gaps in NHS provision or have struggled to find a counsellor that suits them. I’m happy to have an open conversation about what you need so that you can see the benefits of counselling. If you’d like to book a session, please do contact me here.

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