I believe that anyone can achieve meaningful and lasting change, given the right conditions. My Gestalt therapy approach can support you to integrate painful experiences from the past; build better coping strategies to manage current challenges; and develop more nourishing relationships with yourself and with other people.
Ultimately, my intention is to support you to live a more satisfying life (whatever that means for you personally).
Psychotherapy with Lucy Christopher
What to expect
I am a Gestalt psychotherapist. I am also trained in CBT-i (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for insomnia). Keep reading for more info on how I work with each, and please indicate at initial enquiry what you are looking for.
Gestalt therapy with me – what to expect:
Meaningful change is hard work; it is also profoundly rewarding.
Our initial sessions will build a picture of what brings you to therapy, and what you hope to gain. You may have a clear idea, or you may simply feel something isn’t right and want professional input to discover more. Painful experiences from the past may be stopping you from living more fully in the present. However you arrive – I will meet you with warmth, curiosity and a willingness to discover what makes you thrive.
This sets the agenda for how we will work, what to prioritise, and the duration of our therapy. I offer long and short-term contracts.
What is Gestalt therapy?
The Gestalt therapy approach has a reputation for being confrontational and hard-nosed. I prefer to describe it as holding a deep respect for the finite nature of your mortal life. I don’t offer tea and sympathy – rather I will meet you where you are: in stuckness, on the edge of falling apart, in existential crisis, anxiety or depressive hopelessness, or doing “fine” but not quite thriving, and I will join you as you truly confront yourself and your pain with honesty and compassion. This may indeed feel challenging – but also alive, healing, and relationally rich.
Typical questions I may ask: What would it mean for you to live a life more authentic to your own values and beliefs? What are your obstacles? What aspects of your past remain unresolved and get in the way of you living a more meaningful life today?
I will invite you to develop a more attuned relationship to yourself, your body, and your difficulties. I believe all thoughts, feelings, body sensations and behaviours are there to meet a need; I do not label thoughts or behaviours ‘bad’ or ‘shameful’. I will encourage you to be interested in what function your symptoms serve. How and when did you develop these ways of being? How did they once help you? to what extent are they useful (or not) today?
Gestalt therapy provides a space to deconstruct the narratives you tell yourself, and have been fed by others, about yourself, your world and your history. Through the therapy process you start to reconstruct your own narrative and build the skills and capacity to live this in your real life and relationships.
CBT-i with me – what to expect:
I follow the CBT-i model researched and practiced at the SCNi (Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute, Oxford University), where I trained. CBT-i is the NHS treatment recommended by NICE guidelines for long and short-term insomnias. My approach combines an assessment of your insomnia and any related sleep disorders; stimulus control therapeutics (including strengthening your bed-sleep associations and improving your sleep efficiency), sleep hygiene, relaxation techniques, and working holistically to look at the wider context in which you are suffering with insomnia. Please note I do not prescribe medication although I may be able to refer you to Medical colleagues.
I qualified as a UKCP accredited psychotherapist in 2015, with a Masters in Gestalt Psychotherapy. I also teach on the Gestalt Masters course at a leading London psychotherapy training institute, and hold a Post graduate certificate in Higher Education. I work with individuals (adults) and I run creative therapy groups. Previously, I delivered and then trained staff to deliver CBT-based rehabilitation groups in prisons and probation, and subsequently moved into bid management to secure Ministry of Justice funding for rehabilitation services. Through these experiences I formulated a theory of how psychological and behavioural change happens – including the central role of creativity in achieving enduring change.
I embrace working openly with difference and power. I aim to facilitate a space where no discussions are taboo, and where we can be curious about how our differences and similarities influence your experience of our therapy.
As well as traditional talk-therapy, I invite expressive and creative ways of working – a collaborative means to further make sense of your experience, and to expand your possibilities.
Specific areas I work with
- Anxiety & panic
- Exploring existential issues around life, death and meaning
- Family relationships
- Feeling there is something wrong with you
- Life changes / transitions
- Work / professional issues (including imposter feelings)
- Understanding anger
- Trauma / PTS symptoms
Training, Qualifications and Experience:
I qualified as a UKCP accredited psychotherapist in 2015, with a Masters in Gestalt Psychotherapy. I also teach on the Gestalt Masters course at a leading London psychotherapy training institute, and hold a Post graduate certificate in Higher Education.
I’m happy to discuss any concerns or questions you may have about the process.
15-20 minute phone consultation: free
Weekly ongoing Gestalt therapy: £80 per 50 minute session.
CBT-i: £95 per 50 minute session including all resources.
I am registered with various health insurance providers, please enquire at our initial phone call.
Therapy sessions at City Therapy Space: