Category Archives: Clinical Practice

Senior Associate Dr Mish Seabrook

Dr Mish Seabrook
“Passionate about your resilience in your professional and personal life.”

Senior Associate Mish Seabrook has long dark hair and is wearing black glasses, a white top with black dots under a red jacket

Ways to work with me:

• Therapy for stress, depression, and burnout.
• Supervision for professionals who help others.
• Coaching for women wellbeing entrepreneurs juggling life, work, and home.

I am a highly experienced professional who has worked helping others for over two decades, across several helping roles. Working both face to face and online, I’ll work collaboratively with you, and use my expertise to create a bespoke approach, designed to meet your needs as an individual.


Therapy –
from £80 per 50-minute appointment – weekly or fortnightly appointments.

Supervision –
from £80 per hour – monthly appointments.

Coaching –
June 2024 onwards – from £120 per 1 hour appointment – fortnightly or monthly appointments.

Training, speaking & professional development:

Contact me for a bespoke quote for your event.
I can speak on areas such as:
stress, self-care, vicarious trauma, burnout, resilience, supervision, goal setting, motivation.


SCopEd project is causing so much divisiveness

I am disappointed to see how the SCopEd project is causing so much divisiveness within our therapeutic community. Many therapists have huge concerns about SCoPEd. They voiced those concerns several years ago. As often happens, the membership bodies had already decided they will implement SCopEd. They weren’t prepared to incorporate changes based on membership concern. 

SCopEd project – Lack of transparency

Whilst many criteria were openly discussed, I don’t feel it was ever made transparent that accreditation status would be the single criterion determining which column we would each be assigned. Very early on in the SCoPEd process I could see that my personal situation would leave me somewhere between Columns B and C. I anticipated the requirement to do some additional work should I wish to be considered for Column C.

What was never made clear was that those of us with Senior Accreditation status would have that award revoked should we decide not to apply for Column C status or not be eligible for it. This feels, to me, more underhand. One could argue that is because it affects me personally, but I would feel this for anyone impacted. I am eligible to apply for Column C status as soon as the application process opens. Some are not and I feel for these folk too. In a situation where their senior status is revoked, how will they communicate this? Particularly without looking like they are being punished for something they have not done?

Taking frustration out on others

I feel more disappointed and disheartened to see on social media the attack on BACP Senior Accredited members for voicing their discomfort/frustration with having to apply for Column C status (should they be eligible) or face the removal of their Senior status. 

It feels dangerous and unhelpful to me to attack all members of any group wholesale. The therapists at the heart of the attacks don’t know what many of us have attempted to do behind the scenes to affect change. Nor do they know what many of us have done to support those assigned a different category. Inevitably non-accredited members, accredited members and senior accredited members will all have specific needs during the process. Current Senior accredited members will each have to determine whether they are eligible now or in future rounds to apply for Column C status. We will then need to make an individual decision about whether we go ahead with the application or not. Each of us will have different reasons for reaching our decision. 

Working together

The SCopEd project is causing so much divisiveness. I am left wondering, can we find a way to talk about our specific needs? How we can help each other without taking lumps out of one another on social media? Does everyone have to feel the same about it for us to find a way forward? Do we have the resilience to have open dialogue?

Sitting with Uncertainty

Sitting with uncertainty. It comes up a lot in therapy. Many people have the idea that it’s about not caring about uncertainty or learning to cut off from it, but I think it’s much more about feeling it. Really feeling it. That doesn’t mean we won’t distract from the discomfort or that we may prefer to not feel it. Given we live in a world where there us so much uncertainty of many different shapes and sizes, I think it must be about living with it, alongside it rather than trying to convince ourselves we don’t experience it. When living with chronic uncertainty and/trauma it can quickly turn into further trauma and/or burnout.

How do we respond?

Then there is the question of how we respond to ourselves and other when we feel we are sitting with uncertainty. Often, we have more understanding for others when they feel uncertain or anxious, than we do for ourselves. Many haven’t had the experienced of being empathically attuned to as children so how can we learn to respond to ourselves and others with more compassion and understanding?

We tend to either avoid feelings altogether or sit so heavily in it that we can’t function so trying to re-ground and find a middle ground can often be helpful. When we are struggling the inner critic can have a field day so learning what the inner critic is trying to save us from can be a step towards compassion too. Having a sense of what brings us comfort can be a way of caring for those needs that may not have been met as a child.

What are your signs of living with uncertainty?

What are you signs of either living with too much uncertainty or not engaging with it at all? Is there anything you can you do to offset some of it? How can you be more nurturing towards yourself and others during this time?

There’s no shame in needing help too. So if you need to talk it through, get in touch and we can work through it together.

Christmas 2022

I am aware that we are heading towards another Christmas  – gosh, they do seem to come around quickly! We get taught that Christmas, along with festivals such as Hanukkah, Eid and Diwali, is a happy celebratory time and for many it will be. There are also many who, for various reasons, won’t be celebrating and I am particularly mindful of these folk as we head towards our holidays.

Festivals and loss

Christmas, like most festive celebrations, can evoke difficult feelings such as loss and can be really tough for those where there’s an aspect of one’s identity that isn’t shared openly or is ridiculed. Family events can be tortuous.

Problematic relationships can get highlighted at these times; it brings home the sadness and pain of broken and/or unresolved difficulties.

Many people experience bereavement around Christmas or other festive times, and it can influence how future Christmases etc pan out. Whilst the rest of the world (seemingly) is gearing up for excitement there are others experiencing excruciating pain. Empty chairs at Christmas are difficult reminders that a loved one is missing, or perhaps a child who never got the opportunity to experience Christmas. There will also be those knowing an empty chair is on the horizon; the impending loss.

It can also be difficult for those in recovery. With so much focus on alcohol, how do people keep themselves safe? The cost-of-living crisis inevitably will make this year tough for many also with people not being able to heat their homes or pay other bills, never mind buying expensive presents. Loneliness and isolation become a feature.

Good? Bad?

Like most situations and festive occasions, Christmas won’t be all good or all bad. There are likely to be a mix of difficult moments and moments of joy and contentment. How do we fully engage with all our experiences in the moment and how can we better look ourselves where there are moments of difficulty?

Self-care looks like different things to each and every one of us and it can be helpful to remind ourselves up front what brings comfort and have it on standby. Agency is also important. Where situations feel unhelpful, do you have to go, stay as long? Can you find something that brings you joy to do afterwards. Can you find peace within even if you are doing something you’d rather not be doing.

Can you allow yourself to experience the feeling of envy towards what others might have and offer yourself some compassion in return?

However you will be spending your Christmas/Hanukkha/solstice/winter holiday, the team and myself wish you peace and inner calm as we bring 2022 to a close.

One Year on … Looking back at my first full year in private practice

Paual Fowle 23 March 2022

Things I have learnt

To trust myself – Its OK to have a wobble it doesn’t mean that all is lost. By digging deep, I found the confidence to believe in me and my ability.

Have a small good support network – I have found working in private practice can be tough sometimes so having a good team around me made up of an excellent Supervisor along with a Business Mentor have worked wonders. I have had ready access to clinical advice when needed and also a helping hand to clarify business matters when I have not been sure. Being invited to join Baines-Ball & Associates by Luan Baines-Ball following an introduction by Dr Mish Seabrook was a privilege.  The support and guidance from my peer group has been invaluable. The Saturday morning team meetings and CPD have been great to be part of. The opportunity to deliver a CPD session was something I had hoped I would do but being among my peer group soon enabled me to put all of my fears on one side.

Only to do what I am comfortable with – I have only picked up the work that I am comfortable with and feel competent to cope with. It would have been easy to pick up everything that has come my way but it has been important to me to feel safe in the knowledge that I am supporting my clients as ethically as I am able keeping us all safe. I have learnt and feel comfortable to now say no.

Only to retain what I need from the past – I carried with me a lot of experience from previous roles that have helped me develop into the therapist that I am today. The experiences that were tricky I have processed and learnt to let go.

Look after me, only I know what I need to succeed – I had a plan of how I wanted my Private Practice to evolve and what I wanted it to look like going forward. I wondered how it would feel that it was all down to me but I can say it is empowering to know that each time I welcome a new client into my therapy room together we begin a new journey. Some have been tough, but to sit alongside someone who is comfortable in my company as they grapple what is going on for them has been amazing so far.

It’s OK to take time out – This was a biggie for me at the start I didn’t want to take my foot off the pedal in case I missed something. What I learnt very quickly was in order for me to be on the top of my game I needed to rest. Invaluable support from my yoga teacher Helen Braithwaite @Benndyoga has taught me so much about looking after me. My two gorgeous Golden Retrievers have let me know when its time to take a break and we have enjoyed many reflective walks together.

It’s been a tough year. Losing my Best Friend following her brave battle with cancer in October has rocked me to the core but I have learnt from that experience too. Ann has inspired me to continue with the work that I do.

I guess the biggest thing that I have leant is that in life shit happens …. Its up to me how I deal with it and bounce back.

I take inspiration from a book that sits in my Therapy room and also in my Office called The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy. The quote that comes to mind as I close my reflection is ‘When the dark clouds come …. Keep going, when the big things feel out of control, focus on what you love right under your nose, This storm will pass…..

Onwards and upwards, looking forward to another new year ..

Time to celebrate

How can it be 10 years since we moved into our Leicester premises?

Time to celebrate

It’s time to celebrate! We reached our 10 year anniversary back in August but we waited until now so more of us could get together in person. It was great to see people. For some of the team it was the first time we had ever met face-to-face and for others it was 18 months since we last shared a physical space. It was lovely to get to know each other better. We were remined of what  can be missed in face-to-face interactions.

Safe Place

During our time to celebrate we discussed what it means to be part of a busy and established psychotherapy practice. One stand-out from the morning was that collectively we create a safe place not only for our clients but also ourselves. Being our authentic selves helps us to provide better therapy for our clients. I realise I am biased, but it is a lovely building; each room has its own mood. We feel custodians of this grade II listed building and whilst it is in our care we will nurture both it and its occupants.

It has been a blessing to see the practice grow over the years and to experience the differences that each person contributes. We have been blessed by several people really putting down roots and establishing their therapeutic ‘home’. We’ve been through a lot together and shared our knowledge and passion for safe, transparent and ethical practice. It’s become the community we hoped it would.

When the pandemic arrived, we, like many, were unsure as to the impact it would have on our business. Together we have not only survived but become stronger and more self-aware therapists which, in turn, can make us better therapists.

To my team: you are all wonderfully and uniquely you. I really value what we have achieved together.

To my cheerleaders: a heart-felt “thank you” for your support and belief in me.

Where has the time gone?

This week we are celebrating 10 years since moving the practice from our Wigston premises into the Leicester building we now inhabit. Where has the time gone? In one sense it doesn’t seem very long ago since we stood in an empty room assessing how we could make it into a comfortable therapy space, and, in another sense it’s a lifetime ago.

We (colleague Mish and myself) had a vision for the building: that room by room we would take over the building until one day we had access to the whole building as a counselling, psychotherapy, supervision and training centre with a reputation for our inclusive practice.

In those early days we battled with noise from other offices; unrelated work often jarred with us but we persevered. A couple of years in and we got the opportunity to expand into a second room. It felt too soon so we let the moment pass, unsure if we’d get another opportunity. It spurred us on to be better prepared the next time. Sure enough a few months later the same opportunity came by and we snapped it up. We were up and running. Subsequently, each time another room became available we took it, even if we didn’t quite feel ready for it.

There were many stressful moments especially during the middle section where we wondered if we’d taken on more than we could handle.  With a lot of hard work and determination we eventually took over all six rooms and could claim the building as ours. It immediately felt like a safer space knowing that it was completely ours, private and containing. No unexpected loud noises (at least on the inside!).


The pandemic brought more challenges as therapists moved their work online at home. The building sat quiet and empty for months; we wondered if we’d survive. We used the opportunity of it being empty to get some much-needed maintenance done. We took risks and the team pulled together to keep us afloat.

For many months, once COVID restrictions allowed, I was a lone worker, oscillating between my shoe-box office at home to a six-room building in the city: it was a stark contrast! Whilst we are not yet quite back to the busy building we once had, we have several of the team now working from the building part-time and it’s a joy to be back working there with some friendly faces.

One of my high-school teachers told me I wouldn’t amount to much. I had internalised this and many other experiences that led me to think and feel that I couldn’t have any dreams let alone realise them. Aside from this being a most unhelpful and damaging comment from my teacher, she was wrong!

Ten Years!

So, as we celebrate our 10 years here, I am struck by the many challenges we have faced in that time. We have come through those challenges stronger. We have some battle scars, yes, but our resilience has remained intact. We have remained steadfast to our ethical principles even in the face of rejection and adversity.

We have received many blessings in these 10 years and I am truly grateful for them and for the oft unsung cheerleader at home without whose steady support to follow my dream I could not have achieved this.  

As a team, unsung cheerleader included, we are looking forward to a face-to-face celebration later in the year, COVID permitting.

On hearing those dreaded words – ‘I am so deeply sorry we have done all that we can’

Paula Fowle 03 August 2021

Hearing the news

Terminal illness and bereavement. How many of us have been in this position, seeing a much-loved family member, a dear friend or colleague heroically fighting illness. Trying cope with every type of medication, treatment and advice thrown at them. To then receive the news that despite attempting every known route possible there is nothing more that the medical teams can do.

This is when the imaginary food mixer in the tummy kicks in!!!

Everyone around us is trying to cope and understand what has been said and what the future holds. none of us like uncertainty.

What are we supposed to do?

Each one of us will react in a different way and it may be hard to understand what others are feeling and saying. There will be a lot of questions that come to mind as together we all search for the answers.

Terminal illness and bereavement – what’s the impact on us and those around us?

The impact on a family is huge when such news is received. There may be a lot of uncertainty about how much time is left, who do you need to share this information with. You may feel overwhelmed with fear and sadness.

How do I tell my children, what will they want to know?

If there are children involved each one will want information that they can digest and cope with; their reaction may be difficult for you to understand and leave you feeling more isolated that ever.

You may be wondering who is going to support you.

There will be a lot of questions after hearing the news for the well parent. this can be a real dilemma and a physically and emotionally exhausting time.

One of the hardest parts of all of this may be the disruption of the family routine and the change of roles within the family unit.

If poorly parent is a stay-at-home parent taking care of the children, the family home, and the dog, suddenly this is about to change. Few of us like change at any time but especially not in such circumstances as this.

Who is going to do the school run?

Who is going to do the washing and ironing?

Who gets the dinner and who will walk the dog?

Introduction of Others

The disruption may mean that others are stepping in to help either professionals or other family members or friends.

This may lead to the children feeling vulnerable and unsure possibly displaying actions and talking in a way that you have not been heard before, it is important to remember that everyone is hurting.

We all hurt in our own way, not all of us are able to reach out, some retreat into their shells.

Retreating into our shell

I have the image of a tortoise being unsure of a new route to take and withdrawing his head into their shell. These reactions can be hard to take particularly when you are feeling under pressure to hold things together and be there for everyone else.

The impact on the well parent is huge. The news may leave them confused, both physically and mentally exhausted. Although there may have been a lot of doubt about the future until these words are spoken there is always hope and a place for denying the truth.

Why wouldn’t you?? It is so hard to let go of someone special someone you love isn’t it.? To see the plans, the hopes and the dreams that were made for the future be swept away.

You may well be feeling, yesterday was a happy day … today I am not sure what type of day it is…

It’s all different now suddenly there are feelings of sadness, fear, and anger. There may also be feelings of wanting the suffering to stop but not being able to let go invoking feelings of guilt at ‘choosing the easy way out’.

Reaching out for support

There is no easy way to face such a situation but by seeking support from a Bereavement Counsellor you may feel be able to find your way. You will find acknowledgement in a non-judgemental way of your worries, your fears, and the stress of living with many uncertainties.

Trying to find your strengths … they will still be there

The support offered will give you an open space to communicate the fears and feelings that you may not want to share with others, it will help you to explore your strengths and encourage you to use them. It will give you a place to explore your fears for the future and to celebrate the good times in the past.

Making a plan

The time spent can offer an opportunity to plan what you need to say to your children, you know it will feel uncomfortable and will be distressing, think about what you might want them to know, what questions they might ask, it might be tricky dealing with the questions that come back at you, hopefully some of the time spent with your Counsellor can prepare you for this.

None of us are perfect

The one thing to remember with all of this, is we don’t always get things right. This situation will be different for us all; there is no right or wrong way.

Allow time for the news to sink in. Grant yourself the thinking time. By seeking support for yourself you will find the strength to support those suffering around you too.

A final thought:

Reaching out at a time of loss is the hardest thing to contemplate. A listening ear can offer you a safe place as you try to weather the storm.

See part 2

Resilience and why pronouns matter.

Luan reflects on: their ‘why pronouns matter’ article, the resilience bank, paper cuts. They share the 5 things they do to maintain their resiliency.

Luan’s article ‘why pronouns matter’ is here to help bust some of the myths around gender diversity and to demonstrate how small changes in our interactions can have a huge positive impact on those with diverse identities.

As a psychotherapist and supervisor in private practice they reflect on their experiences within the therapeutic community regarding diversity, particularly gender, sexual and relationship identity. Their thoughts can be readily transposed to any area of diversity. Their aim is to offer some insights here into how we might better serve our clients, supervisees and colleagues. All examples are anonymised.

Whilst they recognise that change is slow within wider society they feel we have a duty as counsellors, psychotherapists and supervisors to be robust enough to challenge, be challenged and expand our knowledge and understanding, rather than live in a bygone era of oppression, judgement and ignorance. LGBT+ hate crime has increased by 78% in the last five years1. It matters to clients, supervisees and supervisors. Indeed it needs to matter for change to occur. Resilience and why pronouns matter.

“People are simply people”. Whether you’re a counsellor, psychotherapist or supervisor I would like to think that together we could enable people to simply be people, wear whatever they feel comfortable wearing, using names and pronouns that they feel most comfortable with, doing jobs and hobbies that make them feel fulfilled, loving whoever they happen to love. It’s a vision I still hold most dear but fear we as a profession are not there yet.


Inclusive progressive rainbow LGBTQIA flag

What do you look for in a clinical supervisor?

What do you look for in a clinical supervisor and how do you know if you are getting your needs met? When looking for a clinical supervisor I would recommend thinking about the following:

  • What qualification and experience does the supervisor have?
  • Will the supervisor encourage and support you to engage and grapple with defensible ethical decision-making?
  • Is there need for a supervisor with specialist knowledge, for example, working with gender, sexual or relationship diverse clients/supervisees, racial/cultural differences, or children and young people?
  • Is the supervisor willing to do their own learning (in their own time) about areas of difference or marginalisation which impact you and/or your clients? Do you anticipate having to educate the supervisor before you can discuss what you need to?
  • Do you envisage a helpful mix of containment, exploration, knowledge for you?
  • What is the style of the supervisor? Do they work more in a collaborative, informative, passive or integrative way? Does the supervisor prefer working with trainees, qualified or experienced therapists? How does that fit with your requirements?
  • How do you respond to questioning, empathy, authority? Are you able to discuss how you experience supervision? What might make you feel defensive? Do you feel able to bring all parts of you into supervision?

How do you assess if you are getting enough of your needs met?

If the arrangement doesn’t feel helpful, what would it need to look like to make it more helpful? What would it need to look like to know it’s time to change supervisors?

In each supervision experience I ask myself if I feel I’m getting my needs met in my supervision irrespective of how long we’ve been meeting; essentially what do I look for in a clinical supervisor. This translates into how I work with my supervisees also.

We have regular moments where I ask the supervisee if they feel able to ask for more or less of something. Many supervisees find it difficult to ask for certain needs to be met so it can be an area of personal growth to learn how to ask and negotiate in what is hopefully a safe environment.

What’s helpful?

I invite supervisees to say what feels helpful and unhelpful. I’ll invite open discussion about what we can change in order to get their developing needs met. I encourage supervisees to reflect on where any anxiety or ambivalence might be coming from so we can collaboratively assess our working relationship.

Many therapists, once qualified, have more than one supervisor and reap the benefits of this. Where needed I will recommend the supervisee engages with specialist additional supervision for working with gender, sexual or relationship diverse clients/supervisees, racial/cultural differences, or children and young people.