Why Dr Finlay's?
We have a team of skilled doctors and Clinical Psychologists registered with the Health and Care Professional Council providing top level service. We offer bespoke assessment and therapy to adults, young people and families needing support for their day to day function and well-being due to psychological issues.
Our psychologists work flexibly and integrally to meet your needs and preferences. We can offer a range of therapeutic approaches including:
We work collaboratively with you to identify your goal and tailor the most appropriate support. After an initial assessment that lasts one to two sessions (depending on the complexity of issues) we jointly decide which approach, frequency and duration would be most beneficial to what you would like to achieve. Throughout your therapy, your therapist will review with you regularly to determine the progress you have made and your next steps.
FAQ Psychological Therapy
What is psychological therapy?
Psychological therapy is sometimes referred to as "talking therapy" with a trained
practitioner. It is more than just talking about your problems to someone who will listen,
empathise, offer practical solutions or give reassurance.
Psychological therapy is a collaborative process to explore and address issues related to
mental health or around self-identity, meaning or purpose in a safe and confidential (see
below also on confidentiality) setting. We aim to help you better understand your thoughts
and feelings in the context of your past and current experiences.
With a supportive and non-judgemental environment, your therapist will work with you to
identify ways to address your emotional and relationship issues. The aim is to empower you
to make choice and enable lasting positive change.
How do I know if I need psychological therapy?
The vast majority of us experience psychological difficulties at some point in our lives. We
don’t always need therapy. However, just like physical health, whilst we often do our best
to look after ourselves, we need to consult our doctors from time to time in situations that
we are less sure of or when problems don’t seem to improve as expected.
Therapy can help you gain clarity on an issue, change less helpful patterns of coping, address
complex personal issues, or embark on a journey of self development and transformation.
One might seek therapy in a time of crisis or when encouraged by family members, friends
or colleagues. It is, however, important that it is you, not other people, no matter how
caring they are, who decide on your therapy.
Examples of common issues people have therapy for are:
Work place issues (stress, work-life balance)
Relationship difficulties (work, family, marital, other social)
Emotional and relational impacts of adjusting to physical health conditions
Trauma (post-traumatic stress, early life trauma, abuse)
Anxiety (generalised anxiety problems, panic attacks, agoraphobia, social anxiety,
claustrophobia, other phobias)
Low self-esteem and confidence
Loss and bereavement
Issues with eating
How do I choose therapy to suit my needs? What can I expect from therapy?
Like any human relationship, you will not find the same experience with different therapists,
even if they use the same approach. The initial meetings with a therapist give opportunities
for you to get to know each other and jointly decide if this relationship is working well for
you. It is important, however, that you can clarify expectations, and experience good
rapport and connection in this process.
Therapy process can feel a little risky as you might feel vulnerable in talking about difficult
but important experiences to address. It requires a sense of trust in yourself, your therapist
and the process is required. This trust can be developed gradually with support by your
therapist, towards an open and honest relationship that would benefit both your therapy
and your life outside of therapy.
Often more than one type of therapy may be beneficial for a client. You might or might not
be sure of the particularly approach that would be suitable for you. In the initial meetings,
there will be opportunities to discuss with your therapist your needs, your goals and the
different types of therapy that might help with your unique situation.
You can expect:
To be treated with dignity and respect
To be informed what choices of therapy are available
To have opportunities to ask questions and to understand what the therapy involves
To be seen by a suitably trained therapist, who will work to a professional code of
conduct and who will be receiving supervision of their work.
At the start of your psychological therapy you can also expect to discuss your Therapy
Contract which will include agreeing the main focus of your therapy, how many sessions
you will have and the time and location of these sessions.
How long do therapy sessions and period last, and how often do I see my therapist?
The length of therapy will depend on a number of factors including: your goals, the type of
difficulties you are working with, how long is your experience of the difficulties, and your
level of commitment to the process.
It is therefore important for you to have a clear goal. This is something your therapist would
be able to help you with.
If you have your own constraints about how long you can commit to therapy e.g. due to time
or financial reasons, do make clear in the initial meeting so this can be taken into account for
the most helpful therapy approach for you. For example, you might decide to take a first
specific step towards your development and to revisit issues as and when needed from time
Each therapy session lasts for about 50 minutes unless a longer session (e.g. 90 mins) is
indicated and agreed in advance. After the first meeting, if both you and the therapist are
happy to continue, there will be a typical initial agreement to meet for a further number of
sessions (e.g. 5). This is to enable a more thorough understanding of your needs and
situation as well as address issues more appropriately. Even with this initial part, clients
usually find the improved shared understanding of their issues and potential solutions very
Sessions usually take place once a week or fortnightly to develop working relationship and
build resilience. As the work progresses, it may be appropriate to meet less frequently. On
the other hand, extra sessions might be scheduled to support in times of need.
Depending on the complexity of issues, agreed goal and approach, the length of therapy can
range from 6 sessions to many months or years. The therapist will agree and review the
plan with you on a regular basis.
Will my therapist be available for me in a crisis?
This is a non-crisis service. Your therapist will only be available to you at your scheduled
appointment time. In the case of crisis or emergency, please contact your GP, the
Samaritans (116 123) or emergency services 111.
Do I have to commit? How do I get the most out of therapy
As in most learning in life, the more you put in, the more you will get out. It is therefore
important that we are realistic about the practical and emotional resources that you are able
and willing to commit to therapy.
Like any relationship, the more you are able to be open with your therapist, to attend the
sessions as agreed, to implement new skills, even at times this feels difficult, the more likely
you will gain real and lasting benefit.
If you know at the beginning, giving therapy a high priority is likely to be difficult for you,
then please discuss this with your therapist to explore other options that may be more
During therapy, if you come across doubts about therapy, it might be most beneficial for you
to take the opportunity to address this with the therapist. It can enable development of
therapeutic relationship, support, and your skills in managing difficult feelings to maintain
momentum in progress.
How do I know if therapy is working for me
There is no fixed view on desirable outcome across individuals, it is therefore helpful to have
jointly identified and agreed goals for therapy. Setting therapy goal is an ongoing process
between you and your therapist as your needs might change with your progress.
However, for therapy to work, you need to have a sense that the therapist is engaged and
interested in you, that you are developing shared understanding of your challenges.
It is not uncommon that you will feel an increase in confidence and more empowered to
take step towards improving your life. However, lasting change can take time when deep
rooted issues need to be addressed, small positive experiences can give you a sense of hope
and strength to manage challenging times even in the therapy process.
One word of caution, as you deepen your sense of yourself and your experiences, there
might be times that you feel worse or experience setbacks, if you have built some
foundations in therapy, these times can offer important developmental opportunities. As
always, if in doubt, discuss with your therapist in the first instance.
What happens in therapy ending?
You might decide to end therapy when you and your therapist agreed that you have
achieved your goals. Other situations when therapy ends can include: the costs of therapy
outweigh the benefits, or issues arise in the therapeutic relationship that would be mutually
beneficial to discontinue.
Towards the end of therapy there will be an opportunity to reflect on what you have gained
from therapy and what your next steps might be. This may involve thinking about what
other support you might need to help you maintain progress.
The ending of therapy can affect people in many different ways and there is no 'right' way to
feel. The emotional response can vary and resolve over time. It is important to pay
attention to your feelings, look after yourself at the end of therapy with the learning you
have gained, but also try to keep in touch with your support network and care for your
All the sessions are confidential between the psychologist and the client. This generally
means that your practitioner cannot discuss you or your case with any third parties without
your consent. There are, however, some limits to confidentiality:
Psychologists regularly present their work in confidential professional supervision.
If the client’s or another person’s safety were severely jeopardised, the practitioner
may contact the relevant parties for safeguarding purpose.
In a court of law a psychologist may be required to answer questions about a client.
We can work in a variety of ways including:
Short, time-limited or longer term one to one therapeutic sessions (typically 50 minutes long)
Working with you and your partner or carers together
Consultation to organisation
Supervision of mental health practitioners
Examples of areas we can support you with are:
To manage work related issues, relationship issues, stress and anxiety that impact on everyday life
To deal with the emotional and relational impacts of physical health problems
To deal with memories of traumatic events and reduce distress triggered by the memories
To increase awareness of emotional experiences, identify helpful and unhelpful coping and maximise well-being
To journey towards a life that you want, not hindered by challenging thoughts and emotions.
To gain a bigger picture, understanding and freedom in your day to day experiences