At Focus, we are committed to supporting you through the current Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. We know this will be a time of heightened anxiety, worry and isolation. For many people, access to professional help is needed now, more than ever. For this reason, we have pulled out all the stops to ensure our full range of therapies are available to access by telephone or online wherever possible. Our therapists will be available to work with you over the phone or by Skype/online if preferred.
Here are some useful points to consider if having your therapy by phone or online, particularly if you are self-isolating at home:
- Where will you be having your sessions? Is the environment private, free from distractions or interruptions?
- Is the device you’re using suitable? Is the software up-to-date and working? Do you have an adequate phone signal and/or internet connection?
- In general, therapists will withhold their telephone numbers when conducting telephone counselling. Is your phone set to accept calls from withheld numbers?
- Your therapist will agree with you the time and frequency of appointments, as they would with face-to-face sessions. If you miss their call, they will usually try again in 5-10 minutes. If you do not pick up, they will usually class this as a missed session, just as if you missed a face-to-face session.
- Telephone counselling can be quite different to face-to-face, as you will not be able to see your therapist. Therapy can be experienced quite differently when conducted this way. It may be helpful to discuss these differences with your therapist and agree how you will manage them together.
- When attending a face-to-face appointment, there is usually travel time before and after your session, to prepare before and process afterwards. How might you do this at home? Perhaps consider ways you might ‘virtually travel’ to and from your sessions at home?
- If a session brings up difficult or painful material for you, is there support available at home after sessions, either from somebody in your household or a family member/friend on the phone?
Also, here are some useful resources to help you look after your wellbeing during the pandemic. We will keep updating this page as and when new guidance becomes available, so please do check-in regularly!
Here are some useful tips and resources to help you manage your anxiety during the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic:
- Follow the latest Government advice on how to protect yourself and others. Click here to see the latest guidance.
- Don’t spend too much time checking your phone, watching, reading or listening to the news for updates. This will generate more anxiety and worry. Try to limit checking for updates to just once or twice a day.
- Use trusted websites such as gov.uk, nhs.uk or the World Health Organisation.
- Keep active and make plans for your day. You may be working from home or living differently. Keep to routines wherever possible. Give yourself breaks and rewards. If you find you have more time than usual, consider taking up new hobbies or revisiting existing ones, read books or watch a film you’ve been meaning to watch.
- Try and be more socially connected. Social distancing will physically keep us away from others, so we might need to be more proactive at keeping in touch with people. Use online platforms like Skype, Zoom and WhatsApp, along with social media, and make time to call people regularly.
- Be kind to others! Kindness is a double-blessing. Doing a good turn for someone will make both you and the recipient feel better.
- Look after yourself – eat regularly, maintain a good sleep routine where you can and take regular exercise. The current guidelines permit one form of exercise outside the home per day. There are also lots of resources online.
Although the Government guidelines permit one form of exercise outside the home per day, there is lots you can do at home to stay fit and healthy. Check out the article below which contains a great selection of exercise routines available online, for people of all ages!
Managing Corona Anxiety
Our Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner, Sarah, has put together this fantastic guide to managing anxiety during the pandemic. Based on the principles of low-intensity CBT, the guide will arm you with lots of practical tools and techniques to help you worry less during this time.
You can read the guide here.
I feel I have made a good deal of progress with Focus Counselling and continue to use strategies I have learned in my day-to-day life.
I’m so pleased I came to Focus, it has helped me so much. I feel I can cope now. My counsellor has been brilliant and so easy to talk to.
Very friendly, professional people who will listen, empathise and guide you in the right direction. You can’t go wrong.
Get in Touch
If you have any queries about Focus Counselling Services or would like to find out more about the services we offer, please do get in touch.