Therapy

Hello;  My name is Will Leifer.

Chances are if you are reading this page, it is because you are feeling stuck in some area of your life. Some emotion, problem or situation has come up and you are not sure what to do about it. You may be sad, disheartened, low, angry, scared or struggling in some other way.

Therapy is about getting unstuck, and it does this by helping you make connections. This could mean connecting more deeply with your own unexplored thoughts and feelings, with other people, or understanding how your past is connected to and influencing the present. Very often the most important connection in therapy can be that between the client and therapist. Simply being heard in an accepting and non-judgemental way can help a great deal. Through this process of connection, new ways forward emerge which were previously inconceivable.

For those curious about the psychotherapeutic theory that informs my work, I am an integrative psychotherapist, which means I draw on a range of different theories to help my clients. I draw particularly on the humanistic approaches of person-centred and focusing-oriented psychotherapy, and also on relational (attachment-based) psychoanalytic ideas. In addition to these, I have integrated some ideas and techniques from cognitive-behavioural therapy, existential therapy and gestalt therapy.

About me

I am a UKCP registered psychotherapist and Counsellor, with a post-graduate degree in psychotherapy and counselling. I have been practising for over 10 years.

I have experience:

  • Working for the NHS in G.P. surgeries and hospitals.
  • Working for local mental health charities, such as Mind
  • Working with private clients
  • Supervising the clinical practice of other counsellors, psychotherapists other mental health professionals

I am experienced at working with a wide range of issues, including anxiety and panic attacks, depression, family and relationship issues, work issues and personality disorders. Over the last decade I have experience working with many other issues too – so if you are wondering whether or not I am the right professional to help you, please do feel free to contact me for an email/phone discussion.

My approach

I aim to create a welcoming, non-judgemental space in my therapy room, where it feels safe enough to discuss things that may be very difficult to talk about.  My first task would be to understand as fully as I can your situation from your point of view. To understand your feelings, thoughts and life story as deeply as possible. In my experience, this is the real key to therapy, as simple as it sounds. Often what becomes clear in therapy, is that there are parts of ourselves we have not listened to very deeply – and the presence, empathy and curiosity that the therapist brings enables us to hear these parts, to hear our own neglected needs, fears and wishes more clearly. When this happens, the sense of stuckness people bring to therapy starts to dissolve all by itself – and the way forward becomes visible.

As well as listening deeply, at times I may bring an understanding of how your past experiences may have influenced your present to bear on our work. I find this often really clarifies the nature of the difficulties people are facing; and also that it really softens any feelings of shame or low self-esteem that are around when it becomes clear that problems don’t just arise from nowhere, but are an understandable response to past experience. At other times I may suggest an experiment – such as sitting still for 10 minutes doing nothing, to have a chance to observe what thoughts and feelings arise (often useful for people who are always busy!), or perhaps writing a letter that does not have to be sent, if a client has difficulty expressing themselves and is finding it difficult to decide whether to talk to someone about something difficult. Sometimes trying something out, an experiment like this, can really help. But I never forget the deep listening that is the core of the work and would never ask someone to do something that feels too uncomfortable for them.

Perhaps the last thing to say about my approach is that I work collaboratively with my clients. My aim is to find a way of looking at and thinking about a problem and its solution that makes sense to both of us; to get on the same page regarding the way forward. As part of this, I often talk with clients in the last 5 minutes of the session about how the session has been; what has been useful for them, and what has been less so. There is an increasing amount of evidence from psychotherapy research that finding a common view of the issue the client is facing, and also how the therapy is going between therapist and client leads to really successful psychotherapy outcomes; and this has certainly become an important part of my practice!

Supervision

I am a qualified and UKCP registered integrative supervisor, with experience working with therapists and counsellors from a range of different approaches including psychodynamic, humanistic, transpersonal, existential and cognitive-behavioural traditions. I have supervised both trainees and more experienced therapists. I run a number of supervision groups for mental health charities in London and see people for individual supervision within my private practice.

I aim to create a warm, safe space where we can explore very freely both of our senses of what happens between you and your clients. I also adopt an enquiring and curious stance – aiming to help you develop your own understanding of your work, to become the best therapist you can be, rather than a therapist who looks at the work in exactly the same way as me.

If you are interested in working with me as a clinical supervisor please do get in touch.

Location and fees

I work in East Finchley consulting rooms in north-west London. They are conveniently located just five minutes walk from East Finchley tube station; and on the 143, 263, 102, 234, 603 H3 and N20 bus routes. There is ample parking available in the side streets.

My fees are £60 for each 50-minute session.

Address:

East Finchley Consulting
104D High Road
East Finchley
London N2 9EB

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