counselling keighley

Heather Dale Counselling and Therapy in Keighley, West Yorkshire

counsellor bingley
25th July 2024 
About Counselling and Therapy
My qualifications
The Contract
Links to Resources


Tel: 07932 540386
click here to email

Home. photo for 2017

Heather Dale, Counselling, Psychotherapy and Clinical Supervision in Keighley and West Yorkshire and elsewhere.

Welcome to my website.

Hello and welcome,

To introduce myself first: I am Heather Dale, a counsellor and psychotherapist with over 40 years experience of working therapeutically with a variety of people who are struggling with a difficulty or a variety of difficulties, in their lives. This may be a current or long held issue, but whatever the issue is, if you are searching these pages, you have probably decided t his is the time to seek professional help. I offer both long term or short term issues: long term tends to be something that has bothered you for a long time; a short term issue may be something like a sudden bereavement or a change in work patterns. The decision about how long we work together is always yours.

On these pages I am hoping to tell you something about therapy, how it works and what I can offer. If the iformation you need is not here, please do get in touch with your questions. Later on in these pages you will be able to see my contract with you which may answer some questions, but in the mean time, here is something about therapy and about how I work.

At its most basic, threapy offers a non judgemental, confidential and neutral place to talk: hopefully it can also provides you with new insights, or different ways of looking at, the issues you are facing. Therapy can also help you understand how issues from early life may have influenced the way you are now and that, in turn,can allow you to change unhelpful patterns.

Some of what I can offer:

Time and space to talk through issues, either past or present, and explore feelings and thoughts in a neutral and accepting environment. It is not unusal for current difficulties to bring up other, perhaps more deeply rooted or hidden problems. and we can dscuss those as they come up.

An opportunity to gain new insights and new understandings about your own way of being.

Time to consider whether or what effect past events may have had on present living.

Consider unhelpful patterns that have reoccurred in your life that you may want to change.

Work with individuals

Clinical supervision for both trainees and experienced therapists ( on-line or face to face) please see below for more detailed information

When working via on-line or phone, you do need to be in a private space, ( as I will be) where our conversation will not be overheard or interrupted by others. It is also useful if you are able to give yourself some time and space both before, and especially after the session, in order to first think through what you want to say, and then, later, what has been said.

About me

My background is in working in residential homes, firstly with adolescents and later in a women's refuge in South London. I trained as a therapist in the 1980s and have been practising ever since, gaining my accreditation, and later, a Fellowship, with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) in 1985. More recently, I trained (and qualified ) to work with people who are blind or partially sighted, and/or with the families, friends and supporters of people with visual impairment. Issues that affect one person inevitably affect those who care about them too.

Whilst I began my career as a therapist in London, it was not long before I moved to West Yorkshire, in a small village close to Bradford ( between Bingley and Keighley for those who know the area), and I have built up a busy practice, working from home, both face to face and on-line. I have usually combined my role as a therapist with teaching: I have combined therapy with teaching at all levels, from teaching assertiveness to primary-school age children to working at post-graduate level. Over the years I have at times worked more in education, or in private practice, but at the moment most of my work is counselling and therapy, currently mostly on-line, plus some writing on ethical dilemmas, or on issues of good practice for the profession.

One of the changes that the pandemic has meant for me, personally, is that since 2020 I now work much more flexibly as I am working both face to face and also on-line (on Zoom). Whilst I call myself a Bingley based counsellor, on -line work means that I can now offer therapy and supervision more widely including outside the UK.

I am still offering Face to Face work, particulary with supervisees, , so do get in touch whichever option suits you.

The big advantage of on-line work is that you can talk to me from the comfort of your own home, or indeed, anywhere else where you can find a quiet and private space for the duration of the session. For some people. as a example, this might mean whilst walking alone, or in a private garden. It also means that there is no travel involved so can be easier to make a convenient time. If you are not sure, give it a try and see if this works for you.

Theoretical approache

My theoretical approach to therapy can best be explained by my counselling “credos”, or the beliefs that underpin all my therapeutic work.

First, from the American existentialist psychotherapist, Irving Yalom, “It’s the relationship that heals” (Yalom )

This I take to mean that the most important item in counselling is to build a relationship between you amd me. Part of getting the relationship right is to get the therapeutic frame right too, and so clear understandings, amking sure that what I offer will work for you, in early sessions are crucial.

Second, “The unexamined life is not worth living”. from Socrates , quoted in Plato, (469 BC - 399 BC)

My understanding of Socrates is that he is saying that the point of life is the struggle to understand ourselves; to learn from the good and from the bad; and to struggle always to make sense of ourselves and our world.

Counselling or Psychotherapy?
People often ask what the difference is between counselling and psychotherapy. There are different ideas about this but I use the terms counselling and therapy ( and the words counsellor and psychotherapist) interchangeably as there is no clearly accepted definition of the difference between counselling and psychotherapy. Of my two core trainings, one used the word "counselling" and the other "psychotherapy" but both were concerned with helping people gain insights and make changes.

Traditionally, counselling training focused on listening and helping clients come to their own conclusions regarding current life-problems, such as relationship down or bereavement, whereas psychotherapy training was deeper and involved looking at root causes of problems such as depression or eating disorders. However, in the last couple of decades there has been a recognition that therapists may need training in both disciplines. Many training institutions now offer qualifications that cover both traditions,

I am (senior) therapist, accredited and registered by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) who are my professional body. Accreditation means that I have been recognised as having reached a certain level of training, qualification and experience as a counsellor and as a psychotherapist. I am also a Fellow of the organisation. A Fellowship is a special award given for work that offers an especial service to the profession or the organisation. Mine was for being a part of a group who travelled over the UK giving a day-long work shop on the subject of professional and ethical behaviour within the profession.

To read more about BACP's ethical framework, please click on the link to external resources and follow that link. To read my own contract, which gives information about issues such as confidentiality, please follow that link.

What happens next

We would normally have a short chat on the phone to discuss what you are loooking for. After that we would make a first appointment and I would send my contract and other paper work before the first session whether on-line or face to face. That session would be a time for us to decide whether we are a good fit. If we agree to continue, therapy is open ended.

How I work

My style of working has evolved over the years, but always with an emphasis on you leading the work we do together. You decide what to bring, and, withiin limits, how we discuss your issues. It may help you to know that my way of working can be quite pragmatic. Some forms of counselling can be like a warm fluffy blanket: comforting if that is what is needed, but not not much else. I tend to work with you to achieve your goals, and am happy to give direct feedback when that is helpful.

Sessions last for 50 minutes ( known as the therapy hour) and generally are once a week, depending on need.

As well as therapy, I offer supervision, either face-to-face or on line. Face-to face work always takes place in my home, in a village between Bingley and Keighley, with public transport links to Bradford, Leeds and Skipton.

Whether face to face or on-line I work in an upstairs room in my home. It is accessible by public transport links, from Keighley, Bingley, Bradford, Skipton or Leeds, but please be aware if you arrive early, there is no waiting room, though the local shop ( two minute walk away) serves hot drinks. My therapy room is up a short flight of stairs, so may not be suitable for people with mobility issues.

Currently, I have space on Mondays , Tuesdays and Wednesdays, but not Thursdays, Fridays or at the weekend.

The links on the left give essential information about what I offer but do get in touch if you would like more information, or an informal chat.

My philosophy of supervision is that supervision should be about the whole of the supervisee’s professional development, though with a strong emphasis on client work especially in the early days of seeing clients. However, in any supervisor relationship, there has to be space to monitor ethical practice, to encourage professional development and to offer a safe space to explore, and examine emotions, and to re-charge batteries. For more information please contact me.

Do contact me if you would like to discuss this further