My Journey to Becoming a Counsellor

I began my counselling training journey back in 2005 and have enjoyed every new stage. Learning more about myself and others around me, and has added to my practice and skill set immensely. I started from the very beginning with an ‘Introduction to Counselling course’ and was astounded by the help and support I could potentially give to others, and thirsty to learn more. After four years of core training I qualified as a counsellor with a Diploma.

I continued to embraced further learning with a degree – BA in Humanistic Counselling, with two specialist areas;

  • ‘Grief & Loss’ – which encompasses life’s changes, and how individuals react and respond to these experiences in their own way.
  • ‘Stress & Anxiety’ – I discovered there are many useful techniques to help alleviate the debilitating stressors life can present.

After completing my second degree: ‘Professional Graduate in Education’. I lectured in Counselling for over 8 years, supporting new students on their own journey into the world of helping others.

My continued studies led me to a ‘Masters in Trauma Studies’ – looking at how events & experiences are processed in the mind & body, and the post-traumatic growth that is possible. My dissertation involved systemic/family trauma looking into sibling relationships and maternal emotional health.

My most recent interest is around; maternal emotional health, maternal well-being, paternal impact of becoming and being a father, pre & post-natal support for mothers & families, parenting difficulties…

Qualifications Gained

  • MA Trauma-Informed Practice / Trauma Studies (Distinction)
  • BA (Hons) in Humanistic Counselling (1st Class Honours)
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Counselling Supervision (BACP Endorsed)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Supervision (BACP Endorsed)
  • NSPCC Child Protection Training
  • CEOP - Online Safety Awareness, Risks, and Intervention
  • Certificate of Proficiency (BACP)
  • Level 4 Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling
  • Advanced Cert. in Counselling (inc. Working with Children & Young People), Certificate in Counselling Skills, Introduction to Counselling

I have attended many further professional development days – some are listed below;

Family issues, Abuse, Anger, Loss & bereavement, Safeguarding & Risk, Self Harm & Suicide, Mindfulness, Sexuality, Working with Sex and Relationships(COSRT), Working with Addiction (BACP), Working with Bereavement (BACP).

Further In-Depth Learning

  • Level 3 Certificate in Understanding Substance Misuse
  • Mental Health Awareness: eating disorders, bipolar, post-natal depression, stress, anxiety & depression
  • Working with Couples therapeutically
  • Internal Family Systems
  • Single- Session Therapy (Part 1 & 2)
  • Mother-Daughter Attachment
  • Supervision of Children & Young People

We must complete a minimum of 30 hours professional development each year, so the list will continue...

As a registered member of BACP, I have made a commitment to work within their Ethical Framework for the Counselling Professions.

This means I work to professional standards, provide a suitable and safe practice for clients, and can be held accountable for my work should there be any complaints that cannot be resolved.

Further information can be found at:

I work with teens, young people, adults, and elders. I also work with couples, and family relationships. I am also interested in further research.

I have an Enhanced DBS Certificate.

© Carolyn Stafford Bell Counselling

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