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Hello, my name is Hédi Salánki, I am a qualified, accredited counsellor. I was born in Hungary and have lived in the UK for 30 years now, in fact I have only ever lived in Newcastle and Gateshead, so some of my friends call me an honorary Northerner. Despite this my Geordie could still use some practice!

I qualified as a teacher a long time ago and then life brought me to England where I tried a lot of different jobs even qualifying as an accountant before realizing that my passion lies with helping people and so I started working for a local children's charity. This strengthened my conviction that this is the path I want to continue on, and I want to do it even better.

So, in 2016 I completed a Level 5 diploma in Integrative Counselling. The integrative approach of counselling allows me to combine three effective approaches to counselling:

  • Person Centred Therapy - This enables my client to speak about any issues they wish to explore within the security of the counselling room, thus releasing long ingrained pain.

  • Psychodynamic Counselling - This allows us to shed light on reasons and patterns hidden in the past and present, in our family and other relationships, pointing to potential roots of ongoing emotional difficulties.

  • Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) - After exploring the issues via the two other therapeutic approaches, CBT can help the client to figure out their own solutions and make changes to help themselves.

Alongside these I also use elements of Solution Focused therapy and Inner Child therapy.

"When I first started seeing Hedi, I was a little nervous because I was feeling quite raw and I know you can be quite vulnerable in a therapy session. But as we developed trust between us, I was really pleasantly surprised by how empowering counselling can be.

I found our therapy sessions really useful because Hedi could gently challenge my thinking but I didn’t have to agree with her. We would each take on board the other’s reflections and we would build on each other’s comments. Agreeing or disagreeing but always enhancing my learning of myself. She really responded to my way of reflecting and problem solving. And if it seemed like a session where I just needed to laugh, we’d just have a good old giggle and if I needed to cry she would make me feel comfortable crying.

At the beginning, we often explored things without necessarily needing to talk directly about how I was feeling or what I had been up to, and I enjoyed having eye opening chats about interesting things. Through this we got to know each other a little and developed trust so later on we could explore things that were on my mind or upsetting. She would bring these sessions to a close so that I didn’t leave the sessions and walk back out onto the street feeling totally raw after exploring something emotional. And I often left with something practical or a positive reflection to use that week.

It has been a huge help for me seeing Hedi, by being able to work through my jumbled up and painful feelings, I have been able to take a step back from them, recognise them without being overwhelmed, and feel much more equipped to manage the challenging thoughts, feelings and events that life inevitably brings – along with all the great and beautiful things that life brings too!"

FR, 24 Year Old Female

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