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A warm welcome to WakingGround

Counselling & Therapy

Home: Welcome

Those who look outside dream. Those who look inside awaken.

Carl Jung

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Home: Welcome


Living a human life is hard. Yet we find ourselves in a world that often welcomes us when we're smiling, and turns away when we're in turmoil, as if struggling is strange or shameful. My approach starts from the assumption that tough times are inevitable, that needing other people is normal, and that, if what brings someone to therapy were easy and quick to "fix", they'd have done it already. So, I treat my work as a meeting between two real human beings, undertaking a joint investigation into the unique experiences of one of us, whilst drawing on the wisdom and common humanity of us both.

My aim is to support you in exploring and experimenting with what hinders and helps you, in the light of your own unique strengths and struggles, personality and history, whilst keeping in mind that our experiences are also shaped by societal norms, taboos, prejudices and privilege. Though I make use of neuroscientifically-informed understandings of our psychological development in childhood and adolescence, and of the functioning of the human nervous system throughout life, I work in an open way - I don’t offer one-size-fits-all "tools", and I don't "treat" psychiatric diagnoses, in a medical sense, though I fully respect the fact that some people find having a diagnosis very helpful.

I draw on the humanistic principle that deeply accepting ourselves as we are, however painful that may be, is one of the most important and powerful changes a person can make in their life, creating space inside us for new wisdom and new possibilities to emerge. I support people with the struggle of living with uncertainty, grief and loneliness, acknowledging the unavoidable and universal nature of these experiences.

I typically work on an open-ended basis, with the option of regular reviews. Some people come to see me for a few months; others for several years. I offer kindness, empathy and the curiosity to uncover and discover. At times I also bring humour and irreverence to my work, as these qualities can provide a light that makes exploring the darkest corners of experience bearable.

*Please note, the fit between a client and therapist matters, and I know I can't be the right therapist for everyone. So, feel free to consult the Resources section of this website, for places where you can find other therapists.

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Home: Welcome

Eventually we realize that not knowing what to do is just as real and as useful as knowing what to do. Not knowing stops us from taking false directions. Not knowing what to do, we start to pay real attention. Just as people lost in the wilderness, on a cliff face or in a blizzard pay attention with the kind of acuity that they would not have if they thought they knew where they were. Why? Because for those who are really lost, their life depends on paying real attention. If you think you know where you are, you stop looking.

David Whyte

Home: About Therapy


Dr Beth Carley; MBACP, Postgrad Dip, PhD, MSc, BA (hons)

I am an integrative therapist, which means my work draws on theory and practice from multiple fields of counselling and therapy, including trauma- and attachment-orientated approaches, Embodied Relational Therapy and Gestalt. My personal experience of counselling first began many years ago, and has encompassed a number of different approaches, which informed my decision to train as an integrative practitioner. Indeed, the value of drawing on one's own personal struggles as a resource for understanding and responding to clients is widely recognised in contemporary psychotherapy. I previously worked for four years as a counsellor at Watford Women’s Centre, with female survivors of domestic abuse.

I hold a BACP-accredited foundation certificate and postgraduate diploma in integrative counselling from the Minster Centre, one of Europe’s leading integrative counselling and psychotherapy training institutes. I am a registered member of the BACP and have full professional indemnity insurance.

In my previous career I was an academic researcher, where my work involved speaking to people about their own lived experiences of community organising in economically-deprived neighbourhoods.

I have a PhD in Social Policy and a Master’s degree in Social Research, from the University of Manchester, and a Bachelor’s degree in Modern European Languages, from the University of Liverpool.

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Home: About Therapy
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spring thaw and its rushing forth again
the trees keep growing outwards,
sometimes almost horizontally,
no matter how constrained by concrete or drowned by flood

the ice always thaws
and I give thanks for tears

Sophie Shepherd

Home: About Therapy


I am now living in Southwest France, in the Ossau Valley, where I am able to offer sessions face-to-face or online. Having trained and lived in London for several years, I continue to and work online with clients in London and throughout the UK. 

I offer a free 15-minute telephone or video consultation to meet me and discuss the possibility of us working together. Please contact me at: or 07786 386978.

Please note: I don't currently have any available space for new clients. I will update this space when that changes.

Home: About Therapy


Below you'll find links and contact details for organisations that provide crisis support, that offer support and information on different mental health difficulties, and for different communities, as well as places where you can find out more about therapy and search for other therapists. Knowledge is power!

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If you are in crisis, feel unsafe and don’t know what to do:

  • Dial 999

  • Go to A&E, or ask someone to take you

  • Call the Samaritans or contact SHOUT (see below).

Sources of crisis support:


Shout 85258 is a free, confidential, 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone who is struggling to cope.

Text SHOUT to 85258

More info on their website:


A helpline, for whatever you're going through. Free and confidential. Available at any time, from any phone, 365 days a year.

Call 116 123

CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably)

Helpline for people in the UK who are down or have hit a wall for any reason, who need to talk or find information and support.

Call 0800 58 58 58

Open 5pm-midnight, 365 days a year.

They also offer a webchat and information/ links to support with specific issues on:

NHS mental health helplines

Find a local NHS urgent mental health helpline

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A national charity with lots of information and routes to support for many different mental health difficulties and diagnoses.

Black Minds Matter

Mental health support and resources for Black people


Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans & Queer Mental Health Service

Anxiety UK

Helpline: 03444 775 774 

Text support: 07537 416 905

Depression UK

National Domestic Abuse helpline

Freephone, 24-hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline

0808 2000 247

Women's Aid

Lots of information and resources for survivors of domestic abuse, including live chat and email support.

Cruse Bereavement Care

Support and information for anyone experiencing bereavement.

Telephone helpline: 0808 808 1677



The Mix

Mental health support for under 25s.

Telephone support, 1-1-1 online chat and a Crisis Messenger text service

The Survivors Trust

Lists local specialist services for survivors of sexual violence, including advocates and Independent Sexual Violence Advisors (ISVAs).

For support, advice and information tel: 0808 801 0818

ASSIST trauma care

Information and specialist help for people with PTSD and anyone supporting them.

Helpline: 01788 551919

National Autism Society

The UK's leading charity for people on the autism spectrum and their families.

Refugee Council

Mental health support for refugees and asylum-seekers

Carers UK

Information and advice on all aspects of caring.

Tel. 0800 055 6112.



User-led organisation that supports people who self-harm, their friends and families. 

Hearing Voices Network

Committed to helping people who hear voices. Raising awareness of non-medical approaches to voice hearing. HVN has a growing network of support groups across the UK

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BACP British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

Counselling in France

UKCP United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy

BAATN The Black, African and Asian Therapy Network

Home of the largest community of counsellors and psychotherapists of Black, African, Asian and Caribbean Heritage in the UK

Pink Therapy

Directory of pink therapists provides a list of practitioners who work in an affirmative way with LGBTQ individuals and couples.

COSRT College of Sexual and Relationship Therapists

The Body Psychotherapy Network

Home: Resources
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