Rachael Kellett 

MSc. Psychotherapy, Bsc. (Hons) Psychology

 

Counselling and Psychotherapy

Telephone : 0778 7242442 Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

Offices

85 Wimpole St

(Off Harley St)

Marylebone

London

W1G 9RJ 

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Jordans Quaker Centre

Welders  Lane

Beaconsfield

Buckinghamshire

HP9 2SN

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Living Below the Line

 

Living Below the line: my spectacular failure

This is my experience of trying to accept the challenge by The Global Poverty Project. This involves trying to live for 5 days on only £1.00 per person per day. I tried to inflict this onto my reluctant husband and two children aged 7 and 9.

Day 1: Literally a few minutes after deciding to try living below the line, I realised  I had failed before I even got started. Partly because I had not pre-planned and agreed to it on the spur of the moment, and partly because instead of just doing it alone I involved the family. I wanted it to be a learning experience. I told the children about it and they were keen to have a go. Naively, my daughter said “If we have any money left at the end of the week, we can give it to charity”. I explained that there wouldn't be any left and that it would be very hard to buy what we wanted with that amount of money. I then realised that the children have a hot meal at school. This almost certainly costs more than a £1.00 per head. However, I reasoned that we could still go ahead with the challenge at home. I would also feel less irresponsible as a parent, inflicting this on my children. They would be getting one nutritious meal a day. I also realised that there were quite a few items of perishable food in the fridge. While I was happy to tape up the cupboards of non-perishables, I couldn't justify wasting food. So again, I re-planned. I decided that we could use just the perishables to feed us but that I would not buy anything else. I realised that we were not doing the challenge as it was meant to be done. Rather than give up and forget the whole thing, I reasoned there was learning for us all, in partially taking part in the challenge. That night, my husband arrived home with a bag of shopping in which he had spent half of the entire week's budget! I confiscated the non-perishables. A pathetic gesture, given that we were left with salmon and asparagus. Hardly a reflection of the diet endured by people in poverty.

Day 2:  The next morning when the children got up, they were upset that Daddy had blown the budget. My 7 year old son was unperturbed and came up with a creative solution. “If we take Daddy out of the challenge we still have money left.” So, once again we fiddled with the challenge to make it fit to us. We didn't buy anything else that day but still managed to live quite comfortably on what we had.

Day 3: As we walked to school today, my son asked if he could buy some chocolate with his £1.00. I tried to explain to him that if he really only had £1.00 to live on then there would never be any money for treats. He drinks a lot of milk so I said “If you bought a small bottle of milk that would use almost all of your day's budget.” His response was “Yes, but if I lived in a poor country, milk would only cost 20p.” I explained that “even if it was cheaper you still would need to buy food and £1.00 wouldn't be enough to fill your tummy” Also, that there are plenty of people in this country who can't afford to buy milk or feed themselves. Today I spent £1.45 on a bunch of bananas.

Day 4: Our commitment to the challenge descended further today. We still didn't buy anything but we started to include some of our existing non-perishables into our diet, and instead of meeting a friend for coffee, I persuaded her to come over to mine. That evening, I unthinkingly went out for a drink with some Mothers from school, and gave absolutely no thought to the challenge at all. Convenient and selective amnesia going on!

Day 5: We had almost completely given up on the challenge now. Still didn't buy anything but had far from starved this week and also went out for a coffee with a friend.

As already stated, I knew I wouldn't fulfil this challenge. I am sure that neither myself or my children really got any real sense of what it is like to live in poverty. However, as a family we did get a taste of what it might be like to suddenly have no income coming in and have to make do with what you already have. We learned how much we take for granted. We have so many different types of food to choose from and don't really have to think about what food we put in the supermarket trolley. It was also an excellent talking point for the children, to be reminded that just because they don't have something that a friend has, they are not poor. So although we failed the challenge I feel the spirit of the challenge still managed to permeate through, even without extreme hardship.

As a product of a capitalist society I also wondered about potential effects of the challenge. Would it effect the economy if too many people did this challenge at once, and there was a lack of money flowing for a week? Could it result in someone losing their job and being plunged into poverty? I'm not sure. It isn't a comfortable thought though. Is it wise for people to play at being poor? Is this the only way to raise awareness?


Valentine Day

 

Research shows that couples in romantic relationships are happier and have higher self-esteem than passionate couples or relationships based on friendship. Romance isn’t about grand gestures on Valentines day it is about regular everyday kindness and thoughtfulness without expecting something in return. It is about everyday affection such as hugs and hand holding and saying “I love you”. Making time to sit down with each other and taking 15-30 minutes everyday, giving each other your complete attention when talking and listening.  Learning to express and take ownership of your own feelings so that you aren’t storing up your resentments such as “when you said or did this I felt hurt” instead of “you hurt me”.

Holding your feelings back for long periods of time can lead to health problems and a decreased ability to cope with stress. If you find you can’t talk without one or the other getting angry, put the conversation on hold for a while to let yourselves calm down and discuss it again later. If that doesn’t help you might benefit from couples counselling. Learn to recognise when you or your partner are letting off steam and the anger is aimed at the wrong person. If you are on the receiving end try to give the person space to calm down and let them know it is inappropriate later. If it is you misdirecting your anger, try to find other ways of discharging it. If you feel you are stuck in a rut, introduce some new activities into the relationship either together or separately both will bring a new dimension to the relationship.

Equally if your sex life is in a rut or you are experiencing problems, find a way to talk about it or introduce something new. Keep it lighthearted, laughing at yourselves is more likely to keep things relaxed rather than putting pressure on each other.

We are not the same person this year as last; nor are those we love. It is a happy chance if we, changing, continue to love a changed person.

W. Somerset Maugham

Some people will read the above quote and be able to relate to it with many of todays relationship difficulties. Sometimes we need a person who is not so close to us to help recognise our relationship problems.

The way I work with couples counselling is by building on what you already know and by helping you to increase awareness of how you communicate and how you are in relation to the other. I encourage you to speak openly and help you to clarify any misunderstandings or misinterpretations of the others perspective.

Valentine offer........Take advantage of a free consultation available throughout February.

If you would like any further information I will be happy to speak to you.  

Creativity Workshop

 Wednesday, 15 January 2014 14.25

Make 2014 the year your creativity shines through.  Whether it is making things, paintings, writing, baking, interior, design, photography or simply developing more creative ways of thinking and living. 

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.”

Pablo Picasso

Are you the type of person who would love to be creative but doesn't believe they can. Are you suffering from artist's or creative block? We all have the potential for creativity when we learn to connect with ourselves and remove the false belief that we are not creative or not talented enough.

It is never too late to move beyond your feelings of low self worth. Join with us to challenge yourself to uncover your creative possibilities and allow us to help you to nurture your dreams in an atmosphere of trust.

This day of discovering your creative self is based on the work of Julia Cameron and can be useful as either a stand alone experience or as a taster day and precursor to the The Artists Way 12 week course.

The day will be spent working to uncover the thoughts and beliefs that are preventing your creative flow. Together we will explore common pitfalls and negative patterns and then offer step by step strategies to help you move forward.

Who can benefit from this workshop?

This can benefit anyone who wants more creativity in their life. Ranging from existing artists who feel they are holding themselves back or experiencing artists/ writers block; to those who long to express some creativity but believe that this is something other people do, and that they just don't have what it takes. It can help you to be more creative in your decision making. Basically anyone who feels they are not expressing their full potential.

Inside you there's an artist you don't know about....Say yes quickly, if you know, if you've known it from before the beginning of the universe.” Jalai-Din Rumi

COMING SOON  - 1 DAY WORKSHOP

Discover your Creative Talent

Lane End Conference Centre, Church Road Lane End, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, HP14 3HH                                                                                                                                               

 

Organised by The Sollus Consultancy

Facilitated by Rachael Kellett (UKCP accredited Gestalt Psychotherapist)

Please contact me if you are interested or would like further information

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or 07787 242442

January Detox

January is for many people the time to detox their bodies after the excesses of alcohol and rich food over the Christmas period. Almost everyone you speak to is attempting some kind of detox, most commonly for weight loss or health reasons This year the Breast Cancer Awareness campaign has made “dryathalon” a very popular term. When I saw this campaign I thought it was a great idea.

 

 

Personally, I find January is the worst month of the year to attempt a detox. For starters, I can’t bring myself to throw away the accumulated chocolates and biscuits left over from Christmas. I would consider that extremely wasteful. Therefore, if I was determined to begin a detox on January 1st, I would have to stuff myself with them over Christmas to ensure their was nothing left. Which defeats the purpose somewhat. Particularly as generally if I have them in the house I can manage to be moderate with them (or maybe I kid myself!). Also, for me the cold and dark of January is hard enough to get through without the added torture of forcing myself to eat cold salads when I want warming and comforting food and drink to sustain me.

Maybe, my idea of a detox is outdated and someone more organised than myself can easily whip up warming detox food but my guess is that even if I could it wouldn’t go down well with the rest of the family and I don’t want to be constantly cooking separate meals.

A mental detox is much more me. Reassessing my life and taking positive steps that will support my mind, body and soul. Making changes that are nourishing and supportive rather than restrictive or punishing. I want to nurture myself more not less and I want to make changes that I am not tempted to drop by February. If this sounds good to you, why not book with me for a Free Life assessment or ask about our bespoke Retreats designed to take into account your individual needs and life goals. Create your own perfect antidote to the post Christmas blues.