"We do the best we can with what we know, and when we know better, we do better."

- Maya Angelou

About You

Perhaps you're feeling down or anxious - maybe you're unsure about a relationship, or feel you aren't living the life you want to lead.  You might be having trouble making a big decision, or you keep making the same mistakes again and again.  Has a loved one died, and you just can't 'get over it'?  Are you worried that you might be addicted to something or someone?  Feeling unaccountably lonely? Confidence taken a knock recently?  Finding life difficult?

If you want to talk to someone who can offer an impartial ear, give you the space and support to work something out, or help you come up with a better plan, then my kind of therapy would be great for you.

south downs hills
headshot of annabel giles

About Me

I am a Humanistic Integrative Counsellor/Psychotherapist, which means that I believe everybody is capable - with the right conditions in place - of having a more rewarding life, and I use three main modalities (amongst others) to help you discover what's right for you: Person-Centered, Transactional Analysis and Gestalt. (I believe that the more you know, the more you can use!)

Being in my 50s, I have had a lot of life experience myself, and have picked up some useful tools along the way.  I see lots of different people for lots of different reasons, and I have a special interest in these fields:

Trauma: I have undertaken a lot of extra training on this subject, as I think it is at the root of many human disturbances. By creating a gentle but safe environment, we can explore the best way to understand it and work through it together. This work is not undertaken lightly, and takes time.

Codependency: This is a broad term, but applies to those who are having trouble with relationships, not only with others but also with themselves. Often people say 'I don't know who I am' and only feel OK when they're with other people.  Others prefer to be on their own as much as possible.  Some people expend a lot of energy trying to control others into giving them what they need, with little success. We can explore all this together, and work out some healthier strategies for looking after yourself rather than trying to get your well-being from others.

Loss/Bereavement: I am a trained bereavement counsellor, and understand the desperation felt by a loss of any kind. (This includes a job, a pet, a home, anything you really miss.)  If grief is left unresolved, it can affect your life for years. Contrary to popular opinion, time is not always the greatest healer.

Addictions: I have personal experience of addictions, and of recovery. This includes substance addictions (alcohol, street/prescription/over the counter meds, over and under eating), process addictions (sex, love, gambling, money etc) and living with others' active addictions.

​Recovery from Narcissistic Abuse: you may have a very difficult relationship with a parent, or work colleague, or partner, and can't seem to get away from them.  We can look at the reasons behind this, and come up with some new strategies for restoring your sanity...

​I also see clients with low self-esteem, lack of confidence, overwhelming fears and anxiety and depression.  Please don't think that any problem is too small to bring to therapy; if it's bothering you, it's important.

(PS You may be wondering if I am the same Annabel Giles who was also a TV Presenter; the answer is yes. Having led a (far too) eventful life, I realised the value of counselling and so decided to re-train to be a Counsellor/Psychotherapist, which I find more rewarding and just as interesting, but in a different way! I still occasionally pop up on TV now and then, but this is the work I enjoy most.)

About Us

I like to work by first exploring the current situation and the feelings you have around it, which will inform us as to why you're here.  This may take some time; however, once we've looked at old patterns and behaviours and understood their origins, we can talk about your preferred options for moving forwards.  Then we can work together to find appropriate actions to bring about a solution.

I see counselling as an interactive process; we're on this collaborative journey together and I will challenge you if I think it's beneficial. We work at our own pace, but with a view to taking action, as I don't believe clients have the money or the time to sit and talk without feeling they are moving towards their desired outcomes. I enjoy creative solutions to complicated problems; this could involve anything from a bit of homework in between sessions to using a sand tray for a clear overview of a situation.​

I currently see clients in both Brighton and Hove, and in central London.  We will usually meet once a week, for a 50-minute session.  If you are in crisis, I can see you twice a week.  If we can't manage a face-to-face session, we can talk together via VSee, which is the medical version of Skype and therefore more confidential.  I also have my own progress tool, The Feel Wheel, which we can use every six weeks; this is a way of monitoring your journey in order to avoid any feelings of stagnation. 

Our first session will be an assessment for both of us, so that we can see if we would like to work together.  If we decide to go ahead, I will ask you to commit to at least six sessions to start with.  This is to give us both the opportunity to discover where you want to be and how we're going to get you there.

lavender in forest

My Qualifications:

  • NCFE Level 2 Helping Skills
  • NCFE Level 3 Counselling & Skills Theory
  • Diploma in Humanistic Integrative Counselling from Wealden Psychology Institute (Level 6/BA equivalent)
  • Registered member BACP No 724131
  • Enhanced DBS Certificate 

Further training undertaken:

  • ASIST (Applied suicide intervention skills training)
  • Suicide Alertness for Everyone
  • Understanding and Working with Self-injury
  • Safeguarding Adults
  • First Aid learning
  • Telephone Counselling
  • Working with Patients and Family Members in Bereavement
  • Systemic Practice; working with patients, families and the bereaved
  • Bereavement and Loss Awareness
  • Working Creatively in Bereavement
  • Working with Trauma in Palliative Care and Bereavement
  • Including Coaching Skills in your Therapeutic Practice
  • TA101
  • Trauma and Recovery
  • Trauma in Children
  • Severe and Complex Trauma and Disassociation
  • Attachment, Attachment and Disorder, Trauma and Recovery
  • Adult Developmental Stages
  • Dunamis Couples Course

Helpful Stuff

My formula for a Magic Bath: 1 teaspoon coconut oil, 2 handfuls Epsom Salts, 12 drops lavender oil. Have it just before bedtime, stay in for as long as you can, restful night's sleep guaranteed xxx

single tree in snowy field
rainy jetty in brighton

In the Meantime:

Until we meet, if you find yourself becoming overly agitated, do this:

  1. Sit in a chair, with both feet on the floor.
  2. Shut your eyes, cross your arms and stroke your upper arm with your hand.
  3. Breathe in deeply for a count of 4, hold it for a couple of seconds, and exhale for a slow count of 7, making sure you really empty your lungs.

​Repeat this at least three times, as much as you need to, and you will feel more grounded, ready for what's to come.

I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!

Contact Me...

...and I will do my best to get back to you as soon as possible.

(By the way, all these wonderful images of Brighton and the surrounding areas are used by kind permission of brilliant photographer Finn Hopson)

Thanks for your message!