“Through the Coronavirus situation Nicky and I were able to continue my journey via online sources. Of course, this is not the same as meeting in person, but it is very close to it. Nicky still provided an understanding ear to listen and give the essential support I required. It was just nice having someone to speak to who understands, remains non-judgmental and can provide the balance between care and rational help. A lot of people have stress around online counselling, but the time, passion and dedication Nicky provides is enough to supersede these worries.”
“Nicky helped me to address the anger I was feeling about my breakup. She also helped me to communicate in a more calm and considered way with my ex partner which has been transformative for us all. She has also helped me to find ways to support my daughter through her anger. I really appreciated the honest approach that Nicky took during our sessions.”
“I first came to see Nicky while I was going through a difficult marital breakdown. Over the weeks and months, she really helped me work through the healing process. Two years later, my life has change completely. Counselling gave me more power over my life, and I am a much more confident and level-headed person now.”
“I first realised that I might need help when I began to become overwhelmed with anxiety, it was affecting every aspect of my life. I attributed this to the fact that I suffered a stroke at the age of 18. After this happened, I threw myself into working hard at university in an attempt to forget and move on with my life. However, I was living in denial. After a particular tough day a colleague of mine recommended I come and speak to Nicky in an attempt to address my fears and anxieties, of which there were many! Nicky made me feel very welcome and comfortable in order to talk about what had happened. It was tough to relive the memories. After a while I began to see an improvement and we started to address other things such as work and family life. I soon realised that a lot of events in my life have left a mark on me and I am slowly coming to terms with them. My latest sessions with Nicky have provided me with the tools to face the highs and lows of life and to realise i have a bright and optimistic future ahead of me.”
“I had realised that my co-dependancy had been adversely affecting my life for some time. Nicky has been a tremendous help in supporting me to understand how my background and learned behaviours had led me to be a ‘people pleaser’ and to deny my own emotional needs. She has helped me learn to set appropriate boundaries, to understand my thinking better and to really grasp the concept of ‘loving detachment’. I would highly recommend Nicky as she has a deep and empathic understanding of those dealing with addiction problems in a partner or loved one. I’d been unhappy for as long as I could remember, mostly due to family illness when I was very young. I had this hollow or empty feeling in my chest that was emotional, not physical. Seeing Nicky has really helped me. I noticed the other day that walking home from work, in the rain, on a particularly tough day, I felt dejected but only superficially, that emptiness was gone/healed/filled and it felt good. Nicky has really helped me look at myself and face what has been wrong in my childhood and my life so far. Helped me look at how it affected me and how I feel about it now. In each session there is a point she asks me a question that makes me squirm and then I know that that particular thing is exactly what I’ve never talked about with anyone, even myself, before and a key thing for Nicky to help me with. In short Nicky is amazing, she has helped me develop from being in a bad place to being the me I want to be. If you are reading this far then Nicky can help you!”
“I first came to Nicky a year and a half ago after a sudden traumatic break-up. Nicky helped me to keep strong and see things in a different light and I can honestly say I’m not sure how I would’ve done it without her. After fixing my initial struggle, I kept seeing Nicky to work on my deeper issues to do with family, relationships and confidence. I realise even more now how much it’s working since it finished.”
“Working with Nicky has meant I feel better able to understand myself and the underlying causes for feelings of anxiety and low self esteem that I experience. I immediately felt comfortable enough in her presence to open up and talk about all sorts of issues including my family, work and relationships, and she was an excellent listener while also gently challenging my existing perceptions and patterns of thought. Sessions were sometimes intense and exhausting, while at other times I struggled to find the right words but Nicky’s patience always meant it felt okay to go at my own pace. A year on and I feel like I’ve made progress. It has been the spur I needed to make some positive changes in my life and also equipped me to manage negative thoughts more successfully when they arise.”
“After having four miscarriages, I was diagnosed with breast cancer in my fifth pregnancy. I came to Nicky while undergoing chemotherapy with a newborn baby. I had a strict agenda of topics to talk through and process that I didn’t want to burden my family and friends with.
Nicky is able to actively listen and picked up on points that I wouldn’t have noticed. As we got to know each other I felt comfortable exploring different parts of my life, unearthing feelings and emotions I was not aware of. Nicky has an extremely calming influence. Sessions were a safe haven, just for me, my feelings and thoughts. Nothing was wrong, strange or weird, I never felt judged. Nicky was the perfect person to work through and process an extremely difficult period in my life.
Although sceptical at first, I found two chair work incredibly helpful with a lasting impact, I learnt some extremely valuable lessons about myself. Nicky got to know me very well, I trusted her fully and she gave me renewed confidence. She opened up my potential. I always left sessions feeling lighter and happier about my life, probably the most important gift one person can give another.
Now that our sessions have finished I still feel an ongoing positive impact. I have recommended Nicky and would do so again. She is outstanding.”
“I was feeling quite lost and very upset due to two different types of break ups: the end of a romantic relationship and the end of a long term friendship. At the time it all felt too heavy emotionally and I didn’t feel like I could cope on my own with it. I also didn’t really understand why I was feeling deeply upset over two situations that I had gone through before, at some point in my life. The combination of these two break ups had left me feeling incredibly lonely and panicky. Nicky helped me realise that, before I can go into a relationship, I need to have a healthy relationship with myself, respecting myself, my limits and my needs. We went back in the past to find out why I was repeating certain types of behaviours. Hearing yourself saying things you don’t really want to admit even to yourself is a huge part of therapy for me. It has improved my relationships with family members and most importantly it has made me comfortable with my own company. I don’t fear loneliness like I used to. Nicky has helped me to slow down, to breath and to always seek my own balance.”
“I found my time with Nicky to be very effective in helping me tackle my obsessive thoughts and feelings of anxiety. It was great to talk it out and i am looking forward to applying the learnings from our sessions together to other aspects of my life.”
“I have learnt through counselling not to go round and round and get stuck in a loop. The first big step is to accept that you need some help and then come to counselling. I came because I had major relationship issues in the past that were getting in the way of my life now. I needed a place to vent and to understand what had happened. After talking to Nicky for a few months I finally had the confidence to talk to the family about everything that had happened when I grew up. I don’t want drama in my life anymore. I only wish that I had come to counselling sooner.”
“I begun counselling with Nicky when I was 21 and in my second year at university, and have worked with her over a period of 4 years. I was struggling to cope with life and had developed drug and alcohol dependancies, disordered eating including bulimic tenancies, self-harm and suicidal thoughts. After having a very difficult first encounter with the counselling process I was hesitant to try again, but from the first session I was put at ease by Nicky’s kind demeanor and comforting professionalism. Initially, Nicky helped me to overcome issues surrounding my recent experience with abortion and helped me to begin thinking about eating in a healthier way. During my third year at university I studied abroad, and began seeing Nicky again upon my return. Over the two years since then, she has helped me to not only realise but also come to terms with traumatic experiences in my childhood and has guided me towards discovering empathy for myself. Alongside this, she has helped me work on my relationships and to establish healthy ways of relating to those around me. All of this has helped me develop into a stable person with an understanding of and kindness towards myself, all of which have helped me to recover from my previous experiences. Nicky has given me the time and tools necessary to heal in a calm and assuring environment. I couldn’t recommend Nicky’s services enough, and I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to begin the counselling process at a young age and with someone who understands the unique difficulties which that entails. It’s okay to come and just be however you’re feeling.”
“When I first came to see Nicky I felt lost, incredibly anxious and that I had no one to turn to during the trials and tribulations that was my life at the time. From the first session onwards, I knew that seeing Nicky was a safe space where I was free to be upset, anxious, frustrated and say the things that I felt I wasn’t allowed to say in other relationships in my life. I never once felt judged and my sessions with Nicky became my safe haven every week. Nicky’s calm and compassionate nature was so appreciated during emotional times and the care that she had for my progress in our sessions was so genuine, it helped me to believe that things could be better for me too. The two chair work was something that felt unusual at first, but the more we did it, helped me to see and be kinder to my ‘inner child’ and perhaps approach myself with the compassion and kindness that Nicky helped me to see I deserved. I am still a working progress but the skills and knowledge of myself that Nicky has equipped me with, is enabling me to better navigate through this crazy thing called life, and for that I am incredibly grateful! I would highly recommend Nicky.”
“Nicky’s empathic, gentle and honest way of being provided me with a space to talk and to be heard, a space to explore what I think and feel, a space to be understood and connect, a space to change and grow.”
“I have learnt, from seeing Nicky, that I was repeating cycles of behaviour in relationships. I would be the rock-solid emotionally immovable pillar of stability, not realising that by not admitting that I had weaknesses and emotional frailties to deal with too, that I was building issues that would have to erupt. That happened one day, completely out of the blue, when my world collapsed. What I have come to realise is the things that happened as an adult are in fact comprehensively connected to the things I saw, and felt, as a child. The ability to help me to obtain this degree of insight is what makes Nicky so good at her job. You can’t change those experiences, but by understanding them, and reflecting on them now, it does ease the pain and, crucially, can be used when, inevitably, new issues face me. Now that I understand all this I am no longer self-destructing or convincing myself that ignorance is bliss. By understanding why past issues arose I am in an infinitely better place to ensure those patters of behaviour are not repeated this time.”
“When I met Nicky, I arrived with my list of things to ‘fix’ and only just stopped short of providing a timeline with which she was to achieve it. I also set her impossible unknown hoops to jump through to ensure that I could leave the session assured that therapy would simply never work for me. Over a year later I can honestly say that without the help and tools she gave me I would still be struggling with issues that she helped me understand and put to rest. Nicky offered me a safe environment to talk about events in my life that were both violent and distressing and gave me the time I needed to come to terms with them with no pressure or judgement. Her remarkable acuity also helped me to iron out other issues that I’d chosen to ignore or had been ignorant of. I would encourage anyone struggling to cope with events either past or present to drop her a line.”
“I first saw Nicky in 2013 for about 9 months as I had suffered terribly with acute anxiety and panics attacks for ten years. Amongst many issues the main one was that I was desperately struggling with being at peace with where I was in life and especially with living down South and had I made the right choice. I was tormented for about two years by my own worries and thoughts to the point where it was affecting my relationship with my husband as well as my health and wellbeing. Nicky helped me to identify the reasons why I was feeling the way I did by looking back at my childhood and the environment that I had grown up in. It was like a light bulb moment and we worked together to unpick everything that was causing my anxiety and how to deal with it. I can’t describe how much happier I became and relieved that I had found peace in that aspect of my life.”
“I had traumatic experiences from my childhood and over the years I have seen counsellors but my issues remained unresolved. I decided to start seeing Nicky who was able to help me unravel my problems and overcome them. Since then I have become a happier person as I finally got to the root of my issues. Her approach, using the two chair “Gestalt” technique worked fantastically for me. She helped me to feel safe and understood, through her warm personality and comfortable surroundings. Nicky has also helped me to overcome work related stress and now I have a healthier attitude to my job.”
“I went through a course of therapy with Nicky when I was troubled about my interpersonal relationships with people and the effects of my Asperger syndrome. By using some powerful techniques, Nicky helped me to identify problems and insecurities which went back to my childhood and early life, including issues which I had never directly faced up to before. I appreciated her openness and directness. I feel that I have been given a new perspective and a new understanding of the true and false elements both of how I see myself and how others see me.”
“When I first contacted Nicky, I was feeling both helpless and hopeless after an extremely difficult year, both on a personal and professional level. I had lost control over my life and had no confidence left. With Nicky’s help, I learnt that I do not have to please people all the time; that it’s okay to say no without feeling guilty; and that acknowledging your own feelings enables you to deal with them. The biggest revelation was that you are responsible for your own happiness. And once you start being happy, others around you follow…
Within a few months, I became my happy self again. I have retrieved my ‘joie de vivre’, adjusted a few things in my life for the best, and thanks to my newly-retrieved confidence, I am now able to face difficult situations on my own. I shall be forever grateful to Nicky for her amazing support and guidance. Without her, I wouldn’t be where I am now!”
“I felt out of control, drinking heavily, distanced myself from my husband, felt low and a bit helpless. It didn’t take long to get things moving. The sessions with Nicky gave me and my husband the platform to talk about where we were at in our relationship and what we needed to do to regain our bond. Nicky was great with respect to alcohol as she has lots of experience in this field. I never felt judged, just understood. We have regained our happy family unit, I feel in control and calm. It’s a good place to be. I’d recommend Nicky to anyone who feels they need that extra help to achieve what you need and more importantly what you deserve.”
“When I first met Nicky I was 30 and felt like I had suddenly hit a brick wall in my life. I was suffering from anxiety, low moods feeling unsure about my relationship, job and home.I felt like the easy option was to run away, leaving my 9 year relationship, my job and my home! I felt like that was the only way to deal with my problems, like I had done in the past, just run away. Nicky has helped me in many ways with these issues. I have learnt why I react to certain situations the way I do and how to cope when they arise. I always come out feeling like a weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I am truly grateful for Nicky’s help, support and guidance through this period in my life.”
“It has been so wonderful for me to have someone to talk to, not to criticise but listen. It’s not something I’ve ever done before coming to counselling. You’re never too old to do something like this. I am 75 this year. You can turn your life around even at this age!”
“When I first went to Nicky I was a bit broken, a lot overwhelmed and struggling to get past some turbulent years so I could be happy again. I had tried desperately to work it out by myself, but until I went to see Nicky I felt like I wasn’t getting anywhere. I knew I needed more than passive style counselling, more than understanding nodding, and had been concerned how hard that would be to find. So it was with real relief that I found that was not how Nicky works. She allowed me plenty of space to talk, judgement free, of course, and she is a naturally empathetic listener, which was important to me. But there were also the practical solutions I craved – and skilful techniques which steered me out of the immediate maelstrom to gain new perspectives. Nicky’s calm, kind guidance and wise, warm humour in the right places allowed me to give myself the advice I would a best friend. I would recommend to anyone battling with the hurdles life throws to reach out and let Nicky work the same magic she did with me. Life is short and precious and it’s important to be as happy as you can. Don’t try and struggle on by yourself if you just can’t – here is someone with a big heart who is willing and able to help you get back on your feet. And give you the tools to stay there.”
“When I first met Nicky I was stuck in a rut – I wasn’t truly happy but rather I had settled for what I had and had made no attempt to improve my life. The thing that surprised me most about Nicky was that she is a real person rather than a ‘counsellor’; I was able to engage her in a conversation about my situation and my emotions and she never asked the clichéd therapy questions like ‘how does that make you feel?’. Likewise, she does not pretend to have all the answers but she is incredibly effective at helping you find them on your own. I might come out of the session feeling relieved, motivated, happy or emotional but the overwhelming sense is one of having achieved another positive step forward in your life. Some of the best sessions I feel I’ve had have been those where I have arrived in a pretty good mood with nothing really on my mind and wondering what on earth there will be to talk about for the best part of an hour. In those cases often we have explored different aspects of my life – current, past and future and they have led me to making new discoveries about myself and how I interact with those around me. I would have been the last person to have bothered taking time out to write a testimonial on a website, much less to have added a quotation – and yet here I am…”You don’t go to a counsellor to find out who you are – it’s to find out how to get to what you know you are.”
“I was experiencing low self esteem, anxiety and depression triggered as a result of a relationship breakdown when I first started to see Nicky. I have been on a real journey through our sessions in a safe and non judgemental environment, directive yet supportive. Nicky has encouraged a reflective and analytical style which has helped to increase self awareness of my thoughts, emotions, behaviours and ultimately relationships with others. Through my sessions with Nicky I have been able to maintain a sense of control, self awareness and grounding, identifying coping strategies and building resilience in relation to my anxiety and depression, as well as dealing effectively with pressures and stress from work.”
“Nicky has been a great counsellor to work with and is very welcoming. She makes me feel comfortable every time I have a session. I came for anxiety bereavement and some anger issues. I also wanted to sort out some issues as a parent as I want my family back. It has made me feel a better person. I am more relaxed and feel more able to stay calm and deal with what is ahead.”
“I was going through what I called ‘a meltdown’. Illness in the family, relationship problems and a profound sense of being out of control, led me to seek counselling. Within the first session, Nicky’s non-judgemental approach, combined with her warmth and understanding nature, immediately made me feel safe and able to open up. Counselling has enabled me to make significant changes to my life. I have left behind a job and friendships that were unhealthy, drastically improved my relationship with my partner and gained a deeper understanding of myself. I am infinitely more in control of my life and much happier as a result. I would highly recommend Nicky as a counsellor – she’s been supportive, educational and inspiring and I feel very lucky to have found her!”
“I then revisited Nicky in 2016 for another issue where I’d been diagnosed with chronic insomnia. This was due to tormenting myself by obsessively looking and researching into animal cruelty which was traumatising me and deeply distressing and I couldn’t understand why I was doing it as it was emotionally hurting me. Nicky helped me to identify that it was due to feeling trapped by family and friends during the lead up to my wedding. Thanks to Nicky’s help I am now sleeping again ( and slept through a recent storm!) and my anxiety & panic attacks have lessened considerably since I started seeing her in 2013. Nicky is an amazing person and i feel like she’s a miracle worker! The way she is able to link and identity things is almost ground breaking and she has a unique gift in helping you and tailors the sessions to suit each individual. I feel like she has literally saved me from some extremely distressing and challenging times of my life.”
“I first came to see Nicky after losing my closest family member very unexpectedly. I was in the middle of my bereavement, and Nicky’s warmth and compassion towards my situation immediately told me I had come to the right place, it was a huge relief. Nicky made me feel safe, she put me at ease as she has a very humble approach and isn’t afraid to have a conversation with you as opposed to just listening, which can be intimidating. This is the approach that immediately made me warm to her. Bereavement never goes away and can affect many things in your life, but two years on I feel I have grown through the experience, learning things about myself and having the inner confidence to know I can make positive decisions in my life. Before seeing Nicky this would never have been possible – I can not recommend her enough.”
“After working with Nicky for over a year I can safety say she is fantastic counsellor. For years I struggled with anxiety, anorexia, intrusive thoughts, OCD and depression. I did meet some counsellors, but they never seemed to hit the right mark or build the same rapport/relationship as Nicky Mark. From the moment I stepped into her counselling space I felt I was entering a safe and honest environment. It was refreshing to have someone care about me but, who also knew exactly how to rationally and effectively help me.
The reason for first deciding to go and visit Nicky was because I was suffering from ‘intrusive thoughts’ something I did not know the name of at the time. I was overwhelmed with the painful and horrific thoughts constantly and it got to the point of being every day. I was surrounded by so many different kinds of emotion, I felt ashamed and constantly guilty, believing the thoughts were in fact my fault and because I was a bad person. With Nicky together we took the time to unpick these thoughts, why they were happening and where they came from. It was discovered that these ‘intrusive thoughts’ were part of my OCD. I was shocked when I first heard this term as to me OCD always meant an obsession with cleaning. I was in fact wrong, obsessive compulsive disorder comes in many different forms and affects us in various ways. It is ok to have OCD; the mind is so powerful and we go through so much of course we have certain little quirks to help us cope and safeguard ourselves.
The biggest thing I have taken away is that people with mental illness should not be afraid, or ashamed. We are often deemed ‘special’ or different but that does not have to necessarily be a bad thing. I have taken the best bits and the bad bits from my mental illness. I now always try to rationally think about it and be aware – I can thank Nicky for releasing this self-awareness and ability to self-counsel. I was very harsh on myself and focused on being ‘cured’, and becoming a better person. But what I have realised now, is that it is about embracing it, riding the wave and learning how be strong enough to cope to get myself out of the lows and bad times. I have taken away so many things from working with Nicky, things that will constantly help me in day to day life and the long term, she has made my life lighter and given me the support and necessary professional help needed. I will forever be grateful.”