Helen Maharaj - EMDR Therapist and Senior CBT Therapist (BABCP Accredited)
Welcome to CBT Reflections,
I am Helen Maharaj, the therapist that will help you overcome your anxiety, break free from your depression and build your self confidence.
As an experienced and accredited Cognitive Behavioural Therapist and a qualified EMDR Therapist, I enjoy working with people like you to empower them to achieve their goals.
I am passionate about supporting people to use CBT and EMDR to learn ways of coping with their experiences and problems.
While I follow the latest research evidence, I am able to adapt therapy to you, as I understand that each person is an individual who requires a tailored approach.
As well as running CBT Reflections providing private therapy, I also have experience as the Clinical Team Leader, Senior Cognitive Behavioural Therapist and EMDR Therapist in busy NHS psychological therapies services across London, Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Luton and Somerset.
Having worked for many years in the NHS across Hertfordshire, London and Bedfordshire, I have now relocated to Somerset where I run the local NHS talking therapies team.
I have experience using CBT and EMDR to help people experiencing common and complex mental health and physical health problems.
This includes depression, generalised anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, specific phobias, low self esteem, perfectionism, OCD, PTSD, chronic pain and chronic fatigue syndrome. As well as, slightly less common difficulties, such as excoriation disorder (skin picking), compulsive hoarding, and blood injury phobia.
I have experience providing CBT to indivduals in person face to face, over the telephone, on video chat (Skype) and in group settings.
Qualifications and Accreditation:
I first completed an undergraduate degree in psychology where I gained a broad underlying knowledge about the mind, human behaviour and counselling theory. Then while working in the NHS I was part of one of the first groups in the country to be taught low intensity CBT.
After working with hundreds of patients using this guided self help approach, I went on to study Cognitive Behavioural Therapy in more depth. I completed the Postgraduate Diploma in CBT which allowed me to become accredited by the British Association of Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP).
A few years after that I expanded my training to use EMDR.
I have since split my time between managing NHS therapy services and running CBT Reflections; providing therapy for adults with depression, anxiety, low self esteem and more.
BABCP Accredited CBT Therapist. For more information about BABCP, please visit their website.
Postgraduate Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - Royal Holloway, University of London
Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) Parts One, Two, Three and Four - EMDR Works
Postgraduate Certificate in Mental Health (Primary Care) - University of Hertfordshire
BSc Hons Psychology - University College Northampton
In addition to the qualifications listed above it is important for me to keep my knowledge and skills up to date. So, I attend regular training workshops and conferences run by national and international experts.
Recent topics have included:
An Introduction to CBT Supervision with Helen Kennerley
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) with Professor Kelly Wilson
Agoraphobia and Panic Disorder with Professor Paul Salkovskis
Cognitive approaches to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) with Professor Maureen Whittal
CBT Boot Camp 2.0 with world leading CBT expert Dr Christine Padesky
CBT Group Supervision with Joy McGuire
Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Exposure and Response Prevention for Tics and Tourette Syndrome
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by experts from the Oxford Centre for Anxiety Disorders and Trauma
Radically Open Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (RO-DBT) with Professor Thomas R. Lynch
Solution Focused Brief Therapy
Supervision of low intensity and high intensity therapists from UCL, Royal Holloway and King's College London (IoPPN)
Through my NHS work I have been involved in research into innovative CBT based treatments for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). As part of this trial I have received in-depth training and supervision from the PTSD experts at the Oxford Centre for Anxiety Disorders and Trauma & the University of Cardiff.
Academic and Teaching Experience:
As well as practising as a therapist I have worked as a Teaching Fellow at the University of Surrey.
My main role was training Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners to assess and treat people experiencing depression and anxiety, using a low intensity Cognitive Behavioural Therapy approach. This was on the Advanced Practice in Psychological Wellbeing Course, part of the government's Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) initiative.
It also included training practitioners to consider anti-discriminatory practice within their work. Such as considerations for using CBT with people who identity as LGBT+, older people, people from a diverse range of cultural and religious backgrounds, and people with disabilities.
Furthermore, I have taught Psychologists, Therapists and Senior Psychological Wellbeing Practitioners on the IAPT supervision programme. As well as teaching other mental health related modules to mental health nurses, midwives, paramedics and other healthcare professionals. I now provide bespoke training in CBT and mental health to individuals and services, details of which can be found here.
This list hopefully demonstrates I have the qualifications and experience needed to make therapy work for you. But it is important to know the most important part of therapy is the work I do with you in the session in allowing you to lift your mood, manage your stress and anxiety, and live your life according to your values.
We will work together using CBT and EMDR to give you the skills and techniques to improve your mood.
I can give you the best chance to make your therapy successful by working in partnership and adapting treatment to meet your needs.
Contact me to book your free initital telephone consultation where we can discuss how I can hep you.