Q&A with Bina Patel, Dip, BSc (hons) MBACP
Counsellor at Bridge to Health Uxbridge
We would also like to extend a warm welcome to Bina Patel who has joined Bridge to Health Uxbridge as a counsellor. She is passionate about supporting people through life’s challenges and very much encourages more balanced, healthy and joyful living. Bina recognises that human beings share a common desire for love, peace, happiness and fulfilment - in an increasingly complex world this can also leave us feeling frazzled. Her counselling services offer a supportive environment to bring these nurturing qualities closer in life.
Q. What do you most love about your job?
A. I like to help people help themselves in a way they do not think is possible. People seeking counselling often feel confused, isolated, lonely, anxious, stressed or depressed and may not believe that they have what it takes to live life to the full. Nothing gives me more pleasure than seeing how this attitude changes as their counselling journey progresses. They start thriving.
“If you love what you do, you will never ever do a day’s work again.”
Q. Why did you retrain to become a counsellor?
A. Over the years I worked as a dentist, I encountered children and adults who really struggled with the invasive nature of dental treatment. Managing anxieties, phobias and vulnerabilities was part of the job. I developed informal counselling skills and became aware of how listening sincerely, with empathy and kindness, could positively influence behaviour. Psychology and the workings of the mind became a fascination. I started paying attention to my own internal state. My body was beginning to ‘talk’ and visits to the osteopath and massage therapist, to alleviate pain and re-align my body, became a central theme of life. This made me reconsider my professional path. Counselling therapy seemed to be the obvious choice.
Q. What has been your most rewarding experience as a counsellor?
A. I was supporting a victim of domestic violence who had tried, in vain, to leave the destructive relationship. She came into counselling through a charity and during therapy summoned the courage to break free from her relationship. She sent me a thankful message stating that she did not think she could have done it without counselling support. What was truly rewarding about this experience was that the client taught me - no matter what - when we dig deep enough, we can reach that heroic spirit within us. I will never forget her.
Q. What do you like most about being part of the Bridge to Health team?
A. I love being part of the Bridge to Health team as there is a sense of camaraderie on a daily basis. Being in regular contact with colleagues can help develop a network of support, optimise self-care and enhance professional development. My colleagues have been so welcoming and I look forward to being a valuable part of the team.
Q. Finally, what is your top health tip?
A. Heal your mind to help heal your body and whole being.