Personal Empowerment Therapy

Counselling and Psychotherapy

in Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield

At times in our lives, we can all benefit from the help and support of another and personal therapy can make a huge positive difference.

With therapy rooms in Great Barr, Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield, I work on the basis that we are all unique and individual.  This is reflected in Your therapy, therefore, my primary ethic is to ensure that you are at the forefront of everything we do, after all, your therapy is about and for You.

The services I provide are (click the links below for more information) –

BACP LogoAs an experienced Counsellor and Psychotherapist, I am Accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and a UKRCP registered Counsellor and Psychotherapist.  As well as seeing individuals on a one to one basis, I also see couples for Relationship Counselling.

Appointments are available in the daytime and evening in north Birmingham (close to the Scott Arms crossroads, just off the A34 that links Walsall and Birmingham City Centre) and in Sutton Coldfield (near Banners Gate).  Both locations are very easy to find, offer ease of parking and are in easy reach of Birmingham, Walsall, Sutton Coldfield and West Bromwich.  My FAQ page has address and map details.

Feel free to contact me – I am happy to provide as much information as your require to allow you to make an informed choice.  If you have any questions, would like any additional information or if you would like to set up an initial appointment, please contact me.

Read about some of the more common issues that therapy can help with, you can also read my Glossary of Therapy Terms

Latest News – see the latest articles below relating to recent news, what’s new at Personal Empowerment Therapy, Promoting Your Wellbeing, Counselling in Birmingham and Sutton Coldfield, CBT, Psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy in Sutton Coldfield and Birmingham.

What Really Happens in the First Session?

Sphere jigsaw in handFollowing from the previous article (Counselling – What to expect in the first session), having viewed this, I felt there was a great deal missing and to be fair, although informative, it was possibly a little boring.  It focused about the mechanics of the session such as what I (as a therapist) need to note down and what confidentiality means rather than what you may expect to experience.  I’d like to share some common experiences of the first session as this will hopefully provide a greater feel.  Read more …

Mindfulness Exercises

Cave BeachIn follow-up to the previous two articles, below are some mindfulness exercises to experiment with.  Experimenting with techniques is really important to find what you prefer and what fits best for you.  Often we are advised to do things that may have been wonderfully beneficial or even life-changing for the person telling us, but it may not suit ourselves.


Facebook Page

FacebookI have recently been asked for the address of my Facebook page – Here it is-

If you have time, please share

Wishing you a lovely day


The power of appreciation.

Sea skyIt is extremely hard to feel anxious or stressed when we have a sense of gratitude and appreciation for what we have in life.  We are surrounded by such rich splendour and we have all created truly brilliant things in our lives, however, often these parts of us feel distanced and not felt.  Read more ….

Defining Mindfulness and it’s benefits.

Mindfulness is increasingly being recognised as being very effective to help people manage anxiety and depression. Put very simply, it is the practise of focusing our attention on being in the here and now without wishing it were different. It is enjoying the present when things are good and not holding onto it when it changes and being with the unpleasant without fearing it will always be this way.  Read More …. 

Overcoming Trauma

TunnelThroughout our lives we encounter a vast range of experiences and many can indelibly ink themselves into our memories whether pleasant or unpleasant.  Unpleasant and harmful experiences can often create symptoms of trauma that can stay with us for some time.  Read more …..

Losing Weight – Why a Personal Approach is Most Effective.

FreedomIt can be very easy for us to slip into unhealthy eating and drinking patterns and often this can be gradual which results into us putting on extra weight. Losing this weight isn’t easy and not being as we would like to be can begin to chip away at our self esteem. It can also alter our behaviours for example it can influence how we dress or we may go out less or become a little less confident.  Read more ….

How can keeping a journal help You?

Keeping a journal can bring great benefits and you can do this in a number of ways.  A valid point to remember is that this is your journal and often we can place undue pressure on ourselves to write every day or can give up if we’ve missed a few days or weeks.  This is Yours so if you find it a help to write once a week, month, quarter then do so.  Read more ….

Navigating the therapy minefield?

Sea binocularsWith seemingly an ever increasing number of therapies available, it can be hard to decide what to look for to ensure you have the help and support that is going to be best for you.  From the greater researched and evidence based therapies of Counselling, CBT, Psychotherapy and EMDR to Life Coaching and complimentary therapies such as Hypnotherapy and Reflexology.  Read more …..

New Images are Courtesy of …..

We have been very fortunate to be able to show the pictures of Gary Davison.  Gary’s artistic depth and expertise is expressed through his photography and we are grateful to be able to incorporate them on this website.  For more information on his photos, please  go to –


What if your anger is too much for your current skills to manage it?

Managing any strong emotion can be a challenge for us as when we are flooded with strong feelings, our ability to think rationally diminishes significantly.  Anger is one of our primary emotions and is often sparked by frustration or injustice.  Read more ….

Hypnotherapy – What to expect in the first session

Sunny Leaves

Attending any appointment for the first time can be a daunting prospect and this is especially true of Hypnotherapy due to the many myths that accompany it and the nature of the therapy.

So in the first session, what can you realistically expect? The information that is stated below relates to how I work and there maybe differences between different therapists.  Read more….    

How do You ensure that You sleep well?

  In the previous article ’Do you value your sleep’, it raised some significant points as to why sleep is so  important for us to be able to function at our best.  It’s one thing to be appreciate this but achieving this  cannot always be easy.  Read more ….

Do you value Your sleep?

Sleep is a fundamental for our wellbeing and recent research emphasis this greatly.

Read more …. 

Write to feel right…..

Therapeutic writing is very widely used form of self help.  Writing is a form of expression and any form of expression helps us to manage and deal with our emotions.  When faced with issues and problems in life, it can be very easy for our thoughts to spiral, go round in circles and meander down some dark negative alleyways and as this happens, our emotions become engaged.

Read more …. 

The Smoking Ban – 5 Years On

It’s been 5 years since the smoking ban was introduced in England and it has been hailed as bringing huge benefits.  It has brought about huge behavioural changes, for example, where for many it’s a natural act for smokers to disappear to the designated areas and for others, it has altered whether they go out socially or create their social interactions at home. 


What inspires You?

Feeling inspired and being inspired can provide such powerful positive feelings.  Often this means getting in touch with a thought, feeling, way of being or an emotion that we truly connect with.

Read more …

Counselling and Coaching via Skype is here

From today, we are able to offer coaching and counselling via Skype. This can be done directly or through  It is very easy to use and begins with booking a session.  To do this, simply email me or call and we’ll arrange a mutually convenient time and I offer a free 15 minute taster to allow you to become familiar with talking to me over Skype.

Hypnotherapy – Make long lasting changes with ease

As the New Year gets under way, we often look to make positive changes to ensure this year is a great year. Making it is not always easy.  Read more …

Relaxation alleviates stress.

Relaxation is often under-estimated as a great way to alleviate stress.  Living in the UK can be very stressful with a multitude of perceived demands that we place upon ourselves such as the need to earn a certain amount, to have our status needs met, to perform well as a friend, family member, work colleague or cope with demands such as brining up children or meeting our monthly outgoings.  Also, we can feel a sense of guilt if we’re not being productive or if we’re not busying ourselves.  Read more ….

Does Your Perception Define Your Reality?

The way we view life can often influence our emotions and how we behave.  We tend to attach meaning to things that happen to us such as the manner in which someone talks to us, how our team performs, watching the news etc….  Read more …

How can Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) help with anxiety?

CBT has been given a lot of press over the last few years.  This is largely due to it being an evidence based therapy meaning that organisations such as the NHS can see the differences that are being made. It is can also be a very effective therapy to allow people to free themselves from their self limiting thoughts and beliefs and for them to have tools and strategies to manage their lives effectively.  Read more …

North – South divide

Petals on stonesAn investigation by The Guardian has found that prescription rates for anti-depressants in the north of England are up to 3 times higher than in the south.  NICE guidelines clearly state that pills should not be the first resort in helping mild to moderate depression and instead favour talking therapies such as CBT or Counselling as these work better and do not have risky side effects.

Read more …… 

Making the most of Your relationship?

Life pressures often take their toll on our relationships.  From long hours to the time and effort required to care for children.  It is very easy for us to become distanced from our partner and for us to fall into routine ways of being where the enjoyment we used to share is less. 

Read More …

Tips to help manage Panic Attacks

World in handsThe tips below are to allow people to manage panic attacks and their symptoms.  Some or all may be relevant and useful and these are only a guide of the more common ways to manage anxiety. 


Panic Attacks – what can help?

Panic attacks (also known as anxiety attacks) can be a terrifying ordeal as our mind gives a strong reaction to something it perceives as a threat.  Read more ….. 

New Office Telephone Number

We’ve moved offices and as such the landline number has changed from – 0121 356 1276 to 0121 580 8015.   If you dial the old number though, there is a recorded message to advise you of this change.  My mobile remains the same and is probably the quickest way to get in touch.


Duncan (Quinney)

Updated Page – Anxiety

FreedomThe Anxiety page of this website has been updated to include lots more information – click here.  Included now is information on Panic Attacks, General Anxiety Disorder, OCD, Eating Disorders, Substance Misuse and Phobias.  As always, should you require any further information, feel free to email or call me.  Regards  Duncan

How do I choose the right Counsellor / Therapist for me?

The NHS and Government are in the midst of their initiative – Improving Access to Psychological Therapies which is pretty much as it sounds.  It was found that there are a number of barriers to people gaining the support and help they may benefit from such as lack of NHS counsellors, long waiting lists, lack of awareness of what is available and the perceived stigma attached with seeking psychological support.  Read more …..

Life Coaching

Sphere jigsaw in handA new page has been added.  Click here – Life Coaching in Birmingham.  Having trained as a Coach some years ago, I am now offering this for appointments in Great Barr, Birmingham and in Sutton Coldfield.  The Birmingham therapy room is at the Scott Arms betweem Walsall and Birmingham City Centre and close to West Bromish too.  The Sutton Coldfield therapy room is walking distance from the town centre.  I also provide Counselling, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Psychotherapy and Hypnotherapy at these locations too.

As always, feel free to contact me if you would like any further information or if you’d like to set up an initial appointment.

How can Hypnotherapy help with Anxiety?

Hypnotherapy can help alleviate the symptoms of anxiety.  Anxiety is a human emotion experienced by everyone and if you imagine a scale of 1 to 100, where 1 is very low and 100 is very high, our anxiety levels are on that scale somewhere at all times.  Sometimes we may be veering towards the upper end, other times we may move towards the lower end.  For some people, anxiety can be particularly prevalent and they may feel that they are towards the top end of the scale for a lot of the time and are finding it hard to control this.  Read more ….

Exercise is good for your psychological health.

FreedomThere are a number of reasons as to why exercise is good for us from the obvious physical effects but also from a psychological perspective.  Exercise increases the release of natural opiates within the brain called endorphins which is chemically similar to morphine. 

Read More …

…On becoming a Counsellor

Counselling is a growing industry and the attendance of counselling and therapy is at last becoming more and more accepted.  There has been, and to some extent, there still is a stigma attached with seeking psychological help as though those who engage with such therapies are perceived to be in need or are weak. 

Read more….

Anxiety – Seeking the help you need

Anxiety is a universal human emotion felt by everybody.  We all sit on the scale between experiencing no anxiety to experiencing extreme anxiety and we can move up and down this scale daily, hourly or even by the minute.  For some, their anxiety can be felt much more than others whether this be a temporary reaction to current stresses or pressures or whether it’s a long-term effect.   Read more …

Organisations supporting their employees

Many large organisations now provide personal support to their employees which can bring many benefits to both employer and employee. 


Government aims to cut smoking by 50% by 2020

The government have stated that they aim to cut the number of smokers by 50% over the next 10 years.  Estimates show that currently approximately 21% of the population smokes with the aim to reduce this to 10%.

Please read more …

Managing Stress – what works for you??

Stress can be described as an imbalance between a persons demands and their ability to cope with those demands.  The personal demands that cause this stress are ultimately imposed by the individual, therefore stress, to an extent can be indirectly self imposed. 

Read more …..

How can counselling help me?

Counselling is a talk therapy and many people gain great benefits from being able to openly and safely explore their inner world.  Gaining a greater understanding and self awareness can often be the first steps towards making positive change or experiencing your world in a better way.  Read more ….

Coping with Panic Attacks

A panic attack is the body’s reaction to fear, however, it happens in normal situations when there is no need to feel fear.  They are very common, occurring in about 5% of the population (1 in 20 people) …. Read more ….

We’re all Non-smokers ……

It can be said that we’re all natural born non-smokers, and smoking is a temporary habit that will end at some point.  It’s the individual’s choice whether this ends at the grave or in choosing to improve your life and free yourself.

Read more …..

On becoming a Nonsmoker

With the festive season upon us, the subsequent New Years resolutions will sping into action and many people will seek to gain the freedom of being a Nonsmoker.  Stopping smoking is the single best thing you can do to improve your health and increase your life expectancy.   Read on Further ….

Counselling – You’re really not mad to seek help.

I often wonder how the stigma once attached to seeking counselling has lessoned over the last decade.  It maybe traditionally un-British to talk about ones feelings and the general belief has always been that there must be something wrong with a person if they needed counselling.   Read on further …..

Counselling – What to expect in the first session

So, having made the decision to see a counsellor, having found one or been referred to one and booked an appointment, you now wait wondering what to expect in your first session.  Making this step takes courage and strength as by this point you’re likely to have acknowledged that there’s an issue or set of issues, even if you’re unsure of the exact details.   Read on further ….

New Personal Empowerment Site Launches

I’m pleased to announce I have launched my new website.

The new-look website is to enable users to navigate it easier to find out the information you want even quicker.