CBT Edinburgh
Sarah Lawson Cognitive Behavioural Therapy



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Thank you to my clients who have provided these kind comments on the benefits they feel that they have gained through therapy.


What people say....about CBT


Thanks to Sarah I've been equipped with tools and strategies to regain control of my life again. Having been plagued with OCD and intrusive thoughts for several years, I felt helpless and anxious practically all of the time. After working with Sarah, my OCD now rarely bothers me, and when it does, I know how to handle it - something I would have never believed 3 years ago! I've gained confidence, learnt how to relax, as well as notice and avoid unhelpful thinking patterns. I feel much more at ease being assertive with people now too. Being able to talk to Sarah via Skype during my year abroad really helped me realise how much I am capable of - OCD needn't stop me achieving anything, and thanks to Sarah, it won't! I couldn't have accomplished any of this without her. Thank you!


I started CBT therapy with Sarah because I experienced high levels of anxiety and I was struggling to rebuild my life after a traumatic experience. CBT therapy allowed me to learn ways of coping with anxiety and to acquire set of skills that step by step, enabled me to put my life back on track. Sarah introduced me to ACT (acceptance and commitment therapy) which was the crucial breakthrough in the way I was approaching my anxiety and my life around it. Sarah is very genuine, committed, compassionate and fully professional therapist. I enjoyed working with her and I will be always grateful for her help in making my life enjoyable again.


Sarah provided an insightful and supportive counselling experience, where her listening ear and objective views provided the key to the door to the change that was within me all along. It was helpful to have the support of someone who could make 'outside of the box' suggestions, about how things could be different - which triggered the refreshing and therapeutic changes that I needed to make in my life.


Sarah made me feel very relaxed and welcomed (this was my first impression that did not change throughout treatment) - she is a truly genuine person and her knowledge of her subject is excellent. Sarah always listened and with her own unique way helped me to open up and to be more true to myself, and to learn skills to overcome my difficulties. I would recommend Sarah because she can develop a relaxed environment where emotions can be expressed and safely channelled, and because she is such a kind and truly supportive person that helped me made a change to my life and my ways. Sarah thank you for listening, I always felt that I was deeply heard by you.


My sister suggested I try CBT when I was told I had post natal depression. I found Sarah to be very supportive and helpful as well as extremely professional and through her therapy I began to tackle my anxiety and depression immediately. I was initially sceptical as I wasn't keen to discuss my feelings or my life but Sarah created an environment in which I felt comfortable, relaxed and able to talk about anything in confidence. She made me think about everything differently and helped me to widen my perspective, challenge my beliefs and most importantly she made me believe in myself again and helped me to find the confidence I needed to move forward.


If you are looking for someone to help, support and reassure you through difficult times you need look no further than Sarah. Through CBT sessions Sarah gave me strategies which I now use to successfully manage my depression, anxiety and sleeplessness. Sarahís knowledge of her subject is quite excellent as is her (all important) listening skills. Go for it - she is a godsend.


My GP suggested CBT to me after the recurrence of lifelong anxiety related issues. I was referred to Sarah through word of mouth (always a good start) and quickly found her style and methods to be beneficial in helping me work through my unhelpful thought patterns and behaviours. Her therapy has made an enormous and positive impact on my life and I end my treatment in a place I honestly could never have imagined only five short months ago. My relationship with my family, my work and socially are far healthier and I'm healthier as a result. It takes work on your part to train your mind out of lifelong habitual ways of thinking but Sarah is nothing but supportive and encouraging. Thank you Sarah, for one of the most beneficial experiences of my life.


I started CBT with a narrow agenda, but in the relaxed and welcoming environment created by Sarah I was encouraged to open up and to tackle patterns of behaviour and thinking, and their causes, in a way which has been life changing. She supported me to find my own solutions but also gave feedback that was insightful beyond measure. I cannot thank her enough.


Sarah has always shown enthusiasm, kindness and compassion in our sessions and by doing so I have gradually learnt a way through time to express myself more freely when dealing with work colleagues, friends and family. Sarah has definitely helped me to grow and find the real me. I have learnt to support myself better and to be more kind to myself. CBT has offered me the tools to cope better with stress and unhelpful negative thinking patterns. EMDR has also contributed to unlock and resolve some old painful memories. I feel much more balanced and overall just 'okay' as an individual.


CBT with Sarah is focused, goal based and organised - although all of that is perfectly wrapped up in a supportive way which makes you feel like you're simply having a chat with someone who knows you extremely well.


As I live abroad I needed to find someone who was willing to have sessions via Skype. We are now so accustomed to it I feel as if we are in the same room.


CBT has given me a set of tools that I will be able to use in my daily life when challenging people or situations cause me to revert back to my unhelpful thinking patterns. Sarah was non-judgemental, interested and adaptive in her approach, and tailored the programme to my learning style and my specific concerns. Thank you for starting me on a journey to a happier, more balanced and mindful life.


I now see almost everything in an entirely different light and I feel like a better person for having done it. Or rather, I feel like the real me, not the persona I had adopted to cope with the world.


Sarah helped me change my life around. I was suffering with anxiety, depression and had a drinking problem. I was making very bad choices in my life which was putting a lot of pressure on my relationship with my partner and my job. She helped me recognize what many of my stressors were and we spent a lot of time going back to the root of my negative thinking patterns and behaviours. I made such breakthroughs with her that I felt as if a burden was lifted off of me.


CBT has been a huge part of my recovery from severe depression, which was not treatable with medication alone. Sarah's approach was sensitive and encouraging, and she explained the techniques clearly, helping me to grasp where they could be of benefit. Through using the various tools on a daily basis, they have now become part of my life and help me manage my symptoms of low mood and anxiety so I am able to live healthily and happily again. I would recommend CBT treatment, and Sarah, because of the positive experience I had.


"Could, not should" and "be kind to yourself". Seven words which have changed my relationships with my family and friends, my ways of working and how I feel about myself.


The skills that I learned with Sarah and the realizations that I have made have continue to serve me on a daily basis. I now feel so much stronger and balanced as a person. I enjoy talking with her and appreciate her honesty, kindness and enthusiasm. Thank you, Sarah.


I contacted Sarah for help in reversing a habit which I have had for many years. She helped me enormously by teaching me how to relax and how to change my thought patterns. Sarah was very understanding and patient and I can't thank her enough.


....about EMDR


As a student it is normal to experience some stress and anxiety; we have a substantial amount of work and many deadlines. However, after getting a panic attack in the middle of class I decided to get some help. Sarah helped me identify the origins of my anxiety and understand it better through CBT. Then, I tried EMDR for the first time and after a few sessions I could already feel a difference. It can be a quite intense experience but totally worth it. I now feel more relaxed and I am able to enjoy my year abroad a lot more. I also learned to be less hard on myself and to accept my anxiety as a way to reduce it. I am very thankful that Sarah helped me passing this difficult time with kindness and patience.


Having experienced trauma in the past I was struggling with severe anxiety that impacted most of the areas of my life. Sarah suggested EMDR treatment that, being a scientist, I approached with some level of uncertainty. To my surprise EMDR treatment was very successful and it was the first step on the way to my recovery. The level of my anxiety was significantly reduced and the traumatic memories, although not erased, stopped having a negative influence on my life. Sarah was always very understanding and helpful when I was going through this experience that was difficult for me. She created a very safe environment during the therapy, which made me feel comfortable and relaxed.


Itís changed my outlook from negative to positive Ė the trauma of my accident had become part of my life. It is now in the past and is not going to be part of my future. Sarah has given me confidence and trust in others [to drive me]. I never imagined in the first week of treatment that by the end I would say ĎIíve done it!í [driven through site of accident and been a passenger in back of a 2 door car].


EMDR definitely helped me overcome my panic attacks and mostly my constant fear of panic attacks when travelling. I was so afraid of going on an airplane, or taking the metro. EMDR worked for me just fine - helped me to deal with emotions that I did not want to re-experience and sensations that I wanted to avoid. EMDR gave me the tools to travel wherever I want and to enjoy every part of a trip and not just the destination.


I started EMDR sessions with Sarah around six months ago. Before I started, I was unable to go on any kind of transport and felt anxious even about the thought of travelling. The process of EMDR allowed me to reassess the events that caused my anxiety (a holiday where I became ill during a long flight) and show that they were all just a bad experience and in the past. I am now able to travel in cars, buses, boats and trains and I am planning a flight soon!


Thanks to EMDR sessions with Sarah, I feel I have my life back and no longer live in constant fear of a thunder storm. It was an excellent positive experience which has given me the confidence to stop being paranoid about strange loud noises, which I would have previously associated with a potential storm and stayed indoors.


It [EMDR] has given me my life back. I donít think I appreciated how stressed I was before. My whole life was planned as it was all about driving [since the accident]. I am absolutely fine with it now.


I just wanted to let you know how grateful I am for the help you have given me over the last few months. It is incredible that my very real fear of driving after my accident has disappeared in such a short space of time. When I think back to the person I was before I started my work with you I find it hard to recognise myself back then. While I was sceptical as to the difference EMDR might make to my fear of driving, and still have no idea as to how it has cured me, I could not commend your treatment highly enough to anyone considering this course of action. Where once I dreaded car journeys I now hop into the car and drive without a thought.


I was a mess when I started treatment Ė no-one really knew how bad, I didnít talk about it. To be able to get in the car with my family was unbelievable - doing normal family things. I feel so much less stressed in all areas of my life.


After a major illness, I had a panic attack while driving on the motorway, and I developed a phobia about driving on motorways and dual carriageways. I tried various things - self help courses bought on line and CBT progressive exposure type therapy, but with no real success. When I did drive on the motorway as recommended, it was in a state of grim determination and extreme tension, and on several occasions I again had a panic attack and had to pull onto the hard shoulder or get off the motorway. I seemed to be getting worse rather than better, and eventually I stopped driving on the motorway or the bypass altogether. A friend suggested that EMDR might be helpful and after several EMDR sessions with Sarah, I suddenly realised that I could tackle motorways and dual carriageways again. I have been able to drive on the motorway with no real problems, which seems amazing! I just have to get accustomed again to higher speed driving conditions and longer journeys, which I am now doing. EMDR also helped with a fear of flying, which I had developed at around the same time, in the same way, and I have recently happily flown to Europe on holiday. I think EMDR made a real difference, and I am delighted with the progress I have made. I think it has also helped that I eventually accepted my doctor's recommendation to take a low dose anti- depressant of a type recommended for anxiety. I feel that my life is pretty much back to normal, which is great.


Updated Feb 2018 © 2008 Sarah Lawson