Sarah Benkwitz is a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist using Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Compassion-Focused Therapy (CFT), Eye-Movement Desensitisation Re-Processing (EMDR) as well as CBT. She has helped many people during her time in the NHS. She has taught people how to overcome problems with trauma, depression, anxiety, stress as well as many more. She currently works here at Openforwards Wednesdays and Fridays.
Sarah first started volunteering as a telephone counsellor in 2007 whilst studying for her Master’s degree in psychology at the University of Oxford.
I was told I had a comforting voice and I should be either a psychotherapist or on the radio!”
Eager to explore the world, Sarah first went to London to work in business, and then on to the favelas of South America to work in international development.
Due to events in her own family, Sarah saw first-hand the impact of emotional and psychological distress and just how beneficial psychotherapy can be. Witnessing these moments brought her back ‘home’ to the field of psychology.
After gaining a breadth of experience in community mental health settings and as an academic researcher, Sarah qualified as a CBT Therapist with distinction in 2014. She has since worked full-time in the NHS which gave her a great professional grounding – before more recently focusing on private practice since having a family.
Sarah loves to learn and use the cutting-edge of science to improve her therapeutic work. She also has additional training and experience teaching others in Compassion Focused Therapy, which works well for self-criticism, difficulty relaxing, and traumatic experiences.
Our brains are tricky, so we can all get caught beating ourselves up and going around in circles trying to cope. Good therapy can help us make sense of it, develop self-acceptance, and make practical changes to pursue what truly matters to us.
I know it’s daunting, but I think that when you face your difficulties, it’s a sign of strength.”
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