About Rebecca O’Callaghan
I have had a curiosity about what makes people tick and what gives us meaning since I can remember. It was almost inevitable that I would study Philosophy and Psychology in college, but the academic and intellectual pursuit of answers to these questions, although certainly interesting at times, did not quench my thirst for understanding. Fulfilment came more readily through life experience, meditation, yoga, and psychotherapy. My psychotherapy training, as well as academically rigorous, was deeply experiential, requiring us as trainees to risk finding out about ourselves openly and honestly, to learn about and fine tune ourselves in order to be instruments of psychotherapeutic change for others. I learned that to understand others we must look unwaveringly, compassionately and daringly at ourselves.
My qualifications and accreditations show that I have a solid grounding in theory, that I practice with awareness of ethics and policies, and that I have been thoroughly vetted in terms of my ability, skill and suitability as a therapist. In addition, what enables me to support others on their path, is that I have been walking on my own path of personal growth and awareness for 20 years, and continue to walk it. I have encountered despair, depression, trauma, tragedy and loss along my journey. I can talk passionately about transforming your suffering into your greatest strength because I know from first-hand experience that this is possible if you trust your body, and follow your soul. In Mary Oliver’s words:
“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.”
To do this job of sitting with others, hearing their difficulties, helping them know themselves better and find their way through storms towards light, I constantly return to the job of knowing myself. I continuously strengthen my capacity to be with pain, fear, joy, anger and everything in between, in my own body, so that I can sit with the range of emotions and experiences that others bring to my therapy room. When you bring these things to me, I won’t try to talk you out of them, rescue you, or fix you, but I will show you how to face them and love them, so they no longer overwhelm you. I will accompany you on your journey, reminding you gently that all you need is within your grasp.
Training and Experience
I began training in Gestalt therapy in 2005, and have been working face to face with psychotherapy clients since 2007. I have completed over 1000 training hours and over 900 supervised practice hours. I have worked in short and long term settings, in various counselling centres in London, Dublin and Wicklow, as well as in private practice. I have learnt and continue to learn about myself, about people, and about human nature, in a way that is thoroughly enriching, rewarding and satisfying. I find great meaning in the work of psychotherapy.
Qualifications and accreditation
I hold a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Psychology from University College Dublin, a Clinical Diploma in Gestalt Psychotherapy from the Metanoia Institute in London, and a Master of Science in Gestalt Psychotherapy from Metanoia, validated by Middlesex University.
I am an Accredited Member of the Irish Association for Humanistic and Integrative Practitioners (IAHIP). I am also a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional with the International Association of Trauma Professionals.