Michelle Shively Harris Counselling in Saltburn by the Sea

About me. small me

Experience and qualifications

I began my counselling skills training in 1990 (humanistic) and was then selected by Relate to undertake their counsellor training in 1997. This was a thorough training in psychodynamic psychotherapy, integrating additional trainings in systemic theory and transactional analysis. In order to become an effective couples counsellor, it's my belief that a grounding in individual psychotherapy is vital, prior to learning the added intricacies of working with two people in the counselling room.

In 2000, I qualified as a young people's counsellor, working in primary schools and Relate centres at a time when routinely available, free counselling for young people was in its infancy.

In 2001 I qualified with a Diploma in psychosexual therapy. This combines cognitive behavioural therapy techniques with psychodynamic interventions and was a welcome specialism to add to my work.

During this time I worked with many couples, individuals, children, young people and families in a variety of settings, in education, the NHS and Relate Centres/outposts.

In 2005 I took a career break to fulfil a personal goal of studying for an English/Creative Writing degree. I gained a First Class Honours BA, specialising in female subjectivity in Angela Carter's work. I was then employed by the University of Huddersfield as a Dyslexia Tutor, returning to counselling full-time in 2014, when I rejoined Relate and established a private practice in the Huddersfield area. In 2015 I qualified as a Clinical Supervisor, offering supervision both within Relate and in private practice.

I have undertaken a wide range of additional training since qualifying, for example in bereavement, anxiety, relational trauma and domestic abuse and I remain committed to both my professional and personal development.

In 2018 I relocated to the beautiful town of Saltburn by the Sea, where I balance my time between a busy private counselling, therapy and supervision practice and restorative walks along the beach.



How I work

My approach to therapy is relational and integrative, which is reflected in a deeply held view that therapy is at its most effective when it respects and matches our individual needs.

I have recently completed my (experiential) training in Hakomi psychotherapy with Hakomi Lancaster. Hakomi is a mindfulness-based therapy of assisted self-discovery which offers a non-violent, compassionate approach to change. Having completed this training, I'm now working towards Certification and very happy to be able to share this embodied, heart-centered approach with clients.


Professional membership

I'm a member of The National Counselling Society which means that I am on an Accredited Register that has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority. As a Registrant of the NCS (The National Counselling Society), I am bound by their Code of Ethics. If you'd like to know more about the benefits of an Accredited Register, have a look at this video.


Accredited Voluntary Register


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