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The Counsellor Coach

Cheltenham's Foremost Stress Management Specialist

Stress and Anger Management Specialist Gary Redmond is the creator of RBR (Rapid Behavioural Reconditioning) and founder of the Institute of Effective Anger Management in Cheltenham. Many of us suffer from stress in our lives when things seem to be 'all too much'. We get feelings of overwhelm and that we are 'unable to cope'. We can feel that we have no control over our lives and that we do not have any choices. Stress makes us feel that we want to just 'curl up and let the troubles of the world go by' so we can often become depressed and withdrawn, we feel that there are just too many things to do and just don't know where to begin! So we feel we just want to 'get away' and find some space and peace for a while. We can feel angry and have a short temper, we can often feel sick and anxious and lose our appetite for food and anything else come to that! We can have the feeling of dread for the day ahead and become very unhappy to say the least. We can feel that it will never end and that we are 'trapped with no way out'.

When are feeling like this we feel that we do not have the resources or the will within us to get out of the situation., we are trying to change things whilst in the state of mind created by the stress. This is a little like trying to put a fire out with petrol! We need another state of mind to be able to change our situation, easy enough to say but difficult to do whilst trapped inside a depleted, depressed and un-resourceful state of mind. This is why stress can lead to breakdown as the mind and body need to shut down in order to make the necessary changes to your life.  Breakdown is of course change by crisis which is an effective but painful way to force changes that you have to make and feel unable to. Breakdown has a purpose!  When we see ourselves heading for a breakdown we can prevent it by taking the action needed, whether we like it or not we must change or change will be done for us through breakdown. Breakdown can take years to recover from and some people never in fact recover.

Through the work you will do with me I will help you to find inside of yourself the resources you need to start changing your situation before things get any worse. I will help you to organise things not on your desk but inside of your mind and show you that you have choices and that you are not trapped and that there is hope. My methods of Stress Management have proven to be very effective in helping to make changes quickly.

Symptoms of Stress:

Personal or interpersonal stressors are:


- Loneliness
- Suppressed anger
- Lack of physical contact
- Financial problems
- Low self-esteem
- Guilt
- Shame
- Boredom
- No sense of humour
- Disorganisation
- Unrealistic high expectations

Some environmental stressors are:

- Noise
- Cold
- Heat
- Sexual abuse
- Harassment
- Frequent interruptions

Symptoms regarded as general are:

- Stiffness in the jaw, neck and shoulders
- Lack of gusto for life
- Insomnia
- Concentration problems
- Fatigue
- Lowered sexual desire
- Reoccurring infections
- Appetite loss

Physical symptoms:

Any of symptoms below may be stress related.

- Heartburn
- Indigestion
- Diarrhoea
- Constipation
- Tension headache
- Breathing problems (Hyperventilation)
- Irregular hearth beats
- Dizziness
- Tingling sensations or pins and needles

Behavioural symptoms:
 
Short-term negative strategies we adopt when dealing with stress.

- Smoking
- Increased alcohol consumption
- Recreational drug use
- Increased consumption of sugar
- Increased consumption of caffeine
- Comfort eating
- Throwing up

If ignored, stress and anxiety may cause long-term conditions.

- Migraine
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Clinical depression
- Chronic anxiety
- Phobias
- Permanent stiffens and pain in neck and shoulders
- Stomach ulcers
- Eczema
- Psoriasis
- Rheumatoid arthritis


When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when all the hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 Beers...

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was. The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full.

They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else.

He asked once more if the jar was full, the students responded with a unanimous 'yes.'

The professor then produced two Beers from under the table and Poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed. 'Now,' said the professor as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognise that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favourite passions and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full. The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car.The sand is everything else the small stuff. 'If you put the sand into the jar first,' he continued, “ there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls”.

The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.
Spend time with your children.
Spend time with your parents.
Visit with grandparents.
Take time to get medical check ups.
Take your spouse out to dinner.
Play another 18...
There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal.
Take care of the golf balls first, the things that really matter.
Set your priorities.
The rest is just sand.
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Beer represented.
The professor smiled and said, 'I'm glad you asked.'
The Beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of Beers with a friend.
I called Gary in December looking for immediate help dealing with what at the time felt like overwhelming work and personal stress.  The impact of the stress was making it near impossible for me to do my job and to function properly as a father to my children, to be honest I was struggling to see a way forwards.  Recognising the need for help turned out to be the hardest part of my journey towards recovery and importantly it is recovery, rather than managing the symptoms that Gary has helped me achieve.  After just one session I knew I had come to the right place and person in Gary.  His easy and relaxing style along with incisive mind and methodical approach meant that we made rapid progress to identify the root causes (key to fixing me was knowing what made me who I am and that its ok).  We worked on the root issues in a supportive and focussed way and now it's clear to me (and others) that I've taken a huge leap forwards.  I can now identify and address the root causes before they trigger the stressful cycles that had caused me such pain.  I am a better, more functional person and put that down, in no small part to Gary,his skills and methodology.
Mr C, Gloucester January 2016
I was given Gary’s name and number following two nasty incidents whilst out cycling. I am an amateur road racing cyclist and spend many hours a week riding on local roads. As such, an accident is always a possibility and having had many near misses and been threatened quite a few times by aggressive drivers I knew it was only a matter of time. Unfortunately it finally happened and I was deliberately hit off my bike from behind by an angry driver who left me for dead and drove off! I was lucky not to have been killed and only incurred some nasty bruises and cuts. Initially I felt very little about the accident……no fear or anger…….just disbelief that someone could do that to another human being. A week or so later I started getting nightmares and the fear, anger and reality of the event hit me. I tried to just carry on and went back to riding as normal but I was constantly stressed and apprehensive. 2 months later whilst riding I was run down again. This time it was an accident (didn’t look before turning) and I ended up in hospital with nasty bruises and cuts but again, very lucky really.   I recovered from the physical injuries but my head had started to go to pieces. I felt angry all the time, sometimes upset, sometimes very tired and sleep was intermittent. A month later I had my first road race and hated every moment of it. I was actually scared and fearful during it and after 20 miles I pulled over and got off my bike. I realised I had to do something about it and contacted Gary.   I only had two sessions with him but everything changed………   We discussed what had happened and he explained why I felt why I did, why the anger was there and how to deal with it and what it was that made it so difficult for me to ride my bike again. It was amazing how quickly I changed. The anger receded and I regained control of myself, even when dealing with aggressive car drivers again I was able to remain in control and not lose my head even though I was angry. My wife noticed the immediate change in me and I remain to this day a much better and balanced person since the meetings which has helped in my everyday life as well as on the bike.   I greatly admired Gary’s way of listening and explaining to me the motions and emotions we all go through in our lives. The things we discussed and the way to deal with them had never occurred to me before, even though they seemed obvious after the discussion. He seems to have a great understanding of the way our minds work…….he knew mine better than I did anyway!
Nick Preece January 2016
I was very troubled at the time when I saw Gary. After the second time talking to him I experienced a wave of relief. Though I slipped back into anxiety, I found each session helpful. Sometimes just being understood, sometimes being able to rethink, at other times helpful ideas would occur to me much later. It was a process I had to go through, but it helped immensely to talk to someone I found highly intelligent, perceptive and with a philosophy which challenged me to examine my often unhelpful ways of thinking. I have seen several counsellors and even one or two psychiatrists in my time, but I would have no hesitation in saying that Gary helped more. If you are looking for an effective, kindly and even challenging counsellor to help you, then I would have no hesitation in wholeheartedly recommending Gary.
Huw. Cheltenham 2016