About Fiona

About Me - Fiona Mcalister Counsellor Islington London

I’m very happy to welcome you to my therapy practice, one started in a spirit of love and joy. Having spent my years on our amazing planet discovering and uncovering who I am, one of the purposes of my life as a human being and a therapist is to help others do the same: becoming – or coming back to – who they already are. In the therapy room, I bear witness to the vulnerability of my clients as they put their trust in both our relationship and the therapeutic process in order to work through pain, grief, loss, anger, anxiety, trauma and re-find themselves. I feel privileged to hold that space, listening deeply, understanding both the words and the meaning behind them, reflecting back to the client what they have been holding out of awareness – bringing themselves into being.

My philosophy of therapy has grown out of my career and personal experiences. Before becoming a therapist, I worked in the care and support sector, supporting many vulnerable people of all ages, ethnicities, abilities, genders, histories. Again and again, I saw the adverse effects of trauma on people and I leaned in to understand their personal histories – I wanted to know why they did what they did, what lay behind beliefs and behaviours. However, it took a difficult period in my own life for me to learn the power of leaning into my own self – through the curiosity and kindness of my therapist, I discovered aspects of myself I hadn’t yet met. I learned to be honest with myself and those around me. I learned how speaking the painful truth brought me freedom and peace.

“It’s all a matter of becoming
who you already are.”

Richard Rohr *

Yoga - Fiona Mcalister Counsellor Islington London

Then came one final piece of learning – I needed to listen to my body. Always a keen fan of yoga, it took a frightening panic attack to lead me to start really tuning into my body, to realise how the fear and anger that I’d repressed for so long were causing physical, mental and emotional stress that was rising in my body to demand attention. In order to listen to my body’s wisdom, I deepened my yoga practice, started using mindfulness, breathwork, acceptance and self-compassion to learn who I was from the inside and how to be myself.

So it was that my own process of self-becoming lead me to train as a therapist myself. I completed my training at CPPD  in 2019 and qualified as a humanistic integrative psychotherapist. I followed this with a year’s Diploma in Trauma Therapy at the Naos Institute; then became an accredited member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy. I now focus my ongoing professional development towards enhancing my skills as a trauma-informed therapist.

I bring all this learning to my practice in order to serve you, my client. I will walk alongside you to provide a safe and supportive space, carefully developing a trusting relationship with you to enable you to dig deep – to tell me your story and share your vulnerabilities with me. I will suggest a range of practices to give space to your thoughts and beliefs, feelings, physical sensations, spirituality, personal and familial history, past and present. And in doing so, reveal to yourself who you are.

“Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.”

Pema Chödrön **


* Rohr, R (2012) Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life. London: SPCK
** Chödrön, P (2003) Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating
Fearlessness and Compassion. Colorado: Shambhala.

BACP Logo - Fiona Mcalister Counsellor Islington London