From an early age I was interested in the human condition and like most children asked ‘why?’ a lot. My early childhood was spent in Northern Ontario and Labrador, Canada, then the desert of Peru. I moved to England when I was 10 years old but had fond memories of Peru, so studied for a Latin American Studies degree, which included spending time in Mexico.
In my late 20s I took a different turn, after becoming a mother, and I went into a ‘caring profession’: nursing. I knew I wanted to serve people in some way. I was also interested in personal development and became a student within an Eastern wisdom tradition. I trained as a yoga teacher and taught classes for a few years in Portsmouth. In 1995 I moved to Devon and began my nursing career. I nursed cancer patients both in a clinical setting and as a specialist research nurse over a 20-year period.
However, counselling was always a deep interest. Having been a counselling client for several years and having experienced the benefits of being seen, heard and met, I knew this was the direction I wanted to go in as a career. I had the opportunity to do a counselling course through the NHS initially and later gained my Advanced Diploma in Integrative Counselling with the Iron Mill Institute (now College) in Exeter, in 2009.
I worked as a Volunteer Counsellor in NHS mental health settings for 4 years, alongside my nursing job, during my training and afterwards. Then it felt the right time to start my own private counselling business. In 2011, some counsellor friends and I gathered to start Torbay Talking Therapy and operated as sole practitioners out of a GP surgery in Torquay. After a couple of years I moved my practice to central Totnes, and with a counsellor partner we took over the former counselling room of the long-established Croft Counselling. That ended when I decided to take some time out to live in Canada for a year in 2016. On returning I started working privately again in Totnes and Exeter with individual adults and young people. I am also training in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy based on the model created by Dr Sue Johnson and hope to become a certified EFT therapist in due course.
- Advanced Diploma in Humanistic-Integrative Counselling, the Iron Mill Institute, Exeter, 2009
- Registered with the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP)
- Registered Nurse – cancer nursing and Oncology Research
- Trained in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT)
- Volunteer counsellor – Devon Partnership Trust (NHS mental health service provider), 2008-2011
- Member of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (MBACP)
- Completed the Women’s Initiatory Journey in 2014, facilitated by Elisabeth Josephs-Serra, Culture of Honouring/Social Alchemy
- Counsellor for Torbay Care Trust’s Carer Support scheme from 2014-15
- Counsellor for Counselling for Midwives 2020
- In private practice since 2011
Find me on Facebook: Ingrid Koehler Counselling