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Updated: 5 days ago

How long have we been waiting for this? Save the date: Saturday 1st June 2024






At long last it approaches... The 1st ever BWTOC UK! Hosted by me, Mary Pascall, and Tonia Mihill, in collaboration with onlinevents.co.uk, this essential event will celebrate the contributions of Black women therapists practising in the UK.


The theme for the conference is borrowed from my popular online workshop – ‘Black Women Therapists: Challenging the Strong Black Woman Archetype’, part of my ‘Race, Culture and You' collection.


Come meet some of the most innovative Black women practitioners, service providers and their supporters in the UK, offering an array of experiential workshops challenging the ‘Strong Black Woman’ schema. This is a rare and wonderful opportunity to connect, share experiences and learn from one another – in a spirit of care and celebration.






If you are a Black woman therapist or trainee therapist based in the UK or you support the work of Black women therapists in supervision, training, mentoring, coaching, in the public sector or in private practice, then this is a must for your diary. You are invited to select from an array of experiential workshops, facilitated by some of the most innovative Black women practitioners, service providers and their supporters, in the UK. This is a wonderful opportunity to connect, share experiences and learn from one another.




The day will include opportunities for:

  • Self-care – explore the benefits of a range of therapies – poetry, yoga, music, drama, mindfulness and more.

  • Showcasing – a spotlight on the therapeutic approaches of Black women practitioners in the UK.

  • Discussion – of theory, practice and what it means to be a Black woman therapist in the UK.

  • Networking – form new connections, promote your practice, share ideas and build a community.




Who is This Workshop Appropriate For?

Black women therapists, trainee therapists, and their supporters.


Please note: BWTOC UK 24 promotes self-care. There will be a full lunch break and provision made for rest and relaxation. Our Round-table Open Forum is offered as a ‘drop-by’ session.



Tickets on sale now. Self-Select Fee

For more information:









  • Writer's picturemarypascallcounselling

Welcome to my blog page of 2023. Throughout the year we'll focus on emotional issues that affect most of us from time to time - and see how counselling therapy can help.


Most of us experience low mood from time to time and we anticipate that difficult circumstances can make us feel down for a while. Any type of loss or injury can cause upset, or sadness; we may experience low mood because we are unhappy with our environment or bored with our day-to-day routine. We do not all respond in the same ways to such challenges but low mood is generally expected to last a few days or from two to three weeks.*


Indicators of low mood Include:

  • anger and frustration

  • avoiding others

  • boredom

  • feeling hopeless

  • irritability

  • lack of motivation or purpose

  • loss of appetite or eating considerably more than usual

  • low confidence or self-esteem

  • over or under-activity

  • reduced focus

  • reduced libido

  • sadness

  • struggling to fall asleep/sleeping more than usual

  • worry or panic


It is sometimes possible to alter low mood, when you know the cause. You may be able to find practical ways to make changes to your lifestyle that will alter your mood for the better. Small changes to your diet, sleep and exercise habits or your workload, can make a difference. You can speak with your GP about possible changes you could make and you can find other ideas online.



Ways to lift your mood:

  • acknowledge your achievements

  • be in natural light

  • breathwork practices

  • do something you like

  • express gratitude

  • get active

  • listen to music

  • pay someone a compliment

  • take time for yourself or be with others

  • talk to someone

  • try something new

  • warm up/cool down


It's also helpful to consider a change in mindset. Low mood can feel oppressive or all-encompassing, so it's easy to forget that you have the potential for joy, even a moment of it. However, changing one small thing or focusing on something positive, even for a few minutes each day, can help to improve your mood.




There may be more significant issues, such as your choice of career, course of study, where you live or any relationship, that could benefit from a re-think or overhaul right now. Ask yourself what changes you would need to make to improve your life. Be practical: consider your happiness alongside your responsibilities.



It may be that your struggle feels too big to handle alone. You may be experiencing several difficulties. Perhaps you cannot identify what's causing your low mood. This is where counselling can help. A counsellor can assist you in identifying and understanding your feelings, and support you as you take steps towards a more fulfilling life.



*Low mood lasting more than three weeks, or that is reoccurring, is often diagnosed as depression. You could speak with your GP if you have experienced low mood for some time. A GP may recommend counselling or medication, or both as treatment for depression.


Click here to watch an NHS video on Self-help for low mood and depression



For information on counselling, follow these links to these past blog posts:






You may also find the following links useful:









  • Writer's picturemarypascallcounselling

Updated: Jun 30, 2023

Welcome to my blog page of 2023. Throughout the year we'll focus on emotional issues that affect most of us from time to time - and see how counselling therapy can help.


For most of us, stress is a common experience. Some of us may rely on a level of stress to get us through the routine of our day; to prompt, motivate or spur us into action, whether its getting out of bed in the morning or meeting a deadline. Our stress levels vary according to environment, circumstance and stress tolerance.


It's important to note that too much or too little stress can impact our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Too little stress may lead to boredom, dissatisfaction, depression. Too much can lead to overwhelm and 'burnout' (the physical and emotional exhaustion resulting from stress).


Noticing early signs of stress can help to lower the risk of overwhelm. But we also need to remember that some levels of stress can work in our favour.


Noticing early signs of stress can help to lower the risk of overwhelm. But we also need to remember that some levels of stress can work in our favour. This is because certain hormones, that respond to stress, give us a short-term physical and emotional boost. They can also trigger the mind's automatic 'fight or flight response', should we feel under threat.




So what are the early signs of too much or too little stress?
  • Fatigue

  • Feeling hopeless

  • Headaches or stomach pains

  • Inertia or restlessness

  • Irritability

  • Lack of motivation

  • Loss of libido

  • Reduced appetite or over-eating

  • Tearfulness

  • Underwhelm or overwhelm

  • Withdrawing from family and friends



There are a broad range of factors that can contribute to stress. To understand what's causing you to feel stressed, it may help to consider the following five categories:


1. Environmental

Includes events and social conditions such as natural disasters, epidemics, identity, war, human rights issues, pollution, cost of living, housing and healthcare, employment.

2. Physical

Negative symptoms can cause aches and pains, blurred vision, breathlessness, dizziness, heart disease, hypertension, affect libido, sleep, cause stomach issues, teeth grinding, tension headaches, 'weak legs'.

3. Mental

The mind can be challenged by addiction, anxiety, depression, inability to focus, disordered eating, dissociation, irrational thoughts, night terrors, over-thinking, phobias, memory issues, suicidal ideation, unwanted behaviours.

4. Emotional

Feelings, such as anger, confidence, envy, fear, loneliness and isolation, loss, love, sadness, self-esteem, can become unmanageable or overwhelming.

5. Spiritual

Difficulties seeking connection, meaning, self-awareness, personal development or purpose.


Note that all of these categories can impact one another. For example, you may be more prone to stress if you are feeling physically unwell.


Your ability to deal with stress depends on your, stress tolerance – how stress affects you day-to-day, during particularly stressful events or periods of time and your recovery following. This is shaped by your personality, experience and circumstance (just how much you have going on).


If you are struggling with stress, you could:

  • try using self-help techniques

  • seek advice from your GP

  • consider counselling

A counsellor can help you understand what's causing you to feel stressed and support you in finding ways to cope. For more information on how to find a counsellor visit:





You may also find the following links helpful:




















and here

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