Counselling and
stress management
in Southampton

Currently fully booked

Explore options and waiting list


What's in the driving seat?

If life is like a road or a river, would you say that unhelpful, emotion-charged thinking or calm, wise, kind awareness currently decides how and where you drive your car or paddle your canoe? Counselling could give your awareness more valuable time in the driving seat. Like the image above, when awareness is in charge, you're more likely to have healing moments on calm and sparkling waters, and you can use these vital resources to light up your darker places.

While counselling has been the foundation stone of my practice since 2011, there are many ways to change things for the better. So, you may also benefit from developing skills in one or more stress management practices and I offer strengths coaching and careers guidance if needed.

'When awareness is in charge, you're more likely to have healing moments on calm and sparkling waters.'

With many years of experience working with university students, graduates and early career professionals, I have a good understanding of the issues facing these diverse groups. However, I enjoy working with people of all ages, backgrounds and identities and offer a sliding fee scale to support this. Wherever you come from, I'm interested in your unique story.

The two related issues I help most people to work through are:

Based in a peaceful location in Southampton (Bitterne SO19), I offer a free 15 to 20 minute phone or video call and a reduced-fee, no-obligation first appointment to help explore how we could work together. So if you've got any questions or want to check anything out, feel free to get in touch

With best wishes

David Whistance
Accredited Counsellor
I run a COVID-aware practice

In a nutshell

My video intro and Hello page summarise what I offer.

Welcome video text

Welcome to Goodwill Guidance. I'd like to say three things in my virtual hello.

At a very practical level, as well as introducing my approach to therapy, the counselling page has links to resources and videos that you might find helpful.

Secondly, there are many paths to wellbeing. For example, I also teach a self-help system called Autogenic Therapy that, with regular practice, could bring many relaxing and restoring moments into your life.

And finally, my experience is that we can make choices every day to constructively change what’s in the driving seat. So please feel free to get in touch if you’d like to explore ways to support this life-enhancing process.

Healing possibilities

Sometimes, despite our best efforts, we just get stuck. We can get lost in:

Imagine yourself being in the tranquil picture below and slowly, ever so slowly, soak up the wise words by Jack Kornfield. My experience is that possibilities for emotional healing, from small to large and from practical to profound, wait quietly and patiently within and between us all.

'See for yourself what brings
contentment, clarity and peace.
That is the path for you to follow.'
Jack Kornfield


Are you a good friend to yourself?

Counselling could bring a healing light to dark areas in yourself and your relationships. It may help you find valuable resources to clean and dress emotional wounds. It could help you learn important lessons and move on.

While research repeatedly shows that building a trusting relationship with your counsellor is more important than the methods they use, if you like the sound of my approach to therapy, this could be a sign we’d work well together.

So, what is paddling your canoe?
I’ve developed a creative method based on the five element metaphors of Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. It may help you to explore and heal emotion-driven protective processes that take your life in unhelpful directions.
More >

Hopeful words
'You were flexible, understanding and patient.'
‘Really valued being able to explore and understand things more.’
‘The intensity of anger I was feeling has lessened significantly.’
'I can cope better even though life is still very stressful.'
'A valuable experience which was a great help to me.'

Extra support

Stress management

Do you need more balance and inner peace? Autogenic Therapy (AT), Acupoint Touch and Tapping, the Breathing Space and STOPP are all valuable self-help practices which may also support, and be guided by, the counselling process. You'll need to practise to reap the rewards but time invested in learning resource-building practices like these could be time well spent.

Strengths coaching

Are you making good use of your inner resources? Strengths profile coaching may bring valuable energy and direction into your life. You can have a one-off session or use this enriching activity as part of ongoing support.

Careers guidance

Does your career need some TLC? As well as offering counselling, I've worked as a careers adviser for over 20 years. So if you’re stuck in a rut, we can work together to explore more meaningful options and ways for you to move forwards in your professional life. If your struggle is more about who you’re working with rather than what you’re doing, or if career issues are seriously impacting all areas of your life, it could be that counselling is what you need. This happiful article explores when career counselling or career coaching may be most helpful. My About page says more about the research and good practice I've promoted as a careers adviser.

Client resources

Does you want to know more about key therapeutic ideas and practices? At the bottom of many pages on this site you'll see links to related client-only resources. If we work together, you'll be able to access these secure pages whenever you need some helpful reminders.

Time to pause

Having a wuff day?

Need to press reset?

For Southampton and the South

While many people I work with live in Southampton, some also come from places like Winchester, Salisbury, Romsey, Portsmouth, Petersfield, the New Forest, Fareham, Eastleigh, Chandlers Ford, Basingstoke and Bournemouth.

There’s free parking where we’d meet and good bus services to my practice. I also offer video and phone appointments which gives flexibility and enables me to work with people who live a good way from Southampton.

Time to move


May 2023


Take a step

Picture this

Hello Spring!