For as long as I can remember, I have been fascinated with the human mind and why and how we become who we are. From being a child I was interested in the dark side of the human mind, I watched programmes and read books about serial killers and psychopaths because it completely drew my interest.
Throughout my 20 year career working in psychology and mental health, in addition to my work in film & TV, I have been lucky enough to have worked across a range of different settings. I have worked for the National Policing Improvement Agency (College of Policing) in occupational psychology, assisting with the design and delivery of police examination and training processes. I now work across the corporate sector as a business psychologist and psychotherapist. I have delivered psychological interventions for organisations such as Cleary Gottleib, Lockheed Martin, HSBC, Barclays, Deloitte, Squire Patton Boggs, UBS, Allen & Avery, Ernst & Young, to name just a few. In the NHS, I worked in Community Mental Health Services as part of my doctoral training and as a psychologist in the Clinical Psychology team in a Neurological Rehabilitation ward. In addition to this I have worked in third sector mental health services as a psychotherapist and have been on the board of directors for two large mental health charities. Additionally, I have delivered psychological interventions within secondary schools, working with children with challenging behaviours and mental health problems.
My experience working as a businesswoman, owner of an film & TV educational establishment (YAFTA), agent, psychotherapist and psychologist, place me in a unique position to understand the psychological implications of working in the film & TV industry and I use this viewpoint to bring originality and depth of understanding to my work as a duty of care psychologist.
I am on the registered list of mental health professionals for all major broadcasters including; Viacom, Channel 5, BBC, E4, Channel 4, ITV, Netflix, Audible. I also deliver psychological support for employees of organisations within the sector such as STV. In addition to duty of care processes and employee psychological health, I work as a forensic psychotherapist on true crime documentaries involving traumatised victims of crime. This type of duty of care work is specialised due to the added complexities involved.
As a member of the British Psychological Society (BPS) Media Ethics Advisory group, I am involved in helping to develop guidelines for those working in the industry as well as advising production companies on duty of care processes.
As a psychotherapist with specialist knowledge of the media, I have regularly been employed to help individuals manage media exposure which comes as part of their career, this includes working with elite athletes, actors, influencers and journalists.
Using my knowledge, passion and experience in mental health, criminology, psychology and psychotherapy, I enjoy contributing on-screen, on radio and through writing columns for media publications. I provide expert commentary for the likes of Stylist, BBC, Metro, The Guardian, The Telegraph and Red magazine to name but a few and I have appeared onscreen for a number of TV documentaries.
My services as a psychotherapist are available to individuals as well as organisations and production companies. I treat a range of presentations and work in the cognitive-behavioural, psychodynamic, person-centred and humanistic modalities.
I provide Entrepreneurial therapy to clients. This is a combination of mentoring and psychotherapy. The goals of the process are decided upon in a collaborative manner during our assessment session and we work specifically with issues which may be holding you back in your career, if it is safe to do so. I have delivered this therapy with a range of people including medical professionals, entrepreneurs and actors.
You can see a full list of Media Psychologist & Psychotherapist services on the Psychologist Services page.
Through my work as the managing director of YAFTA International LTD, I have worked to actively promote diversity on screen to encourage fair representation and ethical practices within the industry.
Through my agency, YAFTA Talent Agency, I represent the first actor with down syndrome to secure a regular role in Coronation Street. I also represent the first actor with a disability to win a National Television Award for his role in Emmerdale.
These groundbreaking actors are paving the way for fair representation on-screen. The normalisation of diversity on screen consequently leads to better acceptance of diversity in society.
YAFTA is now working towards delivering arts based education within schools to support the psychological wellbeing of children. This will be facilitated through the exploration of emotion and interpersonal relating, in the imaginary circumstances of acting training.