Jo is an Art Psychotherapist.
She supports children and young people for Free to Be You both online and face to face. Here is Jo in her own words.
Who Am I?
This has been quite a journey. I have 28+ years’ work experience in supportive roles for both the NHS and in education. I knew that I did not want to qualify as a nurse but that I wanted to work in health/social care, combined with creative arts. I studied for my fine art degree in my 30’s and for my teaching degree and then Art Psychotherapy Practice MA in my 40’s. For a couple of years, I practiced as an Art Psychotherapist in several voluntary organisations. I then applied for a self-employed role with Free to Be You Ltd and since then I have been working both face to face and online with Children and Young People and have never looked back!
The best advice I have ever received is to plan nice things, small or big in your week/month/year.
My Days Look Like This
My days are so different, but the first thing I always do is to go through my diary and check which zoom email links I need to email out to clients and where do I need to drive to, to work with the rest of my clients. Next, I make myself a coffee and have a glass of water (self-care) and plan my sessions both online and face to face.
I can’t live without my diary (both paper-based and electronic), Zoom, WhatsApp and Pinterest. Also, my phone diary plus alerts/reminders to keep track of what I have to do.
My Online Client Work
I am lucky to have 2 home/work spaces: a spare bedroom office and my shed.
Making art online with clients has been challenging and interesting. Adapting with play (applying puppets and stories) to some sessions has also been an interesting process.
My Support System
I can definitely rely on my work colleagues, Leah (manager) and Mal. My friends Fi, Sue and Chrystal are a great support. My husband Ian supports me with all the practicalities in life and keeps me laughing. As do my children Amy and Jack who have always kept me focussed.
Journaling in my art journal is my go-to self-care space. Dancing (whilst cooking) on a Saturday night to Northern Soul tunes and watching Netflix comedy series and familiar films.
I’m still working on Imposter syndrome but I’m discovering that I’m not alone with this.