Pneuma Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy in Stockton-on-Tees & Newcastle upon Tyne

Psychotherapy Services

“I keep telling this story - different people, different places, different times - but always you, always me, always this story, because a story is a tightrope between two worlds.” — Jeanette Winterson

Beyond the stories – how Psychotherapy helps

From our earliest interactions with our environment, we start to develop an idea of who we are as a person. Often, how we respond to the people around us as children - and life's inevitable events- leaves a lasting impression on how we think and feel about ourselves as adults.

These thoughts, feelings and emotions form the basis of the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves and colour the way we experience the world around us. We explore how the external world affects you and the significance of any social, cultural and political experience. I also welcome individuals looking to integrate non-ordinary states of consciousness, including spiritual emergencies, psychedelic, and non-traditional religious experiences.

Psychotherapy can help you change your sense of self and relationships with others and the world. I often see motivated and courageous clients; they realise they are not just the stories they have come to believe about themselves - and, in time, reconnect with a more profound sense of who they are and have meaning in their lives.

Issues I work with:




Borderline Personality Adaptation



Developmental Trauma

Employment Difficulties



Health-related Issues

Identity Problems

Mental Health Issues


Post-Traumatic Stress

Psychedelic Integration






Spiritual crises


To book an appointment, call Michael on 07712 278288 or email

"We're fascinated by the words--but where we meet is in the silence behind them." — Ram Dass

As an integrative and relational psychotherapist, my approach relies upon the importance of the relationship between myself and you - to enable mind, body, feeling, soul and spirit to come together as a whole.

We're both engaged in shaping the processes of assessing your problems or issues, working out what will happen during therapy and evaluating the outcomes.

I draw upon various theoretical approaches from Psychoanalytic / Object Relations Theories, Attachment Theory, Transactional analysis, Gestalt, Trauma, Person-Centred and Transpersonal pluralist approaches.

Psychoanalytic Therapy

Psychoanalytic therapy is a form of psychotherapy rooted in the idea that all people are motivated by unconscious desires, thoughts, emotions and memories. It works on the theory of psychoanalysis developed by Sigmund Freud. Psychoanalytic therapies help people improve their lives by better understanding how they think and feel. So that you can help create better relationships, more manageable emotions, and the ability to make better life choices. Psychoanalytic therapy looks at how our experiences shape who we are and how things from the past can make us react poorly to the present.

Psychoanalytic therapy aims to identify patterns of thinking and behaviour that cause emotional distress. Through in-depth conversations and other therapeutic techniques, you are helped to analyse, confront and heal from the past to achieve greater well-being in the future. It's effective in helping you gain insight into how your unconscious mind influences your behaviour and any repetitive, self-destructive patterns that hold you back in daily life.

Object Relation Theory

Object relations theory works on our internal relationships with others. According to this theory, our lifelong relationship skills are strongly rooted in our early attachments with our parents, especially our mothers. Objects refer to people or physical items that symbolically represent a person or part of a person. Object relations, then, are our internalised relationships with those people.

It is a variation of psychoanalytic theory that believes that humans are primarily motivated by the need for contact with others – the need to form relationships. This therapy aims to help you uncover early mental images that may contribute to any present difficulties in your relationship with others. It focuses on helping you identify and address challenges in your interpersonal functioning and explore ways to improve relationships so that you can understand the impact on current emotions, motivations and relationships.

Attachment Theory

Attachment theory focuses on relationships and bonds (particularly long-term) between people, including between a parent and child and between romantic partners. It is a psychological explanation for the emotional bonds and relationships between people. This theory suggests that people are born with a need to forge bonds with caregivers as children. These early bonds may continue to influence attachments throughout life. Research indicates that failure to form secure attachments early in life can harm behaviour in later childhood and throughout life.

Children who are securely attached as infants tend to develop stronger self-esteem and better self-reliance as they grow older. These children also tend to be more independent, perform better in school, have successful social relationships, and experience less depression and anxiety. Adults who were securely attached in childhood tend to have good self-esteem, strong romantic relationships, and the ability to self-disclose to others.

Transactional Anaylsis

Transactional analysis (TA) is a widely recognised form of modern psychology that promotes personal growth and change. It is considered a fundamental therapy for well-being and helping individuals reach their full potential in all aspects of life. TA therapy is based on the theory that each person has three ego-states: parent, adult and child. These are used along with other critical transactional analysis concepts, tools and models to analyse how individuals communicate and to identify what interaction is needed for a better outcome.

During sessions, you explore how experience has shaped your personality - particularly those stemming from childhood. You work directly on problem-solving behaviours while developing day-to-day tools for finding constructive, creative solutions. The ultimate goal is to ensure you regain absolute autonomy over your life. Eric Berne founded TA in the 1950s, and he defines this autonomy as the recovery of three vital human capacities - spontaneity, awareness and intimacy.

Gestalt Therapy

Gestalt therapy is a form of psychotherapy centred on increasing awareness, freedom, and self-direction with a clear understanding of your thoughts, emotions and behaviour. It's a form of therapy that focuses on the present moment rather than past experiences. Gestalt therapy is based on the idea that people are influenced by their present environment. Each individual works to achieve personal growth and balance. Gestalt therapy focuses on the use of empathy and unconditional acceptance. This helps you eliminate distress by learning to trust and accept what you feel.

"Gestalt" is a German term meaning "whole" or "form." It is an idea that views every individual as a blend of the mind, emotions, body, and soul with unique experiences and realities. Gestalt therapy puts the focus on the here and now. You can develop new perspectives and bring positive changes into your life.

Trauma Therapy

Trauma therapy can help you deal with the emotional response caused by a traumatic event, and the experience can profoundly affect your daily functioning. Trauma therapy can help you address the traumatic event and process your feelings and emotions. It can allow you to face your fears in a safe space and learn coping skills to help you function daily.

Trauma can instil fear and cause you to avoid people, places, or things that remind you of the traumatic experience, making it difficult for you to function. Trauma therapy can help you confront the trauma memory and overcome your fears. It can help equip you with the confidence and coping skills you need to function properly; it also helps challenge problematic thought patterns you may have developed about yourself and the world around you to help you understand why the traumatic event occurred. Trauma therapy can help validate your experiences and offer the understanding and acceptance you need to start healing.

Person-Centred Therapy

Person-centred therapy, or client-centred counselling, is a humanistic approach that deals with how individuals perceive themselves consciously rather than how a counsellor can interpret their unconscious thoughts or ideas.

Created in the 1950s by psychologist Carl Rogers, the person-centred approach ultimately sees human beings as having an innate tendency to develop towards their full potential. But this ability can become blocked or distorted by specific life experiences, particularly those experiences that affect our sense of value. You'll be encouraged to bring your own issues to the session – the counselling is led by you and not directed by the counsellor.

To help you achieve self-actualisation, the person-centred therapist will offer:

  • unconditional positive regard (UPR) – accepting and valuing you.
  • congruence - being honest and transparent in how they experience you and your world.
  • empathic understanding – seeing your viewpoint as if they were you.

You explore your issues, feelings, beliefs, behaviour, and worldview to become more self-aware and achieve greater independence. This person-centred approach helps you reconnect with your inner values and sense of self-worth, enabling you to find your way to move forward and progress.

The core purpose of person-centred therapy is to facilitate our ability to self-actualise - the belief that all of us will grow and fulfil our potential.

Transpersonal Therapy

Transpersonal therapy takes a holistic approach to therapy with an emphasis on spirituality. This therapy addresses the client's mental, physical, social, emotional, creative, and intellectual needs to facilitate healing and growth. Transpersonal therapy integrates spiritual perspectives into modern psychology.

The holistic treatment is based on the idea that humans are more than just their mind and body but are also composed of intangible, transcendent factors that make up the whole person. During sessions, techniques such as meditation, guided visualisation, dream work, art, music, journaling, and mindfulness practices can help you explore your spiritual self and create meaning.

One of the goals is to increase your sense of empowerment. To facilitate healing and growth, transpersonal therapy places great emphasis on honesty, open-mindedness, and self-awareness on the part of the therapist and you.

To book an appointment, call Michael on 07712 278288 or email

Get in touch

To get in touch, please call me on 07712 278288 or email

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