Discovering what therapy can offer you

Written by: Dr Nicky Kimber-Rogal
Published: | Updated: 05/09/2023
Edited by: Karolyn Judge

The wider conversation that surrounds mental health is slowly becoming louder and more positive, leading more people to incorporate therapy into their lives. If you are new to it, however, you may wonder: ‘What does it involve?’

Top Doctors speaks to leading chartered psychologist and psychotherapist Dr Nicky Kimber-Rogal about what you might come across, especially if you’re looking for assistance regarding workplace issues, couple counselling or mental health services for young people.

Her professional observations of the issues she addresses, techniques and the overall aims of therapy - and how they fit into her everyday practice, are expertly detailed in this informative article.

Close shot of woman therapist completing a form while asking her client questions


What are key issues in therapy?  

My clinical experience with therapy clients suggests that people are suffering from loneliness (regardless of whether they live alone, are in partnerships and families or not); difficulties in finding partners and problems with dating apps if they attempt to find partners through this means.  They are also concerned with body image and perfectionism - perfectionism not only in relation to physical appearance but also in other areas of life. 

In addition, bullying and, in some companies, sexism at work appears to be paid only lip service to and clients feel that they have no recourse or redress through HR or other means.  Mental health at work is also still stigmatised - regardless of company policies - and this is particularly apparent in large corporates.


What are techniques for marital and couple counselling? 

In terms of my work with couples, I use a cognitive analytic therapy (CAT) -based approach which is generally very helpful.  This allows couples to see how the patterns and roles they have assimilated since childhood are being played out - often to the detriment - of the relationship.  The idea of mutual self-disclosure is fundamental to good relationships and this can only be achieved once the first step of knowing one's own roles and coping strategies is recognised.  Trust and vulnerability in relation to one’s partner are also central to healthy relationships.


How are young people affected by mental health?

I also work with young people - some in their early twenties - who have come from relatively high-pressured environments and are starting work in new companies. They are somewhat institutionalised - often coming from private education, straight into university and then onto graduate training schemes.  The process of individuation is part of the therapeutic process.


What is the aim of therapy?

In summary, all clients need encouragement to be confident, to access the full range of human emotions, and learn how to recognise, articulate and manifest these to live a meaningful life

Therapy is efficient when there are positive answers to the questions:

  • “Does it lead you to feel hopeful?”
  • “Is it meaningful?”
  • “Is it useful?”



Considering therapy with an effective, expert specialist? Find out more about Dr Kimber-Rogal’s psychology and psychotherapy services by visiting her Top Doctors profile.

By Dr Nicky Kimber-Rogal

HCPC: PYL16880

Dr Kimber-Rogal is a chartered psychologist and psychotherapist in London with a Masters in Mental Health Studies, Cognitive Analytic Therapy (CAT) training and a PhD, all from Guy’s Hospital, London. She specialises in anxiety, depression, and relationship counselling.

Dr Kimber-Rogal was a founding member of the Organisational Psychiatry and Psychology MSc course at Guy’s Hospital, London and worked in psychological audit, counselling and therapy with clients from both public and private organisations. She was a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ 'Changing Minds’ Employment working party – a campaign which sought to reduce stigma against mental health at work and school. Her doctoral thesis addressed the importance of recognition in reducing emotional distress. 

She has taught at Guy’s Hospital in Organisational Psychology and is Chair of Governors of the Royal Free Hospital Children’s School, with a special interest in pupil inclusion. Before her work in psychology, Dr Kimber-Rogal had a successful career in musical theatre, culminating in a seven-year contract in the Andrew Lloyd-Webber musical, Cats.

Most clients come to therapy because they are anxious, depressed/demoralised, confused and/or self-doubting – all to varying degrees. Although she is a qualified and experienced psychologist, Dr Kimber-Rogal does not emphasise the ‘doctor-patient’ approach; rather, a collaborative one which assumes that the client is the expert and that she is there to facilitate well-being. Whilst the basis of her work draws on CAT, she adopts a client-centred, eclectic approach.

Some clients may prefer the classic 12-16 session CAT therapy and others, a more flexible approach. The relationship between therapist and client is paramount. Dr Kimber-Rogal encourages all clients only to continue attending only if they find the sessions useful, meaningful, and encouraging. Dr Kimber-Rogal works with individuals and couples. She is currently working in her private clinic in West Hampstead; until recently, she spent three years as a consultant psychologist with The Priory Group Well-being centres in Fenchurch Street and Harley Street.

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