Background

Thank you for visiting my blog. As you have just clicked on ABOUT, I take the liberty of assuming that a few personal details on its author, may be in order.

The description of seemingly chaotic bee’s trajectory, which shows that the bee lands on a flower and continues to move from one flower to another, eventually retiring to a beehive for the night, seems to resonate with my personal experiences of how I became a Counselling Psychologist.

I received my undergraduate education in psychology at Vilnius University, in Lithuania, where I was taught to believe in a rather linear computational model of the mind, and to focus on the problems as coming from inside the individual, which completely ignored person’s environment, diversity and complexities of human nature. While this approach revealed some aspects of our experiences, I realized how limited this knowledge really was when I started working in the prison service as a Forensic Psychologist. I felt challenged, rewarded and at times even enjoyed my clinical practice. Eventually, however, I found myself at an early career crisis point. I had to acknowledge that I was not interested in working this way or working only in this way.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, I joined the Arts Therapy training where I rediscovered the need for freedom and creativity. I worked as a Creative Director and delivered psychology-arts projects and creative educational therapeutic workshops in the UK for almost five years. While it was an inspiring and highly rewarding job, and I was very lucky to have it, yet there was still something missing.

Looking for inroads into my restless longing, I sat down and gave myself the space and the freedom to explore what was most meaningful to me. I found the therapeutic process itself, and the many different possibilities it offered to care for others, intellectually and emotionally empowering.

I was awarded a scholarship and years later I received my Counselling Psychology doctorate (PsychD) from University of Roehampton, in London, where I had the great honour to meet, to be inspired by, and learn from amazing people such as Prof Mick Cooper, Dr Anastasios Gaitanidis, Dr Paola Valerio, Dr Edith Steffen, Dr Joel Vos, and many others. My doctorate thesis explored many different ways that people may relate to personal mortality.

I am registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and the British Psychological Society (BPS). I have over 5 years’ experience working in NHS primary and secondary care, and community counselling service. I have worked with patients with a range of mental health issues. At present, in addition to my private practice where I offer individual counselling and psychological therapy, I work as a Counselling Psychologist in secondary care for the NHS.

 

Publications & Presentations

I am also a speaker and a writer. I created and delivered interactive presentations on a variety of topics such as ‘Perversion in Psychoanalysis’, ‘Critical Pluralism’, and ‘Complexity in Contemporary Psychoanalysis’. I was invited to present my research project ‘Assessing Multiple Meanings of Personal Mortality’ at the BPS Counselling Psychology Annual Conference 10-11 July, 2020.

I have published (or preparing to publish) my doctoral research project and several papers on psychoanalysis and psychotherapy:

The development and validation of the multidimensional meanings of personal mortality measure (MMPMM)
Meistaite, E., & Pauli, G., Cooper, M. (2020). Manuscript in preparation.

Grasping the complexity of evolving worlds in therapy: A case study
Meistaite, E., Gaitanidis, A., & Valerio, P. (2020). Manuscript in preparation.

Impossible to do, but possible to say: Using countertransference in the trainer-trainee relationship
Ayling, R., Meistaite, E., & Valerio, P. (2018), In P. Valerio (Ed.), Introduction to countertransference in therapeutic practice: A myriad of mirrors (pp. 99-112). London: Routledge.