— Welcome, I'm Carolyn Gillan

About me

Carolyn Gillan

BSc (Hons), AdvDipIntCouns, HPD, DHP SFBT (Hyp)​

Counsellor · Hypnotherapist · Supervisor · Author · Lecturer
Taking control of your life and your emotions takes courage. Making personal changes can seem a daunting prospect but it is absolutely worthwhile – your happiness matters. I find it incredibly rewarding seeing people turn their lives around to become happier and more fulfilled.
Carolyn Gillan, Counsellor, Hypnotherapist, Supervisor

My background

Originally from South Wales, I moved to Plymouth in 1995 and love being so close to the sea and the moors. I qualified as a therapist more than a decade ago and feel privileged to be able to help people discover and realise new possibilities in their lives.

Why I became a therapist

I know from experience how devastating mental health problems can be and how difficult it can be to find a good counsellor or therapist. My late husband suffered with bipolar disorder – a mood disorder that involves episodes of mania and depression. It was a very difficult time for several years until we found the right support. Inspired by this experience, I trained as a counsellor and hypnotherapist because I wanted to do something that would make a real difference to people’s lives – as cheesy as that sounds!

My qualifications and experience


You can be assured that I have been trained and assessed to a good standard. I gained an Advanced Diploma in Integrative Counselling with the Iron Mill College in Exeter in 2008. The course was accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) — the professional association for the counselling professions in the UK.

In 2015 I became a BACP Accredited Counsellor. Accredited BACP members have to achieve a higher quality standard than registered members. To become accredited I completed hundreds of hours of training, supervision and clinical practice and went through a rigorous application and assessment process.


Also in 2015, I qualified as a hypnotherapist with the Clifton Practice Hypnotherapy Training school and successfully gained the Hypnotherapy Practitioners Diploma (HPD). The HPD is an accredited, nationally recognised qualification. Hypnotherapists who hold the HPD are trained to a high standard and have met rigorous requirements. I gained the status of accredited hypnotherapist with the National Council for Hypnotherapy (NCH) in 2021.

Professional Standards Authority

I am registered with two Professional Standards Authority Accredited Registers – BACP for my work as a counsellor and CNHC (Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council) for my hypnotherapy practice. Registration is not compulsory. I choose to register because I believe it shows my commitment to my profession and to maintaining high standards. Counsellors, psychotherapists and hypnotherapists in the UK are not regulated by law like other healthcare professionals such as doctors or nurses. This means anyone can call themselves a therapist. That is why it is important to choose someone who is registered with a Professional Standards Authority Accredited Register. It is the safest way to ensure that the therapist you choose is competent and trustworthy.

Continuing Professional Development

I am committed to my continuing professional development (CPD) to ensure that I keep my knowledge and skills up to date with current thinking. To this end, I gained a First Class BSc (Hons) Professional Development in Mental Health with Plymouth University in 2021. 

Published author

I am a co-author and co-editor of the book The Art of Solution Focused Hypnotherapy: A Collection of Case Studies, which provides twelve uplifting case studies giving a unique insight into the Solution Focused Hypnotherapy process. I am also the author of a research review article: The effectiveness of group and self-help hypnotherapy for Irritable Bowel Syndrome and the implications for improving patients’ choice and access to treatment, published in Alimentary, Pharmacology & Therapeutics, a peer-reviewed journal that specialises in high quality, clinically relevant original research and review articles in gastroenterology and hepatology.

Visiting lecturer

I am a visiting lecturer on the Foundation Course in Solution Focused Therapy at the University of Plymouth.