My first career was in education. After taking a degree in English Literature at Oxford in 1966 I was planning to enter social work in the field of child guidance. To provide a sound base for this I went to Liverpool University where I followed a year’s course leading to the Diploma in Social Adminstration. Before continuing to the Advanced Diploma, I was advised to gain experience working in schools. I accepted a job in a Sheffield comprehensive, teaching a range of subjects to the more disaffected pupils. Four years later I had turned from my social work idea and moved fully into special education and had taken charge of a Sheffield school for children with emotional difficulties. I had a sabbatical year in 1973 to study at Manchester University for an M.Ed in the education and psychology of “disturbed” children. For 21 years I was a headteacher, working with the students, training staff and playing my part in establishing collaboration between mainstream and special schools across Sheffield. I regard the management training and experience I had over these years as something that has been of great value in my present work. I also learned first-hand about professional stress when I was given the task in 1988 of merging my school with another. In 1994 as the result of a rationalisation of the City’s special education service, I was given the opportunity to take early retirement. So started my new life in the field of counselling and therapy.