About Dr Jim Byrne
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Dr Jim Byrne is the creator of Cognitive Emotive Narrative Therapy (CENT), which is a fusion of REBT, CBT, TA, Zen, Object Relations, Narrative approaches, and moral philosophy. 


Doctor of Counselling:

Jim Byrne holds the degree of Doctorate in Counselling (DCouns) from the UK's University of Manchester, School of Education; based on almost six years of study and the submission of a doctoral thesis.  He is a Fellow of the International Society of Professional Counsellors (ISPC).  He works as a professional counsellor, and is Executive Director of the Institute for Cognitive Emotive Narrative Therapy.

If you need help with coaching, counselling or therapy for a range of problems - including anxiety, depression, anger, stress, self confidence or relationship problems - then Dr Byrne can help you, on the basis of his more than fifteen years experience in private practice.


A good counsellor will remain vulnerable in their relations with clients: “If as counsellors we hide behind the safety of our professional role, our clients will keep themselves hidden from us.  If we become merely technical experts and leave our own reactions, values, and self out of our work, the result will be sterile counseling”. 

Gerald Corey, Theory and Practice of Counseling and Psychotherapy, page 15. (32)


DrJim_in-Scarboro_2010c.jpgHello, My name is Jim Byrne, and I have been in private practice as a counsellor/ psychotherapist for more than sixteen years; at ABC Coaching and Counselling Services, in Hebden Bridge and Halifax, West Yorkshire, UK; and worldwide over the internet and the telephone system. As at 5th January 2015, I am in my seventeenth year of continuous private practice. During that time I have had the privilege of helping almost 800 individuals, including many couples, to learn how to cope more effectively with their practical, emotional, thinking and relationship problems. As a result, they gained significant personal improvements. To see what some of them said about working with me, check out the Client Testimonials page.

I was originally trained as a Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapist by Dr Al Raitt, who was himself trained by Dr Albert Ellis, in New York City. Up to the time of his death, Al ran the Institute for REBT in Bristol. I successfully completed a one-year training programme there as a Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapist, or REBT therapist: (December 1998 - November 1999), which accords me Qualified Therapist Status. I also completed a three year Diploma course, as described below, in Humanistic, Existential, Psychoanalytic, Behavioural, Cognitive, Cognitive-Behavioural, Eclectic and Integrative Theory and Procedure. And, more recently, I have undergone updating and refresher training in REBT at the new Centre for REBT at the University of Birmingham.  Lately my interests have turned towards the integration of Rational/Cognitive therapy with Narrative and Psychodynamic therapies, plus Object Relations, Attachment theory, moral philosophy and Zen Buddhism.

Contact details:


Dr Jim Byrne
Doctor of Counselling
ABC Coaching and Counselling Services
27 Wood End, Keighley Road,
West Yorkshire
HX7 8HJ - UK

Telephone: 01422 843 629 (from inside the UK)

or 44 1422 843 629 (from outside the UK)

Email: Dr Jim Byrne at ABC Coaching


I have an MA in Education, which included a significant amount of psychology (Open University, 1994: 01908 653003); a Diploma (with Distinction) in Counselling Psychology and Psychotherapy (Rusland College, Bath, 2004: 01225 313184); a Professional Certificate in Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (from the Institute for Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy, Bristol, 1999); plus a Primary Certificate in Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy from the Albert Ellis Institute, New York. (Confirm with the Registrar of the International Society of Professional Counsellors, at ISPC Website.).

Here are my two main accreditations/registrations:

♣ Licensed Fellow of the International Society of Professional Counsellors - (Confirmable at ISPC Website);

♣ CCC-Registered Counsellor - (Confirmable at Counselling CCC Website);

My Doctorate in Counselling is from the University of Manchester. (Confirm by email to: Dr William West or Dr Clare Lennie at the Education Faculty).  This involved studying: (a) Approaches to mental and emotional health and psychopathology; (b) Counselling, psychotherapy and society; and (c) Counselling in various contexts.  In addition: (d) I studied current approaches to the teaching and learning of research ethics in counselling and social care contexts; (e) I wrote my thesis on the subject in item (d); and in parallel (f) I began a study of how to model (or represent) the mind of the counselling client.

Unlike the situation in the USA, British counsellors/psychotherapists agree to be subject to lifelong supervision of the quality of their work, and the nature of their relationships with their clients. I currently receive regular supervision (or consultative support) from a senior colleague: Dr Clare Lennie, at the University of Manchester, UK.  (Clare was my doctoral supervisor in the period 2003-2009).

I also consulted Dr David Wallin for supervision, because of his expertise in the subject of Attachment in Psychotherpay.  Prior to David, my work was supervised by Professor Ed Jacobs PhD, the creator of Impact Therapy, which is a much earlier form of integration of REBT and TA than my own Cognitive Emotive Narrative Therapy (CENT). See: Ed Jacob's CV; and the Impact Therapy Associates website.


I am also subject to both the ISPC and CCC Complaints Procedures. (See the *Accreditation and Ethics* page on this website.; and the ISPC Website; and also the Counselling CCC Website). 

My style of working is more like a "friendly philosopher" and "wise guide", combined with a "warm parent figure" progressing to "companion", rather than a "cold and clinical doctor". I use an integrated range of thinking and narrative frameworks to conceptualize client problems, as described on the 'What is CENT?' page.  Some of these frameworks and techniques are original creations of CENT, and some come from Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT/CBT), supported by elements of Transactional Analysis (TA), Zen Philosophy, and other modern narrative therapies, including neo-Freudian conceptualizations, like the British Object Relations school (e.g. Klein and Fairbairn); and the Attachment Theorists: (Bowlby, Ainsworth, Main, etc).

My aim is to help you to to resolve your current, adult problems, and/or old, historic problems from your childhood.  I provide an environment in which you can learn and grow, briefly, or longer term.  Ideally I would like to help you to "become your own coach/counsellor" in the shortest possible amount of time, so you can manage your own life better; resolve your own problems; and pursue your own goals.  However, this sometimes takes more than a few sessions.  An integral aspect of the journey is the development of a secure attachment capability in you.

What I do best is to help you to reframe and resolve your problems, to become more secure and Adult, and to tenaciously pursue your goals in every area of your life, in a surprisingly brief period of time; weeks rather than months in most cases; but sometimes it takes longer. To discuss possibilities, or to get an information pack, please email Jim Byrne, Doctor of Counselling, at
ABC Coaching and Counselling Services. Or you could read and download the Information Pack on the Information Pack page.

If you wish to telephone me, then please call me on 01422 843 629 (from inside the UK)

or 44 1422 843 629 (from outside the UK).



If you are still wondering why you should use my services, rather than those of many dozens of others in this business, then please take a look at the Client Testimonials page.

I have been steeped in the world of counseling, psychology and psychotherapy since 1968, when I had a partial Freudian analysis for problems to do with my relationships with my parents. See my Story of Origins in which I outline the problems I had with my early family and schooling history.

In the 1970s, I explored the person-centred philosophy of Carl Rogers; and in 1980 began to study and use Fritz Perles' Gestalt Therapy to promote my own personal development, and to resolve some of my own problems of daily living. Also from 1980, I began to study Zen philosophy, and to practice daily meditation; and in recent years I have completed a couple of years of Zen Koan training. Also around 1980, I began to study Positive Thinking and to do daily autogenic training, to change my consciousness from negative to positive. In 1984, Renata and I went through marriage guidance using Transactional Analysis (TA), and I then went on to take further training in Relationship Skills, Communications Skills, and various other personal and professional development systems. Then in 1992 I began to study Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy (REBT), and subsequently added in up to twelve other therapies.

My major problem in life was my insecure attachment to my mother, which spoiled many years of my life by making it difficult for me to relate to others in a productive and constructive manner.  See my Story of Relationship for an insight into how I resolved this major problem, and became an individual capable of secure attachment to others.  (Indeed, I have been able to take that resolution to a deeper level, as a result of my current writing therapy work [in December 2014!] - thus demonstrating that self-therapy is a life-long process!)

My principal goals in life are to be happy and healthy, and to teach other people how to be happy and healthy. In this sense I am primarily a 'happiness coach', rather than than a 'deviner of psychological sickness'!

There is now also some research evidence that counselling clients get better results when they work with a psychotherapist who practices Zen meditation.  According to a recent report: "Patients Do Better With Psychotherapist Who Practice Zen Meditation..."

This ScienceDaily (Nov. 18, 2007) article reports that: "An investigation by German researchers headed by Professor Nickel indicates that practicing Zen meditation by psychotherapists matters (to the outcomes achieved by their clients). All therapists direct their attention in some manner during psychotherapy. A special form of directing attention, 'mindfulness', is recommended".

"This study indicates that promoting mindfulness in psychotherapists in training could positively influence the therapeutic course and treatment results in their patients (or clients)". 

(Journal reference: Grepmair, L. ; Mitterlehner, F. ; Loew, T. ; Bachler, E. ; Rother, W. ; Nickel, M. Promoting Mindfulness in Psychotherapists in Training Influences the Treatment Results of Their Patients: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Controlled Study. Psychother Psychosom 2007;76:332-338)

I have been practicing Zen meditation (mindfulness) since 1980, and Zen mind training (Koan training) for several years.


Give me a call, or email me, and we can discuss working together.

Jim Byrne
Doctor of Counselling
ABC Coaching and Counselling Services

Email: Jim Byrne at ABC Coaching.

Telephone: 01422 843 629 (inside UK); or 44 1422 843 629 (outside UK).