Counselling and Psychotherapy
Although Counselling and Psychotherapy overlap, there are some differences. Counselors generally focus on specific problems or life changes such as bereavement or addictions, whereas Psychotherapists focus more upon restructuring of the client’s internal processes such as thinking, feeling and core belief’s. Psychotherapy generally takes a longer period of time, depending on the clients needs. Counselling and Psychotherapy is invaluable for treating any crisis situation, management of stress, grief and trauma, relationship or family problems and any emotional or psychological problems. Therapy sessions may be for an individual, a couple, a family or a group, as required.
Consultations are confidential, professional and usually up to an hour in length. Frequency of consultations will depend upon the style of Counselling utilised and the severity of the problem presented and may be either short-term or long-term. Therapy is usually offered face to face but can also be available by telephone, or skype.
See practitioner page for info about counsellors, psychotherapists and psychologists. Please contact practitioners for appointments.
Many people find it hard to cope with the pressures of modern living. Every day, a quarter of a million people miss work because of stress, with 75 per cent of all illnesses thought to be stress-related. And when times are hard, It can be difficult to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Mindfulness is a way of paying attention to the present moment, using techniques like meditation, breathing and yoga. It helps us become more aware of our thoughts and feelings so that instead of being overwhelmed by them, we’re better able to manage them.
Practising mindfulness can give people more insight into their emotions, boost their attention and concentration and improve relationships. It’s proven to help with stress, anxiety, depression and addictive behaviors, and can even have a positive effect on physical problems like hypertension, heart disease and chronic pain.
Mindfulness-based Core Process Psychotherapy
This therapy brings together the practice of Mindfulness Meditation with Core Process Psychotherapy to assist you to be fully present, from moment to moment, with their experience. When we access and learn to stay with our core processes (thinking, feeling, moving, external sensing, and internal sensing) it allows us to explore and change the core material which shapes our lives.
The body never lies, thus, it becomes a door that can be opened to reveal the whole character and belief system of the individual. Core Process Therapy is a powerful way of accessing and transforming limiting beliefs and behaviours. Through compassionate self-study, exercises and mindfulness meditation, we have the opportunity to look deeply at our beliefs and free ourselves from limiting core schemas to live more fully.
Mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
MBCT is based on the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) eight-week program, developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn. Mindfulness-based therapy is used to treat anxiety, depression, and stress related conditions. Research shows that MBSR is enormously empowering for patients with chronic pain, hypertension, heart disease, cancer, and gastrointestinal disorders, as well as for psychological problems such as anxiety and panic.
Mindful Relationship Therapy
In mindful relationships we focus on the relationship to grow both individual’s capacity for personal wholeness, fulfilment and evolution.
Mindful relationship therapy is different to other couples counselling. We appreciate each other’s differences, and do not try to change the other but work with these differences. We discover new skills to communicate and resolve conflicts.
Despite our longing for deeper connection in our relationships, many people find themselves stuck in familiar patterns and lost as to how to overcome these difficulties. This can happen not only in our romantic relationships, but also in other relationships that are important to us, such as with friends, parents, family members, children, co-workers, and neighbours.
The key ingredients that create and sustain a deeply fulfilling relationship:
Take responsibility. Responsibility is the willingness to take ownership over any “baggage” that we bring to our relationships—most of our core wounds, and fears. When we chose to take responsibility for our part in arguments and misunderstandings, we create an space for something different to emerge.
A willingness to be vulnerable. Vulnerability is the courage to open so that we may be seen. We can chose to love and respect ourselves enough to share all of ourselves with our partner, even the parts that we think are unlovable. When we give the gift of vulnerability to our partner, we are opening the space for them to share their vulnerability with us as well. It is only then that we can love each other fully for who we truly are.
Listen deeply to each other. Listening is the gift of our full presence, with an open heart and without judgment or fixing. Often we are listening to form a response. We often want to help by being solution orientated. However, our emotional experiences are not problems, they are simply experiences. Therefore, we suggest listening to your partner’s experiences without trying to fix them.
Form a commitment to each other. Commitment is the conscious choice to be in the relationship. At times it will stir stuff up—it will make you look deeply at yourself and it will ask you to evolve.
Sustaining a conscious relationship requires that both participants choose to be there. I believe there is no shame in choosing to end a relationship when you find that you are both growing in different directions. A conscious relationship is journey not a destination.
Heather can assist you to navigate these challenges and offer an opportunity to find a way out of the loop. Heather can help couples or individuals focus on and study how he or she experiences these inner and outer conflicts. By focusing on the present moment feelings, sensations, thoughts and belief patterns in mindfulness, we can explore the deeper layers contained in each experience. Through acceptance of ourselves we can be more accepting of others.
Brainspotting is a new technique based in brain science used to process release emotional core material. Brainspotting uses eye positioning paired with mindful somatic experiencing to locate and process emotionally charged material. Any life event which causes significant physical and/or emotional injury and distress, in which the person powerfully experiences being overwhelmed, helpless, or trapped, can become a trapped traumatic experience. Emotional material or trauma is stored or frozen in the body, brainspotting can locate and assist the client to process this through activating the body’s healing response. The therapist is attuned to the client, as the client is encouraged to be mindful of and focused on the body. Often words are unnecessary to treat an issue as the memories are stored in the emotional or limbic brain.
Brainspotting is useful for:
- Healing traumatic memories/events
- Inner child work
- Anxiety, fears, phobia’s
- Performance enhancement
- Chronic pain
Mindfulness-based Psychotherapy & Counselling
Mindfulness-based Psychotherapy is a very gentle way of exploring our inner world, in a co-creative way. Mindfulness is used during the session and helps support the client to be present and witness what is happening in a compassionate way. Both client and therapist are held in the present moment working with what arises, in an atmosphere of curiosity, and acceptance.
In this state we can exploring the core processes (thinking, feeling, and moving, internal and external sensing) which allows us to discover the core material and belief’s which shapes our lives. This therapy is a powerful tool for transformation, working with the body, breath, and sound, and discovering creative ways to change beliefs and behaviour that hold us back.
Brief Solution Focused Therapy
This is short term counselling or therapy focusing on specific issues. Desired outcomes can be evident in as few as six sessions. It’s not necessary to go deep into your past to find ways of changing your future. You can learn to change behaviours that don’t work for you as well as you’d like.
You can learn:
- How to improve your techniques when relating to others
- recognise unhealthy pattern of behaviour and how to change them
- New options to change how you experience things
- respond in a more positive way
- manage stress or anxiety more effectively
- Build meaningful relationships and improve communications
Together we can find ways of helping you to help yourself feel and behave differently. You will be assisted to develop strategies for positive change. You will receive support to assist you explore your concerns. you can build resilience to emotional problems through gaining inner strength.
Most of us experience times which are painful, confusing and a struggle. For some these problems have lasted a very long time and come with symptoms that are very hard to live with. For others they might be experiencing a shorter period of crisis and confusion. Seeing a caring psychologist can help you express pent up feelings, understand the problem more clearly, find solutions, learn strategies to resolve your issues, and use different tools to heal your emotions.
For clients accessing Medicare through the Better Access to Healthcare scheme you need to be aware of the following:
1. If you have not used up to 10 sessions during the year just come as usual – you do not need a review to your plan. Once 6 sessions have been used I will provide a letter for your G.P. to provide another ‘review’ (not referral) for a further 4 sessions. You can only have a ‘total’ of 10 sessions under Medicare per calendar year. Through there may be an additional 6 sessions for exceptional circumstances.
2. If you used up 10 sessions during 2012 you will need a ‘review’ (not a referral) to your plan from your G.P. This will allow a further 10 sessions for 2013.
If you wish to make your Medicare sessions more cost effective you may choose to book 90 minute sessions when you use them.