Psychology and CounsellingCounselling offers an opportunity to talk with a psychologist or counsellor in a confidential and supportive setting about problems or issues that concern you.
What is Counselling and How Might it Help?
Counselling offers an opportunity to talk with a psychologist or counsellor in a confidential and supportive setting about problems or issues that concern you. It is a therapeutic approach that seeks to help you to explore and better understand current difficulties, and to make wise choices in your life. Counselling aims to help individuals become more aware of their personal resources and strengths, develop skills for coping with difficulties, take responsibility for their own decisions and solutions, and to thus be more self reliant in the future. It helps develop skill in both personal relationships and social groupings.
The purpose of counselling is to help you work towards living in a way that you feel is more satisfying or resourceful. The goals will vary according to your needs. Psychologists and counsellors aim to offer non-judgmental support, and respect your values and capacity for choice. They don’t generally give advice, or tell you what you should think and feel and do in relation to your situation, since the purpose of counselling is to help you make your own decisions, but they can assist you to work out how best to deal with your situation and overcome your difficulties.
Why have Counselling?
Counselling can help with a wide range of problems, so anything that is worrying you and disrupting your normal work, study or personal life can be talked over in counselling. You might seek counselling for a range of reasons – perhaps you are experiencing difficulties and anxieties in your life, or it may be you are having problems with relationships (with friends, partners or family), or needing help in coping with a crisis, pressure at work, the stress of bereavement or illness, feelings of hopelessness, depression, stress, loneliness, lack of self-worth or confidence. It might be something that happened in the past that is still causing emotional stress, or it might have developed more recently. A particular event may have caused the distress or it might be about something that has been going on for some time.
There is also wide variation in the degree of distress that people are experiencing when they come for counselling. Some are aware that something is troubling them, although they’re not experiencing too much difficulty and they may not feel their situation is urgent. Others may already be feeling extremely distressed, perhaps even suicidal. Whatever the nature of your situation, you may find counselling to be of help. We are happy to talk over any problem, big or small. Some people are concerned about taking up the psychologist’s or counsellor’s time, but no problem is too small or unusual and it often helps to talk something through in a safe and confidential environment.
Psychologists and counsellors take confidentiality very seriously. All client information is treated in confidence. This means that we do not disclose verbal or written information without your permission or consent. The only exceptions to this procedure are where there is a legal obligation to disclose (very rare), or when the Psychologist believes the client or other people are at serious risk of harm. In these circumstances the consent to pass on these concerns will be sought before information is disclosed, if at all possible.
What is the difference between a Psychologist and a Counsellor?
At our centre we have registered psychologists, counsellors with a Social Work qualification, and counsellors with a Counselling qualification. Generally speaking, counsellors and psychologists here (except the educational psychologist) do similar types of work i.e. mainly therapeutic counselling with individuals, couples and families. Some counsellors have very specific areas of specialization, while most practitioners cover a wide area of experience. All psychologists have completed at least four years training at university. Those with asocial work background have also completed four years at university. Counselling training covers a diverse range of courses, from four years fulltime at a tertiary institution to shorter term part-time courses. The way an individual practitioner works is also influenced by their post-graduate training and experience.
Are rebates available?
Rebates are available from Medicare when a person is referred by a G.P. to a registered
psychologist, or to a social worker or counsellor who is registered with Medicare as a qualified
Mental Health provider. Private Health Fund rebates are available for appointments with
What Specific Issues can be Covered?
At the Bardon Counselling & Natural Therapy Centre there are seven registered counselling psychologists, one educational psychologist, and seven counsellors. Between them these psychologists and counsellors have a diverse range of experience, covering:
• Addictions and co-dependence
• Child abuse
• Children’s behavioural problem
• Children’s learning: learning difficulties, learning disabilities, dyslexia,
• Giftedness, intellectual impairment, attention problems, and speech and language disorders
• Educational and developmental psychology
• Eating problems and body image
• Family dynamics
• Gay and lesbian issues• Grief and loss
• Life planning, life transitions and directions
• Multicultural and cultural diversity issues, often associated with religious diversity
• Panic disorders
• Personality disorders
• Relationships: intimacy, conflict resolution, communication, trust issues
• Self esteem
• Sexual abuse and assault
• Trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder
• Team work
• War Veterans and their families