Areas of Special Interest
I have experience working to reduce the influence of problems such as worry, depression, feelings of not measuring up, substance-use, relationship issues, chronic illness, eating difficulties, grief, shame, procrastination and perfectionism.
Frequently people consider counselling when they feel that the problems they are encountering are stuck or overwhelming. Other times there is an issue that does not feel that big but is getting in the way of living a contented life. Often the attempts people make to cope with challenges have outlived their usefulness and these ‘strategies’ then invite problems of their own. Sometimes it can feel as if problems are inextricably entwined with who we are, rather than happening to us, making it hard to recognise our values, hopes, and resources and alternative options. Having a space to unpack your relationship with the difficulties you experience makes a difference.
What Can You Expect?
- Collaborative and respectful conversations which focus upon areas that are important to you
- Developing shared understandings of the ways in which problems have been sustained in your life
- Examining and strengthening your commitments, skills, hopes and values in order to change your relationship with the problem(s) and diminish or alter its influence in your life
- A greater sense of agency and personal influence
- A growing sense of preferred possibilities for yourself, your relationships and your life
Within narrative approaches ‘change’ begins as people examine the effects of a problem and their attempts to deal with a problem, on their identity, behaviour, and relationships. Unpacking and locating some of the taken-for-granted ideas people hold about themselves and the world, is key. To then consider the ways that power shapes these thoughts, feelings and practices as well as working to develop novel or previously unconsidered possibilities, enables us to envision and enliven a different kind of being in the world. People can look to the resources and values they already bring to bear (or would like to bring to bear), in ways that improve wellbeing. In this work I am committed to holding optimism and respect.
Registrations and Professional Memberships
- Member, Registered with NZ Association of Counsellors (MNZAC)
- PhD in Psychology (Auckland University)
- Graduate Diploma in Narrative Counselling (Unitec in Auckland)
Background and Experience
- PhD in psychology from Auckland University (2000-2004)
- Post-doctoral study at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom (2004-2006)
- Graduate diploma in narrative counselling at Unitec in Auckland 2006-2008
- Working at the Eating Difficulties Education Network (EDEN), a charitable organization, for over 10 years including leading the agency for the last 3 of those 1999-2010
- Part time private/contract counselling in Auckland since 2007
- Part time counselling and group facilitation work at University of Auckland’s Health and Counselling Service since 2011 (ongoing)