Common Counselling Questions
Q1. Why should I see a counsellor?
Speaking with a counselor allows you to talk through your personal concerns, develop coping strategies, and increase self-awareness. You are the master of your life; however, if you’re feeling stressed, experiencing relationship problems, or simply need someone to talk to, I can assist you in developing methods and strategies to cope and move forward.
Seeing a counselor can complement other mental health or medical services, as they approach you as a whole person and take you as you present yourself to them. Counselors don’t make diagnoses of any mental health conditions but assist you in developing strategies to cope with what is going on for you.
Tim is a counselor who is deeply empathetic, interested in your story, and eager to help you live your life true to yourself. Tim has had many unique life experiences that translate to a broad appreciation for your circumstances, whatever they may be.
Q2. How many sessions should I attend?
The number of sessions will depend on the support you need and the goals set in your early sessions. You may like as few as five sessions or as many as you feel is necessary to achieve your outcomes. The number of sessions will be determined between us.
Q3. Can I claim any part of the session cost through Medicare or Private Health Insurance?
Unfortunately, Medicare or private health insurance rebates are not available for counselling at this time.
Q4. What happens if I need to cancel?
24 hours notice is required for cancelled sessions, this can be achieved through the client portal (how you signed in to make the appointment).
Less than 24 hours notice will not be refunded. Exceptional circumstances may be considered.
Q5. What if I don’t feel like the sessions are working?
Please raise your concerns with Nicole and they will be addressed as quickly as possible. The relationship between a counsellor and client is paramount to good outcomes in counselling, so please do address any concerns you may have.
Q6. Why is payment taken before the service is delivered?
As this is an online service, payment prior to the session make the experience simple and straightforward. Prior payment allows us to utilise all of the time available during the appointment without disruption.
Q7. What happens in the first session?
The first session tends to focus on building a relationship with a counsellor and to discuss why you feel counselling will help you at this point. The first session may be very emotional, tiring, confronting or none of the three depending on your circumstances. I will aim to help you feel at ease to share your story.
Q8. What timezone is my booking?
When we move into daylight savings the Australian states timezones become a little more complex. Your bookings from the Client Portal will be in your timezone. Any reminders (email/SMS) will contain the Brisbane timezone, for the Eastern States that will be an hour earlier than the booking you made. So please take note when the reminders come to you
Q9. Do I need to prepare for the session?
It is important that you are ready for the session, in a place that is safe, private and quiet to participate in the session. The bigger screen you have the better you will be able to see my face, so do your best to have a good position to engage.
Please ensure any other devices (such as a phone) are turned to off or switched to flight mode to ensure your conversation remains private.
I would encourage you to bring a pen and paper in case there are some notes you may like to take during the session.
Ensure your technology can work and please, don’t stress if something goes wrong. It can happen and we can adapt as we need to.
Be sure to be dressed appropriately ready for your appointment and please, don’t have an alcoholic drink for the session.
Q10. Why is there so much to fill out before I even attend a session?
There are two reasons for the assessments I ask you to complete for me. The first reason is to ensure I conduct some due diligence in terms of your suitability for counselling with me online. Some situations are outside of my scope of practice and in certain cases you may be in a situation that is best served by someone else. The second reason is that these assessments take time and I didn’t want them to detract from the session, I feel our time is better spent talking about what you want, rather than conducting assessments.
The contract and terms are all about setting boundaries for the online counselling space. It is a little different to face to face, so there are extra details in there that you wouldn’t find in a bricks and mortar counselling office. It ensures you get the best out of your time within the session.
Q11. Does online therapy/counselling work?
Studies have been conducted around the efficacy of online counselling and have found that it can be as effective as face to face appointments in some cases more effective (depending on the client’s circumstances).
Q12. Why online counselling?
Online counselling provides an opportunity for you to seek support without the impost of attending appointments during the day or leaving your home in the evening. It provides flexibility and privacy.
Q13. Will my information be private?
I take your privacy to be of the highest priority and have chosen my systems according to their attention to security.
Our sessions will be conducted either with Google meeting. Both offer end-to-end encryption to ensure your privacy. I will not be conducting sessions with Skype or Facetime as they do not meet international privacy standards
Grief and Loss Counselling
Q1: What is grief, and how is it different from mourning?
A: Grief is the emotional response to loss, while mourning is the outward expression of that grief. Grief can encompass a range of emotions, thoughts, and behaviors, while mourning involves the rituals and customs used to express and process those feelings.
Q2: How long does the grieving process typically last?
A: There is no set timeline for grieving, as it is a highly individualized experience. The duration of grief can vary depending on factors such as the nature of the loss, the individual’s coping mechanisms, and the level of support available.
Q3: When is it appropriate to seek grief and loss counseling?
A: Grief counselling can be beneficial at any stage of the grieving process. If you find that your grief is overwhelming, persistent, or interfering with your daily life, seeking professional help can provide valuable support and coping strategies.
Q4: What can I expect in a grief counselling session?
A: Grief counselling provides a safe and supportive space to explore and express your feelings. The counselor may use various therapeutic approaches to help you process your grief, develop coping mechanisms, and find meaning in the midst of loss.
Q5: Can children and teenagers benefit from grief counselling?
A: Absolutely. Children and teenagers may struggle to understand and express their grief. Grief counseling tailored to their developmental stage can help them navigate the complex emotions associated with loss.
Q6: How do I know if I’m experiencing complicated grief?
A: Complicated grief is characterized by intense, prolonged symptoms that may interfere with daily life. These symptoms can include persistent feelings of disbelief, intense yearning, or difficulty accepting the loss. If you’re unsure, consulting with a grief counselor can provide clarity.
Q7: Is online grief counseling as effective as in-person sessions?
A: Yes, online grief counselling can be just as effective as in-person sessions. Many individuals find the convenience of virtual sessions to be beneficial, especially during times when in-person counselling may be challenging.
Q8: What if my friends and family don’t understand my grief?
A: It’s common for people to have varied responses to loss. Grief counselling can provide a space where you feel understood and supported. Additionally, counseling can help you communicate your needs to friends and family, fostering better understanding.
Q9: How can I support a grieving friend or family member?
A: Offer your presence, listen without judgment, and avoid trying to “fix” their grief. Simple gestures like sending a card, cooking a meal, or offering assistance with daily tasks can be profoundly meaningful.
Q10: Is grief counselling only for recent losses, or can it help with unresolved grief from the past?
A: Grief counselling is beneficial for both recent and past losses. Unresolved grief from the past can resurface, and counseling can provide a supportive environment to process these emotions and find healing.
Q11: Is it normal to experience physical symptoms during grief?
A: Yes, grief can manifest physically, leading to symptoms like fatigue, changes in appetite, and disturbances in sleep. These reactions are common responses to the emotional toll of loss.
Q12: How can grief counselling help with the overwhelming emotions of guilt and regret?
A: Grief counselling provides a supportive space to explore and process feelings of guilt and regret. Counsellors can guide you in understanding these emotions and finding healthy ways to cope and forgive yourself.
Q13: Can grief affect relationships with friends and family?
A: Yes, grief can strain relationships as individuals navigate their own grief journeys. Counselling can offer tools to communicate effectively, fostering understanding and support among family and friends during challenging times.
Q14: Is it possible to find meaning or purpose after a significant loss?
A: Absolutely. Grief counselling often involves exploring the search for meaning. Counsellors can assist you in finding constructive ways to remember and honour your loved one while discovering personal growth and purpose.
Q15: How do I help children cope with grief after the loss of a family member?
A: Children grieve differently than adults. Grief counselling for children focuses on age-appropriate activities, discussions, and support, helping them express their emotions and understand the concept of loss.
Q16: Can grief counselling assist in coping with sudden or traumatic loss?
A: Yes, grief counselling is particularly beneficial in cases of sudden or traumatic loss. Counsellors are trained to address the unique challenges posed by these situations, providing a safe space for processing shock, grief, and complex emotions.