Frequently Asked Questions

How are your 1:1 private sessions delivered?
What are your qualifications and experience?
Why should I come to a group event or workshop?
Do I need to have meditation experience?
I can’t sit still for too long. Do we need to sit on the floor, and what if I need to move?
What should I wear?
Who comes to your events?
What are Mornings of Mindfulness?
What are workshops about?
What are courses about?

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How are your 1:1 private sessions delivered?

I work with clients over Zoom, by phone, and also in person in Coffs Harbour, NSW, and local clients find it convenient to use a hybrid of these.

Bookings and payments are made online through the Calendly platform, and clients may reschedule online if they need to. If you require an invoice to be sent to a third party please email me or give me a call.

Do I need a coach when I could do things on my own?

Yes, you can work things out on your own.  The clients I work with have often bought online courses and books, but feel they reap much more when they have an accountability partner to help them implement the changes they’ve learned about, and stay on track when they feel wobbly. 

I see you’re based in a psychology practice – is coaching the same as psychotherapy?  

Although there are overlaps between psychotherapy and coaching and I use a blend of psychotherapeutic modalities; although most of my colleagues are psychologists and I am trained in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy; although I have an undergraduate degree in Psychology with an MSc assessed by my university’s School of Psychology; and although coaching can be therapeutic, it is not a psychological therapy, and I am not a psychologist.

This leads me to the question below.

Can I be in psychotherapy and coaching at the same time?

I do have clients who are also in psychotherapy.  This can work well, particularly if there are specific skills the client would like to learn from me, e.g. how to meditate, breathe more optimally, relax more easily, or embed mindful self-compassion strategies into their working day.

On the other hand, I have also had clients who’ve been struggling deep depression which has been impairing their ability to manage on a day-to-day basis.  In these cases I have recommended that they seek psychological therapy, and have welcomed them back to coaching when they feel more able to engage.

Do I need a referral from a GP?

You do not need a referral, no. 

How many sessions do clients need?

You are welcome to book one session at a time, though best results tend to come from a series of regularly-spaced sessions focused on a particular area at a time.  (By regularly spaced, I mean weekly or fortnightly sessions.)  Whilst some clients are happy to touch base with me every month or so, for those looking to attain specific outcomes, it is better that they attend regularly and take a gap for a while if they choose before returning for another series of sessions, than attend the same number of sessions at ad hoc intervals over a year.

If you would like to go through a structured program, I have a number of options available depending on the outcomes you are looking for and the time you have to put into the program between sessions. 

At the end of each session I ask clients what they would like to remember from the session and how they might integrate what they’ve found useful into their daily life.  I usually email the action steps my clients have suggested for themselves to my clients, along with useful resources and links.  Feedback I receive is that this helps them consolidate their understandings, put the concepts and skills we’ve covered into practice, and keep their momentum up. 

Do you work with participants of Australia’s National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)?

Yes. 

I work with adult NDIS participants with strategies (such as emotional regulation and communication skills) that are related to specific NDIS goals.

I also work with parents and carers of NDIS participants under the Capacity Building:  Training for Parents and Carers.  In our sessions we explore strategies for both them and those they care for in the area of distress tolerance, emotional regulation and the importance of co-regulation, burnout and compassion fatigue, and self-care.

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What are your qualifications and experience?

I was certified as a mindfulness instructor in 2005 by the Center for Mindfulness (Massachusetts Medical School) and the Centre for Mindfulness Research and Practice (Bangor University). I have an MSc in Mindfulness-based Approaches to Healthcare, a teacher qualification and degree in Education, and a degree in Psychology. I’m also a Credentialed Practitioner of Advanced Coaching.

Since 1989, I’ve taught adults in a variety of settings, and in 2006 began using Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy and running classes and professional trainings in prisons and mental health units, and workshops for businesses, carers, nurses, psychologists and non-governmental organisations.

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Why should I come to a group event or workshop?

Sometimes it’s helpful to work alone or 1:1, and at other times, it’s great to be part of a group. Whether it’s meditating, discussing, sharing or simply listening, a group experience can facilitate huge shifts as we learn from each other, realise that we’re not alone with our worries or challenges, and develop a sense of bonding, community and friendship.

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Do I need to have meditation experience?

You don’t need to have meditation experience – beginners are welcome. On the other hand, many people who attend the mini-retreats do have meditation experience, and appreciate the chance to refresh or deepen their practice, or simply practise in the company of others.

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I can’t sit still for too long. Do we need to sit on the floor, and what if I need to move?

We use chairs, though you are welcome to bring meditation equipment if you have it, or try mine out. You will be invited to experiment with seating and find a posture that is both comfortable to you and will help you feel awake and alert. Whilst there is often benefit in sticking to a particular position for a little longer than we usually would, being kind to yourself and your body, and following the advice of your health professionals about what you should and shouldn’t do is more important than following my suggestions.

Everything is optional and participants are encouraged to make the adjustments they need to. It might be, for example, that you would prefer to lie down during a sitting meditation, or engage in only the subtlest of movements during a stretching practice.

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What should I wear?

You don’t need to wear anything special, as long as you’re comfortable and can breathe easily at the waist. Sometimes we do gentle movements, so if you’ve come straight from work you might want to bring something to change into. As we relax we can get a bit chilly, so dressing in layers is a good idea.

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Who comes to your events?

I work with men and women 18 years and up. I’ve worked with teachers, lawyers, psychologists, business people, builders, graphic designers, politicians, carers, physiotherapists, psychiatrists, GPs and even a Buddhist nun! Others were studying, unemployed, on disability or retired.

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What are Mornings of Mindfulness?

A Morning of Mindfulness is a mini-retreat (usually held on a Saturday 9am – 12pm) that gives you the chance to immerse yourself in a range of guided meditations. On occasion these are offered with a co-facilitator or are presented by another teacher who will have his or her own outline preferences.

The basic outline is usually as follows:

  • There will be a brief introduction, and you’ll be invited to say hello to one or two people around you and find out a little about them. You won’t be asked to talk in front of the whole group.
  • You’ll be asked to keep anything that’s said in the group private. We all have ups and downs, and we want to keep this a safe space.
  • Even if you’re running very late, please come in anyway and make yourself at home – you are so welcome.
  • We’ll have a short break half-way through. Help yourself to some herbal tea, and have some quiet time or get to know a few others.
  • Anyone can leave at any time, but if you need to leave early please let me or my helper know so we don’t have to wonder how or where you are.
  • You’ll be given time to check in with one or two people at the end to reflect on how you’ve found our time together.

Many people see the mini-retreats as opportunities to get out of the ‘doing mode’ of mind and check-in with themselves. They return time and time again to immerse themselves in ‘the simplicity of being’.

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What are your workshops about?

Workshops I offer are half- or full-day events, usually held over weekends. They are designed to meet the learning preferences of different people, and might include personal reflection, private, pair or small-group exercises, journaling, informative content, inspiration, optional whole-group discussion and meditation.

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What are your courses about?

Courses I offer focus on mindfulness, self-compassion, the habits of happiness and the skills of emotional intelligence. They vary from three to nine sessions. Most classes are held each week for two hours in the evenings, or sometimes on Friday mornings.

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