Frequently Asked Questions
What is counselling?
Counselling allows people to better understand who they are. People are provided the opportunity to explore past and present issues that may be impacting their life today. As people explore their thoughts and emotions they develop more clarity and greater self awareness which can lead to making positive changes in their lives.
Counselling can be short-term. Usually this involves dealing with an immediate issue and may be focused on managing the situation or problem, or adjusting to a life change. This type of counselling often is focused on developing skills, becoming aware of patterns and how to break them.
More in depth counselling, sometimes called psychotherapy can deal with long term difficulties and can require more frequent sessions over a greater period of time. Developing life skills and becoming aware of patterns can be a part of in depth counselling, however there is also a focus on understanding yourself and your emotions and exploring underlying patterns that impact your life and relationships.
Whether short-term counselling or longer term counselling is most appropriate for you will be determined by the nature of the issues you would like to address and your goals for counselling. This will be discussed in the initial consultation with you.
What can I expect from a Psychologist?
Most people are not sure what to expect in counselling and this can cause some anxiety when choosing a psychologist. You are entitled to have an empathic, supportive and non-judgemental therapist who provides an environment that feels emotionally safe to explore your issues.
All psychologists will respect your personal beliefs and values and will provide counselling in a context absolute confidentiality. This is in accordance with the Australian Psychological Society Code of Ethics.
Ling is a qualified Psychologist who is a Full Member of the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and adheres to its Code of Ethics.
Link to Australian Psychological Society Website:
What is the difference between a Psychologist and a Psychiatrist?
Psychologists are required to study for four years and then do two years post-graduate practical training. They are required by law to be registered with the Psychological Registration Board in their State or Territory. They have specific training in counselling and will work with clients to develop strategies to help clients deal effectively with issues in their life. They may also look at underlying issues that inhibit a client’s quality of mental health and healthy relationships. No referral is required to see a pychologist.
Psychiatrists have studied medicine first and then gone on to study the mind. They are medical doctors and therefore can prescribe and monitor medication. Some psychiatrists (but not all) are also trained and skilled in counselling. A referral from a GP is required to see a psychiatrist.
Psychologists and Psychiatrists can work together to help clients. Alternatively Psychologists and GPs can also work together to ensure the client receives the support and/or medication that is required.