By: Sarah van Ree, Clinical Team Lead/Psychologist

Psychologists are part-detective, part inquisitive toddler, gently unpacking why we do what we do. Isn’t it interesting that we are simultaneously bored and grateful, moving and cycling between the drudgery of the minutiae of life to the bigger perspective?

Recently, I have been reminded of the joy within therapy of digging deeper, delving behind the standard answers, gently pushing, where appropriate, to the part that notices the inherent complexity of us as humans. I became a psychologist in part because I love stories and am endlessly fascinated by why we do things. Why do certain people live ‘rent-free’ in our brains? How do others earn our respect? Why are some things cool and who makes them cool? (Do the cool kids even say cool?)

I was fortunate to have the inspirational and brilliant Dr. John Roodenburg emphasise the core principle of ‘individual differences’ during my master's program at Monash University. This is the concept that though I have been practicing as a psychologist since 2010, I have never met you before: the you that is complicated, unique, ever-changing and the you that is an expert on your situation. The idea that though I might know of your culture, life stage and greater situation, I do not know what it is like to be you in your world. And so, I humbly try to bring curiosity to our sacred therapy space. I try to notice my assumptions and temper my observations and analyses with a huge grain of salt.  Together, we work in partnership to try to make our time together relevant and practical and any ideas that may come genuine and doable.

At Northside Psychology, we lean into our values of commitment and abundance, trying to brainstorm what an abundant life would look like for you and what skills and strengths you can use within that. Along the way, our commitment to you is to be curious and led by your feedback to make sure you feel secure, seen and strengthened. Effective and innovative therapists self-reflect on their practice and regularly seek feedback. Clarifying and solidifying the therapist-client relationship is integral for progress.

Therapy is a huge, vulnerable step. We’ll be there with you: checking in, curiously noticing and humbly changing to meet your needs.