How to Help the Negative or Pessimistic Child

We’ve all encountered a ‘Negative Nancy’ in our lives —  the type of person who is constantly expecting the worst out of any given situation.

While many such people consider themselves ‘realists’, in reality, there’s not a whole lot of benefit to this kind of negative thinking.

And for the relatively sheltered and protected time of childhood, this attitude is particularly unproductive.

So how can we help a pessimistic child to take a more positive approach to life?

Read more…

A New Way to Look at Depression

Evolutionary psychology proposes ways of helping us to understand our cognitive processes by looking to the past.

Just like human beings have physically adapted to our environment in order to survive, evolutionary psychology suggests that we adapted cognitively the same way…

And that many mental and emotional reactions have served an important evolutionary purpose.

Now some psychologists are offering a new way to look at depression through an evolutionary lens.

Read more…

‘Happiness Lessons’ to be Introduced into UK Schools

In great news for British students and their families, the UK Department of Education will be investing over 2 million dollars in mental health support over the next few years.

This comes as a response to what has been called a ‘youth mental health epidemic’…

With around 10 per cent of UK students suffering from a diagnosable mental health condition.

Many students suffer from symptoms of anxiety and depression directly as a result of the extreme academic pressures they face in schooling.

So it’s a proactive and thoroughly appropriate response to tackle these issues within the school framework.

Read more…

Mindfulness for Kids — at Home and at School

There is no denying — or avoiding — the fact that children, and even very young children, are suffering from more anxiety than any generation before them.

This increase has been heavily documented in university research papers, psychology studies, and even noted by education professionals…

Up to 55 per cent of teachers in the UK have reported a dramatic rise in anxiety levels in their students in the last few years, and in Australia, the figures are similar. 

Read more…

Get to Know Our Staff Psychologists: Danielle Kaufman

One of the most important things when it comes to seeing a psychologist is building rapport.

While qualifications are essential, without positive rapport children simply won’t benefit from counselling…

So we invite you to get to know a bit more about our staff before you consider engaging their help.

First up, meet Dani Kaufman — a talented and skilled psychologist with a wealth of experience working with kids.

Read more…

Distinguishing Behaviours — The Difference Between Shyness, Introversion and Social Anxiety

During the formative years of childhood and adolescence, it can be difficult for a parent to understand what their child is going through.

Particularly when it comes to mental and emotional challenges, the lines between what’s normal and what might need to be addressed can be very blurry.

Depression versus sadness; anxiety versus stresslearning difficulties versus disengagement…

They can all present overlapping signs and symptoms.

That’s why psychologists are constantly researching and analysing these conditions, so that they can be addressed and rectified as early as possible.

Social anxiety, shyness and introversion are three concepts which can be confused for this exact reason — they all lie on the same spectrum.

But while the latter two can be harmless and even positive personality traits, social anxiety can interrupt a sufferer’s ability to function on a day to day basis.

So what’s the difference?

Read more…

How Therapy Can Rewire Your Brain

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is an approach used by many psychologists to help their patients deal with a variety of mental and emotional challenges.

It’s a problem-focused, action-orientated talking therapy that has proven to be extremely beneficial in the treatment of depression and anxiety. 

And the principle that underlies the therapy is that if we can change the way we think, we can change the way we feel…

By training ourselves to identify negative, dysfunctional and destructive thoughts (a less intuitive task than you may think), we can then begin to work on replacing them with healthy ones. 

And the benefits of CBT have been championed by psychologists for decades.

But now, new research suggests that CBT can not only change our thought patterns, it can literally rewire our brains! 

Read more…

How to Become a Better Listener

A concept that comes up a lot on this blog and in our dealings with children and parents is the importance of listening. 

Really listening to your children is an integral way to build or maintain a healthy and mutually respectful relationship.

And especially for adolescents, having someone to talk to openly and honestly about the challenges you are facing can make all the difference…

For parents, actively listening to your children helps you to understand where they’re coming from in all matter of issues, from bullying to problematic behaviour or depression and anxiety

And this can help you to make better choices in your interactions with them going forward.

But how do we know if we’re being good listeners? 

And how can we become better listeners?

Read more…

A New Way to Look at Anxiety

We all experience ‘anxiety’ in some form throughout our lives.

We can describe this anxiety as a feeling of worry or nervousness about something.

And for many people, these uncomfortable feelings are both fleeting and surmountable.

In many situations, it may even be more appropriate to ascribe these feelings to ‘stress’, rather than anxiety.

But for those who suffer more seriously or frequently from anxiety, or even from generalised anxiety disorder, it can be hard for those who don’t to relate.

Read more…

Dealing with the Immense Pressures of VCE

We’ve talked about motivation and success when it comes to study and examinations.

But an increasingly important issue surrounding these ideas is the pressure that is put on our students…

By the education system, by parents, and by the students themselves.

Studies show that in Australia, we are bordering on an adolescent mental health epidemic.

Instances of anxiety and depression in young people are becoming increasingly and alarmingly common.

And a huge source of these conditions is stress from schooling.

The pressure is even taking a toll on parents, with a mental health organisation setting up extra counselling services for parents of high school students.

So how do we help our kids, and ourselves, to deal with the pressure?

Read more…

How can we help?

Book your initial parent consultation to get the right advice for your child's needs

Book Now »

Got any questions before you book? Click here to request a phone call and a psychologist will call you at a convenient time (prospective clients only). Please keep in mind we are often busy with clients but we do our best to respond to all enquiries within one business day. :-)

Why have 2,866* parents chosen us?

(*As of 24th July, 2019.)

  • Private and confidential: We are a private service so you will receive 100% independent and confidential advice.
  • Child and adolescent experts: We only work with school age children, teenagers and parents.
  • Education and school experts: We will help you navigate the school system to get the best possible results for your child.
  • Qualified and experienced: We only employ psychologists with a master degree or higher and experience working in schools.
  • Fast appointments: We don't keep a waiting list and see most new clients within 7 days.
  • Convenient location: We are in Middle Park with easy access from many parts of Melbourne and unrestricted street parking.
  • Trusted methods: We use approaches that are strongly supported by research evidence or clinical experience.
  • Lovely beachside office: You will love our quiet, modern and attractive office, with its beach and ocean-themed rooms.