Fraught with a galaxy of perils and challenges, we journey through our lives in a vortex of uncertainty. We seek the heady lights of wealth and status... the tender hearths of connection, shelter and love. We strive for causes, for meaning, for purpose and direction. We dream of adventures, conquests, of vibrant days and brighter futures. Yet, amongst this constellation of destinations we hurtle toward, there is a star we all gaze up to, a star we can almost touch, yet feels light years away... the meaning and understanding of ourselves. Remove the titles, theories and sterotypes, this is the power of therapy... to provide a light in the darkness that helps people find their way again and make sense of themselves and their lives. Thinking about seeing a therapist for the first time can feel frightening. For most people, it represents that change is needed and as we all know, change is very difficult. Designed to provide a safe space to explore your inner world, therapy at The Couch helps people to find solutions to obstacles standing in their path and provides them with the tools to cope, grow and shape their lives in a way that is meaningful and authentic. And even though we cannot control how our journey ends, we can control the steps we take. And there isn't a more important step than your first.
Everyone has a story, and I am no different. Graduating from the University of Witwatersrand, with a Masters in Clinical Psychology, I interned at Tara H. Moross Centre and Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital. During my internship at Tara, I worked with both in-patients and out-patients diagnosed with severe psychopathology. Additionally, I was involved in numerous group therapies, developing experience with formulating and running DBT, in-patient psychotherapy and support groups for psychopathology. After Tara, I took up a new internship post at Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital. Here, I worked primarily in the severe psychopathology ward for females where I conducted individual and group therapies. I also aided in managing the Suicide Clinic, performing multiple suicide risk assessments and interventions. Once my internship had concluded, I spent a year working at Sizwe Tropical Disease hospital.
My journey began while at Wits Medical School, where I first began learning about psychiatry. After graduating from medical school, I worked as an intern at Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital and spent time working in the Psychiatric Department. I later returned to work in Psychiatry during my community service. I then stayed on in the Department as a Medical Officer. Thereafter, I went on to complete the 4 year psychiatry specialist training program through WITS and passed the required exams to graduate as a Specialist Psychiatrist. During this time I also participated in research in the field of Neuropsychiatry.
After an educational and rewarding two years as a small business owner, I decided to pursue my keen interest in psychology and commenced with an undergraduate degree majoring in psychology and criminology. After completion of my honours degree in 2004 I gained valuable and varied experience in the fields of academics, corporate wellness and management. In 2012 I returned to university for training as a psychometrist. Subsequent hereto I completed an internship through JvR (Jopie van Rooyen) during which I comprehensively engaged with clinical assessments and organizational selection test batteries. I was also trained and accredited in the use of specialist assessment tools such as the MBTI, the EQ-i2.0-360 and the 16PF.
My journey in becoming a Clinical Psychologist with a specialty in Neuropsychology has been exhilirating and challenging simultaneously. Having been fascinated by both the therapeutic and neuropsychological aspects of psychology, I obtained a Masters degree by dissertation in Research Psychology (cum laude) from the University of Johannesburg. My research focused on the effects of methamphetamine (tik) on neurocognition in current and recovering addicts.
My journey as an Educational Psychologist began during my teaching practical for the subject of Life Orientation. Throughout that time I was approached by a variety of learners seeking emotional and learning support. It was then that I realised that I wanted to engage with the learners on a more in-depth and personal level. I went on to actualise my passion for educational psychology by obtaining my Masters degree from the University of Pretoria.
My journey as a clinical psychologist begins with me initiating a degree in Psychology. During this time my passion for helping people led me to volunteering as a lay counsellor at the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG). I also volunteered my services at the Teddy Bear Clinic, assisting and catering for the needs of abused children.
My entry into my career as a psychologist began in 1988 when I completed a six-month psychometric internship at what was then the Johannesburg General Hospital. Towards the end of that year, I was admitted into the Masters programme in Clinical Psychology at UNISA. My training at this university was orientated towards brief, strategic systemic therapy encompassing work with both individuals and families. While I found this approach indeed useful in working with families, I felt that it was not sufficiently effective in work with individuals, particularly those who had experienced a great deal of trauma in their lives. I therefore later obtained work at the after-hours clinic of the Family Life Centre where I was exposed to supervision with a psychodynamic therapist.