Barb Gonda, Counselling Endorsed Psychologist
Psychologist ( special interest in Trauma, Workplace and and Emergency Service Personnel)
I have a broadly based background comprising of experience in counselling, training, therapy group facilitation and management. In previous lives I have also been a registered nurse and a naval officer. My many years of part time study and my very hands-on working life have equipped me with a practical, realistic and genuine approach to the counselling needs of people from many walks of life. Of particular note is my extensive experience as a psychologist supporting first responders in trauma and disaster response. I have pursued in-depth studies of trauma and self awareness. I have maintained a small private practice for more than 10 years. I have some 17 years of experience in managing government employee support programs and therefore I can turn my counselling framework and expertise to many of the client’s needs. I have been the primary therapist in establishing and running a group based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy program for Post Natal Depression.
If I have a key motto or principle to practice by, it is to be authentic with my clients and therefore to be in touch with who I am when I am with them. This engenders a genuine connection for being heard and cared about. I believe that all of us will at some stage in life need a little extra support such as counselling and to access this in a nonjudgemental and supportive environment is paramount to it making a difference. I aim to provide a safe and real place in which clients can connect, feel, explore and respond. My studies, experience and philosophies have honed me into someone who is down to earth, compassionate, empathic and who believes in the integrity and the capacity of being human. I cherish our innate drive to grow and understand ourselves and others; to find our place in the world and to learn how to be at peace with ourselves.
My life as a carer began as a registered nurse (quite some years ago). This path then grew into more deeply supporting the emotion needs of people and I started studying psychology and later counselling and psychotherapy.
I have always been interested in trauma and the way in which it challenges so much within us; our views of the world, our relationships, our abilities and ourselves. Some traumas are most apparent and some are lost in adaptation and time. Perhaps more important is how those events and others affect the way we do life. On a very similar path is depression and grief and loss. These challenge us but also can strip us of resources and our resilience. I also value being able to work with clients on matters of change, meaning and purpose. These sometimes become apparent in relationship endings and challenges, professional achievements and self esteem. I believe meaning making and mindfulness are major tasks in being human. I also have experience in counselling children through the use of expressive and play therapies. I have a nurse’s insight into the psychological impact of illness, diagnosis, treatment and recovery.
My expertise has developed through many, many years of part time study and I am still studying. I think my life experiences and my journey adds to the down to earth and genuine connection I make with my clients.
My trauma expertise comes from my many years working with first responders and members of the public. Both my Masters theses were around trauma. These factors have helped imbed my research and clinical training into a sound knowledge base from which I can practice. I am adept at using cognitive behavioural therapy, mindfulness and existentially based therapies. I have significant experience providing support during disaster situations and was actively and significantly involved in state response to disasters since 2011.
Another large part of my professional experience has been supporting people with depression and with working through issues of loss and grieving. These underlie so many of the issues that people seek counselling for. I conducted therapeutic groups for a number of years supporting women and their partners through post natal depression. My nursing background has added to my counselling skills in supporting individuals and their families through illness and death. I focus on the experience of emotion in a supportive and nurturing environment in order to support people as they move through their pain and reestablish their resilience, develop new life skills and find some resolution.
In my work with children the same applies – that is providing an environment where they can safely explore and resolve unmet needs.
Barb has appointments available at Nundah. To book an appointment call (07) 3256 6320 or book online now.
Approach to Therapy:
- Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)
- Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT)
- Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy
- Solution focused/ Brief therapy schema therapy
- Relaxation and meditation
Main Areas of Interest:
Full List of Services Provided
- Adult Survivors of Sexual Abuse
- Anger Management
- Assertiveness Training
- Domestic Violence
- Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
- Grief & Loss
- Group Programmes
- Health Related Problems
- Life Transition & Adjustment Issues
- Life/Personal Coaching
- Panic Disorder
- Post Natal Depression
- Psychological First Aid/Crisis
- Self Esteem & Self Development
- Sexual Abuse
- Terminal Illness
- Victims of Crime
- Workplace Bullying
- Workplace/Executive Coaching