Treating Anxiety with Psychotherapy
and Counselling - It works!

Anxiety is our bodies response to a threat

The challenge we face when confronting a threat, is our body does not know if the threat is  real or imagined.

 Our body responds with a burst of energy, butterflies in the stomach, increased heart rate and rapid breathing.

Our emotional and mental responses  may involve excessive fears, obsessive thinking or worrying.

So when are these responses natural and good for our survival?  And when are they not helpful and poor for our well being?

Everyone experiences anxiety during their life time, some even experience it regularly in their lives.

How often we are in a heightened state of alertness is not the issue. This is because it gives us the physical and emotional energy, and alertness, to escape situations which are dangerous for us.

However, for some of us, these anxious emotions, physical sensations and sense of being hyper-alert just does not stop.

Sometimes we regularly believe that:

  • our situations are really worse than they might really be
  • our emotions are so strong they affect our ability to concentrate, sleep, and even complete daily tasks.

We feel stuck, out of control and permanently on edge. We feel we are at the mercy of our anxious thoughts, we feel uncertain and afraid of the future. Thinking we are powerless, or helpless or not even where to start to change keeps us awake at night.

This is the same for us all, irrespective of our age.

It is also far more common than we we might think – recent studies continue to show anxiety in some way affects 1 in 4 Australians every year.

Kinds of Anxiety – scroll down the page

Treating Anxiety for adults, teens and children is different. Scroll down the page to find out more  

I am Barbara and I have successfully treated Anxiety conditions for children, tweens, teenagers and adults.

I am a qualified psychologist having practiced in Southern Africa and Australia.

I am an Australian registered Strategic Psychotherapist and accredited Clinical Hypnotherapist .

I have 2 adult sons who are building their own lives and families here in Australia.

Stresses people are facing today as a result of COVID,  global financial threats, expanding zones of  conflict, as well as ever increasing break ups of families means we have more people than ever experiencing anxiety, and even depression.

I combine different therapeutic approaches  to give clients  a treatment approach which suits them specifically.

This means  they are able to get quick, effective  and lasting results as they build lives where anxiety no longer holds them behind.

Who says I am qualified – click here to see where  I graduated and how I maintain my professional expertiese.

How to treat Anxiety

Anxiety feels overwhelming, but we know that it is treatable and it is possible to learn how to reduce the impact it has on our everyday life.

Treating Adult Anxiety

Extreme anxiety regularly presents as  underpinning many adult mental health issues. 

Domestic violence, anger and aggression and bullying include anxious episodes which maintain these behaviours.

Adults express their anxiety in different ways. If left untreated in young adults,  it is more likely to develop into depression episodes.

Treating Adults with Anxiety

Anxiety is multi faceted,  which means it’s treatment  depends on the person, their circumstance, their skills to manage their thoughts, beliefs and attitudes.

It is useful to use different psychotherapy techniques, including Strategic Psychotherapy, hypnosis,  education and counselling

Treatment plans focus on enabling the person to understand  and change their thinking patterns which cause and maintain their anxiety.

Treating Teenager Anxiety

 If serious anxiety is left untreated in teenagers, it can have long-term effects which might continue into adulthood.

Teenagers show anxiety by:

  • being constantly tense, restless, agitated
  • having noticeable physical signs eg: sweating, headache, trouble breathing, sore muscles, 
  • bullying others, or being bullied by others 
  • very sensitive to criticism
  • often extremely self-conscious
  • being irrational, having negative thoughts all the time, unhelpful
  • show a clear behavioural changes compared to how they were when younger 
  • avoid people, situations and difficulties
  • become withdrawn
  • struggle to concentrate, start and finish projects
  • have poor sleeping habits

Treating Teenagers

Teens respond well to combined counselling and hypnotherapy. It focuses on:

  • the presenting issue first
  • confirming that anxiety is normal for everyone and can be managed
  • involves lifestyle patterns eg eating, sleeping, avoiding substances as  quick fixes, 
  • improving their ability to self manage their stress 
  • uses story telling, creative activities, mindfulness, relaxation techniques, hypnosis and education

Treating Children &
Tween Anxiety

The first step is always to acknowledge the feelings and physical sensations children describe.

They are real to the child after all.

Children show anxiety through:

  • trying to avoid the situation they are worried about
  • complaining about being bullied or picked on by other children or teachers
  • get headaches, stomach aches often
  • poor sleep or vivid nightmares 
  • become clingy, worried, need lots of reassurance
  • worry often
  • get angry when things do not go their own way
  • want things to be perfect, and get upset when they are not so.

Treatment options

Treating anxiety with children under the age of 10 usually:

  • focuses on helping them to learn how to recognize, describe and manage their anxiety
  • starts with their presenting issue first, eg sleeping better, reducing bed wetting occasions, etc,
  • involves their parent or carer
  • uses story telling, play therapy, acting, singing, creative activities etc.

Children respond well to treatment and tend to learn how to handle their feelings quickly.

Free, No Obligation Discussion - 20 minutes

The purpose of this discussion is for you to determine if our approach is going to work for you. 

It is also for us to determine if we are able to help you.

Kinds of Anxiety

Anxiety experiences come with many labels, – some of which help us to understand them, but none of which really help us to overcome the impact anxiety has on our daily living.

Everyone experiences anxiety during their life time, some even experience it regularly in their lives.

It is also far more common than we we might think – recent studies continue to show anxiety in some way affects 1 in 4 Australians every year.

Anxiety comes in many forms, each with its own unique characteristics and effects on us. 

There are numerous triggers which can elicit  feelings of anxiety, and other different characteristics which affect both the severity of our emotions and how often we experience them.

For us as people, the name of our anxiety is not important – but for your therapist it is important as certain therapies work differently with the kinds of anxiety experienced.

It is important to remember ….

We are so much more than our anxiety.

Generalised Anxiety

or GAD - happens across a wide range of everyday situations. It involves persistent , excessive and often uncontrollable worry. What may set off the worry may refer to health, work, family , school, friends, finances, or career situations

Panic Anxiety

refers to regular panic events involving strong fear, shortness of breath, dizziness. Often accompanied by physical sensations. May be triggered by long stress, exhaustion, facing particular situations eg big crowds

Social Anxiety

occurs when it feels too terrifying to see and meet other people. It causes people to isolate themselves, stay alone, avoid others, have no/limited friends so they can avoid most social interactions.

Phobias and Anxiety

occur when we experience irrational fears when in one particular situation. It may be fear of an animal, insect, place or situation. They may develop in childhood, and appear as if they diminish with age. What changes is our physical response to the situation, not our phobia when we get older.

Obsessive Compulsive Anxiety

when you just have to repeat that action again and again
occurs when continuous unwanted thoughts and impulses cause us to repeat routine behaviours over and over. We act this way in order to cope with anxious emotions or situations. Obsessions tend to be fears which cause stress. Compulsions are actions we keep repeating.

Separation Anxiety

happens when children are away from their family members. It involves extreme worrying and anxiety, with high clinginess, tears, nightmares and ohysical complaints eg tummy aches.

Study & Performance Anxiety

occurs when one is afraid about not being able to complete a task. When it is school performance, anxiety about studies, exams, speaking then impact the ability to retain learning, acting out, sleeplessness, mood swings. Adults have this anxiety when needing to complete activities at work, on sports field.