Counselling Page




Who Can Benefit from Counselling?

Counselling is for normal people of all ages who have the wisdom to seek help when feeling overwhelmed by tough situations, or finding it hard to make important decisions. A good counsellor will walk alongside you and help to work through your difficult issues. In doing so, she will also encourage you to think more laterally, help find the underlying causes for your problems, and facilitate increased awareness. And most importantly, she will help you find suitable strategies to achieve your desired goals and empower you to make good choices.



Personal Difficulties

Interpersonal Issues

Grief and Loss


Mentoring & Life Coaching



Pre-Marital Counselling

Relationship Counselling

Family Therapy

Private Mediation

Personal Development


Attitude Adjustment

Self-Image Repair

Assertiveness Training

Communication Enhancement

General Relationship Training

Work & Staff


Personal Work Related Issues

Staff Communication Issues

Individual Staff Mentoring

Mediation - Individuals or Groups

Christian Counselling


Individual Problems

Interpersonal Issues

Relationship Issues

Doctrinal Enquiries


Help for Depression

Help for Depression

For those of you suffering from depression, you may like to do a depression self-test on

or check out the following site:

If you have suicidal thoughts,


**CLICK HERE to read the full article about depression and what you can do to help.


Qualities of a Good Counsellor

A good counsellor is genuine, truthful, warm, open and friendly. S/he is concerned for you as a unique individual and has an unconditional, positive regard for you. Empathy, acceptance and a non-judgmental attitude are just as important as the ability to remain impartial. A good counsellor also has highly developed active listening skills and the ability to easily form meaningful relationships with all types of clients.


Counselling Methodologies

Counselling Methodologies

There are many different counselling styles in use today. Margaret does NOT endorse psychoanalysis, psychotherapy or humanistic/existentialist models but instead suggests cognitive behaviour therapy (Rom.12:2), systems theory, and a wholistic style of counselling. She believes in looking at a problem from different perspectives to provide assessments concerning all four dimensions of the human realm (feelings, thought processes, behaviour and social context). This may incorporate a variety of approaches to adapt the counselling process to individual client needs:


  • Modelling and rehearsal strategies
  • Self-management programs
  • Person-centred approaches
  • Cognitive restructuring
  • Re-decision work
  • Anxiety reduction
  • Communication skills building
  • Relationship skills building
  • Strategies for parents with teens
  • Strategies for young children
  • Conflict management skills
  • Negotiation strategies



Christian Counselling vs. Secular Counselling

Christian vs. SecularThe word "counselling" can have multiple meanings, including offering advice and encouragement, sharing wisdom and skills, setting goals and resolving conflict. As a general rule, both Christian and secular counsellors share the same desire to help people overcome their problems, find meaning and joy in life, and become healthy and well-adjusted individuals, both mentally and emotionally.

Christian counselling is distinct from secular counselling in that it rises to another dimension. The International Association of Biblical Counselors puts it this way, "In contrast to psychologically-integrated systems, Biblical counseling seeks to carefully discover those areas in which a Christian may be disobedient to the principles and commands of Scripture and to help him learn how to lovingly submit to God's will."

Christian counsellors are able to do just that because they have an absolute standard by which to measure their objectives and evaluate their counsellee's lifestyle. They see the Bible as the source of all truth. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." The secular counsellor has no such standard and instead uses the latest psychological findings or societal norm, both of which change with the winds of time. Therefore, a secular counsellor has no absolutes with which to judge morals and the choices people make.

Christian counsellors understand that the Bible has a lot of practical wisdom about human nature, marriage and family, human suffering, and so much more. By using biblical concepts in counselling, they can instruct people in the way they should go and also hold them accountable. Psalm 119:24 says, "Your statutes are my delight; they are my counselors."

Although Christian counsellors often use skills from the field of secular psychology and counselling, they recognise that the Bible, not psychology, is the final authority. "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness (2 Peter 1:3). A Christian counsellor's major strategy is therefore to help their clients substitute biblical truth for error as they go about their day-to-day lives. They know that the truth, when known, believed and obeyed, sets people free. When people are set free, they are fulfilling their true calling. "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" (John 8:32).

Christian Counselling - A Personal Story
"We have been married for 25 years and are blessed with four children. Our family life has been quite happy, but that doesn't mean we haven't needed a bit of 'marital realignment' from time to time. Our Christian counsellor has provided a wealth of wisdom and sound judgment to make our marriage sparkle again, and the relationship tools we have picked up are serving us well as we continue to face life's challenges together."

"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart" (Hebrews 4:12).


Counselling Contracts

Counselling ContractsThis is a mutual agreement negotiated between the Counsellor and the Client prior to the commencement of counselling.  It articulates the responsibilities of the Counsellor towards the Client, and also the Client's responsibilities in the counselling relationship.  Below is a guide of a typical counselling contract, but this will vary according to the Client's needs. The following is an example of what I have used in my own work:

As a professional counsellor, I will walk alongside you and assist you to explore your world with the aim of resolving difficult issues in your life. I believe that people are capable of finding happiness and contentment as they become more aware of the underlying causes of their problems and pursue suitable strategies for dealing with their difficulties.

As the client, you need to be aware of the fact that awareness and change may take some time to achieve. Whilst some clients need only a few sessions to reach their goals, others may require many more. It is therefore impossible to guarantee specific goal-related results within a particular timeframe. You are in complete control of this process and may therefore end the counselling relationship at any point you wish.

As we work together, our sessions may become very intimate and therefore it is important for you to realise that we have a professional, rather than a personal, relationship. A strictly professional relationship will allow us to concentrate exclusively on your concerns.

As your counsellor, I will keep confidential anything you say to me, with the following general exceptions: You direct me to tell someone else; you reveal to me that you or someone else is in danger; I determine that you are in danger to yourself or others; I am ordered by a court to disclose information.

My counselling services are of necessity limited to the scheduled sessions we have together. If you feel at any time that you are approaching an emotional crisis and are unable to make an immediate appointment to see me, you may contact a Lifeline Telephone Counsellor on 13 11 14, or seek help at the emergency department of your nearest local hospital and request mental health services.



Workshop InfoMargaret has facilitated many workshops for business clients, community organisations, churches and community college.

She now offers workshops only from a Christian perspective and in the context of Christian ministry.

More workshop info on the Speaker page.



Margaret's Counselling Qualifications and Experience

Margaret has been counselling and helping others for the past 20 years. She holds a degree in Social Science with Honours, majoring in Counselling & Mediation as well as Human Relations & Communication. She has also done research with counselling students New ATMS Logofrom Southern Cross University and is in the process of publishing her book Counsellor Training: What's in it for the student? Margaret also holds the Certificate IV in Workplace Training, OHS Consultation Statement, an additional Diploma in Professional Counselling, further training in Human Resource Development, and a Master of Adult Education. Her expertise therefore reaches beyond counselling & mediation to include human relations & communication issues, mentoring, personal coaching, human resource development and adult education. She has also undertaken studies in specialised areas such as domestic violence, suicide prevention, brain injuries and mental illness.

Margaret was accredited for Counselling by the ATMS and has always adhered to their Code of Ethics and Practice Standards.

Due to her additional training in theology and pastoral care, Margaret has also provided Christian Counselling. You can read more about the context of Christian counselling on the For Christians page.



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