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Mrs Sarah Bergman

Mrs Sarah Bergman

Mobile 0422 620 151
Counsellor, Gestalt Therapist

Counselling on the Coast

Mobile 0422 620 151

Sarah's practice is gentle and respectful, allowing her clients the space to fully understand where they are at. Sarah's approach is holistic and her aim is to help her clients increase self awareness, relieve confusion and experience self-acceptance. Sarah understands that choosing a counselor is a very personal decision and you may feel hesitant or anxious about attending counselling. For this reason Sarah provides a safe, private and confidential place for her clients.

PHONEPRACTICE LOCATIONS

  • 72 Riviera Ave, Tweed Heads, NSW 2485 0422 620 151 PHONE 0422 620 151
  • Coolangatta, Gold Coast QLD 4225 PHONE

Services

  • Counselling, Psychotherapy, Family Therapy, Group Therapy, Workshops / Courses, Workplace Training, Phone Consultations, Internet Consultations 
  • At Counselling on the Coast Sarah provides counselling through the practice of Gestalt Psychotherapy for individuals, families and couples.

    Areas of Special Interest

  • Anxiety / Panic Attacks, Assertiveness, Autism / Aspergers, Burnout, Career Counselling, Communication Issues, Depression, Divorce / Separation, Family / Parenting, Grief / Bereavement, Guilt Feelings, Intimacy Issues, Life Transitions, Relationship Issues, Stress Management, Workplace Issues  
  • MODALITIES / Approach

    Gestalt

    Gestalt Therapy focuses on the here and now of a client’s thoughts, feelings and situation, providing a holistic engagement with the nature of the human condition. It privileges experiential learning, human relating and believes strongly in the therapeutic relationship as a healing relationship. Recently Neuroscience discovered that a relationship with someone who can supply support and understanding reshapes a person’s neurological possibilities. That is, with the right supportive environment, change is possible.

    ACCREDITATIONS

    • Masters Gestalt Therapy - 2016 - Gestalt Therapy Brisbane
    • Diploma of Applied Science (Community/Human) - 1996 - TAFE Queensland

    Professional Associations

    • Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia


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      10 Questions with Sarah Bergman

      • What led you to choose psychotherapy or counselling as a profession?

      • I have always been interested in talking with and getting to know people. I am very curious about myself and others. What makes us unhappy and happy? How do our relationships with ourselves and others affect us? From a young teenager I decided that I would work in the field of Social Work and have done so since the mid 1990's. Previously I have worked for RAPT an organisation in conjunction with The Department of Family Services with at risk youth; The Smith Family as an Edu-cate officer working with families; Community Corrections as a Community corrections officer working with offenders whom presented with a number of issues from addiction, depression, anxiety and trauma. After having my four children I returned to study and did my Masters degree in Gestalt therapy. To me Life is a journey of self-discovery and I find that the more awareness and acceptance I have of myself the better my relationship is with myself and others. My wish is to support others to do the same.
      • Which philosophical approaches have influenced your professional/personal development?

      • Studying and becoming a Gestalt therapist has had a huge impact on me as a person. I have always been interested in mindfulness and awareness as a solution to my own difficulties. Gestalt methodology and principles make sense to me as a practitioner and as a human. Living in the 'here and now' staying close to my own experience as it arises without judgement, just curiosity is a gentle practice that has allowed me to be more accepting of all parts of me without needing to exclude or hide parts that I feel others may view as undesirable. None of us are perfect and that is ok. Providing we know this we can choose how we wish to respond to oursleves and others with more awareness and thus confidence. As a practitioner the Gestalt framework allows me to be completely open to my clients just as they are, without needing to fix them, rather to explore mindfully with them How they are doing their life? How it impacts them and others? And What they would like to do differently? Firstly in the safety of the therapeutic relationship and then in the outside world.
      • Which particular aspects of health or the human journey are you interested in?

      • Gestalt therapy is all about how we do relationship with ourselves and others. So I would have to say I am interested in relationships. How one thing relates to something else. We are all interconnected and thus influence each other in ways that we may not be aware of at first. I am curious about attachment theory and how the patterns we create in childhood to "fit in" or "not fit in" affect our lives. What relationship patterns are we hanging onto from our childhood that are no longer serving us now? How do we feel about ourselves? I feel everything stems from what sought of relationship we have with ourselves and others. How well we do relationship affects all parts of our lives. Family, marriage, work, with self etc.
      • What method/s do you use?

      • I work in the here and now with my clients. Whilst the content of their story is important, it is how the client tells their story that I am most interested in. What non-verbals are in use, what tone of voice are they telling their story in? Are they rushed or slow? Gestalt is holistic in it's approach thus as a therapist I attend to the whole of my client and help them to raise awareness around what they are doing and how they are doing it. For example, "I notice as you say that your hand is over your mouth, is there something else you would like to say. " In Gestalt the therapeutic relationship is paramount, for people will not open up to their vulnerability if they do not trust the therapist, thus I checkout with the client how we are doing in relationship to each other. It is a collaborative process where the client is the expert on their own feelings. Gestalt is also experiential it is a way of helping client’s express themselves behaviourally, rather than to merely cognize an experience internally. It is about attending to process.
      • When do you think the client will start to feel that progress is being made?

      • My first session is 1.5 hours. I have a longer session at the beginning as I find their is often a lot to cover. I find that generally my clients and I have a better understanding of the issue by the end of this session which generally can bring some relief. Depending on the issue the client brings, depends on the time required. I find that six sessions usually provides the clarity required. Then it is up to the client as to whether they wish to proceed and further deepen their clarity around other aspects of themselves (or the situation). There is not limit to understanding self and self expression it is an never ending journey. I myself still deep in and out of therapy as the need arises. I like to think of it as mental health hygiene. In my private practice I have some clients that come once a fortnight for a year, whilst others come once a month after the initial six sessions depending on the support they require. Others dip in and out as they need.
      • How has therapy made you a better person?

      • I am a lot more aware of myself the good and not so good. I am more accepting of all of myself. I am more patient and kind to myself and others. I am able to accept difference without taking it personally. I am more comfortable with uncertainty and that sometimes somethings are un-resolvable and need just to be accepted as they are without completion. My relationships with my husband, children and friends are more mature and considered. My communication skills have improved and I am able to say clearly what I need and speak up for myself. Most importantly I am more discerning of my choices. What is right for me? What is wrong for me? What do I need right now? How will my wants and needs impact others? How do I manage that?
      • What do you like most about being a therapist?

      • I love people. I am a people person. What I love most about being a therapist is sitting with another person in the realness of the other side of life.The part of life that most of us try to avoid, yet is as real as the good parts of life and if anything are the deeper parts. The side of life that I too experience from time to time. Sadness, suffering, confusion, loss, fear, vulnerability, anger and hurt etc. These emotions and experiences are as much a part of the human psyche as joy, awe, gratitude, love, excitement, happiness, togetherness and peacefulness etc. Yet more often than not we try to avoid the painful parts of life until we cannot avoid them any longer. I often see people at their most vulnerable and I find this place of vulnerability to be very precious, real, meaningful and courageous. I too know this place of vulnerability and I know that making friends with our difficult emotions and experiences in life will eventually lead to a more fuller enjoyment of ourselves and life and less fear around the more difficult parts of ourselves and life. I love the sensitivity and care of my work as I keep close company with my clients until they can reach their own insights and discoveries of themselves and develop the strength and courage required to be open to all parts of themselves and life. As a therapist I am continually humbled and grateful to my clients who show up with the courage required to explore the difficulties that life presents.
      • Do you ever have 'bad hair' days?

      • Everyone has 'bad hair' days. If I am having a particularly bad day (which isn't very often) and time permits I will cancel my client list. As a therapist it is important to me that any problems I may be having in life do not overtake or influence my clients. It is important to me that I am fully present to my client. If I feel I am unable to do this for whatever reason, I would responsibly cancel my appointments until such time that I could. This is in the extreme. If I am just having a bit of a 'bad hair day' I know that my moods are fluid and will shift as soon as my focus moves away from my bad mood and I am attending to my client in the present moment, my 'bad hair day' pales into insignificance and I gain perspective.
      • What do you think is the most significant problem we face, in the world today?

      • I feel the most significant problem we face in the world today, especially the western world is that we are forgetting how to rest deeply. By resting deeply I mean within ourselves, connected to ourselves. Social media, consumption and the need to be successful seem to be making our lives more complicated and we are loosing simplicity and mistaking more as more rather than less as more. In the past I feel we had more time to contemplate, reflect and connect to the awe of life. Our ability to sit in the awe of a sunset, sunrise, star gazing or tree gazing are diminishing and with that our connection to the miracle of ourselves, our planet and this life. We are distracted and my feeling is that awe, contemplation, reflection and quiet sitting are very healing and calming to our over worked, over thinking tormented psyche's. Deep rest, deep peace enjoying hobbies on your own or in community that nourish and calm us. Poetry, story telling, music, art, craft, nature, ritual all nourish and nurture our real connections to self and other.
      • Can you share the name of a book, film, song, event or work of art that inspires you?

      • Book - Cutting through Spiritual Materialism by Chogyam Trungpa (Pema Chodron's teacher).
        Film- Good Will Hunting
        Song - The leaves that are green James Taylor
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      Mrs Sarah Bergman

      Sarah Bergman

      Counsellor, Gestalt Therapist

      Sarah's practice is gentle and respectful, allowing her clients the space to fully understand where they are at. Sarah's approach is holistic and her aim is to help her clients increase self awareness, relieve confusion and experience self-acceptance. Sarah understands that choosing a counselor is a very personal decision and you may feel hesitant or anxious about attending counselling. For this reason Sarah provides a safe, private and confidential place for her clients....

      • Tweed Heads, Coolangatta
      • Gestalt