AIPC Institute InBrief
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In this Issue

bullet Hello!
bullet Intothediploma
bullet Intostudies
bullet Intocounselling
bullet Intobookstore
bullet Intoarticles
bullet Intodevelopment
bullet Intoconnection
bullet Intotwitter
bullet Intoquotes
bullet Intoseminars
bullet Intoresources

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Editor: Sandra Poletto

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Copyright: 2012 Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors

Welcome to Edition 135 of Institute Inbrief. In this edition we’ll explore a topic that brings shivers to the spine of many counsellors and mental health professionals: going into private practice.
Also in this edition:
-      Previously Published Articles
-      Professional Development news
-      Blog and Twitter updates
-      Upcoming seminar dates
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The Institute's Diploma of Counselling is an Industry Recognised Qualification, Allowing You to Practice as a Qualified Counsellor.
The nationally recognised Diploma of Counselling is recognised by the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), Australia's largest Member Association for Counsellors.
As part of its charter, ACA recognises courses that meet its training standards. These standards cover a broad range of areas, encompassing core organisational, staffing and educational competencies, as well as ensuring AIPC as a training body maintains an exceptionally high professional standard.
When you graduate, you are automatically eligible to become a Qualified Member of the Australian Counselling Association. You will be able to get professional indemnity insurance (preferred rates), and your qualification and Membership will be accepted and regarded in the industry.
And while you're studying with the Institute...
Simply put, AIPC sets the benchmark in education support. Even if you decide to study entirely at home or online, you'll never be alone in your studies. We have specialised in external education for over 19 years and have the most highly qualified, professional support team in the industry. Help is only ever a phone call or email away. Our enormous pool of educational resources means you have access to:
-      An Education team of over 65 degree qualified counselling professionals, all with extensive industry experience and teaching and assessing qualifications.
-      You'll have access 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to the online Knowledge Base that contains over 4,000 specific questions and answers relating to your course.
-      You'll have unlimited FREE access 9am to 5pm (EST) to the 1300 Study Assistance Line where you can discuss any study questions you may have with qualified team members.
-      You'll have unlimited email support. Send a question any time and have your enquiry replied to within 12 hours.
-      And you'll have the support of your local Student Support Centre who will link you into a local student support network (if you wish to stay in touch with other students); help you prepare for your practical assessments; co-ordinate your In-Class or tutorial activities; and set you up in a number of volunteer opportunities if you wish to practice your skills in the field.
Want to find out more? Visit
Learn How You Can Gain Specialty Expertise And A Graduate Qualification With A Vocational Graduate Certificate Or Vocational Graduate Diploma In Counselling...
...In Only 6 to 12 Months.
More and more Counsellors are gaining advanced specialist skills with a Vocational Graduate qualification. Vocational Graduate qualifications provide a higher level, vocational alternative to traditional Post Graduate courses offered by Universities.
It's time and cost effective, meaning you can gain a formal graduate qualification in 6 to 12 months in your specialist area. Here's how a graduate qualification can advance your career:
-      Develop a deeper understanding of your area of interest and achieve more optimal outcomes with your clients.
-      A graduate qualification will assist you move up the corporate ladder from practitioner to manager/supervisor.
-      Make the shift from being a generalist practitioner to a specialist.
-      Gain greater professional recognition from your peers.
-      Increase client referrals from allied health professionals.
-      Maximise job opportunities in your preferred specialty area.
-      Formalise years of specialist experience with a respected qualification.
Save Over $6,000 (67% Discount to Market)
A Vocational Graduate Diploma at a university costs between $10,000 and $38,000. BUT, you don't have to pay these exorbitant amounts for an equally high quality qualification. You can do your qualification with the Institute and save a massive $6,000+ on the cost of doing a similar course at university.
To learn more, please visit Alternatively, call your nearest Institute branch on the FreeCall numbers shown below:
Sydney: 1800 677 697
Melbourne: 1800 622 489
Perth: 1800 353 643
Brisbane: 1800 246 324
Adelaide: 1800 246 381
Regional NSW: 1800 625 329
Regional QLD: 1800 359 565
Gold Coast: 1800 625 359
Assessing Entrepreneurial Attitudes
Starting any new business can be an exciting but challenging time. As a counsellor, your forte may be in helping clients make changes in their life but you may be unsure of where to start when venturing out on your own in the business world.
In this article, we will look at how assessing your entrepreneurial attitudes and behaviours can help you develop the “right” mindset to start your own private practice.
What type of business to start...?
A good starting point in deciding what type of business you should start, or if you should consider starting a business, begins with understanding who and what you are. In a society such as ours, few people understand themselves - a fact borne out by the number of counsellors and psychiatrists employed. Most people are running to satisfy expectations and demands placed on them from the outside.
They never stop long enough to spend time with themselves to get to know that person inside. To get to know that person inside generally requires a degree of isolation and quiet. Our world is one of overstimulation, where most people hide from themselves, constantly in a state of overstimulation. Surrounded by people and noise even when alone, the television, stereo, or radio are on: something, anything, to drown out the quiet.
A period of reflection and meditation in solitude to acquire a degree of personal understanding is often required before making life-altering changes. Without a sense of self, the tendency exists to continually chase that “something out there.” “I want to go into business to get rich.” “I want to make a lot of money.” Such reasoning is dangerously superficial. Begin with the right reason for you; go into business if doing so will bring a sense of fulfilment to you.
Every person brings himself or herself into business. Personal strengths and personal weaknesses within the context of a level of skill and talent will tend to create for the entrepreneur a realm of opportunity and a realm of constraints. One's personal strengths need to be strong enough on which to base a workable business concept, and personal weaknesses must not be such that they could cause the business to fail. For some people, the entrepreneurs always knew the type of business they wanted to start.”
Source: Urlacher, L.S. (1999). Small business entrepreneurship: An ethics and human relations perspective. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Simon & Schuster.
Let us start to investigate some of your attitudes and behaviours to help you identify relevant business opportunities. By looking at your attitudes and behaviours, we can begin to compare them to those of an entrepreneurial mindset. The entrepreneurial mind-set may be used and/or developed to contribute to your success in the business world.
Developing an Entrepreneurial Mindset
Developing a business mindset means knowing how to think like a successful entrepreneur, by adopting an optimistic yet pragmatic attitude in order to make the right business decisions. Let's look more closely at how your mind works when it comes to minding your business. Are you a worrier – dwelling on worst-case scenarios, feeling down about your lack of success, rejecting possible ideas because you assume they won't work?
Are you a planner – making a mental list of what to do next, staying focused and motivated? Are you overly optimistic – seeing many opportunities, not able to prioritize, needing direction? Are you a procrastinator – coming up with good ideas but never feeling ready to start?
How you think about your business influences your abilities and your actions. Negative beliefs and critical self-talk hamper your efforts, while constructive, optimistic yet pragmatic thinking helps you to take big steps. Developing an entrepreneurial mind-set – the combination of thinking, feeling and sensing that is the hallmark of successful business owners – is the next step in your business education.
Counsellors often have a part of this mindset developed, but need to activate additional elements. For example, we are often very skilled at sensing, and can read subtle cues and unspoken signals. This is good and can be very helpful in business situations. But we must also learn to use the linear, unemotional thinking that is necessary in business. Successful entrepreneurs tend to display the following six qualities in their thinking:
Given a set of challenges, successful entrepreneurs see opportunities. Counsellors face particular challenges just from being in a profession that is not well understood by those who could benefit from its practices. To deal with this, you need to see the opportunities inside each challenge and keep an optimistic yet pragmatic attitude. Can you see the opening in every rejection, the break in each obstacle?
Given a problem, successful entrepreneurs are both optimistic and pragmatic. Being a successful entrepreneur means that you can balance dream with reality. Can you stay upbeat and at the same time assess the truth of a situation? Taking right action when you are in a challenging situation means that you have the skill of combining a confident stance with level-headed expectations.
Successful entrepreneurs expect a lot from themselves and others. They want a lot for themselves and others. Expecting a lot from others – those who work with you be they staff or clients – means having clear boundaries around your requests with clients or staff. Express your needs and wants directly.
Expect those around you to come from the best in themselves, and hold yourself to this expectation as well. Wanting for others means that you can hold a big vision and goals for those around you. When one of your clients sets a goal, you will support the achievement of the goal by staying interested, by brainstorming, and by celebrating when it is met, but you don't demean the client by reminding or nagging about the goal. You are there as a very interested party for your clients to report to, but not for babysitting goals. 
Successful entrepreneurs operate from a state of abundance. When you, as an entrepreneur, begin to feel that there is a profusion of resources in your environment, it is easier to hold a big vision for your clients and yourself as well. You come to believe that there is enough in the world for each client you see to have a meaningful life, satisfying work, enough money to live well, love and happiness.
Successful entrepreneurs are persistent. Business is not for the faint-hearted. It takes effort to land a contract, set up a thriving counselling practice, identify and cultivate referral sources, fill a workshop, land a training contract, get a book deal. It's nothing personal when your goals take more effort than you thought they would. Can you find it within yourself to stay with your goal long enough to get results? If so, you have persistence.
Successful entrepreneurs enjoy making a profit. As an entrepreneur, your developmental task is to develop an adult relationship with money. You need to understand that as a business person, making a profit from your coaching practice is as much part of your job as being a coach.
Self-Reflective Exercise
In your own time, you may wish to reflect on your own entrepreneurial attitudes by examining what has been covered above. Think about the following questions:
Which of the six qualities do I possess?
How specifically do I demonstrate these qualities in my life and business?
Which of the six qualities do I need to develop?
What is my first step?
Adapted from: Grodzki, L., & Allen, W. (2005). The business and practice of coaching: Find your niche, making money, & attracting ideal clients. New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.
Personal Characteristics
As well as looking at your entrepreneurial mindset, it is important to examine other personal characteristics that are common in people who are successful small business operators. The following list identifies these characteristics. You may wish to take some time to reflect on whether you consider yourself to have these characteristics and how important they are to you in running your own practice.
-      Drive and energy
-      Self-confidence
-      Ability to take risks
-      Ability to set goals
-      Tenacity
-      Ability to cope with failure
-      Ability to live with uncertainty
-      Optimistic
-      Independent
-      Innovative
-      Ability to see opportunities
-      Forward thinking
-      Competitive
-      Resourceful
-      Assertive
-      Ambitious
-      Ability to utilise external resources appropriately
Skills & Knowledge
The running of your counselling practice will also require a certain level of business skills and knowledge. Business skills can be classified into three main areas: Marketing, Financial and Operational. The section below highlights the types of skills that will be particularly relevant to you in your counselling practice. You may wish to reflect on your own skills and knowledge of these areas.
1) Marketing Skills
-      Choosing a successful business location
-      Understanding the competitors
-      Conducting market research
-      Devising a marketing strategy
-      Positioning the counselling practice appropriately
-      Pricing
-      Service code
-      Personal selling
-      Advertising and promotion
-      Internet marketing
-      Analysing product life cycle
2) Financial Skills
-      Profit planning
-      Budgeting
-      Cash flow
-      Breakeven analysis
-      Using an accountant
-      Profit and loss account
-      Debtor control
-      Income tax
-      Banking
-      Bookkeeping
-      Payroll + PAYG
3) Operational Skills
-      Quality control
-      Scheduling workflow
-      Decision making
-      Problem solving
-      Negotiation
-      Computer systems
-      Improving services
-      Recruiting staff
-      Training staff
-      Supervising staff
-      Purchasing office supplies
Source: This article was extracted from Mental Health Academy’s “Building a Counselling Practice” professional development course. Click here for more information about this course.
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The Institute has a list of recommended textbooks and DVDs which can add great value to your learning journey - and the good news is that you can purchase them very easily. The AIPC bookstore will give YOU:
-      Discounted prices!
-      Easy ordering method!
-      Quality guarantee!
This fortnight's feature is...
Name: Issues and Ethics in the Helping Professions, 7th edition
Author: Corey, Corey & Callanan
AIPC Price: $84.60 (RRP $94.00)
ISBN: 978-053-461-4430
Up-to-date and comprehensive, the authors provide readers with the basis for discovering their own guidelines within the broad limits of professional codes of ethics and divergent theoretical positions.
To order this book, simply contact your nearest Student Support Centre or the AIPC Head Office (1800 657 667).
Introduction to Telephone Counselling
The telephone has long been considered a professionally acceptable tool for helping counsellors provide their services. In the past two decades, there has been an enormous growth in technology aided services provided by psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers and counsellors. The use of the telephone has gone beyond answering initial inquiries and scheduling client’s appointments to offering full psychological interventions.
Historically, telephone counselling evolved from psychiatric services and medical triage experiences. In the late 1950’s crisis hotlines focusing on suicide prevention began to emerge in both Europe and the United States and rapidly expanded to Australia (Ormond, Haun, Cook, Duqutte, Ludowese & Matthews, 2000; Cruz, San Martin, Gutierrez, Farias, & Mora, 2001). These hotlines, despite lack of empirical evidence for their effectiveness, soon became part of community mental health services in many places around the world.
Click here to continue reading this article...
Working with Young Children
It is important that children are able to express and understand how they are feeling. Some children feel uncomfortable talking about their feelings, therefore combining discussion with an external activity will often help them open up about their feelings. It is important when working with children to remember to apply the strategies and techniques that work best with the child. For example, a toddler may be able to express their feelings using a finger puppet or a stuffed animal whereas pre-school aged children like to express their feelings through creative imagery, drawings, and feeling charts.
Sessions with children tend to be short and brief. When identifying the issue, keep the idea simple and at the level the child can identify with, e.g. a little boy called Tim wanted to get rid of his fears of vampires and monsters. In the session Tim indicated that he liked chocolate, therefore he was asked by the counsellor to make all the monsters into chocolate and place them in the sun and make them melt. This gave Tim control over the monsters as he could watch them melt away (Baumgardner, 1989).
Click here to continue reading this article...
Breaking away from the pack
The thought of entering private practice can be daunting, but many counselors find the payoffs well worth the risk
For Margie Williams, the goal was always to be her own boss. “In grad school, I knew that I’d have to learn to be a therapist by actually doing it, and that meant putting in the time at the best training site I could talk my way into. The years I spent working at a residential treatment center gave me a solid foundation in every aspect of this field, until there came a point when I was ready to call my own shots.”
Williams, who runs a private practice in Tucson, Ariz., is hesitant to call herself a born entrepreneur, but she knows she’s never been happier. Many counselors-in-training and veteran counselors alike have dreams of one day working in private practice, so Counseling Today reached out to a handful of private practitioners and asked them to share a little about the challenges they have faced, the lessons they have learned and the strategies they have implemented to ensure success.
Click here to continue reading this article...
Other articles:
Convenient Professional Development
Hundreds of counsellors, psychologists, social workers, mental health nurses and allied health professionals already access over 100 Hours of Professional Development online, for less than $1 a day. Now it's your turn.
Mental Health Academy (MHA) is the leading provider of professional development education for the mental health industry. MHA provides the largest variety of courses and videos workshops, all conveniently delivered via the internet.
With MHA, you no longer have to worry about high costs, proximity and availability, or fitting a workshop around your lifestyle!
You can access the huge range of PD, including courses and video workshops, whenever and from wherever you want.
Whether you are looking for courses on anxiety and depression, or a video workshop discussing the intricacies of relationship counselling - Mental Health Academy is your gateway to over 100 hours of professional development content.
Take a quick look at what Mental Health Academy offers:
-      Over 70 professionally developed courses.
-      On-demand, webstreamed video workshops.
-      Over 100 hours of professional development.
-      Extremely relevant topics.
-      New courses released every month.
-      Video supported training.
-      Online, 24/7 access to resources.
-      Endorsement by multiple Associations, including AASW, ACA and APS.
Begin your journey today. Click on the link below to register for a monthly or annual unlimited membership. As an unlimited member, you can access all MHA courses for less than $1 per day, and receive discounts when purchasing any video workshops:
Have you visited Counselling Connection, the Institute's Blog yet? We continually publish new and interesting posts including case studies, profiles, success stories and much more. Make sure you too get connected (and thank you for those who have already submitted comments and suggestions).
A Dilemma with Supervision
You are a counsellor and approved supervisor working in your own private practice. One of your supervisees, Mary, who has been with you for over twelve months, has told you that her sister is going through a lengthy and difficult relationship breakdown.
Mary has previously suggested to her sister that she seek counselling but her sister has rejected the idea outright. Recently, however, when they met for coffee, her sister said that she would attend counselling but only if it could be with you, as she felt that she would be comfortable with you from what Mary had told her. Mary intends to continue to work with you as her supervisor.
What would you do in this situation; what issues does it raise?
Click here to continue reading this post...
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"Happiness does not come from doing easy work but from the afterglow of satisfaction that comes after the achievement of a difficult task that demanded our best." 
~ Theodore Isaac Rubin
Below are some of the seminars available for the first semester of 2011. To register for a seminar, please contact your Student Support Centre.
To access the full list, visit:
Diploma of Counselling (CDA) Timetable
Northern Territory
The Counselling Process: 25/06
Communication Skills II: 16/04
Family Therapy: 02/04
South Australia
The Counselling Process: 26/03, 28/05
Communication Skills I: 02/04, 04/06
Communication Skills II: 03/04, 05/06
Counselling Therapies I: 07-08/05
Counselling Therapies II: 21-22/05
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 01/05
Family Therapy: 29/05
Case Management: 18-19/06
The Counselling Process: 09/04, 06/05, 28/05, 03/06, 29/06
Communication Skills I: 14/04, 13/05, 17/06
Communication Skills II: 15/04, 20/05, 22/06
Counselling Therapies I: 28-29/04, 15-16/06
Counselling Therapies II: 30-31/05
Case Management: 24-25/03, 26-27/05
Western Australia
The Counselling Process: 16/04, 14/05, 18/06
Communication Skills I: 30/04, 28/05
Communication Skills II: 01/05, 29/05
Counselling Therapies I: 09-10/04, 11-12/06
Counselling Therapies II: 07-08/05
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 19/06
Family Therapy: 17/04
Case Management: 21-22/05
The Counselling Process: 30/04
Communication Skills I: 28/05
Communication Skills II: 02/04, 25/06
Counselling Therapies I: 26-27/03
Counselling Therapies II: 16-17/04
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 14/05
Family Therapy: 04/06
The Counselling Process: 22/05
Communication Skills I: 27/03, 26/06
Communication Skills II: 08/05
Counselling Therapies I: 19-20/03
Counselling Therapies II: 30/04-01/05
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 29/05
Case Management: 09-10/04
The Counselling Process: 03/04, 08/05, 17/06
Communication Skills I: 27/03, 09/04, 07/05, 03/06
Communication Skills II: 26/03, 02/04, 01/05, 10/06
Counselling Therapies I: 16-17/04, 14-15/05, 18-19/06
Counselling Therapies II: 23-24/04, 21-22/05, 25-26/06
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 05/06
Family Therapy: 04/06
Case Management: 28-29/05
Sunshine Coast
The Counselling Process: 16/04
Communication Skills I: 04/06
Communication Skills II: 05/06
Counselling Therapies I: 02-03/04
Counselling Therapies II: 21-22/05
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 18/06
Case Management: 25-26/06
Gold Coast
The Counselling Process: 16/04
Communication Skills I: 21/05
Communication Skills II: 18/06
Counselling Therapies I: 25-26/03
Counselling Therapies II: 06-07/05
Legal & Ethical Frameworks: 15/04
Case Management: 01-02/04
Diploma of Professional Counselling (DPCD) Timetable
Northern Territory
Communication Skills II: 16/04
The Counselling Process: 25/06
Counselling Therapies II: 30/04-01/05
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 11/06
Counselling Applications: 07/05
South Australia
Communication Skills I: 02/04, 04/06
Communication Skills II: 03/04, 05/06
The Counselling Process: 26/03, 28/05
Counselling Therapies I: 07-08/05
Counselling Therapies II: 21-22/05
Case Management: 18-19/06
Counselling Applications: 27/03
Communication Skills I: 14/04, 13/05, 17/06
Communication Skills II: 15/04, 20/05, 22/06
The Counselling Process: 09/04, 06/05, 28/05, 03/06, 29/06
Counselling Therapies I: 28-29/04, 15-16/06
Counselling Therapies II: 30-31/05
Case Management: 26-27/05
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 31/03, 04/06
Counselling Applications: 01/04
Western Australia
Communication Skills I: 30/04, 28/05
Communication Skills II: 01/05, 29/05
The Counselling Process: 16/04, 14/05, 18/06
Counselling Therapies I: 09-10/04, 11-12/06
Counselling Therapies II: 07-08/05
Case Management: 21-22/05
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 15/05
Communication Skills I: 28/05
Communication Skills II: 02/04, 25/06
The Counselling Process: 30/04
Counselling Therapies I: 18-19/06
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 11/06
Communication Skills I:  27/03, 26/06
Communication Skills II: 08/05
The Counselling Process: 22/05
Case Management: 09-10/04
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 19/06
Counselling Applications: 03/04
Communication Skills I: 27/03, 09/04, 07/05, 03/06
Communication Skills II: 26/03, 02/04, 01/05, 10/06
The Counselling Process: 03/04, 08/05, 17/06
Counselling Therapies I: 16-17/04, 14-15/05, 18-19/06
Counselling Therapies II: 23-24/04, 21-22/05, 25-26/06
Case Management: 28-29/05
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 30/04, 12/06
Counselling Applications: 10/04, 11/06
Sunshine Coast
Communication Skills I: 04/06
Communication Skills II: 05/06
The Counselling Process: 16/04
Counselling Therapies I: 02-03/04
Counselling Therapies II: 21-22/05
Case Management: 25-26/06
Advanced Counselling Techniques: 09/04
Counselling Applications: 28/05
Important Note: Advertising of the dates above does not guarantee availability of places in the seminar. Please check availability with the respective Student Support Centre.
Counselling Courses
Community Services Courses
Role Play Videos
Due to popular demand, we've posted 5 educational videos exclusively to our Facebook fans. Each video incorporates a role play demonstrating the key techniques of a counselling therapy. The role plays include CBT, Person Centred Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Gestalt Therapy and Behavioural Therapy.

To watch these videos, visit our Facebook page at and click the video icon on the left-side index. And while you're there, don't forget to click the 'LIKE' button to receive daily updates and resources in counselling!

Counselling & Psychology Courses

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