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Copyright: 2012 Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors

Institute Inbrief - 19/03/2014


Welcome to Edition 199 of Institute Inbrief! Most Western models of health deal extensively with physical, social/emotional, and mental levels of health. Transpersonal therapy, conversely, can be thought of as an open-ended effort to help clients expand their awareness and grow beyond the limits implied by the Western models. In this edition’s featured article, we’ll briefly introduce you to some concepts and aims of transpersonal therapy.
Also in this edition:
  • Video lecture: Supporting People with Chronic Pain
  • Event: No 2 Bullying Conference
  • Mindfulness-based Meditation Eases Cancer Symptoms in Teens
  • Disordered eating and body bashing
  • Articles and CPD updates
  • Social media updates
  • Upcoming seminar dates
Enjoy your reading!
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Bachelor of Counselling
Become A Counsellor or Expand On Your Qualifications
With Australia’s Most Cost Effective & Flexible
Bachelor of Counselling
AIPC is Australia’s largest and longest established educator of Counsellors. Over the past 22-years we’ve helped over 55,000 people from 27 countries pursue their dream of becoming a professional Counsellor.
The Bachelor of Counselling is a careful blend of theory and practical application. Theory is learnt through user-friendly learning materials that have been carefully designed to make your studies as accessible and conducive to learning as possible.
You can gain up to a full year’s academic credit (and save up to $8,700.00 with RPL) with a Diploma qualification. And with Fee-Help you don’t have to pay your subject fees upfront.
Here are some facts about the course:
  • Save up to $57,000.00 on your qualification.
  • Get started with NO MONEY DOWN using FEE-HELP.
  • Save up to $8,700.00 with RPL.
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  • Study externally with individualised personal support.
  • Attend Residential Schools in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane to hone your practical skills and network with other students.
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Bachelor of Psychological Science
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Bachelor of Psychological Science
Psychology is one of the most versatile undergraduate courses, leading to many different career opportunities. And now there's a truly flexible way to get your qualification – with internal or external study options. It means working while you study is a realistic alternative.
Cost of living pressures and lifestyle choices are evolving the way we learn and Australian Institute of Psychology (AIP) is paving the way through flexible, innovative learning models:
  • Save up to $34,800 on your qualification.
  • Get started with NO MONEY DOWN with FEE-HELP.
  • Earn while you learn with flexible external learning options.
  • Be supported by a large team of highly-qualified Psychology professionals.
  • Study internally or externally with individualised personal support.
  • Enjoy a flexible and supportive learning experience.
  • Benefit from less onerous course entry requirements.
AIP is a registered Higher Education Provider with the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, delivering a three-year Bachelor of Psychological Science. The Bachelor of Psychological Science is accredited by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC), the body that sets the standards of training for Psychology education in Australasia.
APAC accreditation requirements are uniform across all universities and providers in the country, meaning that Australian Institute of Psychology, whilst a private Higher Education Provider, is required to meet exactly the same high quality standards of training, education and support as any university provider in the country.
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Diploma of Counselling
AIPC provides you with flexible course delivery modes
So YOU set the rules for how and when you learn...
AIPC’s accredited and nationally recognised Diploma of Counselling is designed so that you determine the manner and pace you study. You study entirely at your own pace (except of course if you’re receiving a government benefit such as Austudy) and you can start at any time, graduating in only 18-months.
Not only can you set the pace you study, you also determine the mode you want to study. You can study externally (at home with phone and email access to our counselling tutors); in-Class; online or any combination… all the time fully supported by our huge national team throughout our 8 Student Support Centres.
External learning means you can complete your entire course from the comfort of your home (or office, or overseas, or virtually anywhere). Your course comes complete with fully self-contained, referenced and professionally presented learning materials including 18 individual workbooks and readings. It really is as simple as working through the material and contacting us for support along the way. If you live locally to one of our support centres you can also attend tutorials to provide you with face to face contact if you wish (this option is ideal if you enjoy working more independently or have a busy schedule).
In-Class learning is a classroom forum where you learn with other students from a qualified lecturer. Classes are available in most main cities, at flexible times. In-Class is a great way for you to accelerate your learning, interact with other students and stay highly motivated. (This option is particularly suitable if you enjoy learning in the classroom environment with other students).
Online learning allows you to complete your learning entirely via your PC. You still receive all the high quality hardcopy resources (so you don’t miss out on anything!), but you’ll access all your learning materials and complete assessments online.
Any combination. Of course you don’t have to stick with one learning method throughout your studies. You’re welcome to use whichever method suits your needs and desires at the time. You may choose to complete one workbook in-Class, another online, then externally. Whatever is most convenient!
You can learn more here:
Video lecture: Supporting People with Chronic Pain
Have you ever had a period in your life when the main thing you recall from it was the relentless pain? What about a period when you were a caregiver for someone with chronic pain? 
In the fourth of ten episodes of the AIPC Video Lecture Series, Richard Hill (MBMSc, BA (Linguistics), DipProfCouns, MA (Social Ecology), MEd, DPC) talks about supporting those who are dealing with chronic pain, whether the person supported is the one with the pain, or the caregiver to the one with the pain.
More specifically, Richard defines what chronic pain is and suggests some of its causes; explains the roles of the nervous and immune systems in creating chronic pain; and outlines the treatment options for dealing with it.
Go to to watch this lecture.
Please help us spread the word
We think many of your friends and colleagues may be interested in this engaging series. Simply email them the link to the page, and instructions above. Another way to share this resource is by posting the instructions/web address on social media: including Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
Event: No 2 Bullying Conference
The No 2 Bullying Conference, hosted by the “not for profit” Australia & New Zealand Mental Health Association is being held on the Gold Coast from the 6th - 8th April 2014.
The theme of the Conference “Identifying Bullying | Policy, Prevention & Management Strategies” will examine bullying and what can be done about it in a range of contexts such as schools, families, workplaces and cyberspace. Programs will be described and evaluated, and where possible, evaluations will be evidence-based.
The conference will examine what some organisations have been doing to counter bullying, look at how the law operates and provide a critical evaluation of its effects. The role of parenting will also be considered.
The program consists of 8 Keynote Presenters, 48 Session Presenters and the addition of 8 optional Workshops. The conference will deliver a thought provoking and educational program combined with opportunities for networking and discussion.
Further information can be found on the website
Discount for AIPC subscribers
AIPC subscribers are eligible for the early bird member rate (you can save $200.00 off the conference registration fees). Contact the conference secretariat for the discount. 
Mindfulness-based Meditation Eases Cancer Symptoms in Teens
Mindfulness-based meditation has been found to lessen some symptoms associated with cancer in teens.
That may be because mindfulness-based meditation focuses on the present moment and the connection between the mind and body, according to researchers at the University of Montreal and its affiliated CHU Sainte-Justine children’s hospital.
Teens diagnosed with cancer face not only the physical symptoms of their condition, but also the anxiety and uncertainty related to the progression of the disease, according to the researchers.
Click here to continue reading the original article via PsychCentral.
Disordered eating and body bashing
Today I ate a piece of chocolate cake, and I survived. This sounds silly, I know. But not too long ago, there were countless days in a row when I truly thought my life was measured by the number on the scale, the size of my jeans, the number of calories I ate or my ability to refuse chocolate cake.
Sadly, this is no exaggeration, and many of you know this because you too are dealing with or have dealt with living in a self-made prison where the bars are made of supermodel standards, fear of rejection, endless exercising, obsession with body image, overeating, undereating, laxatives, diuretics, self-induced vomiting and self-loathing. Would you be able to tell, just by knowing someone, if they are one of the inmates in this prison of torment that destroys both body and soul? Are you one of these people who secretly hope that your warden of self-criticism will unlock the door and free you?
Click here to continue reading the original article via Counseling Today.
Transpersonal therapy: What is it?
Most Western models of health deal extensively with physical, social/emotional, and mental levels of health. When they talk about maximising a person’s potential, it is normally within a context such as Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (1962), which – in stating that the highest level of the nested hierarchy is “self-actualisation” – takes one to the threshold of the transpersonal, but not into it. Transpersonal therapy, conversely, can be thought of as an open-ended effort to help clients expand their awareness and grow beyond the limits implied by the Western models. 
The transpersonal is a phenomenon or experience "in which the sense of identity or self extends beyond (‘trans’) the individual or personal to encompass wider aspects of humankind, life, psyche or cosmos" (Walsh & Vaughan, 1993).
Thus, in addition to typical counselling and psychotherapeutic techniques and methods, the therapist may employ mindfulness and other types of meditation or stillness practice adapted from Eastern spiritual disciplines in order to facilitate the expansion of awareness (Vaughan, 1979).
Goals of full humanness, with responsibility, balanced growth, and self-healing
Given that the ultimate state of psychological health is deemed to go well beyond “normal” levels when one works in the transpersonal, it makes sense to define just what the goals might be. Frances Vaughan (1979) makes the case for the following aims of transpersonal psychotherapy.
Responsibility-taking: While normal (non-transpersonally-oriented) counselling certainly attempts to move clients in the direction of taking responsibility for themselves, transpersonal therapy makes no bones about it: we are all responsible for what we have created in our lives and in our relationships. Thus, if we do not like what we see, our best option is to change how we think and behave until outer reality begins to conform to our preferred circumstance. We cannot always shift all outer situations, however, so the psychospiritually advancing person also needs to be able to disidentify.
Disidentification (detachment):The healthy person is assumed to be capable of feeling the full range of human emotions, yet not getting “stuck” on or overly identified with any particular personal drama. Such a person has the skill of being able to detach, experiencing all life situations and events with a minimum of melodrama. A goal, therefore, of transpersonal therapy is to help the client expand into and identify with any emotions not yet fully experienced, while simultaneously being able to disidentify at will.
Meeting needs: Along with taking responsibility, the transformed individual has (mostly) achieved the capacity to meet physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual needs appropriately in accordance with his or her individual preferences and pre-disposition. There is the expectation that s/he can generally find a way to make things work, to meet the need. Where a client seems unable to meet his or her own needs, transpersonal therapy works to enhance the client’s sense of self-reliance and resourcefulness. There is the corollary assumption here that no one path can be right for everyone, due to the infinite range of personal preferences and inbuilt character tendencies; thus the transpersonal therapist aims to be flexible in helping clients see how to meet needs (Vaughan, 1979).
The spiritual life integral to full humanness: Contrary to the general stance of other counselling modalities, which leave up to the client whether to engage in spiritual pursuits, transpersonal therapy takes as a basic assumption that a fully human life includes the spiritual dimension. In addition to needs for food, shelter, and nurturing relationships, human beings, to maximise their functioning and achieve the highest levels of health, must also meet needs for self-realisation: that is, connection with themselves as Self, as soul. We must clarify here that the client determines the content of a session.
The therapist is not in attendance to proselytise any religion, nor to insist that a client – especially including agnostic or atheistic ones – acknowledge the existence of spirit. Rather, the therapist sees the client within a wide context which, often silently, holds the space for the client to unfold into. The processes used may be, as noted, either ones used in general counselling or they may be transpersonally oriented. Always, there is the opportunity in session to identify with the most inclusive sense of oneself.
Self-healing: The old saying that “the doctor is the one who stands by while the patient heals himself” is nowhere truer than in transpersonally-oriented helping, where every client is seen as having the capacity for self-healing. The therapist’s role is not to provide a “fix”, “cure”, or “solution” for what ails the client, but to facilitate the client’s tapping into inner resources which allow the natural healing or growth process to occur.
Beyond that, there is the assumption that the natural tendency of the human organism is to seek ever-greater enhancement and expansion in the process of self-actualisation. Thus, qualities or capacities that may lie dormant within an individual when that person is experiencing great conflict or stress can be brought to bear as healing resources when the transpersonal is accessed. Finally, in service of the ultimate self-healing, transpersonal therapists may aim to facilitate the client’s experience of self-transcendence, in which the separate ego is experienced as an illusion, and the underlying oneness of existence is experienced as real (Vaughan, 1979).  
Balanced integration: Through the transpersonally-inspired recognition that one’s beliefs and point of view are necessarily subjective, relative and limited (although the therapist aims to find validity in the client’s worldview), clients can be helped to conduct a closer examination of their beliefs, which yields the ability to break out of self-imposed limitations of awareness. As clients come to disidentify from beliefs which they thought were part of them or which they took for granted, they are able to discard or transcend limiting views and thereby heal psychological splits. 
In this process, disowned parts of the psyche (component parts of one’s psychological shadow) can be re-integrated, yielding an accelerated resolution of internal conflicts. The client can then achieve another aim of transpersonal therapy: namely, the balanced integration of physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual aspects of oneself and one’s wellbeing (Vaughan, 1979). 
This article was adapted from the upcoming Mental Health Academy course “Recognising Spiritual Emergence”. The purpose of this course is help you recognise when spiritual emergence is occurring for a client.
For more information, visit
Maslow, A. (1962). Toward a psychology of being. Princeton: Van Nostrand.
Vaughan, F. (1979). Transpersonal psychotherapy:  context, content and process. The Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, 11(2), 1979.
Walsh, R. and F. Vaughan. (1993). On transpersonal definitions. Journal of Transpersonal Psychology. Vol. 25, No2, pp. 199-207.
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The Institute has a list of recommended textbooks and DVDs that 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, an easy ordering method and quality guarantee!
This fortnight's feature is...
Name: Stress: Myth, Theory and Research
Authors: Jones, F. & Bright, M.
AIPC Price: $61.10 (RRP $72.95)
ISBN: 978-013-041-1891
This book attempts a clear overview of our current understanding of stress. It highlights some of the popular misconceptions about stress, providing a valuable resource in terms of suggestions for further reading and the guidance it provides through a developing and complex field.
To order this book, contact your Student Support Centre or the AIPC Head Office (1800 657 667).
Psychotherapy vs. CBT for Chronic Pain
Pain can have a profound social and psychological impact on those who suffer from it, and also those who care for them. What can you as a counsellor, psychotherapist, or psychologist do for such a client? While “talk therapy” admittedly does not always have the same quick response time as, say, painkilling medication, it can be hugely effective in helping the chronic pain client to come to a place of acceptance, opening the door to the establishing of a new life: one which accommodates the changes that have occurred.
We look at both psychotherapy and cognitive therapy, including under the latter’s umbrella the myriad techniques for working with one’s mind and attention to change the relationship with pain.
Click here to continue reading this article.
A Case of Grief using an Eclectic Approach
Grief is a complex and individual process. There are a number of well documented stages to the grief process such as numbness, guilt, despair, panic and acceptance to name a few. The order in which these stages are experienced and the intensity and duration of each stage will be different for each individual.
It is therefore understandable that an eclectic counselling approach to grief can be beneficial in allowing for the flexibility needed to work with individuals through various stages of the grief process. The following case study is a practical application of a variety of counselling approaches to one client and her experience of grief.
The client’s name is Joan. Joan sought counselling to deal with the unexpected loss of her daughter in a car accident. She received counselling about 2 weeks after her daughter’s death and continued with the counselling process over a period of 8 months.
Click here to continue reading this article.
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Mental Health Academy – First to Knowledge in Mental Health
Get unlimited access to over 50 hours of CPD video workshops and over 100 specialist courses, for just $39/month or $349/year. Plus FREE and EXCLUSIVE access to the 10-hour Psychological First Aid program ($595.00 value).
We want you to experience unlimited, unrestricted access to the largest repository of professional development programs available anywhere in the country.
When you join our Premium Level membership, you’ll get all-inclusive access to over 50 hours of video workshops (presented by leading mental health experts) on-demand, 24/7.
You’ll also get access to over 100 specialist courses exploring a huge range of topics, including counselling interventions, communications skills, conflict, child development, mental health disorders, stress and trauma, relationships, ethics, reflective practice, plus much more. 
You’ll also get FREE and EXCLUSIVE access to the Psychological First Aid course ($595.00 value). The PFA course a high quality 10-hour program developed by Mental Health Academy in partnership with the Australian Institute of Psychology and the Australian Institute of Professional Counsellors, and framed around the internationally accepted principals of the NCTSN Field Operations Guide.
Benefits of becoming a premium member:
  • FREE and exclusive PFA course ($595.00 value)
  • Over 100 specialist courses to choose from
  • Over 50 hours of video learning on-demand
  • CPD endorsed by leading industry associations
  • Videos presented by international experts
  • New programs released every month
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  • Online, 24/7 access
Some upcoming programs:
  • Dialectical Behaviour Therapy
  • A Constructive-Developmental Approach in Therapy: Case Studies
  • Sitting with Shadow: Case Studies
  • Emotionally Focused Therapy
  • Counselling the Disabled: Introduction to the Issues
  • Counselling the Disabled: A Look at What Works
  • Recognising Spiritual Emergence
  • Healing Spiritual Emergencies
  • Spiritual Emergence: Case Studies
  • Drinking and Alcohol Related Harm among Adolescents and Young Adults
  • Diagnosis and Treatment of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Neuroscience, Mirror Neurons and Talking Therapies
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Have you visited the Counselling Connection Blog yet? There are over 650 interesting posts including case studies, profiles, success stories, videos and much more. Make sure you too get connected (and thank you for those who have already submitted comments and suggestions).
VIDEO: Enhancing Resilience
Have you ever wondered what it takes to survive, or even better, to thrive? Clearly, this might be a life-or-death skill! In this video, Richard Hill talks about how you can enhance resilience: in yourself, your friends and loved ones, or – if you are a mental health helper – in your clients.
Click here to read the full post.
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"Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it."
~ Mark Twain
Many students of the Diploma of Counselling attend seminars to complete the practical requirements of their course. Seminars provide an ideal opportunity to network with other students and liaise with qualified counselling professionals in conjunction with completing compulsory coursework.
Not sure if you need to attend Seminars? Click here for information on Practical Assessments.
Below are upcoming seminars available during the first semester of 2014.
To register for a seminar, please contact your Student Support Centre.
BRISBANE (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 24-25/05
Communication Skills I: 05/04, 21/06
Communication Skills II: 11/05
Counselling Therapies I: 31/05-01/06
Counselling Therapies II: 12-13/04
Legal & Ethical Framework: 04/05
Family Therapy: 15/06
GOLD COAST (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 04-05/04
Communication Skills I: 17/05
Communication Skills II: 21/06
Counselling Therapies I: 21-22/03
Counselling Therapies II: 23-24/05
Legal & Ethical Framework: 13/06
SUNSHINE COAST (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 31/05-01/06
Counselling Therapies I: 22-23/03
Counselling Therapies II: 12-13/04
Family Therapy: 03/05
Case Management: 21/06
MELBOURNE (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 05-06/04, 09-10/05, 13-14/06, 28-29/06
Communication Skills I: 11/04, 11/05, 15/06
Communication Skills II: 12/04, 17/05, 21/06
Counselling Therapies I: 12-13/04, 17-18/05, 27-28/06
Counselling Therapies II: 26-27/04, 24-25/05
Legal & Ethical Framework: 22/03, 26/04, 31/05
Family Therapy: 23/03, 27/04, 01/06
Case Management: 29-30/03, 03-04/05, 07-08/06
DARWIN (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 05/04
Communication Skills I: 14/06
Communication Skills II: 14/06
Counselling Therapies I: 12/04
Counselling Therapies II: 21/06
Family Therapy: 29/03
Case Management: 24/05
ADELAIDE (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 06/04, 28-29/06
Communication Skills I: 29/03, 17/05
Communication Skills II: 30/03, 18/05
Counselling Therapies I: 24-25/05
Counselling Therapies II: 21-22/06
Legal & Ethical Framework: 03/05
Family Therapy: 04/05, 24/08
Case Management: 22-23/03, 14-15/06
SYDNEY (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 07-08/04, 02-03/05, 26-27/05, 27-28/06
Communication Skills I: 20/03, 29/04, 29/05, 25/06
Communication Skills II: 21/03, 29/04, 30/05, 26/06
Counselling Therapies I: 27-28/03, 09-10/05
Counselling Therapies II: 10-11/04, 23-24/06
Legal & Ethical Framework: 24/03, 12/05
Family Therapy: 30/04
Case Management: 16-17/05
LAUNCESTON (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 13/06
Communication Skills I: 16/05
Communication Skills II: 16/05
Counselling Therapies I: 27/06
Counselling Therapies II: 11/04
Legal & Ethical Framework: 21/03
Family Therapy: 05/04
Case Management: 02/05
HOBART (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 06/04
Communication Skills I: 15/06
Communication Skills II: 15/06
Counselling Therapies I: 13/04
Counselling Therapies II: 22/06
Family Therapy: 18/05
Case Management: 23/03
PERTH (9.00am – 5.00pm)
The Counselling Process: 03-04/05, 07-08/06
Communication Skills I: 10/05
Communication Skills II: 11/05
Counselling Therapies I: 05-06/04, 14-15/06
Counselling Therapies II: 12-13/04
Legal & Ethical Framework: 18/05
Family Therapy: 24/05
Case Management: 31/05-01/06
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.
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