September 7, 2022
At 16 Emma attempted suicide and was left paralyzed. Now, at 21, Emma is a passionate mental health advocate. She take us on a journey of what led up to her attempt and her thought processes immediately before, during and after and ultimately her recovery. Emma reflects on meaningful ways in which to reach out and support someone that may be at risk. She now uses her story as a powerful instrument to support others.
Emma’s story is particularly relevant this week as it’s suicide prevention week.
You can reach out to Emma’s team as well as finding out how to watch her incredible documentary My Ascension here:
For emergency support contact:
13 11 14 in Australia for Lifeline, a crisis support and suicide prevention service
1800 273 8255 in the USA for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline
July 5, 2022
Today we continue speaking with Professor Sean Drummond, a Cognitive Neuroscientist and Clinical Psychologist at the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health at Monash University.
In part 2 of our conversation, we explore the relationship between poor sleep and mental illnesses - how one can be caused by the other. We talk about cognitive based therapy for insomnia (CBTI), the current gold standard for the treatment of poor sleep, medication for insomnia and the role that it has in treatment. Finally we circle around to the resources available to help people with poor sleep, and some tips to achieve better quality sleep.
The Australasian Sleep Association (offers a list of providers)
The Sleep Health Foundation
June 7, 2022
Today we’re speaking with Professor Sean Drummond, a sleep expert, Cognitive Neuroscientist and Clinical Psychologist at the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health at Monash University.
We have split this conversation into 2 parts, in this, part 1 we cover the mechanics of sleep, how much sleep do we need, how much we actually get, the price for insufficient sleep, Sleep patterns, Caffeine and alcohol and how they impact sleep, Insomnia and sleep apnoea. We touch on 4 key things that you can do to improve your sleep.
May 5, 2022
Today we’re speaking with Dr. Jarrod White, a Clinical Psychologist working in private practice at The Viewpoint clinic in Caulfield Melbourne. During Dr. White's research he had the opportunity to conduct face to face interviews with holocaust survivors and Sudanese genocide survivors. During our conversation, Dr. White shares some of his research and the key themes of how trauma is processed and expressed differently within different cultures.
April 5, 2022
Today we speak with Professor Paul Fitzgerald who has been involved in the development, evaluation and clinical implementation of new treatments for mental health disorders for 2 decades. He pioneered the use of TMS in Australia and is internationally renowned as a leader in the field of brain stimulation and device based treatments in psychiatry.
In our conversation we discuss what TMS is, the mechanisms of how we believe it works, we discuss how it’s administered, side effects, it’s efficacy and the costs and funding available in Australia.
This conversation was recorded in November of 2021, since this time the Australian government has added TMS to the rebate scheme as Prof. Fitzgerald mentioned.
Professor Paul Fitzgerald has been the Director of Epworth Centre for Innovation in Mental Health (ECIMH) but is currently in the process of transitioning to a role as Director of the School of Medicine and Psychology at ANU through which you can connect with him.
You can find a list of TMS relevant publications by Prof Fitzgerald on his website at paulbfitzgerald.com/
March 11, 2022
Today we talk to Phil Armstrong, CEO of the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), about the ethics of client patient dynamics and what happens when a clinician develops romantic feelings towards their client or visa versa. Phil, as the head of the ACA, is in the perfect position to provide some guidance and boundaries on these sorts of ethical questions. As you’ll hear from our conversation, Phil draws on his own clinical experience as well as that of their 7000 members.
December 21, 2021
We’ll be taking a break over December and Jan and will post our next podcast in Feb.
Thank you for your support and for tuning into conversations about mental health. We hope these conversations have sparked your curiosity and have given you new insights into your own lives and of those close to you.
We wish you a safe festive season, take care of yourself and we’ll see you in 2022.
December 9, 2021
What is the difference between a counsellor and a psychotherapist? Today we’re speaking with Dr. Di Stow, the President of the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia (PACFA) who will explain this in detail. PACFA is a leading national peak body and professional association for counsellors and psychotherapists in Australia with over 4500 members nationwide and as one of the leaders of this organisation, Dr. Stow is well placed to explore the similarities and differences between these two mental health professionals.
Dr. Di runs her own private counselling practice in Hobart, Tasmania, working a lot with grief and loss, anxiety and depression, and many other issues.
November 9, 2021
Today we speak with Dr Zac Seidler who is a clinical psychologist, researcher and leading men’s mental health expert. Zac currently holds dual roles as Director of Mental Health Training at Movember and Research Fellow with Orygen at the University of Melbourne.
We speak about men’s mental health, masculinity, the idea of toxic masculinity, how men relate to seeking support and help, the role of men in relationships and society, consent, and the Movember movement and support out there for men.
At the time of release (November), many men are in the full swing of supporting men's health awareness by growing out their mustaches. If you are keen to get on board it’s not too late to start your mo. Head over to movember.com to get the details.
https://www.zacseidler.com/ (Zac’s training program for clinicians)
https://familyman.movember.com/ (Resources for young fathers)
Mo-Conversations – A podcast by Movember on all things man-related
October 12, 2021
Dr. Gery Karantzas, is an Associate Professor and Director of the Science of Adult Relationships (SoAR) Laboratory at Deakin University and is one of Australia’s leading relationships experts. Prof Gery has edited and authored over 100 publications including a handbook and co-authored text on relationships. Gery writes for the Conversation and Psychology Today, and is regularly contacted by the media to discuss all matters on relationships. He is also the founder of Relationship Science Online, a website that curates and delivers the science of relationships to target the needs of relationship counsellors and the general public.
In this conversation we explore the impact of COVID and lockdowns on couples and the Vulnerability, Stress Adaptation Model of relationships. We also discuss some of the most common types of conflict patterns experienced couples and how to improve the ways in which couples fight so that they deal with conflict in more constructive ways. Prof Gery offers lots of roleplay style scenarios and gives great insights into some things to say, different ways to approach difficult conversations as well as pointing listeners to some great resources.
You can find Dr. Gery as well as much of his writing for the Conversation, Psychology Today and helpful insights on relationships at www.relationshipscienceonline.com
To find out more about the Science of Adult Relationships (SoAR) Laboratory at Deakin University, go to: www.scienceofadultrelationships.org
The article that Ruan and Dr. Gery refer to:
Dr. Gery referred to the work by Professor Andrew Christensen (UCLA), specifically Professor Christensen’s co-development of Integrative Behavioural Couples Therapy( IBCT). He and his former student Professor Brian Doss (University of Miami) have developed an online couple program based on IBCT, the “OURRelationship Program” – a program to help couples become unstuck from their core relationship issues.
To find out more about the OURRelationship Program go to: www.ourrelationship.com