Therapy and Counselling

ACC Sensitive Claims Counselling

The Nelson Clinic has an experienced team of clinicians that are accredited to provide therapy and assessments related to sexual trauma.

These services are available to any adult or child who has experienced sexual trauma in New Zealand at any point in their lives.

This support is fully funded by ACC and you can start whenever you are ready. There are also services available for your family and whānau.

Brief Intervention Therapy

The Nelson Clinic Brief Intervention Service is intended to provide short-term, focused mental health treatment to people who do not require longer term mental health counselling services.

The service is intended to utilise no more than six sessions to address specific concerns.

The first session will be used to confirm that the service is appropriate for the client's needs and to set goals for the intervention. During the first session the therapist may also provide some standard psychoeducational material (e.g., building resilience, effective sleep hygiene, or using mindfulness to reduce anxiety) that will support the client in their progress toward the established goal(s).

Each subsequent session will include some form of informal assessment and review of the stated goal(s) to ensure that the service is on track. At the conclusion of the service, clients will be asked for some feedback about their experience and maybe referred for other services if required. 

The work undertaken by the client and the therapist may transition into traditional mental health treatment if both parties agree that that is appropriate.

The sort of problems that can be helped with this approach include:

Problem Solving
  • Identifying the problem
  • Action to manage the situation
  • Developing or using existing coping strategies
  • Evaluating how well the plan worked or what else needs to be done
  • Understanding physical, emotional, behavioural connection to anxious thoughts
  • Doing things differently, facing fear rather than avoidance behaviour
  • Identifying triggers and reducing threat
  • Catching problem thinking patterns and challenging thoughts
  • Assessing effects of depression in daily life
  • Activity scheduling to improve symptoms
  • Challenging negative Automatic Thoughts
  • Measuring improvement in mood
  • Breathing Relaxation techniques
  • Abdominal breathing
  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation
  • Guided Body scan ( Mindfulness)
Brief Intervention Therapy
Work Stress
  • Ways of managing stress
  • Scheduling and planning
  • Letting go of stress
  • Career change advice
Covid 19 Stress
  • Living with uncertainty
  • Separation and worry about loved ones
  • Dealing with media coverage of Covid 19
Supporting Parents
  • Behavioural plans
  • Rewards
  • Emotional support
  • Active Ignoring
  • Time Out and other strategies
Smoking Cessation
  • Reasons to quit
  • Triggers and how to avoid them
  • Plan for quitting
  • Staying quit
  • Smoking cessation methods
Substance Abuse and other unhealthy coping habits
  • Recognising patterns of unhelpful thinking
  • Dealing with addiction
  • Plan to quit
  • Replacing old behaviours
  • Staying quit

Individual Counselling/Therapy

Individual Counselling/Therapy

Individual psychotherapy, or counselling, involves an interaction between a client and therapist with some stated objectives and goals.  Individual therapy can be useful in resolving conflicts and exploring and changing historical behaviors and thoughts that interfere with productive daily functioning and emotional resilience.  While there are many theories about psychotherapy, most professionals agree that the primary curative component of individual counselling is the relationship with the therapist. Finding a therapist with whom you feel comfortable and trust is an important part of the therapeutic process.

Societal norms sometimes create stigma around seeking mental health care. While there may be an implied message that only people with severe mental health concerns seek counselling, many people can benefit from seeing a mental health professional to assist change and growth, resolve problems and make life more fulfilling. Therapy may be useful to provide assistance with: relationship issues, family dynamics, anxiety and nervousness, addiction, depressed mood, learning disorders, career concerns, loneliness, aging, experience with oppression due to sexism, racism, ageism or other prejudice, sexual assault, physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, body image, stress, financial insecurity, declining health, grief, and self-esteem.

Child Therapy

Child therapy provides a safe, non-threatening environment for children to work through thoughts, feelings, and behaviors.

The child therapist may use play, art, music, or other mediums to help the child express him or herself, and to help the child resolve problematic behaviors.

The family is an important part of treatment, and the child therapist will often provide tools to assist the family in efforts to support the child at home and school.

Child Therapy
Relationship Counselling

Relationship Counselling

Relationship counselling is an effective way to help couples work through conflicts and recognize unhealthy habits.  Couples often don’t have either the awareness of interpersonal interactions or the personal resources to change those interactions on their own.  Relationship counselling allows the therapist to work in the moment with couples whereas individual counselling focuses primarily on half the couple.

The Nelson Clinic provides a range of approaches to relationship counselling, including Family Systems Therapy, Brief Solution-focussed Therapy, and therapy based on the work of John Gottman.  As an example of one of these approaches,  Dr. John Gottman studied couples relationships his entire career and developed his theory of the Four Horsemen of relationships:  Criticism, Defensiveness, Contempt and Stonewalling. This approach to therapy identifies the role of these problems in a relationship and then collaboratively develops strategies to change it.  Gottman has written numerous books about relationships including The Seven Principles For Making Marriage Work.  Reading Gottman’s work can be a helpful addition to couples counselling.

Other resources that may be helpful in improving relationships can be found by following these links: