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What is psychotherapy?

More commonly referred to as “talk therapy”, psychotherapy encompasses a wide range of treatment options.

The types of psychotherapy I specialise in include:

Integrative Humanistic therapy

This therapy helps clients understand how uncovering their deeper feelings can actually change the relationships with those close to them. The key focus is to increase self-compassion, empathy and holistic integration of life matters.

Existential therapy

Existential therapy is centred on the idea of our existence  in the world impacts on how we feel and our ability to navigate the world around us. Existential psychotherapists consider life and death, freedom and responsibility, meaningfulness and meaninglessness, as well as isolation and connectedness.

This therapy examines how you are existing in the world and considers our current and past existence in order for better integration into our future existent self.

Transpersonal therapy

This approach focuses on our spiritual connectedness to ourselves and others around us. Transpersonal psychotherapists consider the mind, body and spirit of all people that they see for therapy.

During transpersonal therapy, you will open up your spiritual connection to all that is, in order to come to a new understanding and a new peace in the world.

Integrative Relationship therapy

Integrative relationship therapists draw from a broad spectrum of theories and work in harmony with relationship matters in couples, broader relationships and family matters.

Renée draws from her studies of Gottman therapy, conflict resolution skills, family systems theories, integrative humanistic therapies and person-centred approaches to come up with a unique formulation just for you.


How does psychotherapy help?

Psychotherapy aims to enable you to better understand your feelings, and how these feelings impact your life.

Through expert guidance, I can help you to accurately identify what makes you feel happy, anxious, depressed or frustrated.

The ability to identify and understand feelings and why they occur can help you better cope with any situation which may arise.

Through regular treatment, you will be able to cope in a much more adaptive way, rather than just reacting to situations.

Psychotherapy can provide constructive help with many different problems, ranging from:

  • – Low self-esteem
  • – Depression
  • – Anxiety
  • – Addiction
  • – Family disputes
  • – Anger
  • – Sadness
  • – Grief
  • – Frustration
  • – And much more

While everyone experiences intense emotions, the trouble is, many of us don’t know how to process or express these emotions in a healthy way.

My psychotherapy services seeks to empower you through increased self-awareness by freeing you from the influence of unconscious triggers or impulses.

It intensively examines your history. The key focus of psychotherapy is to help you understand your life in a profound and reflective fashion.

This therapy is a growth process, which helps you examine and evaluate long-standing attitudes, behaviours and thought patterns which form the current state of your relationships and life overall.

Ultimately, this approach results in very dramatic changes in perspective regarding your self-image, sense of self-worth, life experience and view of the world in general.

Looking for more personal
and professional growth?


Helps with: Anxiety, bereavement, grief, loss, bullying, mental health, relationships, trauma, stress.

Counselling falls under the umbrella term of ‘talking therapies’.

Counselling gives people the opportunity to talk openly about their challenges and feelings, while being heard and understood. Counselling tends to be short-term and I tend to use solution-focused, existential and person-centred short-term methods. Counselling aims to help you live a more productive life in your own way.

If you are looking to make a positive change in your life, or would like to explore and understand your feelings in more depth, please explore my counselling services further.

Life Coaching

Helps with: Confidence, career choices, accountability, goal setting, relationships, meaning, purpose, happiness.

Life coaching is a broad term that includes the support and guidance to live the life you crave.

If you feel disheartened, disillusioned, struggling with self-esteem, or any negative perception of your day to day routine, life coaching can assist.

Like a sculptor seeing a statue inside a block of clay, a life coach can challenge, motivate, support and inspire you.

If you are looking to return the spark to your life and power towards clearly defined goals, please explore my life coaching services further.

Business Consulting

Helps with: Changing workloads, business growth, training, upskilling, performance management, financial planning.

Are you satisfied with the current performance of your business? Or the people within your business? Business consulting provides objective support to ensure maximum productivity, efficiency and a confident workforce.

As an experienced business consultant I’m able to identify markets, bring niche expertise, action change, provide objectivity, and develop lasting professional solutions.

My expertise is in the area of assisting you to gain the best effort from your staff in order to achieve your professional goals.

If you are looking to increase business and achieve success, please explore my business consulting services further.

Business and Executive Coaching

Helps with: Productivity, motivation, leadership skills, performance, staff morale, communication, marketing, goal setting.

Business and executive coaching are two methods with the same goal – to solve business related issues and help clients get more from their business.

While business coaching has a focus on the metrics of success for a business: strategy, market needs, organisation and so on; executive coaching deals with personal growth.

Blended together these skills offer dynamic and multi-dimensional approaches, ideal for businesses looking to stabilise or grow.

I have extensive experience working with small businesses and professional practitioners to improve their mindsets, and as a result, increase their profits.

If you are looking to maximise the potential of your business, please explore my business and executive coaching services further.

Online Therapist Training

Helps with: Mentoring, digital familiarity, digital therapeutic holding, feedback, communication, disinhibition effect, written communication, audio and video tools.

Are you looking to take your real world therapeutic skills to the online environment?

The continued progression of technology has allowed for traditional therapeutic practice to move to the digital space, with client lives accessible in a dynamic and modern way.

Across email, audio, and video connectivity, the ability to connect with and heal clients wherever they are has never been more available.

Over the past three years, I have been training online therapists with my online therapy training solutions. This has expanded to become Australian Online Therapy Training.

If you are looking to succeed in the online therapy world, please explore my online therapist training services further.

Corporate Training

Helps with: Closing skill gaps, engaged employees, industry changes, technological development, job satisfaction.

A business that stands still is one that falls behind its competition.

With your staff the key to your success or failure as a business owner, it’s vital to ensure they experience regular training.

As an experienced coach, psychotherapist and mentor I can assist you to take your business to the next level.

If you are looking to achieve or retain your competitive edge, please explore my corporate training services further.

How psychotherapy works

Successful psychotherapy is the result of four key factors working together:

  • One – Evidence-based treatment which is appropriate to address your problem.
  • Two – The psychotherapist’s experience.
  • Three – Your personality, culture, values and personal preferences.
  • Four – The therapeutic alliance, engagement and relationship.

This realisation leads to positive changes which enhance healthy behaviour, including:

  • – Improving interpersonal relationships
  • – Better expressing emotions
  • – Thinking positively

As you begin your therapy, I will work with you to develop overall goals and a treatment timeline.

What to expect

Many people suffering from mental and emotional problems feel extremely isolated and alone. When you attend psychotherapy sessions, however, you have someone in your corner.

I am driven to form a partnership with you in which you feel connected, comfortable to share, and most importantly, part of a team that is invested in your recovery.

You will know you’ve formed a good therapeutic relationship if you look forward to therapy sessions, leave therapy feeling as though you’ve made good progress and find it easy to open up and share everything.

Ultimately, psychotherapy is a conversation between two people, you and me. Our conversations focus on increasing your self-awareness and understanding.

As you progress through treatment, you can expect to build a trusting relationship where you are free to share anything.

Psychotherapy progresses in phases.

  • – During the first phase, you and your therapist will explore your problems by talking through them.
  • – Then, you’ll move on to the problem-solving phase. This involves finding alternative ways to be and manage your feelings.
  • – And, as your treatment continues, your psychotherapist will continually assess your progress.

Looking for more ways to live the life you want?

Psychotherapy process and technique

Psychotherapy is also known as “talk therapy”, because talking out your problems and concerns is the cornerstone of the treatment.

During your treatment, we will engage in an ongoing dialogue, discussing your problems and how to address them.

Firstly, we will work together to help you articulate what is bothering you.

Then, you’ll move on to the problem-solving phase, where we’ll work together to find different ways to behave, think and manage your feelings.

This may be done through role-playing new behaviours during sessions, or doing homework in between meetings to practice new skills.

As your treatment continues, as your therapist I will assess how you are progressing and decide whether your original goals should be re-examined or even expanded.

Psychotherapy vs medication

Both medication and psychotherapy have been shown to help people suffering from mental or emotional difficulties.

However, psychotherapy has been proven to be the much more effective option for almost every problem you may face.

If you’re dealing with problems relating to parenting, marriage or life adjustment periods (i.e. losing your job, grieving the loss of a loved one or pet, etc.), psychotherapy is an effective and proven recommendation.

The work you do in psychotherapy will help you develop effective coping skills to handle the situation.

Why choose me?

I am a firm believer in an holistic approach to psychotherapy.

This allows me to offer psychotherapy services for a wide range of issues, including psychotherapy for relationships, grief, depression, chronic pain and anxiety.

Our all-encompassing approach to psychotherapy can help people dealing with all sorts of personal problems by:

  • – Giving you someone to talk to
  • – Creating new ways for you to look at difficult problems
  • – Helping you move towards practical solutions (i.e. by changing your thought, communication and behaviour patterns, etc.)
  • – Helping you gain a better understanding of your goals and values
  • – Giving you tools to improve your personal relationships


Renée’s style, enthusiasm and knowledge was what I liked best about this training. It was great to consider the opportunity for ongoing networking. The information provided was great, along with the informal discussions and other class participants.
Mary* | Counsellor / Psychotherapist
Renée provided thorough, in depth information and relevant resources and the training was very well run and organised.
Sally* | Counsellor
I would definitely recommend this training by Renée. I have signed up for the next segment!
Marcia* | Counsellor
"Renee McDonald. Every therapist who is considering working as an online therapist should be signing up with your course. I was really amazed at how much information there was that I didn't know about it. And it comes with accreditation. There is a lot of work you have put into this. Thank you. Can't wait for Level 2 & 3".
Maria D.

Are you ready to improve your well-being
and mental health.

Book your free 15 minute, no-obligation consultation.

Questions to ask before you hire a psychotherapist

How long does it take to see progress?

This depends on several factors, including the nature of your problem, your characteristics and history, your goals, what is going on in your life, and how quickly you are progressing through your treatment.

Some clients feel better after only one session, but others need much longer to work through their problems.

What types of therapy do you offer?

At Renée McDonald services, we are pleased to provide:

  • Individual therapy
  • Relationship counselling (Couples, family or marriage therapy)
  • Clinical supervision, and;
  • Family sessions.

How do I find the best help?

Finding a therapist that understands your needs, goals and current situation can be a challenge.

I am driven to get to know you, help you define your goals and give you practical tools and exercises to help you manage your thoughts, feelings and behaviour.

Where do you work?

I am based in New South Wales with face-to-face meetings available in Wollongong, though I also provide nation-wide and international online psychotherapy to ensure no one goes without the support they require.

How do I book?

To reserve your psychotherapy session, simply click on the button.