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Spencer Street Psychology Team

Who are we?

We are an innovative team of psychologists with a broad range of training and expertise that includes clinical psychology, counselling, as well as neurophysiology and research specialisations.

We work with a range of techniques and approaches to help people reduce their anxiety, improve their mood, heal from traumatic experiences, see themselves more positively, to feel more at ease in relationships, and to achieve their goals. 

We apply an informed and empathic approach to our work including those from diverse cultures, migrants, and our LGBTIQA+ clients.

Can we help you?

Anxiety disorders (panic, generalised)
Trauma (PTSD, developmental)
Obsessive compulsive disorder
Grief and loss
Adjustment disorder
Stress and burnout
Mood disorders (depression, bipolar)
Relationships (intimacy, breakdown)
Gender and sexuality
Adult attachment repair
Self-development
Sleep disturbance

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
Trauma therapies
Acceptance and commitment (ACT)
Sensorimotor psychotherapy
Schema therapy
Attachment repair
Parts/self-states approaches
Interpersonal therapy (IPT)
Internal family systems (IFS)
Mindfulness-based stress reduction
Compassion therapy
EEG biofeedback
Cognitive-processing therapy (CPT)
EMDR

An essential aspect of therapy, early on in the process, is to listen carefully so that we are able to conceptualise our clients’ experiences in terms of what happens next. This early assessment phase informs the treatment approach we use. However, people arrive at a set of symptoms via many different routes, and due to myriad factors. To understand these factors together requires that we perceive the person through a wider lens.

The most effective treatment is an integration of evidence-based techniques to address the primary set of symptoms, but that is also customised to the individual. 

If you would like to enquire about attending the practice as a new client, please contact us via the New Client Enquiries Form below

Our People

Angela Gale

(She/her)
Counselling Psychologist

Masters (Counselling Psychology)
BA (Hons Psychology)
BSc(Psychology/Psychophysiology)
Board approved supervisor
Couples counsellor
FCCOUNP, MAPS

I have a deep interest in working relationally with people and supporting them through their goals. Many people have experienced relational wounds, like betrayal, neglect, silent treatment, bullying, verbal and emotional abuse, which can be long lasting. Sometimes it can be less obvious and more subtle, like being encouraged to ‘be brave and not cry’ when feeling deeply hurt and unsupported. Trauma and childhood wounds can disrupt someone’s life immediately or take many years to impact negatively.

The concerns people often present with are anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, perfectionism, anger, self-development needs, trauma, dissociation, emotionally stymied or overwhelmed, or difficulty starting or maintaining relationships. I guide and support people to change what is in their control. This means people have an improved ‘foundation’ to function cognitively, emotionally, and behaviourally.

I continue to pursue new evidenced-based approaches to working with people and adapt treatment to the individual. This means during your first session I will gather information about what has brought you to seek help, the current and past relevant circumstances, how you want to benefit from therapy, and we then together find the best path forward. Some of the approaches I use include IPT, Attachment Repair, Trauma Therapy, Parts Work, Schema Therapy, CBT/ACT, MBT, and a few more. I have also completed the Specialist Course in Couples Counselling from Relationships Australia and see couples for a range of concerns such as, communication problems, ways of fighting better, and feeling distant or uncared for.

In addition to attending and hosting professional developments in the field, I have been a member of the Australian Psychological Society National Executive since 2015, and am the Victoria State Section Chair for the APS College of Counselling Psychologists.

Feel free to check out my website www.angelagalepsychology.com.au. If you would like to touch base with me before booking in your first appointment you can. Finding the right fit with a psychologist is like putting on your favourite pair of shoes.

Limited availability

Benjamin Shields

(He/him)
Clinical Psychologist

Masters (Clinical Psychology)
PhD Candidate
Board approved supervisor
MAPS

I love helping people achieve positive change in their inner world, in their relationships, and to get closer to their goals. I have 16 years of experience as a psychologist, and more than 20 years in mental health.

I work with a range of conditions, including low mood and depression, anxiety (including worry, panic, and social anxiety), and responses to traumatic events (including single events, and trauma and neglect that occurred in childhood).

Therapy works when there’s a trusting partnership between the client and me. A deep respect, sensitivity and empathy make for good relationships, generally. These are the foundations of a good relationship with a therapist.

My style with clients is friendly and transparent. We work together on what they want to change. That can be about worrying less, feeling calmer in their body, to stop feeling terrorised by painful memories, or more at accepting of their past, to get rid of panic attacks, to understand why they are responding to situations or people the way they are, to be less critical of themselves and others, to feel more hopeful and optimistic, to be freer to express themselves in all different ways, to name a few.

Sometimes clients tell me that they don’t know if their ‘problem’ is serious enough to work on with me. For me, helping someone to worry less, or to feel more confident, is as genuinely wonderful and legitimate a process as is helping someone in their recovery from a terrible assault, abuse, or huge loss. If therapy might make us feel more at ease and freer in the world, then we should do it!

I am cautious about making assumptions when working with clients. I’ve learnt that ‘the devil is in the detail’ when it comes to conceptualising the problem and the approach to it. Here is one example of what I mean: A client might come into therapy feeling depressed, which would have it that we would refer to the most tried and tested approaches for depression. However, we can arrive at period of low mood via 100 routes, e.g., worrying so much (i.e., simulating the worst ways things might unfold) that we feel hopeless and exhausted, or because our social anxiety and low confidence has put us in particularly isolated place, or because we’re actually grieving something we’ve lost, because we’re starting to understand that something we thought we had, we never had. It can be that we are mistaking sadness for depression (sometimes it’s both), or that boredom is in the mix. An over-pathologisation of our feelings can mean we are so focused on fixing the feeling that we don’t recognise that there is often a context to it. That’s not to deny ‘depression’ as a condition – absolutely not. However, an approach to low mood (and all other ways we people present) needs to factor in the pathway to it, the factors that contribute to it, the person’s style and strengths. If we want to see permanent change, that means breaking things down properly and looking deeper.

I am interested in the ways that the nervous system and mind interact, using top down, and bottom-up approaches to treatment. I am interested in attachment style and emotion regulation and training the mind and brain to strengthen the relationship with the self and create new ways of being.

Aside from my work at the practice, I am doing a Phd focusing on the function and activity of several brain networks, and these functions underpin different symptom sets. I am particularly interested in how these networks affect sense of self, to understand how we can help people develop and/or restore a sense of self after traumatic events via talking therapy techniques, but also techniques that can address the nervous system directly, such as neurofeedback.

No capacity for new clients
No waitlist capacity

David Eckel

(He/him)
Mental Health Social Worker
PhD Candidate Master of Social Work Master of Mental Health Sciences Master of Counselling Master of Creative Arts Therapy Bachelor of Teaching (Hons.)

David is an accredited mental health social worker with over twenty years’ experience counselling adults in community health, specializing in the areas of PTSD and complex trauma, GLBTIQ mental health and alcohol and other drugs. David was co-founder and co-therapist in the Women’s Trauma Recovery Program, a collaboration between Swinburne University and Access Health and Community. David has worked in counselling, project work and clinical supervision roles at IPC Health, Victorian AIDS Council and Access Health and Community. He is passionate about trauma treatment and has trained in EMDR Therapy, Polyvagal Theory and completed Level A Certification in Interpersonal Therapy, Gottman Method Couples Therapy Level One, and is a Level One and Two trained Internal Family Systems Therapist. David is also a trained creative arts therapist and is experienced in supervision and training, having previously taught at the Australian College of Applied Psychology (ACAP). He provides a gentle, warm and sensitive approach to counselling. David is a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT), a registered Circle of Security Facilitator, and a past board member of the EMDR Association of Australia. He is currently completing his PhD focused on Internal Family Systems Therapy and Adult Attachment.

 

Professional Affiliations
Registered with the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW)
Registered Circle of Security Facilitator
Member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT)
Member of the EMDR Association of Australia (EMDRAA)

Publications


2021 Eckel, D. (2021). The Inside Story of Attachment: What can Internal Family Systems Therapy offer? Psychotherapy and Counselling Today, Ed. 3, 49-63.
2011 Eckel, D. (2011). Early vs. Late-Onset Drinkers. Of Substance, 9 (2), 20.
2006 Eckel, D. (2006). On creative arts therapy and depression. The Australian Journal on Psychosocial Rehabilitation, 2006 (1), 43–54.
2003 Eckel, D. (2003). Movement Assessment for Children with Special Needs. Dance Therapy Association of Australia Inc., Quarterly, 2003 (4), 17–22.

Emily Li

(She/her)
Psychologist

Masters (Professional Psychology)
BA (Hons)
MAPS

I believe in creating a safe space for clients where each client feels seen, heard and respected. My therapeutic style is collaborative, compassionate, and transparent. I take into consideration the uniqueness of each individual, and therefore tailor my treatment to the specific needs of each client using evidence-based interventions and approaches.

When working with clients, I like to support them to gain awareness about how their current challenges are linked to their environment (e.g circumstantial or situational factors) , their relationships (with themselves, with others, and with the world), as well as their history (e.g past experiences). Whilst the past does not define us, understanding the past can shed light into how unhelpful patterns and beliefs have originated. I believe this insight empowers clients to break negative cycles and behaviours that no longer serve a purpose, so that they can actively choose a better future.

I have worked in both the private and public sector, and have had extensive experience working with youth as well as families who have been impacted by trauma . I see both adolescents and adults for a range of concerns including: anxiety (panic, worry, OCD & phobias), PTSD and trauma, low mood, difficulties with emotion regulation, negative self -worth, relationship difficulties, and life stressors and adjustments. I am trauma informed in my practice and integrate and draw upon elements of CBT, Schema Therapy, emotion focussed, interpersonal psychotherapy, positive psychology, mindfulness and relaxation strategies, as well as attachment and systemic approaches. I have a special interest in working with individuals who may experience cultural and identity related challenges and difficulties, and am able to speak Mandarin (Chinese) for those who may require the service in a language other than English.

Limited availability

Sean Cuthbert

(He/him)
Clinical Psychologist

Masters (Clinical Psychology)
Certified Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapist
Approved IFS Clinical Consultant
Board approved supervisor
MAPS, FCClin

Sean has over a decade of experience working therapeutically with clients across a number of settings, including community organisations, within public health settings, and in private practice.

Sean draws on a variety of experiential methods to create a tailored approach for each individual and situation. He has advanced training in Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapy, EMDR, Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, the Comprehensive Resource Model (CRM), Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), and Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT). He has worked extensively with adolescents, young adults, and adult clients, and has a particular interest in men’s health.

As a therapist, Sean has an approachable manner, and is warm, open, encouraging, and direct. He combines a down-to-earth, realistic approach to the counselling process with a healthy sense of humour. Sean strives to provide a high quality, personalised, professional service.

Sean graduated from Australian Catholic University in Melbourne with a Master of Psychology (Clinical). He is fully registered as a Psychologist with the Psychology Board of Australia (PBA). He has an endorsement in Clinical Psychology with the PBA. Sean is a full Member of the Australian Psychological Society (APS), and a Fellow of the Clinical College of the APS. Sean is a Member of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD).

Sean is a PBA-approved supervisor of Psychologists and has worked as a Senior Psychologist and supervisor in a number of settings. Sean is a Certified Internal Family Systems (IFS) Therapist from the IFS Institute, and an Approved IFS Clinical Consultant (Supervisor). He can supervise other therapists and practitioners in gaining competence in IFS practice, and IFS Level 1 graduates for IFS Certification.

Sean specializes in the big challenges: complex trauma and PTSD, addictions/substance use issues, depression/shame, and improving relationships, both internal and external. Sean is energetic, and passionate, and brings the full intention for clients to experience change as soon as possible into the process.

Timothy Hill

(He/him)
Psychologist

Masters (Clinical Psychology)
Graduate Diploma of Psychology
Bachelor of Psychological Studies (Honours)
MAPS

I am a Registered Psychologist offering face to face sessions in West Melbourne and via telehealth.

I work with adults (18+) experiencing a range of difficulties, including anxiety and depression, work related, financial and academic stress, grief, interpersonal/ relationship issues, as well as sexuality, gender and self-esteem related difficulties.

I am passionate about providing a safe space for people of any sexuality, gender, sex, culture, religion or ability.

Treatment plans are unique to every client. I work collaboratively in a empathetic, supportive and non-judgmental way, primarily drawing on therapeutic modalities of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Schema Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Limited capacity

Engage with us?

If you would like to enquire about attending the practice as a new client, please click the icon below to contact us via the New Client Enquiries Form below. 

We are happy to answer any questions you have.

Our practice is not accessible from the street without a code. You need an appointment to visit the practice. 

Call us on (03) 7038 0980
Leave us a detailed message and we will get back to you as soon as we can

How to refer to us

Please fax referrals to (03) 4050 7076

Call us on (03) 7038 0980
We will get back to you as soon as we can

In our experience, the best outcomes and level of care for patients occurs when there is an effective partnership between GP/specialist, and the treating psychologist. 

Feel free to get in touch so that we can meet with you to discuss.

Have questions?

Our therapists are private billing psychologists. Therefore, a gap fee will apply to all sessions.

Fees are comparable to other therapists with similar experience, training, and specialisation. Fees also vary between our therapists, so please contact us for more information.

Mental Health Care Plans: A Mental Health Care Plan (MHCP) is available from your GP and will cover up to 10 sessions of psychological therapy per calendar year

In order to access the medicare rebate for sessions, your mental health care plan (referral) needs to be made out to the psychologist you intend to see. We are unable to process rebates using plans that are made out to other psychologists.

Click here more information about Medicare rebates for psychology sessions 

Insurance: Private health fund rebates may be claimable depending on your level of coverage. Please check with your health fund provider for details. Please note, you cannot claim both a medicare rebate and a private health insurance rebate on the same service.

TAC/Worksafe/VOCAT: Our therapists are registered providers for TAC, Worksafe, and VOCAT services.

If you do not attend or reschedule your appointment within 24 hours of your agreed appointment time, there is inadequate time for your psychologist to offer the session to another client. In those cases, clients are required to pay the full fee for the session. 

Please be aware that you are not able to claim the Medicare rebate for cancellation fees. Cancellation fees must be paid before your next appointment.

We take your privacy and confidentiality very seriously, and we are also required by law to preserve and uphold your right to privacy and confidentiality. Subject to certain limited exceptions (described below), your information is kept strictly confidential and stored securely at all times.

Your information will be stored electronically using secure 256-bit SSL encryption. The following accreditations, certifications and standards for data storage are in place: PCI DSS Level 1, ISO 27001, and FIPS 140-2.

As part of providing psychological services to you, Spencer Street Psychology will need to collect and record personal information that is relevant to your current situation. This information is collected for the purpose of enabling your psychologist to plan and provide you with treatment. Your personal information is gathered as part of your assessment and treatment. It is kept securely and, in the interests of your privacy, used only by your psychologist. Your personal information is retained to document what happens during sessions and enables the psychologist to provide a relevant and informed psychological service to you. A detailed description is provided in the practice’s “Privacy policy for management of personal information”, which can be obtained by contacting Spencer Street Psychology. 

All personal information gathered by your psychologist during the provision of the psychological service will not be disclosed except when:

-it is subpoenaed by a court; or
-failure to disclose the information would, in the reasonable belief of your psychologist, place you or another person at serious risk to life, health or safety; or
-your prior approval has been obtained to: provide a written report to another professional or agency. e.g., a GP or a lawyer; or discuss the material with another person, e.g. a parent, employer, or health provider; or disclose the information in another way; or
– you would expect your personal information to be disclosed to another professional or agency (e.g. your GP) and disclosure of your personal information to that third party is for a purpose which is related to the primary purpose for which your personal information was collected; or
– disclosure is otherwise required or authorised by law.

If you are claiming rebates from Medicare, your psychologist will provide your GP with a brief report about your treatment and will outline any recommendations for maintaining and improving your mental health. This is standard practice, and your information will remain confidential. 

The safety and security of our clients, staff, and records is very important to us.

Spencer Street Psychology is not accessible from the street without a security procedure. The building is monitored by CCTV by in-house security staff 24hrs/day. 

The services provided by Spencer Street Psychology are treatment focused.

Spencer Street Psychology does not accept referrals for the purpose of providing medico-legal opinions. Psychologists are not obliged to provide reports for court matters.


Your safety and the safety of our staff is our first priority. We are grateful for your assistance keeping our staff and other clients safe by adhering to the following COVID-19 safety requirements:

Please do not attend the practice if you have symptoms associated with COVID-19. These symptoms including fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea. Please use the following COVID-19 symptom checker to determine if you should be tested for COVID-19: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/apps-and-tools/healthdirect-coronavirus-covid-19-symptom-checker

Telehealth sessions are available. Please advise your psychologist if you have any symptoms associated with COVID-19 so that alternative treatment arrangements can be made for you.

Contacts

Phone:

(03) 7038 0980

Fax:

(03) 4050 7076

New client enquiries:

If you would like to enquire about attending the practice as a new client, please contact us via the New Client Enquiries Form below. 

We are happy to answer any questions you have.

Address:

Office 101, 393 Spencer Street
West Melbourne 3003