"You...just as you are, and your life here, right now, are all there is and all you need to know. You don't have to do anything special."

Hi, I’m Dana! My pronouns are they/she. I’m a PACFA registered, Qualified Counsellor offering therapy services online, or through gentle "walk & talk" sessions. I aim to create a collaborative space that safely encourages exploration of possibilities and provides a foundation from which growth in any direction you choose is valued and respected. You are the expert of your life, and during our sessions will always be regarded as such. In this spirit of this collaboration, I am humbled to share some of my story here with you:

My own journey with Counselling began in childhood following the death of my Father. These therapeutic sessions became the first of many turns I would take on the therapist’s couch. Later I would go on to be diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, Anxiety, Depression, PTSD, Autism, and ADHD. I have survived Family Violence, Eating Disorders, Self-Harm, Suicidality, Substance Misuse and Sexual Assault. And I have endured the painful stigma that attaches itself to each of the mental health & neurodevelopmental diagnoses I have lived with or currently live with.

I am open about these experiences now after discovering how profoundly shame unravels itself through the power of being held in shared stories and experiences. I know what it’s like to be ignored by professionals in charge of care, because I have been there. I know what it is like to have emotions and boundaries disregarded because others have decided that the strength derived from the colour of my skin was impenetrable, when what I actually needed was someone to give me permission be vulnerable.

It is this shift that eventually lead me to study a Bachelor of Counselling. Whilst studying my Counselling degree, I was fortunate to be provided with a wealth of volunteer opportunities ranging from LGBTQIA+ peer support both in helpline volunteering and group facilitation, as well as creating & working within spaces across several Australian music festivals to provide consent education, drug harm reduction, and crisis support. Many of the aforementioned volunteer roles are ones I still hold today, remaining steadfast in my vision to create spaces where the voices and experiences of the communities I am proud to be a part of can be uplifted.

I have also worked in Disability Support and Residential aged care providing death-positive end-of-life care. My integrative, holistic focus has also led me to study other forms of emotional support. In addition to Counselling; I am a certified Meditation Teacher, Revelation Breathwork Facilitator, and current student of The School of Embodied Philosophy's Mind-Body Therapy Practitioner certification. It is my belief that Mental Health is not just a singular, personal endeavour (though it is a huge part!) but also a community responsibility. This vision toward a more socially kind & just world is one I bring to my work in the Counselling Space.

My work is centred around empathy & openness. My use of an existential therapeutic anchor provides a lens of curious respect for your unique experience. My practice seeks to dismantle the oppressive barriers that regard the experiences of some as less valid than others. I am body, sex, kink & polyamorous positive and trauma-informed. I believe that counselling should be affordable & accessible to anyone who seeks it, and I am committed about working in alignment with this belief and reflecting this within my practice. It is my honour to step into the space with you, as you step deeper into your personal power.

 

-Rev. angel Kyodo Williams

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©2020 by Dana Swann Counselling. All Rights Reserved. PACFA Reg. Provisional no. 26811