Cheryl Leber is the director and principal psychologist of CG&CS
Ms Leber is registered with the psychology Board of Australia and has specialist endorsement in:
Ms Leber has over 25 years experience working as a psychologist and educator. She has worked in a number of settings within private enterprise and the public school system. She has trained and supervised psychologists and currently works in independent private practice with a focus on personal and relationship counselling.
Over the years Ms Leber has provided psychological consulting services to approximately 50 school communities in the Southern and Eastern Metropolitan School Regions. She worked with students, parents and teachers to foster student independence, resilience and wellbeing.
Early in her career Ms Leber taught students with learning difficulties and established a school-wide program for teachers to support their students' emotional development. She has taught parenting programs and programs to improve teacher skills in counselling and student behaviour management.
Ms Leber's vast experience provides a depth and breadth to her work that benefits her clients and ensures that she provides a very effective and efficient service. She works with enthusiasm and passion to empower her clients to achieve their chosen goals.
Cheryl established a part-time private practice in 1995. She gained further qualifications in family therapy, marriage education, couples counselling, grief education and hypnosis. She is keen to help individuals and couples lead more meaningful and satisfying lives. She is very interested in helping people improve their emotional wellbeing and enabling them to break free from the grip of emotional pain that stems from fear, frustration, confusion, conflict, stress and the feelings of overwhelming sadness and hopelessness.
Cheryl is trained in cognitive behaviour therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, solution focused therapy, hypnosis and motivational interviewing.
- BA, Dip Ed, Grad Dip Voc Couns, MAPS
- Registered psychologist with the Psychology Board of Australia (Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency AHPRA)
- Australian Psychological Society
- Australian Association for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
- College of Counselling Psychologists
- College of Educational & Developmental Psychologists
- Australian Guidance & Counselling Association
- Association for Contextual Behavioral Science
- Certificate for Primary Training Course in Rational Emotive Therapy
- Certificate for Levels 1 & 2 in Family Therapy
- Certificate for Specialist Course in Couple Therapy
- Hypnosis - Diploma course
People who suffer from depression are likely to feel as if they are 'stuck in their unhappiness', with a sense of being helpless, worthless and hopeless. The severity of their depression can vary from mild to severe. If you suffer from depression it is probable that your appetite, sleep, routine of exercise and sport, ability to socialise and your involvement in pleasurable activities has been impacted negatively. Counselling will help you develop healthier self-talk and use strategies to gain a more positive outlook on life. It will help you to get your life moving in the direction that you choose and in the direction that is meaningful and of value to you.×
Anxiety is a condition that usually involves worry, fear and stress and that interferes with your enjoyment of life. Generalised anxiety, panic disorder and panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, social anxiety and specific phobias are all categories of anxiety that can be helped by counselling. Counselling for anxiety introduces clients to a number of effective strategies to help them identify triggers that lead to anxious thoughts, apply relaxation techniques to manage bodily tension, understand and identify unhelpful and self-defeating patterns of thinking, stop the struggle against anxious feelings and to utilise helpful thoughts that promote more effective behaviour.
Hassles, deadlines and demands that often compete with one another are part of everyday life. We experience stress, emotionally and physically, as a response to situations that stretch our ability to cope to a point beyond our sphere of competence and outside our circle of comfort. Stress can be triggered from external factors such as relationship difficulties, financial pressures, life transitions at work or school or in our personal lives, and work issues. Stress can also be triggered by internal factors of worry and health problems. When we are subjected to on-going stress in our daily lives then we are likely to experience some of the following symptoms: agitation, over-sensitivity to comments from others, difficulties concentrating and remembering information, moodiness, irritability, poor judgment, unhappiness and negativity and feelings of being overwhelmed. Counselling can help you develop more effective strategies to manage stress. Counselling will encourage you to learn new strategies that help you to identify your stressors and to use skills of self-calming, time-management, prioritising, perspective taking, assertiveness and cognitive restructuring. Counselling can help you develop greater confidence, resilience and self esteem.
Anger is an emotional state that varies in its intensity from low levels of irritation and frustration through to high levels of infuriation and strong rage. Some people have a low frustration tolerance for being inconvenienced or feeling they have been 'wrongly done by' (when they perceive that they have been treated unjustly). At times they may feel that their anger is out of control and is likely to impact very negatively on their relationships. Anger management counselling can help you learn to regain a sense of control and calmness and to express your feelings in more helpful ways.×
Traumatic events, such as exposure to life threatening situations, abuse, systematic bullying, horrific events and natural disasters, often leave us feeling insecure, unsafe, vulnerable and helpless. Over time, some people may find that they do not easily return to their 'old self' of how they were like before they experienced the trauma. They may experience post traumatic stress. Trauma counselling, which is undertaken in a safe and supportive environment, can give you strategies to regain confidence and self belief and be more in control of your life. Counselling techniques can help you learn how to cope with the pain and fear from the trauma and the flashbacks. It can help you to embrace life, rather than avoid it and withdraw from situations, and it can enable you to recalibrate your emotional reactions to everyday life and to use healthy ways of coping.
Grief & Loss
Grief is a common reaction to loss, which can be experienced in a wide variety of circumstances. Such circumstances include the experiences of loss of a relationship, death of a loved one, loss of a job, loss of one's feeling of safety, loss of one's health or even loss of one's strongly held dreams and beliefs. The emotional experience of grief is unique for each individual and may involve deep emotional pain that is often mixed with some elements of anger, shock and even guilt. Grief counselling can enable people to feel supported and less isolated. It can also help people develop a greater understanding and acceptance of the 'grieving process' and to explore healthy ways of coping.×
Counselling for everyday problems often enables clients to gain a new perspective about their difficulties and the context in which they occur. Clients are encouraged to consider options for resolving their problems. This work is conducted privately and confidentially with a psychologist who has specialist qualifications and experience in counselling. Counselling uses a wide variety of techniques that are tailored to meet each client's needs. Some of the benefits available from counselling include:
- Strengthening your self-esteem and gaining self-confidence
- Achieving practical and sensible outcomes in a relatively short time
- Receiving encouragement and support to handle stressful life circumstances
- Improving your skills of communication so you can express your feelings in more constructive ways
- Learning effective ways to deal with intense emotions
- Recognising the triggers for stressful, anxious, angry and distressing feelings
- Identifying and examining unhelpful and self-defeating patterns of thinking
- Managing anger, anxiety stress, depression and other emotional pressures
- Resolving relationship issues and discovering new ways to enhance your relationship
- Obtaining help to actively pursue goals that are important and meaningful to you
- Developing relaxation and self-calming skills
Relationship problems can cause frustration, confusion and pain which then may lead to anger, conflict, resentment and distrust. Following is a list of difficulties that are commonly experienced by couples who decide to seek counselling.
- Communication problems (arguing, criticising, being defensive, showing contempt, stonewalling)
- Poor problem-solving skills, with difficulty in compromising
- Differences in values and expectations held by the partners
- Lack of partner support (with feelings of invalidation)
- Lack of affection and intimacy from one of the partners
- Loss of love
- Distrust through one of the partners being unfaithful (affairs)
- Unequal division of responsibilities within the relationship
Couples counselling can help clients rebuild or create a healthier, more satisfying and meaningful relationship. Relationship counselling occurs in a non-judgmental and safe environment with a psychologist who will bring objectivity to the process. Clients will be encouraged to communicate effectively in an open and honest manner.×
Family and Parenting Practises
Not all children are easy to parent. Parenting can be very challenging, particularly with a demanding child. Parenting is often something that is learnt through trial and error and so counselling can help parents gain confidence and support in their parenting ability. Seeking help from an educational and developmental psychologist can provide parents with extra knowledge and strategies to enable them to deal more effectively with their child's difficult behaviour. It most likely will allay their fears and help them gain greater understanding about their own feelings and reactions to parenting. Parenting counselling can help parents deal with child developmental issues and behaviour management. Some of the more common childhood problems for which parents seek counselling are listed below:
- Angry defiant outbursts and tantrums
- Anxiety and panic
- Fears and excessive worrying
- Irregular sleeping patterns
- Eating issues
- Obsessive-compulsive behaviours
- Peer relationship issues
Psychologists, specialising in child psychology, work to enhance the emotional health and wellbeing of children. They help children to understand themselves better and to cope with problems that they may experience within their family, school or peer group. They use a variety of techniques that are child focused and selected to meet the specific emotional and behavioural needs of their clients. Counselling can help children to explore and manage their feelings and to develop their resilience and coping skills. Counselling helps children and adolescents who may present with one or more of the following common difficulties:
- Anxiety (with ongoing worries and fears) and shyness
- Angry, aggressive behaviour and defiance
- Family issues (separation, divorce, sibling rivalry)
- Depressed mood
- Poor sleep patterns
- Friendship issues
- Lacking concentration, focus with school work or motivation
- Learning and memory difficulties
- Low self-confidence
- Poor eating habits and diet
- Coping with trauma, grief and loss.
Child psychologists also have expertise in cognitive assessments that identify student strengths and weaknesses and develop learning and behavioural plans to improve their learning outcomes at school.×
Change is a normal part of life Life transitions occur when we experience major changes in our lives. They occur when we enter new phases in our lives (phases such as starting secondary school or tertiary education, adolescence, marriage, having children, changing jobs, retirement, empty nesting). Changes such as a death of a loved one, the breaking-up of a relationship, personal illness or being made redundant at work can cause considerable stress, particularly if such changes are unexpected and negative. Transition counselling will help clients learn skills to manage their emotional reactions and build an identity based on confident and healthy self-esteem.×
Phone: 03 9578 7655
Mobile: 0425 775 757