About Michelle Lam

My Background | My Philosophy | My Experience and Qualifications

My Background

I grew up in a family dedicated to assisting others through the provision of medical and health services to the community so it is hardly surprising that I developed a strong interest in helping others from an early age. In spite of this, I ended up working in the investment banking and finance industry specialising in mergers and acquisitions.  After ten years of working in “the industry” I realised that something was missing and I wanted my life to be different.

So I took what was for me a very brave step – I started my personal therapeutic journey and asked someone for support.

Even though my journey hasn’t always been easy and has sometimes been confronting and painful, I received great comfort in the knowledge that I wasn’t alone. Now life is easier and less of an effort to manage (even the difficult moments), my heart is more open, my relationships are richer and more honest and I am living more of the life that I want.

The dedication that I have to my own self development and my passion for helping others led me to the field of counselling and psychotherapy.  My fully accredited qualifications provide me with training in many forms of psychotherapy and I primarily focus on the embodiment of experience to help people who have difficulty managing the legacy of trauma or emotional wounding that has occurred within their family and in life generally.  I use a combination of “talking” as well as body oriented modalities such as ISP (Integral Somatic Psychology) and Polyvagal Theory, psychodynamic and narrative psychotherapy, mindfulness and focussing, trauma-sensitive yoga, internal family systems and systemic constellations, as well as brainspotting.

I welcome the opportunity to be your companion as you embark on your own personal journey. 

My Philosophy

I believe that after food, water and shelter, the relationship that we have with ourselves and each other directly influences the quality of our lives. While relationships can sometimes be difficult and bring up distressing emotions such as shame, frustration, anxiety, loneliness and deep sadness and pain, relationships are also the source love and joy and the place where healing of past hurts can occur. 

I take a holistic approach to counselling and psychotherapy which creates an opportunity for you to find your way back to yourself through the embodiment and integration of your thoughts, feelings, body and spirit. If we are not connected to any of these, our ability to live a full life is limited.

My intention is to develop a relationship with you that is compassionate, respectful and honest so that you can experience being seen, accepted and understood as you really are. I will also invite you to focus on your embodied experience to help you explore, understand and fully experience the impact of your thoughts, feelings and ways of behaving. The opportunity to explore and deepen your connection to who you really are often leads to:

  • feeling more confident and at ease with being your true self;
  • greater acceptance of the things in your life that you would like to change but cannot;
  • the ability to discover new options available to you and to make decisions with clarity;
  • feeling empowered and better able to manage any difficulties you may face;
  • more nourishing and satisfying relationships; and
  • a renewed enthusiasm and a desire to engage fully in a richer and more fulfilling life. 

My Experience and Qualifications

Before setting up my private practice I provided counselling and psychotherapy to clients at several low cost clinics in the inner eastern suburbs and the lower north shore of Sydney. For three years I was also an after hours volunteer counsellor for ACON (the AIDS Council of New South Wales) in Surry Hills. I have also recently been a clinical supervisor and educator at Western Sydney University (WSU) and the Australian College of Applied Psychotherapy (ACAP).

My qualifications include a Bachelor of Commerce (Merit), a Master of Applied Finance, Graduate Diploma of Counselling and Psychotherapy and Master of Counselling and Applied Psychotherapy.  I am a Certified ISP Practitioner as well as a qualified clinical supervisor (individual and group), hypnotherapist, trauma sensitive yoga teacher and family constellation facilitator .  I am an Unregistered NDIS Service Provider, a Level 4 member of the Australian Counselling Association (ACA), member of the ACA College of Clinical Counsellors and ACA College of Supervisors, and ARCAP registered. 

For things to reveal themselves to us we need to be ready to abandon our views about them Thich Nhat Hanh
Hope is being able to see the light in spite of the darkness Desmond Tutu
Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life JK Rowling
We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone - we find it with another Thomas Merton
Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage Lao Tzu
To wish to be well is a part of becoming well Lucius Annaeus Seneca
True happiness is to enjoy the present, without anxious dependence upon the future, not to amuse ourselves with either hopes or fears but to rest satisfied with what we have, which is sufficient, for he that is so wants nothing Lucius Annaeus Seneca
We suffer more in imagination than in reality Lucius Annaeus Seneca
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end Lucius Annaeus Seneca