Why should I consider seeing Dr. Brett Deacon at the Illawarra Anxiety Clinic?
1. Expertise: I am an internationally-recognised expert in exposure-based cognitive-behavioural therapy, the most effective approach for overcoming anxiety according to scientific research and the most recommended approach in clinical practice guidelines. I co-authored the leading book in the field on this approach. I have published over 100 scientific articles on the nature and treatment of anxiety. I have over 20 years of experience with exposure therapy, have trained and supervised dozens of students and practitioners in this approach, and regularly present popular workshops around the world on this therapy. Through this work, I have achieved status of a Fellow of the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies in the United States. Due to a lack of therapist training and the popularity of less effective approaches, it is difficult for clients to find a therapist who is skilled in the most effective approach for overcoming anxiety. If you are seeking the most effective therapy available for anxiety from one of the most qualified, experienced, and expert practitioners in it, you have come to the right place.
2. Interpersonal skill. I understand that therapy can be an intimidating prospect. Opening up about deeply personal topics with someone you've just met can be challenging. Strong interpersonal skills are therefore critical for any therapist. Put another way, a good therapist must be a good person. I do my best to be kind, respectful, personable, empathic, compassionate, non-judgmental, and genuine. I form strong working relationships with my clients and regard them as valued equals. It also helps that I specialise in a highly effective form of therapy that routinely and quickly helps my clients get better.
3. Values: I have strong values that prioritise the wellbeing of my clients above all else. I believe the practice of psychology should be science-based and strive to ensure that my work reflects current best practices in the field. I also believe that people dealing with psychological issues are not sick with a "chemical imbalance" in their brain, their experiences are not "symptoms" caused by a medical/brain disease, and they are not fundamentally different from me or anyone else because psychological struggles are part of the human condition. This empowering philosophy means I view my clients as valued equals and do not adopt the stance of providers who view their clients through a "mental illness" lens. It also means I emphasise overcoming psychological issues to reach one's full potential, not "skills" for managing problems viewed as "chronic illnesses."
4. Privacy: The Illawarra Anxiety Clinic is located in a safe, quiet, beautiful residential area in the Illawarra escarpment. The clinic has no waiting room. Appointments are staggered one hour and 15 minutes apart. Clients come and go in complete privacy.
5. Time. Sessions last for 60 minutes, not 50 minutes as with most practices.
6. Flexibility. My core value is "the needs of the client come first." Sometimes that means conducting sessions out of the office, via video or phone, at the client's home, or during a half-day or full-day. I often meet clients out of the office for therapy sessions, for example at Crown Street Mall in downtown Wollongong for exposure therapy sessions. Therapy sessions take place where they need to take place in order to best serve the needs of the client.
7. Comfort. The office is lovely. The furniture is comfortable and view of the bush is beautiful. The setting is very non-clinical.
8. Bally. My loveable golden retriever Bally is happy to join us, according to your preference. Her presence is comforting and she always maintains confidentiality.