A few things I wish I had known!

I recently reflected on my experience of working in Australia as a psychologist. We have now been here 3 years and worked for about 2 years and a half (it took around 6 months for me to register as a provisional psychologist and designed this website and wrote this blog in the meantime).  A few developments about work opportunities made me think about a few things I wish I had known.

I went to the APS Congress in Sydney and met a number of psychologists there. I remember thinking I could not really afford the conference the first year I was here, but now I really wish I had known how important these professional connections are. Working as a psychologist can be very isolating particularly if there is a team around, or when one is part of a multi-disciplinary team, or one is on the road for home or school visits. Connecting with other like minded psychologists is so important for professional practice as well as self-care. As someone new in the area, I found it difficult to know where things were, how to connect and where to find information. Many commitments meant that ‘Finding my Tribe’ was not so on the cards initially. I have realised recently how important that is as significant feelings of loneliness crept in. Some people were particularly amicable in inviting me to be part of a group. The gesture was so natural and easy done with a significant impact on my wellbeing as a professional. A sense of belonging is found to be important in terms of wellbeing, participation and engagement. I certainly felt this important feeling and hope to grow these connections further.

I thought I would write a few top tips here in terms of finding connections as these could be highly beneficial in settling in Australia as a newcomer and psychologist.

  1. Connect with psychologists locally. Ask about local groups. Visit other psychologists in their clinic or ask to meet them.
  2. Join a Networking Group either on social media or in person. Help create a peer support group.
  3. Join a professional body and attend specific events and conferences. Connect with people sharing a similar interest as you.
  4. Ensure you communicate your needs with others and be firm about how it is important to you to be able to connect with others.
  5. Take time to reach out, find out what other psychologist do. This can be done through messages on social media initially. We never know how a few connection can evolve in other opportunities.
  6. Take time to find a supervisor who will be able to introduce you or help you connect with others locally.



One thought on “A few things I wish I had known!

  1. Veronica says:

    Hello Pascale, I really enjoyed reading your blog ! I am coming from New-Caledonia where I worked as a psychologist for the National Education for 10 years. ( also worked as a teacher for 10 years)I am currently working through this complicated path with AHPRA to get my provisional registration.
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience!


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