Renee McDonald has been a leading international Counsellor and Psychotherapist for over 20 years. In addition to being a PACFA Clinical Counsellor, Psychotherapist, and Accredited Supervisor, the high-powered Renee is a certified Coach and Mentor to hundreds of clinicians in the field.
Based in New South Wales, Australia, Renee worked in the media and entertainment sector before gravitating towards therapy. This gave her unique insights and helped her explore a variety of roles within the framework of counselling.
“I have a love of helping people have a better life, be it through self-discovery in therapy, through creativity, spiritual practice or through educating themselves,” she says. A pioneer in the online space, her courses in online therapy were the first short courses available to individual practitioners by someone who had worked as an online therapist in Australia.
Today, she is also an experienced academic educator, trainer and assessor, who runs her own training company – Australian Online Therapy Training (AOTT) Pty Ltd, since 2018. AOTT assists online therapists and online businesses to create a better experience for their clients and customers. Through Renee’s continuous training experience over the past 14 years within training, institutions and community organisations, she brings this expertise to the online space and to online therapy.
“Brene Brown (of ‘Daring Greatly’ and TED fame) and positive psychology (especially Martin Seligman’s Positive Psychology and Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi’s Flow work) have proven that wellbeing can be improved by having a better balance of life, more connection to ‘community’, and allowing creative processes to assist with how your life flows,” she says.
In her two decade long career, Renee has been a Humanitarian Refugee Accommodation Officer, a Volunteer Telephone Counsellor and Crisis Supporter, a Counselling Unit Manager, an educator, and a business consultant. In addition, she continues to be the Business Owner at Butterfly Courage®, and Managing Partner at The Shine Counsel.
She’s also the sought after workshop facilitator and leader at Heart & Soul Movement® – which is about improving your health and wellbeing through quality programs, retreats and workshops that help with personal growth and change. Having trained and developed practices in a variety of movement-based meditations and sound experiences, Renee has been running Heart & Soul Movement® for five years now.
She is truly passionate about helping people live fulfilling lives by equipping them with the skills to overcome the challenges they face.
Offering compassionate, confidential and caring sessions in counselling, coaching and training, she is driven to help individuals, couples and families find the balance they are looking for.
Some salient features of Renee’s work include:
- Providing a training program that has international accreditation with an international association.
- Very unique training, creative and adaptable to the needs of the learner.
- Providing support with years and years of experience in private practice where she sees all manner of clients.
- Assisting therapists, coaches and organisations with their marketing approach and transitioning their business to work online.
In 2019, Renee launched her textbook – Online Therapy: Processes, Tasks, Integration and Energetic Holding; based on her research, practice experience and training in the Online Therapy and Telehealth space. With a reprint in 2020 itself, her Online Therapy textbook is available both as an eBook on her training company’s website: www.aott.com.au and as a standard paperback from Lambert Academic Publishing, through www.morebooks.de. An industry thought leader, she has contributed to innumerable other publications as well.
Recently, when the world went into a lockdown, Renee became a passionate advocate for the client-therapist experience in the online space. She can be contacted directly from anywhere in the world via her professional services website: www.reneemcdonald.com.
“These credentials and professional experiences don’t sum up who I am. My passion for helping people overcome the challenges they face is what I love doing most,” sums up