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Kael Cockcroft

Personality disorder
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Me in a nutshell

I spent 10 years as a journalist and graphic designer, then another 5 years facilitating community development in rural southern Africa. This led me back to my dream of being a psychologist, again starting out in isolated rural clinics. Due to decades of working within intense environments, I have specialised in complex cases that are not progressing. I work with people who are really trying to get their lives on track but always seem to choose the wrong direction and end up being their own worst enemy. In addition to this, my experience in the media industry allows me to deeply relate to and support people within the creative fields.

What fascinates me the most about working with people…

The creative ways they solve the problems of their lives. They come to me when these strategies are no longer working, but that creativity remains an amazing resource for change.

Something unexpected that my clients have taught me about people…

A fundamental element of human nature that completely blew my mind is that 'The Known' is more important than good, comfortable, happy or functional. People will consistently choose a situation they know even when it is doing them harm and a better option is available.

My specialities

  • Abuse
  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Personality disorder
  • Self-esteem
  • Self-harm
  • Stress

I also work with most of the major psychological and mental health issues.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is a more structured, goal-oriented approach to therapy. According to CBT, destructive behaviours result from unhealthy emotions, and unhealthy emotions stem from distorted patterns of thinking - for example, overgeneralising, catastrophising, magnifying negatives and minimising positives. CBT helps clients to identify and challenge these cognitive errors, to replace them with more realistic thoughts and to learn coping skills and practical strategies that minimise dysfunctional behaviour.

Psychodynamic Therapy

Psychodynamic therapy looks at how our early experiences shape our present lives. Its main insight is that problems often arise from painful childhood experiences that have been pushed down to the unconscious because they may be too painful for the conscious mind to process. These repressed emotions don’t go away but resurface to haunt our current relationships. The goal of therapy is to examine our current challenges at their roots, to make the unconscious conscious so we can understand ourselves and stop replaying past conflicts into the present.