Carmel Catanuto is a Gestalt therapist, counsellor and art therapist with Health Space Clinics Newtown. The clinic, which is relocating to a brand-new fitout on Erskineville Road, offers an integrated approach to health, with chiropractic, acupuncture, massage therapy, nutrition services and more. Carmel sets up a safe, non-judgemental space to help her clients develop a deeper connection with themselves, find new meaning and purpose, and flourish. Carmel has a strong interest in supporting women who have gone through unsuccessful IVF treatment.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a Gestalt therapist, counsellor and art therapist who listens with care and sets up a safe space for women who’ve been through multiple unsuccessful IVF rounds come through with a solid sense of who they are. I also work with adults experiencing depression and anxiety to develop a deeper connection with themselves.
I hear some soul-destroying stories and am in awe of the resilience of the human spirit. Curiosity, fascination and excitement are ignited in me when I see people connect with themselves where they couldn’t before and and find new meaning in their lives.
What did you do prior to becoming a Gestalt therapist, counsellor and art therapist?
I’ve had experience in airlines, customer service, sales and administration. An opportunity arose in the field that aligned more with my values of being a counsellor; it was a role as a support worker for a mental health not-for-profit organisation. This gave me insight into the experiences of people living with mental health and great empathy for them.
How did you get into these areas in the first place?
I had just finished my studies in art therapy and was offered a job in a mental health organisation. I found I had a talent for therapeutic practice and decided to continue my studies by undertaking undergraduate training in Gestalt therapy.
What methods or practices do you use?
When someone comes into my practice we begin by taking an inventory of their circumstances and why they have come to therapy and what it is they hope to achieve. I draw up a customised series of logical steps that will help them achieve balance in their life, setting up with care the therapeutic relationship using awareness-raising enquiry, mindfulness art and creativity.
What are your particular areas of interest?
I specialise in helping women who’ve had challenges in IVF to navigate their way in becoming a mother. I give them hope and support. We journey the emotional challenging pathway together. I often find myself feeling excited when I see clients who’ve experienced depression and anxiety connect with themselves where they couldn’t before, begin to flourish and come alive once more.
What do you enjoy most about working in these areas?
It is so rewarding to see clients connect when given the right tools and encouragement. I’m an empath who always sets up a safe, non-judgemental space, the perfect field conditions needed for people to reveal deeper unexpressed feelings. I hear some earth-shattering stories and am in awe at how resilient people are. I feel privileged that I get to see people enjoy meaningful, quality lives and flourish.
What services does Health Space Clinics Newtown offer?
Health Space Clinics Newtown offers acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, chiropractic, massage therapy and more.
What can clients expect from a visit to the clinic?
At Health Space Clinics the practitioners work holistically, and we work as a team. Patients will often see more than one type of practitioner, and we are able to give the best health support because we are working together to support our patients. Each of our practitioners are fully accredited within their area of focus and undergo continual training and development to ensure we offer the best service possible.
Which book or podcast has inspired you recently?
Recently I was interviewed by a woman who is in the field and passionate about mental health for a podcast on alleviating the stigma that often goes with mental health. Stay tuned – it’s coming out in October.
Favourite places in the Inner West?
I love a good night out in Newtown. I’ll often start with dinner at Emma’s Snack Bar – traditional Lebanese home-style street food set in a buzzy atmosphere. Then I’ll move on to a thought-provoking arty film at the Dendy Cinema. If there’s room, next it’s off to Gelato Blue for ice-cream.