Sylvia Tan Psychology Counselling
Partnering with you in overcoming challenges
to get back to living life the way you want to
Welcome to Sylvia Tan Psychology Consultancy
We understand that going through life challenges, mental or emotional difficulties can be a very overwhelming, painful and lonely experience. However, it is not something you need to go through alone and there are solutions for different types of struggles you may be experiencing.
At Sylvia Tan Psychology Consultancy, we believe everyone deserves to be heard and they can heal from their emotional and psychological pain with the right support and intervention. With 20 years of experience in mental health and relationship counselling, we have a wealth of experience and expertise behind us to offer you and your family a safe, non-judgemental, tailored, and individualised intervention for your therapy needs.
We offer counselling and psychotherapy for adults, teenagers, children, couples and families with a range of psychological and emotional issues, both in-person as well as online therapy. Don’t struggle alone any longer. Take the first step towards recovery and contact our practice today to schedule an appointment. Together, we can work towards improving your mental health and helping you live the life you deserve.
We look forward to supporting you on your journey towards a more fulfilled and joyful life.
Our Counselling Psychologist in Singapore
Sylvia Tan - Founder, Principal Counselling Psychologist, MPsych (SRP Registered)
Sylvia is a Counselling Psychologist practicing in Singapore. She holds a Master’s Degree in Counselling Psychology from Curtin University of Technology ( Perth, Western Australia) and is currently a registered counselling psychologist and a clinical supervisor with the Singapore Register of Psychologists (SRP).
After her graduation in 2002, Sylvia lived and worked in Australia for many years before her relocation back to her home country Singapore in 2014. To date, Sylvia has over 20 years of experience working in a range of settings both in Australia and Singapore.
Why seek counselling or psychotherapy?
Talking to a therapist can help unload the emotional burden you have been carrying by yourself. Most people find relief by expressing their thoughts and feelings in the presence of a compassionate and non judgmental listener.
Together with your therapist, you will discover parts of yourself and how these parts support or sabotage your life and your relationships. Through therapy, you can understand yourself better, heal parts of yourself that had been hurt, and develop more adaptive ways of coping. Many clients experience this process of self discovery to be very therapeutic and healing. They often come into greater compassion and greater appreciation of themselves and people around them.
Processing your thoughts and feelings with a therapist can help clear the fogginess and confusion in your mind. You will learn skills to enhance greater clarity in your thought pattern so that you can achieve your goals more effectively.
Much of emotional distress and mental health issues are related to relationship or interpersonal difficulties. It could be relational problems with your partner, your child, in laws, co workers, or your boss. Counselling can help identify the problems and find the right solutions to resolve the difficulties between you and others.
Counselling/Psychotherapy can help improve your mental health and overall wellbeing. The duration of counselling/psychotherapy may differ from person to person. For therapy to be effective, the number of sessions could range from 4 to 12 sessions. You can discuss the number of sessions with your therapist.
Counselling and psychotherapy can help improve your mental health and overall wellbeing. The duration of counselling/psychotherapy may differ from person to person. For therapy to be effective, the number of sessions could range from 4 to 12 sessions. You can discuss the number of sessions with your therapist.
Counselling psychologists hold a 4-years undergraduate degree in psychology and a 2-years post graduate master degree specialising in counselling psychology. They provide counselling and psychological therapies for a range of mental health issues as well as for those facing relationships difficulties, marital problems, parenting problems and family relating issues. Counselling psychologists are trained to provide individual therapy as well as group, couples and family therapy.
A counselling psychologist, like a clinical psychologist, receive 6 years of university training before they are registered as psychologists. They are both trained in assessment and treatment of mental disorders. The difference between counselling psychologist and clinical psychologists lies mainly with the population they work with. Counselling psychologists generally work in community-based counselling centres, schools and outpatient clinics whereas clinical psychologists generally work in psychiatric hospitals and clinic settings. As counselling psychologists are also trained in couples and family therapy, they generally provide counselling for couples and families as well whereas clinical psychologists typically focus on individual therapy and psychological assessments.
No. In Singapore, to be a registered counsellor, a minimum postgraduate diploma from a recognised course with 600 postgraduate clinical hours is required, whereas to be registered as a psychologist, a minimum of 2 years post graduate degree programme in psychology with relevant coursework and practicum of 1000 post graduate clinical hours is required.
A psychiatrist is a medically trained doctor specialising in treatment of mental disorders. Psychiatrist can diagnose and prescribe medication for patients with diagnosable mental disorders whereas psychologist do not prescribe medication. Psychologists use “talk therapy” as their treatment for mental disorders. Psychologists sometimes work in conjunction with psychiatrists are part of patient mental health management.
Psychotherapists use talk therapy to treat people with emotional or mental health disorders. Depending in their training and their speciality, psychotherapists can be psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers or counsellors. Psychologists sometimes call themselves psychotherapists, but not all psychotherapists are psychologists.
Most people try to help themselves when they are struggling emotionally or mentally. But when their method of coping is not working anymore or when their emotional or mental state is affecting their daily functioning like school, work or their relationships, it is time to see a psychologist.
If you are experiencing symptoms like insomnia, anxiety, persistent sadness, lost of motivation, sense of hopelessness, lack of energy, increasing irritability or moodiness, then you can consider seeing a psychologist as soon as possible. Psychologists help people who are struggling with their mental wellbeing, depression or anxiety brought about by stressful life situations like death of a loved one, work stress, divorce, parenting, traumatic event, etc. Psychologists provide treatment for a range of psychological disorders like mood disorders, anxiety disorders, personality disorders, addictions, post-traumatic stress disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders, dissociative disorders, sleep disorders, ADHD, autism spectrum disorders.
Coming for your 1 st counselling session can be daunting and anxiety provoking , especially if you never had counselling before. Thus, in preparing for your counselling appointment, you may want to think about what you would like to achieve in your session. What is your therapy goal? What changes would you like to see and what do you hope to achieve by the end of the therapy sessions. You may need to share with your psychologist what difficulties or psychological symptoms you are experiencing ( eg insomnia, anxiety, low mood, teary etc). Take note of how long you’ve had those symptoms and how those symptoms are hindering your life. You may need to talk about the situations or events that had brought about those symptoms. So, being open to share about the situation will be very helpful.
The frequency of seeing a psychologist depends on the issues and severity of the issue. Usually the frequency is either weekly for those with moderate to severe levels of psychological distress. Once your situation or mood has been stabilised, the frequency of sessions can be more spread out from fortnightly to monthly sessions. You can discuss the frequency of sessions with your psychologist.
Depending on your issue, your therapy goal and the type of therapy you are receiving, the number of sessions required will vary. The number of sessions can range from 4 to 12 sessions for short term therapy, and from 12 sessions to 50 sessions for longer term therapy. Studies have found that most people will start to feel the appreciable benefit of therapy within 8 to 14 sessions, but some would require at least 14 sessions. It is recommended that clients receive weekly to fortnightly session to receive the full benefit of treatment. To achieve full recovery, most people require about 50 sessions. The outcome of therapy depends on the therapists, treatment modality as well as the therapeutic relationship between the therapist and the client. It is important that you chart your progress with your therapist, so that your therapist is aware of what is working or not working for you. Your therapist can then twig his/her treatment approach if needed.
For individual session, the duration is typically 50-60 mins in length. For couples and family therapy session, the duration for each session can be 60-90 mins in length. You can discuss the duration needed for couples counselling with your psychologist.
Couples counselling can be beneficial for couples who are struggling with their relationship. However, sometimes only one party sees the value of counselling and the other party is unwilling to attend. If your spouse is unwilling to come for counselling, it might be helpful for you to have a
conversation with your spouse to find out why. Could it be that there is stigma around seeking counselling, or could it be that your spouse is worried that the counsellor will be bias and start to take sides?
Show your spouse that you understand his or her concerns and assure your spouse that counselling is not going to used as a battle ground for fault finding. Couples counselling is for both parties to work on their own issues and to help both parties to improve on their communication and connection with each other. If you approach it in a supportive and non-judgemental way, your spouse may be more open to coming for counselling and be more motivated to work on your relationship.
Counselling is working is you start to notice changes in your mood, changes in the way you think and the way you feel about yourself. You may also start to see a change in your behaviours and your reactions. Situations, things or people who used to bother you will no longer have much of an effect on your anymore. You may start to feel more energised and feel more empowered. You may feel more confident and your relationships with other has improved.