Dr Jane Direen – Psychologist

Why did you decide on a career in this industry?

I became fascinated with human behavior when I completed an introduction to psychology course in College. I had always been interested in health (physical, mental, emotional etc) since I was little (I used to run laps around my house to get fit when I was about 11, and being the oldest child of 6, was the “go to” person for advice), it was a natural progression!

What do you enjoy about your current role?

I love connecting with people. It drives virtually all that I do. I love working with people who are willing/able to be vulnerable, as this is where the magic happens. It is extremely rewarding to be in a position to help people find their own way out of their difficulties.

Do you have any particular special interest areas?

I feel particularly passionate about assisting people with anxiety, trauma (particularly complex/interpersonal trauma), stress, pain and fatigue.

What does good mental health look like to you?

Being psychologically flexible – being able to ride the bad with the good. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable. Creating and maintaining connections – with people, with animals, with society, with
family. Being present as much as possible.

Developing acceptance of what is out of your control. Taking values-driven, daily action (small or big), in alignment with the person you want to be, the things you want to achieve, and the stamp you want to leave on the world/your family/your friends.

How do you personally look after your mental health?

It looks different now to how it used to. Now I aim to walk each morning, do yoga once a week and fit in some Pilates self-practice when I can. I would love to get back into some formal Pilates lessons. I find Pilates (both as student and teacher) very grounding. I know that I need to take time each day to stop and close my eyes, breathe and reflect – even for just five minutes. I actually love doing this, and it helps me to re-set.

Best advice you’ve received in life?

“Go and have a shower”, said by my father at times of distress. (not because I smell! But to re-set)