Natasha Fowler (M.N.Z.A.C.)


Counselling |  Sandplay Therapy |  Symbol Work

"A More Fulfilling Life For You!"

Hello again.  This is the Services page of  This page gives more details about the specific services I provide (i.e. counselling, sandplay therapy and symbol work) along with session and booking information. 

On this page:
About Counselling
About Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work
Introduction To Sandplay & Symbol Work
Background To Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work
About The Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work Process
The Length Of A Sandplay Process
Booking Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work

How I Work & About The Way I Work
What To Expect From Counselling
Session Information
How Many Sessions Should I Have?
Cancellation Policy 
Counselling Subsidies for WINZ beneficiaries
Arranging Your First Session

About Counselling   

Would you like to be happier and more fulfilled?  To spend more time doing the things you value, that give you joy, that make your heart sing?  And less time tied up in the minutia, the detail, the things that sap your energy and leave you feeling drained?  Perhaps you have a specific issue, problem or transition you would like to work through.

I offer you the opportunity to work with a trained and experienced counsellor.  It is my aim that you will have the opportunity to both safely and gently, explore the things that are getting in the way, as well as the things that are helping you to achieve the outcomes you desire.  People who attend counselling often report that they feel clearer about 'what' is happening in their lives.  Previous difficulties and challenges often lessen as a result and a space is created for something new to emerge. 

The Testimonials page provides specific feedback from a selection of clients about how they experienced counselling with me.

You can click down to the 'How I Work - And About The Way I Work'' section to read in more detail about the styles of counselling I utilise in sessions and the 'theory' behind the way I work. 

About Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work 

"To see a world in a grain of sand, and a heaven in a wildflower...
hold infinity in the palm of your hand, and eternity in an hour..." - William Blake

Introduction To Sandplay & Symbol Work

Sometimes words aren't enough - it's a reality for some of us.  Counselling is an excellent way of working, however if you are seeking a creative and, quite literally, 'hands on' alternative to traditional talking therapy (i.e. counselling), then sandplay therapy & symbol work are two great options.  Please contact me if you would like to discuss setting up sessions.

Both ways of working
will provide you with the opportunity to work through problems, challenges, issues and transitions with the use, and exploration, of symbols.  Each process is designed to help you to find creative ways to access the many different levels and layers of your Self - counselling is too, however the 'way' this is done is different, in counselling you talk and this is very, very useful for many people, however sometimes words are a block and this is where sandplay therapy and symbol work can provide a valuable resource. 

People often report that these styles of working help them free up blocks and open up to new possibilities.  Often people are not able to put words to 'how' this happens and that is entirely 'okay', the important message here is that it 'can' happen if, and 'when', we are in the right place in our lives to receive the wisdom of our psyche which finds voice in the creative processes that are known as 'sandplay therapy' and 'symbol work'.

Background To Sandplay Therapy &  Symbol Work

Dora Kalff the Swiss psychotherapist (1904-1990) was the originator of Sandplay.  She worked extensively with Carl Gustav Jung (1875-1961) who was, and still is, one of the worlds most famous figures in the development of psychology, therapy and the therapeutic helping professions.   

Dora conceived a way of working that allows adults (and children) to 'work through' their experiences via the use of what is now known as Sandplay Therapy.  Carl Jung was immensely fascinated in this process and personally mentored her throughout his life as she developed and honed the sandplay therapy technique.

Of note is that Dora also spent time with Dr Margaret Lowenfield (1890-1973), a British child psychiatrist who developed what is known as 'The World Technique' to help children express the 'inexpressible' using miniatures to 'work through' challenges and problems in their lives.  Dora incorporated the concept of using of miniatures as symbols following her time working with Margaret.  The resulting process is used extensively by hundreds of thousands of adults and children world-wide every year

These proven ways of working have been described in many different ways.  Common words that people use to name their experience of what happens include inspiring, magical, fascinating, useful, insightful and intriguing. People often find answers to questions that have eluded them previously and access to new ideas and inspirations that add immense value to their lives.

About The Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work Process

You will have access to a large number of symbols (comprised of figurines, miniatures, ornaments, action figures and natural materials like shells, wood, metals and various items of flora and fauna) which all symbolically represent a broad spectrum of our life experiences.  The symbols, along with a traditional 'Dora Kalff*-style' Sandplay tray/box, will allow you to 'work through' what is happening in your life by accessing the symbolic realm.

In Sandplay you will be in the driving seat right through the process being 'hands on' working with symbols and the sand tray.  I will be there along-side you every step of the process, for the most part silently, supporting you as the process emerges.

Symbol work is a similar process however it is more 'directed' in that we will focus on specific issues/situations and work through these verbally together - you are still 'hands on' in that you will use the symbols and sand box.  I will provide direction about specific types of items to focus on.  Using symbols and doing symbol work happens in tandem with standard counselling approaches and involves a greater level of verbal interaction than sandplay. 

There is immense power in the symbols used in these ways of working and we each find different meanings when we choose to engage in this unique process.  In life we are surrounded by symbols, and figurines allow us an exciting opportunity to explore some of this symbolism through the sandplay process.  For those who might feel cautious about the use of what they might see as 'just toys' the writer Eric Hoffer says on the subject of achievements: "We are more ready to try the untried when what we do is inconsequential. Hence the remarkable fact that many inventions had their birth as toys..." 

The Length Of A Sandplay Process

Sandplay therapy is a process which lasts for a minimum of 6 to 10 sessions (and often continues on after 10 sessions for people wishing to gain further insights and to deepen their process).  As mentioned previously you will utilise 'symbols' and a specially designed sand tray/box to access various parts of your conscious and unconscious world through the process of Sandplay. 

Symbol work generally occurs in tandem with traditional counselling approaches so the length of time needed for symbol work entirely depends on your individual situation - please also refer to the general notes here about the length of counselling sessions.

Booking Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work

Because these are such unique ways of working each persons experience is different.   If you are intrigued and would like to know more, I encourage you to contact me and arrange to come alon
g for an introductory session to get a feel for this style of working.  It is important to know that one size doesn't fit all - this is a 'creative therapy' option, for some people regular counselling is a far more useful option and there is never pressure to engage in either of these processes.  Please let me know your preference for counselling or sandplay therapy and symbol work and/or if you are open to exploring either option.

How I Work - And About The Way I Work

My primary modality (which means the main way I work) is Psychosynthesis Counselling.  

This way of working
was created by the Italian Psychiatrist and Psychotherapist, Dr Roberto Assagioli (1888 to 1974). Roberto was a man far beyond his time who revolutionised the way we look upon ourselves and our relationship with others and the world.  Along with Carl Jung, whom I have spoken of earlier on this page, he helped to move through some of the obvious deficiencies in Sigmund Freud's ground breaking work, to create a far more inclusive and healthy frame of viewing ourselves as human beings.

Psychosynthesis is a highly regarded way of working and is often described as a Transpersonal Psychology.
These are big words which can be off putting when they really don't need to be.  I think the most important thing that you can know about Psychosynthesis is that it is an inclusive way of working that incorporates all aspects of you as a person and is a way of working which is incredibly flexible to meet the needs of anyone who is willing and able to engage in a journey of self exploration.

An impor
tant aspect of Psychosynthesis is the focus we have on relationships; especially the relationship between you the client and me the counsellor. This relationship underpins everything that happens in each counselling session along with our agreed 'context' which I will talk about in more detail below.

Broadly speaking the word 'transpersonal' is simply describing those ways of working which transcend, and reach beyond, the personal or individual and acknowledge that there is 'more' that exists outside of just 'us' as insular individual beings. Sometimes we live under the illusion that we are somehow seperate from the rest of the world. If we work only at this limited level the results we get are likely to be just as limited.

Although we might sometimes 'feel' that we are isolated and alone we are actually part of many groups and communities in our lives. The concept of the 'transpersonal' acknowledges that there is a level of interconnectedness that exists outside of ourselves; of which we are a part; a part of a greater whole.

For you as the client all of this means that when I am working with you I am seeing you firstly as a person, an individual, who is both someone with potential and promise and someone who is most likely experiencing some kind of challenge, issue, problem or transition in your life which has brought you into counselling.

Secondly I am
also seeing you in the context of your greater life which is more than just the various roles you hold in particular parts of your life. Each of us holds many roles in life and sometimes these varying roles can be confusing or cause conflict within ourselves and with others. Examples of roles we might hold in life are:

* being a parent,
* a child,
* a grand-parent
* a sibling,
* a friend,
* a partner,
* an employer,
* a worker,

* an owner,
* a kaumatua,
* an adviser,
* a specialist,
* a beneficiary,
* a colleague,
* an associate,
* a leader,
* a participant,

* a relative,
* an advocate,
* a mentor,
* a guest,

* a catalyst

....and the list goes on to include any other role we hold in our day to day lives. I am sure as you read this you will find that you fit at least a couple of these roles, possibly more, along with other roles too.

Psychosynthesis is a strengths-based style of working where we explore your resources as well as the difficulties or transitions you may be facing. Some other modalities (ways of working) may potentially view people in counselling and therapy as having problems which require 'fixing' and may use specific techniques each and
every time to try and 'fix' things.

In Psychosynthesis we take a very different approach.  We believe that one size really doesn't fit all so we never attempt to 'always' use a specific technique with everyone, as we understand that everyone has different needs at different times of their lives.

We consider that our experiences and the things we think, do, feel and say can both 'serve' (be useful) and/or 'limit' (be unhelpful). From our perspective we see problems and difficulties as information which can be utilised to help us live more fulfilling and enriched lives; rather than the need to 'remove' something.

You may have noticed my statement when you first arrived on the site "A More Fulfilling Life For You". I chose this statement because it really is my passion in life to walk alongside people; alongside you, to help you achieve "a more fulfilling life".

I also offer Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work as they are other creative alternatives to traditional counselling which is a 'talking therapy'. Both ways of working (i.e. Counselling or Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work) are very effective in their own
right. So it is your choice about which (or both) will be best for you.   To read more about the Sandplay Therapy & Symbol Work service please click here.

What To Expect From Counselling 

I think it is useful to let you know what to expect when you first come to see me for counselling. Initially in our first session(s) we will both be exploring whether we are the right fit to work together.

I think your counsellor should be someone you like and c
an trust 'enough' to feel comfortable to share about the things that are happening in your life. As time goes on that initial trust and understanding forms a base from which we can safely explore the challenges, issues, difficulties or problems that you are experiencing in your life. Facing into the difficult parts of our life takes courage and I have a huge amount of respect for the courage it can take to enter counselling. As your counsellor I am there to support you on this journey of exploration.

If we both agree that we can work together we will explore the 'context' of our work together. This means that we will agree, together, about 'what' we will be working towards in our sessions.

This context is very
important as it gives us both clarity about why we are meeting and what we are aiming to achieve. Every context is unique, often though it seems to include a desire to have a better relationship with ourselves and/or a better relationship with others.

In our first session we will also spend a short amount
of time exploring the 'administrative' side of our working together, such as an ongoing session time, reviewing the cancellation policy, confidentiality considerations and any other general queries that may arise.

Whilst everyone's context for counselling is different, there are general areas that people often bring to counselling. Examples include:

* depression

* relationship issues
* despair
* life transitions/crises
* grief
* birth and death

* anger
* jealousy

* loneliness
* physical injury
* personal development
* work issues

It has often been said that if you are working with a really skilled counsellor you will know you did things almost by yourself. What you won't find when you work with me is me 'giving' you lots of advice, or implying that I have all the answers or telling you 'what to do' or 'how to live your life'.

I'm not yo
u and so it wouldn't be appropriate, or useful, for me to tell you what to do. What I will do is listen to you confidentially, as well as care about you, and what you are saying, and ask you questions and share insights about what you are telling me; in order to help you to discover your own answers and your own wisdom. You are most welcome to contact me  to ask any questions.

Session Information 

Sessions last for one hour and are held weekly - this is because counselling is generally most effective when it is done weekly.

Sessions are charged on a hourly basis at the current rate.  You can contact me for more details.  If you are a WINZ beneficiary you may also be entitled to assistance with some of your counselling costs - please click here to read more.

Payment can be ma
de via cash, online banking or bank deposit. Payment is due on, or before, the time of each booked session so please bear this in mind when making online payments which may take time to come through from your account to my account. Please contact me to book a session and set up initial payment details.

How Many S
essions Should I Have? 

The length of counselling varies depending on your unique context and needs.  Some people come to counselling for short term work of 6 to 10 sessions or 10 to 20 sessions if they only want to work on something specific.

Many people find it more useful to engage in medium to longer term work as this allows for a deeper level of work to be explored.  Again one size doesn't fit all, so the amount of sessions you have will depend on what you are wanting to achieve as well as practical considerations such as your budget and your/my availability.


I take the confidentiality of my clients very seriously. This means that I treat all communication between myself and you as my client as privileged information, unless you give me consent to disclose particular information I will not talk about you. I think it is important to mention that there are some general exceptions to confidentiality. As a professional counsellor, I have regular Supervision in order to ensure that that I am visible and accountable in my work. It is also possible that I may need to talk about you if I am concerned that you are at risk of hurting yourself or others, or if I am referring you to another health professional.  I will always respect that we are having a private conversation when we meet.

Cancellation Policy 

If you need to cancel or reschedule a session there is no charge up to 24 hours prior to the start time of the booked session providing you advise me using the below methods, however if you cancel or reschedule within 24 hours of your booked session (or do not arrive for a booked session for any other reason) you will need to pay for 100% of the session cost. Wherever possible please give as much notice as you can though, 24 hours is only a minimum.

Cancellations must be made via phone call where possible (a text message is permissible if it is not possible to call).

Counselling Subsidies for WINZ beneficiaries 

If you are a WINZ beneficiary you may be entitled to a counselling subsidy if your Dr/GP agrees that counselling will be useful for
you - you can read more about WINZ subsidies here on the WINZ website and/or you can get in touch with me and we can talk more about the options.


If you have any questions or requests you are also welcome to contact me at any stage. I welcome your bookings and enquiries and I will
look forward to speaking to you when the time is right for you.  If you are a service provider or you have loved ones you would like to refer please also feel free to pass them my contact details or to contact me if you have any other queries.  I also welcome students and trainees from within the helping professions who would like to undertake their own counselling or sandplay therapy process.

Arranging Your First Session 

If you are ready to get started please feel free to get in touchGenerally I will be able to respond to queries within 24 hours, the next working day. Occasionally this will not be possible - I will always contact you as soon as I am able.

Complimentary Calendar

~Winston Churchill~