John Pertl

Psychologist BEd, Grad Dip Psych, BPsych(Honours), MPsych(Counselling)

John is a Registered Psychologist with experience in counselling, therapy and assessment with children, adolescents, adults, couples and families in both private practice and the education sector.

John believes in the innate goodness and potential of each individual and places an emphasis on building a strong therapeutic relationship that is based on journeying together with clients as a guest: by being truly present, respectful and authentic.

John encourages curiosity and exploration, in order to gain insight into present-day problems and to evaluate patterns that have developed over time. By recognising these patterns John encourages a self-awareness and mindfulness, which allows a transition to a healthier sense of self and thus more thoughtful and productive life choices.

He is easy to relate to and has a real passion for working in a collaborative and practical manner by using his knowledge and skills as a Psychologist, Physical Education teacher and coach to guide clients in a change process that is meaningful.

He has extensive experience and an interest in working with male clientele, supporting children and families, as well as a personal interest in the psychology related to sport performance and health. John draws on his professional and life experiences of having a family, involvement in the teaching and coaching of various team and individual sports over the last 20 years, as well as his personal journey as a fitness and health enthusiast (being a life-long distance runner).

Contact Us 08 8361 7008

Areas of Experience

  • Anxiety & Depression
  • Family Therapy
  • Parenting support and education
  • Behavioural difficulties
  • Anger Management
  • Emotional Regulation
  • Bullying & Harassment
  • Difficulties at school
  • Learning difficulties
  • Grief & Loss
  • Men’s Health
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Sport performance
  • Health and weight management
  • Substance abuse
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder / Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Personality Assessment
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder

Qualifications and Professional Membership

  • Graduate Diploma in Psychology, Flinders University of South Australia, 2002
  • Bachelor of Psychology (Honours), University of South Australia, 2009
  • Master of Psychology (Counselling), Monash University, 2015
  • Registered Psychologist, Psychology Board of Australia, 2011
  • Bachelor of Education (Secondary Physical Education), University of South Australia, 1997
  • Registered Teacher, Teachers Registration Board of South Australia, 1997
  • Member of the Association for Counsellors in Catholic Schools
  • Psychology Provider with Medicare

Further background

John works collaboratively with children, adolescents, parents and family members by using a Systemic approach that allows each individual to have a voice and be part of the solution in order to resolve complex family dynamics and improve relationships.

John has extensive experience and an interest in working with male clientele who experience difficulties in regulating emotions, anger management, managing personal relationships, social skills, parenting, dealing with anxiety, stress, and depression, as well as maintaining a healthy work/life balance. His easy-going nature and ability to make connections with other males from different backgrounds, ages and experiences, in combination with his practical and action orientated approach, assists clients to make meaningful changes that align with current life circumstances.

With 20 years of professional experience as a secondary school Health, Physical and Outdoor Education teacher, as well as his personal involvement as a coach and instructor in various individual and team sports, provides valuable knowledge and experience in helping athletes with sport and adventure based performance. John is able to assist athletes to remove psychological barriers to optimal performance as well as manage the inevitable set-backs (such as injury) and everyday life stressors that can impede performance. John can help athletes with goal setting, performance profiling, imagery, concentration, attention, self-talk, performance anxiety and performance routines.

John’s therapeutic approach

John uses a range of therapeutic approaches that are tailored to meet the needs of each individual, including both short-term Solution Focussed Therapies, as well as longer-term therapies, depending on an individual’s preferences.

His approach is based upon Humanistic and Existential Therapy, as he believes that every individual has the capacity to be self-determining. So while therapy is present focussed and practical, John initially explores clients’ histories in a way that promotes greater understanding of how past experiences contribute to current behaviour. This reflection upon how a client has answered life’s questions in the past provides insight and ultimately shifts to making conscious choices that are more attuned with a client’s current values.

This non-judgmental approach encourages exploration of the recursive interaction between values, thoughts, emotions, feelings, and behaviours, while also recognising an individual’s strengths and creativity to make conscious choices in the ‘here and now’, thus allowing clients to take the responsibility of how to live a life more freely.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do With your one wild and precious life? Mary Oliver

John is also skilled in and utilises a variety of therapeutic approaches including Psycho-Education, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Positive Psychology, Mindfulness, and various Family and Systemic Therapy interventions.

John feels privileged in being able to journey with clients as they share their personal stories and does this with gentleness and compassion.