About Meredith Fuller
Qualifications include a BA psych, a Grad Dip in vocational counselling, a Masters in career behaviour, and membership of the College of Counselling Psychologists, and Lifemember of the Australian Association for Psychological Type. My concurrent careers have included author, playwright, columnist, talkback radio counsellor, TV host & panellist, psychological profiler and university lecturer. I work as a psychologist in private practice, providing counselling and vocational psychotherapy, writing, and as a media spokesperson on psychological issues for the media for several days a week, and direct plays or films and work in the media on other days.
With over 30 years as a psychologist, I have also consulted to a broad range of organisations on career development, communication, and interpersonal issues.
I have substantial experience in career change & vocational behaviour for professionals and ran a university careers counselling service for 12 years as well as being a sessional lecturer in postgraduate courses in psychology at several universities for over 10 years. Membership of consultancy panels & counselling service provision include the University of Melbourne, Monash University, Swinburne University and RMIT University, since 1986.
As an author and contributor to various books, articles and papers, I have been invited to write essays and opinion pieces for the Wall Street Journal and Huffington Post, as well as most Australian media.
I wrote “Working with Bitches” Da Capo for the USA in 2013, and an Australian book
“WORKING WITH MEAN GIRLS: identifying & protecting yourself from workplace nastiness” PENGUIN 2012. There’ s a contributing chapter & mini book ‘Doing Beloved Work: Finding truth in your career’ LOVE@WORK series for Australian Institute of Management, Wiley & Sons, 2006.
As a media spokesperson for the Australian Psychological Society, I provide media quotes on psychological issues and interviews.
I’m a resident psychologist on several radio programs including Light FM, 4BC, 774, and ABC. She’s a regular guest psychologist for ABC and many radio programs.
I also blogfor USA Psychology Today – ‘Working with B*tches Careers Counselling for the Disappointed’
I have been a regular columnist in the Daily Telegraph and Sunday Herald-Sun (‘Body Talk’), The Age Sunday Life, New Idea, House & Garden, B magazine (‘problem page’), and a quiz designer for Cleo and Cosmopolitan. Often quoted in social media, daily newspapers and popular magazines, and also provide career advice on ninemsn.com and other sites.
Since the 1980 I have spoken on psychological topics on radio, including regular talk-back counselling with guest spots on Channels 7, 9 and 10, ABC and SBS, including the programs A Current Affair, Today Tonight, Insight, The Project, Body & Soul, and Live at Five. Behind the scenes, I have provided psychological profiling and technical advise to digital media, including the drama series Halifax fp.
After co-hosting an hourly radio program, THE REEL SPIEL with Fred Levit in 2014 discussing film noir, we aired a weekly half hour TV program ‘FullerLevity Classic & Australian Films’ on Channel 31 digital 44 TV Sunday evenings in 2015.
Theatre, Writing, Media, and Creative Projects
In 2017, I am directing the play “Sweet Phoebe” by Michael Gow, at epicentre, co-producing with Linda Zintilas
In 2016, I directed the play “International Stud” by Harvey Fierstein, at the Butterfly Club, co-producing with Jacob Antolini.
In 2015 I directed the play ‘The Wisdom of Eve’ (the inspiration for the film ALL ABOUT EVE) at Theatre Works 20 to 26 July 2015, and produced with my colleagues from our theatre production company GLAMM Productions. My plays Stalk, Stalking, Stalked, and Come As You Are/School Reunion have been staged at Dancehouse & Gasworks.
As a professional child model for over 10 years, I worked for Athol Shmith and John Cato, amongst others. I was awarded a scholarship to the National Theatre, and appeared in many theatrical and light opera productions over 14 years, at St Martins & theatre groups, including The Cavern, Salad Days, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf? and Twelfth Night. I have appeared in the iconic television drama Homicide, often as a dead body extra.
A LifeMember of AusAPT, I have been a regular contributor to the ‘Australian Psychological Type Review’ and ‘Personality’, with Workspaces series of in-depth case studies of personality types in the workplace.
I host regular Salons for a diverse range of professionals (gatherings to participate in formal & informal discussions centred around specific topics) – increasing knowledge through conversations and readings.
Love my counselling and creative projects, and I adore enabling others to find their purpose and to facilitate their development.
A Brief Interview with Meredith
How did you become interested in counselling psychology?
“I have always been fascinated by people’s life purpose, personality difference, and the unconscious since I was a child. The moment I knew what I’d do when I grew up occurred at the National Theatre where I had won a scholarship.While I enjoyed theatre and performing, I had the sense that it wouldn’t completely satisfy me. When I was 9, we had an improvisation night, ‘seeing a therapist’. As the youngest in the class, I was assigned the role that the older members thought was boring; that of the therapist. As I sat in the chair listening and responding to each client’s fantastical story, I had an epiphany – I knew that my true vocation was to become a psychologist. I had a great interest in what would become of people. From age 11, I wrote down what I thought each school classmate would do when they grew up.”
Someone who had a profound influence on your work?
“My mentor, Dr Selby Markham. He taught me 4th year vocational counselling, and then became my Masters thesis supervisor. Unlike the linear theoretical careers practice of the time, he was intrigued by the puzzle of people’s vocational behaviour and saw it as a far more intuitive, complex life process than administering interest inventories & ability tools to identify careers. Several colleagues and friends have informed my work; including Susie Rotch, Liz Norris, George Cally, and Pat Strong, my therapist, and various inspiring encounters throughout my professional development.”
What have you learned from your clients?
“That who we are – as evidenced by what we profess to be in our work – is critical to our well being. We must be true to ourselves – whatever that may mean for us. That being invisible – not to be seen and valued for who we really are – causes tremendous pain.”
Most difficult aspect of your counselling work?
“My focus and intensity is absolute. I hold my clients in mind, and as a result I’m cautious about the volume of people I’m prepared to see.”
How has the way that you work changed over the years?
“I hold the tension of not-knowing and life’s paradoxes more easily. I prefer to work with older people undertaking life’s transitions. I am interested in interpersonal and intrapsychic issues, and am particularly curious about quirky, talented or reserved people who are often lost or lonely around the edges of our society, regardless of how supposedly ‘successful’ or ‘unsuccessful’ their careers are in the outer world.”
Most influential written work of all the reading you’ve done?
“I love Irvin Yalom, and the writer Janet Malcolm. I appreciate the existential and psychodynamic theorists. Possibly the first vocational theorist who interested me was Harren; he saw career decision making as only quasi-rational, and acknowledged the more intuitive elements. Like Selby, he identified the serendipitous factors – those chance/luck encounters that affect your life path.”
Know NOW about the practice of counselling psychology that you wish you’d known when you began?
“How important it is to have a concerned interpreter for you on your journey. Whether you feel lost, are having relationship or work difficulties, can’t locate your purpose, or are distressed as well as when you feel jubilant and enlivened with possibilities, or burdened by overchoice. That to make sense of one’s life and work actions may need retrospective translation. ”
How long have you been a counselling psychologist?
“Since I knew that I’d become a psychologist since childhood, I had a clear trajectory. Prior to gaining my degree I sought opportunities that would help to develop my counselling skills, such as voluntary welfare work, and while completing my post grad training I worked as an employment officer with Youth Job Centre, part of the Commonwealth Employment Service. I began working as a university careers counsellor when I was 23. While leading the Careers Counselling Student Services team, I began sessional lecturing in post grad psychology and had a part time private practice. 12 years later I became self employed, counselling and consulting to organisations.”
Describe yourself in 50 words or less?
Creative, intuitive, empathic, curious and ethical. My interactive style is engaging and vital yet quietly reflective while honouring the importance of personal boundary, trust, respect, and support.