I can’t tell you the feeling of satisfaction and pride I felt whilst holding my (Nikki) Provisional Psychology registration certificate in my hands.

For those of you who have been following my journey, you’ll know how much of a milestone this is!

Here’s a recap…

My story begins back in 2008.

I was studying a Bachelor of Psychology at the University of Sydney and experiencing anxiety.

I had a constant heaviness in my chest, butterflies in my stomach, digestive issues, and muscle spasms in my back.

What’s more, I struggled to enjoy the present moment as I would worry incessantly about my upcoming essays or exams, and I was just generally unhappy.

By the end of my degree, I was so burned out that for two years after, I spontaneously woke up from nightmares about an exam scheduled for the next day.

It was this anxiety that led me to Effortless Meditation.

Having had assumed meditation wouldn’t work on someone with such a busy mind like myself, I was pleasantly surprised by how easy and enjoyable it was and commenced a daily practice.

Not only did my symptoms dissipate, my practice sparked a whole journey of self-awareness and growth.

Most importantly, it led me to discover that I was being held back by an intense fear of failure.

Underpinning that fear of failure was a fear of not being smart enough.

Deciding to face that fear,

I enrolled in a Graduate Diploma of Psychology (Advanced) through Monash University two years ago.

It was an arduous journey.

It brought up all those anxious feelings again which threatened me to quit, only this time, I had a solid layer of self-awareness and mindfulness tools to effectively deal with them.

Thanks to my mentor, Walter Bellin (who co-hosts our programs and retreats), I uncovered a huge psychological blindspot, and was back in the game.

Cycling through this anxiety treadmill a number more times, I finally freed myself from the anxious stronghold and completed my studies!

Upon completion, I now had an important task on my hands:

Securing a placement for a Provisional Psychology internship which would put me on a path to becoming a Registered Psychologist in a few years time.

I wanted to find something meaningful which aligned with my values and interests where I could learn from someone with a more holistic approach to mental health.

I was adamant in not falling into a trap of ticking boxes and counting down hours in a placement which I resented for the next few years.

But it proved to be bloody tough!

Multiple times I was let down by various prospects (even in the last minute) and I began to doubt whether it was possible.

Despite my setbacks, I decided I wasn’t going to settle, and I trusted that if I was patient enough and continued to research and email prospects, I would eventually find what I’m meant to.

Lo and behold, I finally landed the PERFECT placement with a Psychologist who specialises in mindfulness-based interventions.

She was excited to take me on and so I submitted an application to the Psychology board and was approved!

I was reminded by this experience how important it is not to give up!

How when we are committed to something bigger than ourselves and we trust it will work out the way it’s meant to, eventually it happens.

So look out world, there’s a new Psychologist coming your way soon!