In many ways, video counselling sessions are similar to face-to-face sessions.

But there are some extra technical and security issues to be mindful of.

Here are some things to consider:

  1. For the best possible connection, ensure that your computer or device has the most up-to-date software installed, and your internet browser is up-to-date.  Our telehealth software may not work if your computer or device is not recently updated.
  2. For your own security, ensure that up-to-date antivirus software is installed and running on the device you use for your online consultations, and be sure to use your own private computer or device, rather than a shared one.
  3. On the day of your appointment, ensure that you have a private room for your session and that your conversation cannot be overheard.
  4. Give yourself plenty of time before the appointment to settle in and make sure your technology is working smoothly. Remember to plug in your device or ensure that it’s adequately charged.
  5. You might like to use headphones for your session, as this helps to increase privacy and sound quality.
  6. Set your camera up so your face is visible in the screen and that there is adequate lighting on you.  Light in front of you, like a window or a lamp, is usually better than light behind you, otherwise you’ll end up in the shadows.
  7. Take a moment to make sure you are comfortable with your therapist seeing what is in the background of your video.  Please know that we don’t mind seeing your dirty dishes and unfolded washing in the background and we love meeting your pets if they come to say hello during the session!
  8. Once your session starts, be sure to close down any other tabs or browers on your computer and switch off your phone. This helps you to be present and get the most out of your session.
  9. If you’re not used to talking online, it can feel a little strange to begin with, and hard to know where to look.  We suggest looking at your therapist on the screen, rather than looking at camera, as this usually feels more natural.  If you don’t want to look at yourself while you talk, you can switch off your video view, so you can only see your therapist on the screen.  Ask your therapist how to do this in the session.
  10. If you’re calling on your device, it’s best to prop it up somewhere stable. If you hold your device with your hand, you’ll probably end up with a tired arm by the end of your session, and your therapist will probably end up with a bit of motion sickness from the camera moving around!
  11. Please make sure that you’re not driving during your session.  Aside from the obvious safety reasons, you also won’t get the most out of your session if you’re focussed on the road.  You’re welcome to have your session from your car (we know this is often a private and convenient place to have a session), but please make sure that you’re parked somewhere safe and secure, and with good internet reception.
  12. Due to internet hiccups, there may be a short interruption in your session.  Use this as an opportunity to take a breath, and remind yourself that sometimes things happen that are outside our control, and we can only do the best we can in each moment.  On a more practical note, you can also click the REFRESH button, or leave the online session, and click back on the link to return.
  13. Don’t forget the tea. Pop on the kettle, and make yourself a cuppa before your session.


For more information about how to stay safe online, visit Australian Cyber Security Centre website here.


We’re currently looking for exceptional Psychologists and Mental Health Social Workers, focussing on relationship counselling to join our growing team.

Find out more here.


We acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land we live and work on, and pay our respects to ancestors and elders past, present and future. Awake Psychology HQ is located on the land of the Bundjalung people.