Hello. My name is Dr. Jacques Rizk, and welcome to Heart Matters Psychology. In my work with thousands of clients over the years, I have noticed that people are the healthiest and feel most alive when they are living truest to their values. It has long been my vision to offer individuals, couples and families a service that helps them make contact with what matters most to them, and Heart Matters Psychology is that vision realised.
As a clinical psychologist who has been training and practicing in the field since 1999, Dr. Jacques Rizk has had much experience in dealing with children, adolescents, adults, couples and families from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Jacques has particular experience, interest and advanced training in two clinical areas: working with people struggling with their weight and eating; and working with people who identify as LGBTQI. You can read about his work in these areas in the ‘Clinical Interests & Experience’ section below.
On a more personal note, Jacques was born in Melbourne and grew up exposed to a rich mixture of Australian, Arabic, and African cultural influences. He became interested in psychology early in life, and has particularly been drawn to elements within psychology that resonate personally, such as compassion and authenticity. Jacques adds to his suite of scientifically-supported therapeutic strategies a heartfelt dedication to helping individuals make lasting and meaningful changes towards psychological health.
Informed by this rich combination of the highest level of formal training in the field and over 15 years of professional practice, and coloured by a personal history that has imbued him with depth and authenticity, Jacques is well placed to offer quality therapeutic services to a range of people.
Clinical Interests & Experience
Jacques has two particular clinical focus areas:
These days, about half of Jacques’ referrals are for working with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBTQI) people of all ages (you can read about his work in this area here).
Another area of intense focus for Jacques is in the area of his PhD, which investigated the psychology of eating and weight problems. Jacques has presented this research at a number of national and international conferences. These days, he uses his extensive knowledge in this area to help people struggling with binge and emotional eating, as well as people considering surgery for weight management (read more about his work in this area here).
In addition to his clinical and academic expertise in these two areas, Jacques also has a clinical interest and over a decade’s experience assisting people with a range of other issues. He works with children, young people, couples, families, and groups, and his greatest areas of experience are:
– Depression (and other mood disorders such as Bipolar)
– Anxiety (including panic attacks, generalised anxiety, phobias
– Problems with managing emotions (including anger)
– Recovery from trauma (including PSTD and childhood/past trauma)
– Managing chronic pain
– Workplace and school bullying
– Cultural identity issues
– Recovery from addiction
– Self-harm and suicide prevention
– Assertiveness Training
– Relationship problems (including polyamorous and non-traditional relationships), and
– Uncertainty with life goals and direction.
Jacques also enjoys supervising psychologists, and regularly running group therapy sessions, workshops, and trainings. He has presented on a range of topics at schools, businesses, professional network meetings, conferences, and universities in Brisbane, Cairns, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Sydney.
In assisting people who seek therapy for these concerns, Jacques adheres to the APS code of ethics, the APS Charter for clients of psychologists, and the Medicare provider guidelines.
Jacques is committed to only using evidence-based psychological strategies that are considered by the profession to be best practice and the highest level of care. Jacques is a Humanist at heart, and resting on these principles of empathy, authenticity, empowerment and client-centeredness is a highly developed and defined clinical framework that augments pioneering third-wave behavioural therapy strategies such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy with more traditional and established strategies like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy. When working with couples, Jacques uses his advanced training in Emotionally Focussed Therapy for Couples. Jacques’ clinical practice has also been heavily influenced by his PhD research, which emphasised that psychological treatment is most effective when it is tailored to meet each individual’s unique set of needs.
Jacques has made a commitment to give back to the community through the provision of quality training and supervision to more junior psychologists. If you would like to find out more about Jacques’ supervision, please click here).