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Nick Arnott-Steel

Registered Clinical Psychologist

- create meaningful change -


I thought finding a therapist I could connect with would be a challenge, however after my first session with Nick, I knew I had found the right person to support me on my journey. Nick immediately made me feel at ease. He creates a trusting, empathetic and supportive environment where I feel safe to share my innermost thoughts and feelings. Nick’s approach is gentle, kind and non judgemental. He challenges me to reflect on scenarios and unpack them myself, before offering me his perspective. Nick has a huge repertoire of knowledge, insight and experience which has enabled him to support me in many different areas. I have learnt a lot from Nick about emotions, positive response strategies and the complexity of the brain. He takes the time to explain the reasoning behind certain therapies so I understand how and why they are effective. His sessions make me feel empowered and prepared to respond to life’s many challenges. I have come such a long way and I can’t thank Nick enough for his role in my progress.

Female, 27


I would recommend Nick for any early 20s young male like myself. I personally have tried a few therapists prior to meeting Nick. The biggest fear of mine was the way some therapists attempt to trigger your emotions or anxiety. Going into a session with Nick I was not pressured into any uncomfortable situations. I could think logically and stay grounded. Usually amongst younger males (like myself) expressing challenging emotions and opening up fully can be challenging. Personally I would disconnect then the session would become worthless. However, with Nick our sessions became a relaxed discussion that helped me tie up loose ends about issues I could not understand alone. If you are hesitant about therapy because you are nervous, scared or do not want to feel immensely uncomfortable then I would send you in Nick's direction.

Male, 21

I have been struggling with PTSD for the last 4 years. In November I met Nick, who introduced me to EMDR. Initially it was scary and foreign. With Nick's support and the obvious benefits and improvements I noticed using EMDR, we stuck with it. I can confidently recommend and encourage anyone to try this type of therapy. Nick and EMDR are giving me my life back. I'm reinventing myself. My confidence is building, my anxiety and fears are diminishing. That light at the end of the tunnel is getting bigger and brighter with Nick and EMDR on my journey.

Female, 52

My experience with Nick has truly transformed my life and I am very appreciative of the time I spent with him in his inviting clinic each week. His approach was obviously client-orientated, with a respect and integration of my own insights into the healing experience. As a young male it is often hard to be vulnerable in a professional setting. However, Nick’s empathy was genuine and allowed me to be open and comfortable through the entire process. I would highly recommend Nick to anyone, particularly if they have struggled to form relationships with mental health professionals in the past.

Male, 28

I have struggled with depression on and off for many years and was therefore keen to try newer techniques such as EMDR combined with ACT. Nick is one of only a few practitioners who offers this technique in Christchurch. This has helped lessen the effect of a childhood traumatic event. Nick was steadfast in support of me getting some core self-care fundamentals established in my life before expecting to much from the therapy. I maybe like others have had the expectation that a solution will come from somewhere other than within. But it is clear it has to come from within. Nick has helped me realise the importance of establishing a healthy routine of exercise, eating, sleeping and socialising. Once this foundation is working well, then you will be better equipped to deal with tougher emotional challenges. Nick has helped me with all of this and I find him very open, friendly, caring and not adverse to having a laugh. I would readily recommend Nick to anyone looking for support on their journey.

Male, 48

Fundamentally, EMDR has been life changing for me in a way I could not have envisaged was possible. I'm 62 years old & over the past 30 years I've spent significant amounts of time & money on numerous 'Healing Models' in order to heal from childhood trauma. These included 'Psychoanalysis Talk Therapy' with a  Psychologist, 'Psychodrama' workshops, & also 'More To Life' workshops. Whilst I experienced benefits from the above, I do now feel significant regret and a little peeved regarding the time & money I've spent, when compared to the healing and positive changes I've gained from EMDR in one year. My experience of EMDR is that it is a remarkably safe & effective tool for accessing, experiencing and expressing unconscious thoughts & emotions, which in so doing, has altered my perceptions of myself & my reality in a very positive, healing & life enhancing way. I feel privileged to have worked with Nick. He is the genuine article. There is no BS about him. He is very relatable & does not separate himself in the role of 'Professional' & you 'Client', whilst maintaining professionalism & professional boundaries at all times. I always felt safe and developed trust in his knowledge, skills & guidance. Probably the biggest impression I have of Nick was that he was non-judgemental  and extremely kind and caring. To reiterate, it was a very positive experience. Thank you Nick & thank you EMDR.

Female, 62

After years of childhood sexual abuse, I thought at the age of 47, that these nightmares, constant distressing thoughts of the events, screaming and jumping through the roof when anyone came into the room, feelings of suicide, no self worth, not good enough, damaged goods, no one will love me etc would be with me forever. With the help of on and off counselling, as well as Nick, I am in a happy place. Nick has helped me get my life back. No nightmares and no jumping from frights. Although my memories will never go away, Nick has helped make them ok. They don't scare me or hurt me. I have control. I have self worth, I am good enough and I am worth loving. I never understood at the start how EMDR could help. I had to try, because living with the trauma that these men had left behind was overwhelming and suffocating. If I can encourage just one person to say "yes" to EMDR, then the process and what I have gone through will all be worth it. You can have your life back, have peace with your memories and thoughts, and feel good about yourself again. Nick, words can never describe how thankful I am to have met you and you helping me get to where I am today. Thank you from the bottom of my peaceful heart :)

Female, 47

I witnessed someone pass away in a freak accident in 2020. It didn't bother me until about 6 months later. I was thinking about it everyday. I felt responsible even though logically I knew no one was at fault. I was encouraged to contact Nick by my doctor. We met for a total of 4 session. I finished therapy with a completely different perspective on the event. My mood has lifted and I'm sleeping much much better. If you've experienced something traumatic, I recommend you try EMDR. If I had known about it sooner, I wouldn't have had to suffer for as long.

Male, 21 

12 years on from school and I was still dealing with a period of bullying from my teenage years. I struggled making friends, and maintaining intimate relationships has always been a problem for me. Nick and I worked on 3 or 4 memories using EMDR. I'm not going to lie, it's a tough process! However, looking back on it now I can see it was totally worth it. I feel more confident meeting people, and that feeling of shame no longer lingers the way it used to. Thanks Nick.

Female, 32

Me and Nick started EMDR while he was working out of his office in CHCH. When he decided to move overseas I was worried that it wouldn't be the same. I think this is because I did most of my lectures via zoom and I found it really difficult to concentrate. I did look for another therapist, but due waitlists I decided to stick with it and try things remotely. Everything felt fine within 20mins. It was also much better seeing Nick in the evening as this gave me time to get home from uni. Trauma work is tough (well it was for me). Nick is a pretty casual guy and I definitely think this type of approach made it easier for me.

Male, 24

I've tried many different therapies over my lifetime. On reflection, I feel like I've wasted a lot of time and money on a general 'chitchat'. I remember Nick saying something along the lines of "if you're not confronting the past, it's likely not an evidence based trauma treatment." I like Nick's honesty. He gave me clear expectations and wasn't shy on time frames. This was pretty daunting given my life WAS TRAUMA. He looked surprised one week when I gave him 4 or 5 pages of memories that I wanted to work through - Poor Nick! We managed to group them in themes and come up with a clear pathway for the year ahead. We didn't need to work on every single memory which was fantastic. Some of them just didn't cause much fuss in the end. I think I take the cake as Nick's longest serving client. I went every week for almost two years! However, for me this was a small price to pay given almost 40 years of on again/off again therapy that just didn't work. I still think about these past events sometimes and wish my life had of taken a different pathway. The main difference now is that they just don't frighten me. I can now look forward to my future and enjoy the time I have left with my family.

Female, 69

I don't feel sad all the time anymore. I don't feel scared at nights and I can sleep on my own again. The best thing is that I can now stay the night at my friend's house! Thank you for helping me.

Female, 11

Nick supports me to go at my pace in therapy. Being Autistic, it has been especially difficult to find someone who doesn't try push me beyond what I know is my limit. He trusts that I'm doing as much as I can, therefore I can trust him. When doing EMDR therapy, Nick listens when I say I need a break or to stop. He encourages gently and intuitively knows when to break or stop EMDR even when I don't. It makes me feel safe and confident to do EMDR therapy with him. My emotional instability and even my chronic pain have vastly improved from doing ACT and EMDR therapy with Nick. I don't remember the last time I had pain medication, I used to need it daily for 14 years. Nick is the the first man that I don't have a tight chest around, it is a testament to the quality of his work as a trauma therapist. I always leave therapy feeling supported, empowered, and mentally buff. Thanks to Nick, I feel as though I'm walking on solid ground for the first time.

Female, 29

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