For those who want to build unbreakable psychological resilience

Build your anti-burnout foundation in just five steps with science-based systems

Download your Burnout Toolkit ebook for free now👇

We respect your email privacy

or click here to book group training for your organisation

Geoffrey Ahern

Clinical mental health & well-being educator trusted by:

My story

I’m a senior mental health clinician and educator who splits my time between working with people in a mental health crisis in the emergency department of a large hospital, taking calls on a mental health crisis intake line, and working proactively in educating other health professionals and the community about how better to understand mental health problems and the journey of recovery. For six years, I worked on the road with Victorian Police on a crisis mental health response team - Mental Health and Police Response (MHaP).Over the years, I’ve gained extensive experience in emergency and trauma nursing, rural nursing, alcohol and other drug counselling, and psychiatric nursing across both the public and private sectors.I’m particularly fascinated by the impact that exercise, nutrition, community, meaning and purpose, and practices like yoga have on a person’s mental health and living a simple life of reflection, contentment, and wonderment.I hold a Master’s Degree in Mental Health Nursing and a Graduate Certificate in Critical Care Nursing. As a part of my own ongoing education, I’ve completed a Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition through e-Cornell University, which explores nutrition and society, diseases of affluence and plant-based practices for clinicians and educators such as myself.

I've experienced trauma as a child and mental health crises myself, which has deepened my understanding of and passion for the work I do.Shortly after moving to Melbourne in 2013, I fell into a major depressive episode and gained over 20kg. I'll spare you the details, but I was in a terrible place.My life changed in 2018 when I visited my dad in the hospital and saw all the terribly sick people there eating awful hospital food. Something snapped in me. I knew if I continued down this path, then I'd be one of those diabetes patients with stomach ulcers or worse.Since that epiphany, I joined 5th Element Wellness and lost all the weight I gained (and gained muscle!). I also saw, and continue to see, a great therapist here in Melbourne.My personal experience with childhood trauma, PTSD, and health transformation has made me who I am today.That's why it's my mission to help people all over the world overcome their mental and physical health challenges.

What people say about my training

“Thank you so much for giving up your time to facilitate a personalised Workshop on Mental Health for our team. I could have listened to you all day, and l loved your fast-paced stories and practical tips that we will be able to implement immediately into our sessions. It was a wonderful opportunity to learn about mental health and highlighted the importance of the three health topics that we offer – mental health & well-being, sleep, exercise & health, and healthy eating & nutrition. The additional information on trauma and PTSD was especially relevant for all of us.”Suzie – CEO, The Water Well Project.

“I can’t emphasise enough how interesting this training was. I have genuinely never been so consistently switched on in a long seminar series like this before. I think I speak on behalf of everyone when I say your passion for mental health education is truly inspiring and has instilled a commitment in all of us to approach mental health from a much more informed and empathetic perspective.”Krishny – Monash University Student.

“Oh my goodness, you are amazing. I’m so glad I came to this course.”Marie – PhD Student, Monash University.

“If you spend time with Geoffrey, you’ll notice how he is constantly emitting positivity. It’s hard not to be inspired when you’re around him, and it makes me want to step up with my own health and wellness goals!”Sam – Director of Training, 5th Element Wellness.

Want to book group training for your organisation?

Enquire now

Training options include:
Mental Health First Aid
Youth Mental Health First Aid
Resilience workshops
Mental health & well-being
Diet, exercise, and longevity
PTSD and trauma
Trauma-informed care
Professional development for healthcare workers

Podcast appearances

Spud Fit
Geoffrey Ahern - Thriving After Trauma

Bottled Up
#24 - Coming to Terms with Trauma and the Path to Recovery with Geoffrey Ahern

Media appearances

Major presentations

Australian Cardiovascular Health and Rehabilitation Association (Victoria) Conference: “A Whole-Hearted Focus.”Keynote Speaker – “Managing Burnout for Healthcare Workers During a World-Wide Pandemic.”

More testimonials

“Thank you for a thoroughly enjoyable and informative workshop. Your passion for and immense knowledge of mental health was incredible to see. In my experience of attending lectures, tutorials, workshops and classes on counselling and mental health, yours was by far the best.”Melissa – Master of Counselling Student, Monash University.

“I never thought that training could be this amazing. I really loved the knowledge provided in a very detailed yet simple manner.”Mehreeh – RALAC.

“The content was engaging and insightful about trauma in our lives and how to provide trauma-informed care. It was research and evidenced-based information and experience and not just telling us what we already knew. It was great.”Anna – RALAC

How I got here

I never envisioned myself working in mental health. Still, alas, after completing a four-month secondment with a mental health crisis team in Sydney whilst I was working in a busy emergency department, I caught the bug and moved from the ED to crisis mental health work.One of the reasons I have such compassion and understanding when working with a person with a mental health problem is that I have my own lived experience, just like many of you reading this.Prior to having any formal diagnosis, my childhood was littered with trauma. I experienced significant bullying at school to the point where I was literally terrified on a daily basis. By the time I reached Year 10, I was ready to get out of there as quickly as possible. The bullying peaked when I was bashed to the point where I ended up with a contused liver and broken ribs.Most significantly, in terms of adverse experiences growing up, I was the victim of four sexual assaults from four different perpetrators, one of the assaults involving three perpetrators at once. I’ll spare you the gory details. Suffice it to say that this kind of trauma impacts you long-term. Like many victims of sexual assault, however, I never disclosed this to anyone till I was thirty years old.If you want to hear more of my story of recovering from childhood sexual assault, listen to Andrew “Spud Fit” Taylor interviewing me about thriving after trauma here.My “formal” lived experience, if you like, of having a mental health diagnosis was at the age of twenty-five when I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after my newborn son died in my arms. Tragically, this should never have happened. It was as a result of the gross negligence on the part of the midwife that actually implicated me in his death (that’s a whole other story).There was an impending court case related to my son’s death that required that I obtain a report from a psychiatrist, and the psychiatrist who assessed me said in his report that,

“Mr Ahern is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, which he will most likely never recover from.”

Now I understand why he used that language; he needed to convince the court that justice needed to be served, but they’re still pretty tough words to read when you’re already struggling in a very vulnerable position.Unfortunately, I didn’t seek treatment straight away. It wasn’t until many years later, after my daughter was born that I disclosed to my then-wife that I had been the victim of multiple sexual assaults as a child, and I was slowly unravelling. In the meantime, I’d discovered that alcohol numbed the pain, and for many, many years this was my source of comfort and escape. I was “functioning” on the outside; working, studying, and raising a family, but I was living in a world of pain, self-loathing, shame and guilt. On several occasions, I came very, very close to ending my life as well. Each time this happened, I was drunk and in a world of emotional pain and torture.Long story short, I eventually sought help. And today, I can say with absolute confidence that I had (past tense) post-traumatic stress disorder. I no longer have it. Yes, occasionally, I’ll have a wobbly day, but I am okay.So, if you, like me, have a lived experience of mental health, please know that we expect you to get better and there is hope. It might take a while to recover, but you’ll get there. Of this I am sure.

Still not convinced?Book training for your organisation
Sign up for the Mindful Musings newsletter

Informed Mind Consultancy Pty. Ltd.