‘Renovate your relationship’: Coast author releases new book
Eight years ago, one Coast women made a career change that would bring joy into other families' households.
Joanne Wilson made the switch to counselling after working in corporate management for Qantas for 22 years.
She said she entered the field because she loved people.
"I grew up in a household that advocated lots of volunteer work and giving to the community," she said.
"I felt in my heart [my previous job] wasn't my calling."
Wilson, who writes regular columns for the Daily, is releasing a book, called Renovate your Relationship.
It is based on her knowledge from working in the industry and her own experiences as a mum and wife.
It is described as an "essential reference interwoven with engaging and often amusing stories for newlyweds, oldly-weds, co-parents and anyone contemplating a relationship" and is broken up into 10 parts, including chapters on parenting, conflict and bettering yourself.
Wilson said apart from workbooks she had never written a book of this scale before.
"I wouldn't say it was easy to write but it was definitely something I enjoyed, spreading the love," she said.
The book is dedicated to the legacy of her parents and in-laws, her husband for a "full marriage experience" and God for his sense of humour by answering her prayer for a beautiful man and then gifting her four, including her three sons, all under 12.
"The book itself was founded on 10 years of working in my private counselling practice and the passion just overtook me after I've been writing and I had the honour of releasing all of my insights," she said.
"There was just so much information I wanted to share and it also came from the fact that it's kind of frustrating that I can only work with one couple at a time and so this [book] is a great opportunity to reach the wider community."
Wilson said a lot of inspiration was drawn from experiences with her own family.
"I definitely wrote about that and how challenging it is to be married, both with our own businesses," she said.
"I say to my husband 'If you have an affair or leave me my career is over'.
"So, he's stuck with me."
The book took four years to put together.
Wilson said the topic was "limitless".
"Once I started in my own practice, it was a very generalised council practice and I just found that my passion was in relationships, I really enjoyed that work and that people were really drawn to me," she said.
"I'll never run out of things to think about or to talk about."
Wilson said her favourite part of the job was the "ripple effect" it created.
"In this society we do have some pretty strong legacies of separation and divorce," she said.
"If couples can get this right today, they show their kids how to do it.
"The most exciting part is impacting generations for the future."
Wilson said she had seen couples go from turmoil to having their next child.
"The most rewarding moments are when people have had affairs, there's been infidelity and there's been relationship trauma and then sometimes I don't see what happens at the end … and then I get a photo of their next child and how happy they are," she said.
"Just recently someone sent me an Instagram message saying four years ago I saw you just for two sessions and those sessions were so impacting and I just go 'Oh my gosh … that is so beautiful'."
Wilson has shared her knowledge in publications such as Women's Day, New Idea and Mindfood.
She said COVID-19 was affecting relationships more than ever.
"People have been put under the spotlight and thrown together under duress and having to sort out what's really important in their lives," she said.
"Everyone was stockpiling toilet paper at the time and I was stockpiling resources on mental health."
Renovate your Relationship is due for national release on October 1.