Counselling is a journey of self-discovery. Through counselling, we can work together to explore any difficulties that you are facing. These can include but are not limited to: stress, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, trauma and abuse. The goal is to increase and maintain self-awareness; in turn facilitating lasting change. I have found that most people come to counselling because they want to be happier. Counselling becomes an exploration of what is getting in the way of happiness. Those interferences to happiness can be old patterns that no longer serve us, a lack of fulfilment, self-judgment, or behaviours that are keeping us from feeling good about ourselves. Counselling explores these interferences and helps the person remove obstacles to happiness so he or she can go on to lead a happy and fulfilling life.
Effective therapy requires that the therapist exhibit respect, authenticity, genuineness, empathy, acceptance, and unconditional positive regard. These qualities are at the heart of therapy and facilitate a healthy connection that allows true healing to occur. I work very hard to cultivate and nurture a loving, authentic, accepting, non-judging and empathic stance with my clients. It is my hope that the acceptance and positive regard the client feels in my office will eventually become internalized and he or she will begin to feel more accepting toward and positive about themselves.
I do not view myself as the healer. It is the client who heals him or herself. I am merely the facilitator. I help explore and delve into the inner workings of the client. I help bring to light that which is often covered by darkness. I do not provide solutions or answers. I assist my clients in finding their own answers. It is my job to help make the answers explicit. To help my clients identify, develop, and mobilize their own resources to successfully solve their problems and meet the challenges of life in a healthy and functional manner.
It is my job to create a safe place in which people can explore themselves. It is my belief that the only way a person can fully explore his or her thoughts, feelings, and behaviors is to delve in without judgment. Once judgment is present, we tend to focus on the black and white/right and wrong of the issue and stop the exploration process. I assist my clients in becoming integrated, fully functioning human beings. Therefore, it is essential that I create an environment that is safe and allows my clients to explore ALL of themselves without feeling judged.
Another important aspect of my work is the exploration of patterns that are no longer useful to the client. Many of these patterns are rooted in the person’s past. I believe that most people need to visit the past in order to fully understand why they think, feel, and behave the way they do. Bringing this knowledge of the past into the present allows the client to understand why he or she perpetuates their negative behaviours and allows them to take the steps necessary to change their lives.
My approach to therapy is integrative; which means that I have studied the three main schools of therapy (humanistic, behavioural and psychodynamic), and placed these into a model that helps facilitate change. I allow the client to determine the direction and depth that therapy should take. I help the client find his or her own inner strength and resources. I make no value judgments and encourage my clients to explore their own value systems to determine whether they believe a course of action is right for them.
I hope that you will allow me to serve as your guide in your journey of self-discovery. I guarantee that I will remain present, non-judging, encouraging, and active as you explore your inner world. If you decide that I am not the right therapist for you I will be happy to assist you in selecting someone who will be a better fit.