What psychotherapy means to me

Therapeutic style

In psychotherapy, my goal is to guide and support you in making the changes you want and need in order to find meaning and live a more fulfilled life. I aim to be present with you in each counselling session, to help you slow down and explore your uniqueness; your inner world (motivations, emotions, fears and hopes), your relationships as well as the unhealthy habits and patterns in your life. In a collaborative, compassionate way, I will help you to learn about yourself, build upon your strengths, boost your inner confidence, gain new perspectives, make changes and integrate practical coping skills into your life. Strengthening your self-compassion and ways of nourishing yourself will be central in our work together as will using mind-body techniques to approach the therapeutic process holistically. Helping you notice what is going on in your body along with your thoughts and emotions can aid in you understanding yourself in a deeper way and begin healing. 

My therapeutic style stems from my training and life experience. With years of working in humanitarian aid, international education and social services, I struggled with how to do meaningful work and not burn out. I also learned how to cope with and adjust to some major life transitions along the way. Through intentional slowing down, self-exploration, and understanding my own stories, I have learned how using experiential creative processes can be beneficial. Creativity has helped me become more self-aware, practice self-compassion, connect with others in more meaningful ways, lessen stress and enhance my overall wellbeing.

Weaving talk & creative experiential therapies

I blend creative experiential techniques with different evidence-based talk therapies that fit with you and the problems you are currently experiencing. Tailored to you and using an eclectic approach, I will draw from such talk therapies as Solutions-focused therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Narrative Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), and self-compassionate mindfulness-based techniques.

I will bring creativity into our work with your permission. This might take the form of art-making, collages, expressive writing (poetry, journaling, story-telling), working with sand or clay, music, and using photographs. I may also try to incorporate Hakomi (a practice that combines mindful exploration, body awarenes and creative experimentation to promote healing) and Qigong (healing oneself through breathing, body movements, meditation and guided imagery) when appropriate.

Why use creative & experiential approaches?

Creative expression can be helpful in addressing the mind/body connection and enhancing your emotional understanding in a non-threatening way. Tapping into your own creative abilities can open up doors to self-exploration, allow you to gain a different perspective and recall your own strengths. Also, moving from more traditional talk therapies that encourage reporting about something that happened in your life to actually experiencing it in session can be therapeutically powerful.