I have had difficult periods in my life, like most people who come to therapy. When clients enter my office, they can sense the authenticity that characterizes me, and the deep compassion of someone who really wants to help them. I appreciate the uniqueness of the human being, and consider the difficulties and challenges of life not simply obstacles, but opportunities to find and develop psychological resources that help pursue goals and live a meaningful life.
Choosing to seek help isn't always easy. Upon meeting me, clients often first notice my calm, kind hearted, and non judgemental way of being. I take great care in creating a space where you will feel safe and comfortable to open up and share.
“Inner joy and true happiness are found in enduring and overcoming adversity.” (Daisaku Ikeda)
In my experience, people find it really challenging to deal with difficult emotions. On the journey to healing, therapy can bring up painful or unpleasant emotions, such as anger, sadness, guilt, or shame. It is common for us to want to suppress or avoid these emotions. However, to heal, often we must shine a light on them, learn from them, and grow from our experience with them.
In therapy I can help you to learn healthy ways of coping with these unwanted emotions. I can't promise it will feel good at the moment. Learning to develop new skills takes time, it takes practice, and often we stumble and fall in the process of gaining mastery. I will be there to support and gently encourage you. Together we will create an accepting space for you to explore with curiosity and move through life’s challenges.
I draw inspiration from different psychological treatment methods and modify therapy based on my clients' personal situations.
Couples therapy can help to identify and revise unhealthy patterns, behaviours, or beliefs that cause or contribute to relationship problems. However, change can be difficult and necessitates dedication and hard work from both partners. Couples may have to compromise on certain issues, acknowledge differences, or give up some habits or expectations that are in conflict with their relationship goals. Couples in the process of change may encounter resistance or obstacles from themselves, their partner, or the world around them. My role is to support each of you as you work through the tough stuff, learning the tools and skills to cultivate greater connection, intimacy, and enjoyment in your relationship.
“It is not difficult to find love, but to keep it alive over time. “
I find Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) an effective approach to help develop greater psychological flexibility that allows a partnership to rediscover their identity as a couple, their shared individual values, and to make room for the pain, anger, shame and fears that can represent obstacles in the long-term journey. The mindfulness component of ACT reinforces commitment to the here and now, reducing impacts from negative thoughts and ruminating.
The Gottman method assumes that conflicts in the couple are not only unavoidable, but if managed in a functional way they can also be a predictor for the durability of the relationship. I use this method because it represents a powerful system for managing conflicts, helping couples maintain positive feelings and respect during difficult conversations.
The Gottman Method involves three main practices: 1) accepting the partner's influence, 2) dialoguing about problems, and 3) practicing self-soothing. These practices can help couples build a solid relationship.
As a therapist, I use different approaches depending on your needs and goals. My role is to help create greater awareness of your own thoughts, feelings, and behaviours as these are often the source of much of our struggles. I may use Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), or Mindfulness-based therapy, depending on what style works best for you. Throughout our work together, I pay careful attention to the emotional experiences coming up for you and how they are affect your well-being both in and out of the therapy office that our work progresses in a way that continues to motivate you.
When I work with couples, I focus on helping you and your partner improve communication, intimacy, and relationship satisfaction. I may use some of the same approaches as with an individual, but I also consider the dynamics and patterns of the couple as a whole. I will help you to identify conflicts, enhance your strengths, and foster a positive and supportive relationship. Again, I will pay careful attention to the emotions that each partner feels and how they are influencing interactions with each other.
I wish I knew the answer myself. Although it's impossible to determine in advance how many sessions are necessary to see a change, certain factors can certainly speed up the process if they are present. These include the quality of the relationship with the therapist and the client's commitment to change.
Ultimately, my goal in becoming a therapist was to assist those who are experiencing mental and emotional struggles, as I once did. When I was a teenager I was verbally bullied because of my introversion and difficulty asserting myself, and that pain was made even worse by the lack of psychological support to help me process my emotions. As a result, I began exploring psychology and training myself to listen to others who were in similar distress. Having personal experience with how difficult it can be to deal with life's challenges, I possess a natural inclination towards showing compassion and make an effort to empathise with my clients emotions and viewpoints. For me, being a therapist is not just a job, but also a passion and a privilege.
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