I have witnessed healing come from learning to cope in the present and also processing the painful and sometimes traumatic experiences from the past. We all want to be free - free from carrying the pains of the past, free from worries about the future, free from our own self doubt, free from addictions (that can come in many different forms), and so on. We all want to be free. Freedom symbolizes being present in the moment and feeling a sense of fulfillment in who you are as a person and the relationships you have with others.
My training in supporting clients in mental health concerns and addictions comes from techniques for healing attachment wounds through inner child work, processing painful experiences as well as building self-esteem and navigating through life stressors and life changes.
One of the areas I specialize in is supporting clients who struggle with past traumas. I use a therapy called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), which is a natural way of processing traumatic/painful memories that your body can hold through feelings, different sensations in the body and negative beliefs of yourself. It helps to bring the intensity of emotions that you feel in association with painful experiences down to neutral and find new ways of seeing yourself. One of the reasons I feel EMDR is such a powerful technique is because you don’t need to share all of the painful details about your experiences.
Fear of being judged! For years I didn’t go to therapy for fear that my concerns were too different from what the dominant culture understood. I downplayed what I was experiencing and thought that I wouldn’t be able to find someone that would not judge me. It took courage to be vulnerable and take the risk of opening up to a stranger hoping that it would lead to some relief. This was my fear of being judged, but yours may be different. It may be stigma from experiencing an addiction or trauma, or experiences of not feeling respected by others for who you are and what you are struggling with. Therapy can be challenging when working with a therapist whom you don’t feel safe with to openly share. It is my highest priority to create a safe space for you.
The journey is unknown. To some, therapy can feel like walking in the dark, where we don’t know where to go next or what the final destination is. This in itself can be challenging, because as a society we have become so future oriented and want to be both in control and in the know at all times. We crave to instantaneously relieve all of our struggles. However, therapy is not experienced this way. Therapy is a process - and often does not have a direct line from A to B (although sometimes it can!). Through this process, we can uncover things that we didn’t know were there. As a result, our goals themselves can shift. What I really want you to know is that we are doing this together and you are not alone in it. I will be there to help you see how far you have come. Growth looks and feels different for each of us. It happens incrementally. Each step takes you closer to where you want to be.
I find change of any kind is challenging and therapy requires changing ourselves in many different ways. Change is also really important and needed because if you continue living the way you are, things most likely will not improve if they haven’t already. Couples seek therapy often after they have already exhausted all of their own tools and supports so at this point change can feel hopeless and impossible. I am here to help you find hope again and not feel alone in the process. We will work together towards change that will bring you to where you would like to be. Yes, it will be hard work, but I believe we are capable of much more than we give ourselves credit for.
I view couples the same way I view individuals: as resilient and capable human beings. I see the possibility of growth in couples when they each are committed to their healing. I see myself as a guide in your journey in finding your way back to one another.
The foundation of love and friendship that forms relationships is meaningful and powerful. Along our journeys in relationships we can start from a place of connection and find ourselves struggling to communicate and feeling disconnected later. All couples go through challenges and I honor the love that brought you together and strive to support you in rebuilding your relationship. The Gottman Method guides my approach in working with couples to unlearn unhelpful ways of communicating and re-learn ways to connect and understand one another again. The techniques I teach couples, from Gottman are easy to follow and allow you to be empowered to navigate conflict on your own and maintain your connection with one another.
You can learn more about how I support my couples through the Gottman Method in One Life's guide to Choosing the Right Psychologist in Calgary for Your Marriage Counselling.
Revealing yourself to a stranger takes courage and my job is to create a safe space for you to find healing and peace within yourself.
I see strength and resilience in the pain we have gone through.
I help my clients to embrace these strengths and learn how to transform their pain so that it no longer defines them.
I respect everyone 's journey, cultural background, identities and understand that these intersect for each person in a different way. It is important for me to help you find alignment in your values and help you discover the next step in your life.
I might be a good fit for you, if you're looking for a therapist that is collaborative, non-judgemental and who wants to help you achieve your goals.
Learning how to deal with my own emotions. As a young adult, I found it incredibly overwhelming to try and navigate the world while at the same time learning who I was. Often, I would get overwhelmed by the pressures in society to have everything figured out and to fit in certain molds or ways of being. Sometimes I would get so overwhelmed that I couldn’t focus. As someone who experiences emotions very intensely, I learned to believe, through the messaging received from others, that my emotional sensitivity was a weakness. From there I dipped in and out of depression and anxiety for years before coming to the realization I needed to do something different.
It was my want to improve my own mental health that led me to exploring psychology and having an interest in how the mind and body work. Through my training as a counselor and working with a therapist, I learned different techniques that I was able to apply to myself and see firsthand how powerful they were in transforming my own life. This experience inspired me to create space for others to heal and transform in their lives. I believe we all deserve to live in peace and happiness regardless of the circumstances we have encountered.
The process of therapy is sacred to me. I don’t take it lightly. My heart is invested in seeing my clients grow and heal. I’ve been fortunate enough to have the opportunity for others hold hope for me and am grateful to now be in a place where I can hold hope and space for my clients in their healing process.