My Approach to Helping
As we journey through life, unfair things happen. The associated thoughts, feelings and people can stay with us as painful memories, create a sense of burden and influence our expectations for the future. While we can't change the past, it is under our control to change the way we look at what happened. As challenging events and relationships unfold, we can control how we respond. We do this by becoming more aware of automatic negative reactions and replacing them with healthier thoughts, feelings and behaviours.
Through periods of suffering in my life, there has been accelerated personal growth and life-changing insights. This is probably true for you as well. However, there comes a point at which continuing to suffer for past events, situations and relationships is no longer useful. The time to let go is now; to start your process of healing, renewal and rebirth.
Through psychotherapy, we let go of the outdated thoughts, ideas, feelings, behaviours and interpersonal patterns that cause us to feel "stuck" in life. My goal is to help you identify elements of your life story that keep you trapped in a cycle where the same types of people and situations continually recur.
My clients have presented with a diverse range of concerns:
Obsessive and or compulsive thoughts (OCD)
Immigration cultural change
The following are my special areas of interest:
The impact of disabilities or perceived disabilities (physical, mental health, learning, intellectual, visual impairment, hearing impairment, neurological) on self-concept and quality of life
Difficulties arising from involvement with the legal system
Impact of chronic andor co-morbid illnesses on patients and their families
Career counselling, school and workplace issues
Modalities utilized in session:
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
With consideration to intersectionality and how our different identities shape our experiences, I approach client work with an anti-oppressive, trauma-informed and strengths-based framework.
I hope today is the day you decide to begin the transformative process of rising like a phoenix from the ashes. Please contact me to set up a free 20-30 minute consultation to see how we can best work together.
More Info About My Practice
Master of Education in Counselling Psychology, University of Toronto.
Specialized Honours Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, York University
Graduate certificate as a Career Development Practitioner, Conestoga College
Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association (CCPA)
College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO)
How Psychotherapy Can Help
Whether you are in a "good", "bad" or "neutral" phase in life, anyone could benefit from seeing a psychotherapist.
When most things in your life seem to be going well, there is still room for enhanced self-understanding. There are always blind spots that go undetected because friends and family are not trained to notice them or draw them to your awareness. Loved ones and friends can offer good advice at times but their feedback will be biased based on the lens that they see you through and the expectations they have for you. Besides giving you more objective analysis, counselling done with a psychotherapist is about digging to your roots, to assess fundamental thought and feeling patterns to identify the self-limiting beliefs you have unconsciously accepted as true.
When there has been a traumatic event, most people shut down or numb their emotions as a self-protective strategy. These repressed emotions have the potential to influence future behaviour for years after the event has passed. You may not think you need therapy at the time of the incident because its possible to pretend everything is fine and continue living life as before. However, there comes a point when you realize that you are having irrational expectations and reactions without knowing why. The longer you keep silent about the trauma, the deeper it affects your mind and body. Continuing to ignore it can cause a complete breakdown which may have serious implications for your future. Prince Harry discusses the relief he felt when he finally began to talk about the grief surrounding his mother's death, 20 years after it occurred. His life began to turn around when he saw a professional counsellor. He is passionate about reducing the stigma around mental health, and co-founded Heads Together to raise awareness about the power in being able to talk about what is affecting you. I am inspired by this organization which is devoted to encouraging people of all ages to seek mental health support in times of need. Prince Harry has also teamed up with Oprah Winfrey to produce a television documentary series on mental health. Winfrey commented, "Our hope is that it will have an impact on reducing the stigma and allowing people to know that they are not alone, allowing people to speak up about it and being able to identify it for themselves and in their friends."
With the help of initiatives such as Heads Together and Bell's Let's Talk, along with influential celebrity advocates, the conversation around seeking professional counselling is becoming increasingly mainstream. The stigma may never completely disappear on a global scale yet I am hopeful that people who may have never considered counselling are becoming more open to hearing about the considerable long-term costs of silence.
My Role as a Therapist
I believe that each person has all the wisdom they need to heal buried deep within themselves. It is my role to create a safe and confidential space for you to re-discover your values, needs, wishes and desires. You may discover hidden parts of yourself as you talk openly and honestly without fear of judgement. This new self-awareness may cause you to change the way you approach life.
How My Own Struggles Made Me a Better Therapist
Like the metamorphosis of the caterpillar into the butterfly, finding my voice and sharing my story has caused me to undergo a complete transformation. Due to my own experiences of trauma and discrimination, I am passionate about helping people from all walks of life heal from their wounds. The systemic power imbalances in society cause many people to accept injustice, to have their voices be silenced and to accept blame for wrongs committed by others. Whether it is painful childhood memories, one or more major events, relationships, or a series of micro-traumas, untreated trauma causes changes in the brain and body. This shapes us in subtle ways, many of which are deeply unconscious and affect our self-worth and behaviour. Through a process of self-discovery and exploration, I re-authored a more empowering life narrative. The stories we tell, define our lives in our own eyes and in the eyes of others. I aim to help you break free from the thought patterns that cause you to experience the same types of situations, events and people in your life. Different narratives lead to different future experiences.