Here are a few things I honestly value, in my life & in my work as a therapist.
Being here –now– is everything. Thinking about how horrible the past was, or how scary the future is, is understandable. Sometimes we need to process what’s happened, or plan for what we want. But to really deal with those things, we need to be calm enough to think. Recognizing that in this moment we can take a deep breath, we can relax our shoulders, we are safe… Sometimes we have to do that before we can focus on healing.
Everyone is so unique. Figuring out what will be helpful for different people, means I always get to be creative, which I love! Being creative also helps us not get bored. If talking gets old, we can go for a walk, or use music, art, or humour to keep ourselves engaged. Believe it or not, therapy can be fun, interesting, and engaging.
What I love about psychology research (nerd alert!), is that we’re always learning about how to be more helpful.
Did you know that not too long ago doctors considered Borderline Personality Disorder (a tough disorder with a high suicide rate) “untreatable”, but now there is Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, which has shown amazing results for BPD? This is world changing, super hero level science stuff!
For the last decade, I’ve done my own research, and worked on some amazing teams. I still love going to conferences, presenting findings, and learning about new discoveries. But my favourite part is that I get to bring it all back to my clients, in a way that is actually helpful, that is so exciting!
I was trying to think of a “nicer” way to put this… Individuality? Perhaps it’s the punk in me, but “non-conformity” fits best.
So much of what weighs us down relates to society’s standards. “Be a perfect student, get a good job, look a certain way, don’t offend anyone”. How ‘bout no? Nopey, nope, no.
I’m not suggesting we quit our lives and start a band, but if we find ourselves living someone else’s’ idea of a good life, who is going to live ours? We only live once.
It is worth taking a step back to consider whose dreams we’re chasing, and why. What if we look back one day and realize we were too distracted to live our dreams, because we were busy making other people happy? Them being happy is their job to figure out, not yours.
When I was young, my best friend was bullied and attacked, just for being herself. So early on, I learnt about hate, discrimination, and a lack of justice. At that young age I became passionate about justice and equality.
As my client, this means you will always be accepted for who you are. You won’t be “challenged” on your experiences of oppression. I love working with folks from all cultural backgrounds, and proudly work with and support those from the LGBTQ2S community. If you are dealing with discrimination or bullying, I will not only be your theraputic support, but your ally and advocate.
Contact me about starting a band. Just kidding, contact me about counselling.