Philosophy of Counselling

We have an innate movement to wholeness. And while you may not feel it right now, you are already whole. Life events can create blocks to accessing that state. Counselling can help you heal unresolved conflicts and losses so that you remove the obstacles that block you from feeling happy, healthy and whole.

Exploring your life and making lasting change can be hard work. It helps to have support to ensure you are successful in having the life you desire. My approach is practical and collaborative. Together we will identify your resources and you will learn how to build on them so you experience deep, lasting change.

I see the role of a counsellor as a combination of healer, teacher and guide.

  • As a healer, to help you resolve past issues and be a witness to your experience.
  • As a teacher, to help you learn self-care activities and effective ways of relating with yourself and others.
  • As a guide, to be supportive as you move into unfamiliar (and often uncomfortable) territory whether it is exploring thoughts, feelings and sensations, exploring new behaviours or adopting new ways of thinking.

The Counselling Process

My Approach to Counselling

My approach is integrative with a focus on the body-mind connection. I specialize in somatic therapy which is a body-oriented approach. It involves bringing awareness to how information is experienced in your body. You will explore thoughts, feelings and behaviours and you will also explore physical sensations in the body.

Why Include the Body?

We are embodied beings. Sometimes you will know something but do not feel it – it’s as if it doesn’t reach below the head. Including body awareness can help you bridge that gap so you feel more connected in mind and body and spirit. The body holds so much information. Increasing body awareness can help anchor in change because the more information we have the more choices we can make.

As an experienced yoga instructor I am familiar with how increased self-awareness, especially awareness of the body can be healing. So it makes sense that we include awareness of the body in counselling for a truly holistic approach.

Identifying Your Resources

Resources are positive things that help you feel safe and comfortable – they can be external or internal and include relationships, self-care habits and your personal characteristics. Together we will identify your resources and you will learn how to build on them.

Home Practice

Sometimes I will suggest home practice between sessions, for example, journaling or practicing a new skill (such as a breathing technique) to help anchor in the changes you want.


Feedback is built into the practice every session to ensure your sessions are effective. This way I can address the approach and adapt to your needs.

The amount of time you attend counselling depends on what issues you are struggling with and what goals you set for yourself. Sometimes when there is a specific issue to deal with you may require only a few sessions. Other issues may require a longer commitment. Clients usually start by attending weekly and then move to every second week. Ultimately, you decide when to end counselling.

I am dedicated to working with you effectively to create the long-term changes you seek.

For Stress-Management Counselling, we will identify your biggest stressors and develop a plan on how to manage them. This may involve me teaching you relaxation techniques, helping you develop problem-solving strategies and/or building resources.

When Working With Trauma, I will work with you to develop a sense of safety and build resources. I will help you learn how to feel more at home in your body. We will work slowly so the process feels safe and manageable for you.

Whether you want help with stress-management or trauma resolution, I can help.

Contact me for a free 15-minute phone consultation to see how I can help you get your health back.

Stress Management

Are You Struggling with Meeting the Demands of Daily Life? Are You Feeling Stressed and on the Verge of Burnout? Do You Feel Wound-up and Unable to Relax?

Stress, a Natural Part of Life

Stress is the emotional, physical and mental reaction to the conditions and events in our lives. Stress can be caused by minor everyday hassles as well as major life-changing events.

In small amounts, stress in not a problem and, in some cases, can actually help increase your performance because the stress response makes you alert and ready for action. However, stress is a problem when you are unable to relax and it is constant and prolonged.

The Effects of Stress

When you perceive a threat to your well-being, the stress response is triggered. The body undergoes strong internal changes: adrenaline pours into the bloodstream and your muscles become tense to prepare you to fight or flee the potential threat.

If you are not able to recover sufficiently from the stress response after a perceived threat has passed, you may experience the consequences of chronic stress.

Characteristics of Chronic Stress

  • You are tense. You feel muscle tension especially in the neck and back.
  • You are moody and irritable. You often feel on edge.
  • Your concentration is poor. You find it hard to stay mentally focused.
  • You have problems sleeping. You often feel fatigued.
  • You have developed health problems, such as poor digestion or high blood pressure.

If the stress you feel is severe, you may be dealing with trauma.

What Can You Do to Manage Stress?

Effective stress management involves a strong sense of self-awareness and a constructive set of coping behaviours.

Some people are able to handle stress more effectively than others. This is partly due to individual physical differences. While you cannot change your physical make-up, research has identified other factors that can moderate the effects of stress.

To learn more, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have a healthy lifestyle that includes adequate sleep, nutritious food, refreshing exercise and regular relaxation?
  • Do you have a strong commitment to yourself, your work/studies, your family and your values?
  • Do you have sense of control in your life? That you are able to handle whatever is in front of you?
  • Do you see change as a challenge rather than as a threat?
  • Do you have a strong social support system? People who you can call on for help or to simply listen to your concerns?
  • Do you feel able to express your emotions?
  • Do you enjoy a hearty laugh at least three times a day?
  • Do you tackle problems by taking direct action?

If you answered a resounding ‘yes’ to any of these questions, you are already well on your way to effective stress management.

Any questions you answered ‘no’ to will identify areas you can focus on so that you can become more effective at handling stress in your life.

If you feel overwhelmed by stress, isn’t it time you did something?

Stress Management Counselling Can Help with Your Areas of Concern

  • Develop constructive, healthy ways to manage stress so you are less likely to resort to unhealthy fixes like overeating, drinking or drugs that can end up creating more problems leading to even more stress.
  • Identify your biggest stressors and learn how to minimize their impact.
  • Improve your mental focus so you feel sharp.
  • Become more resilient so you can handle daily hassles with ease.
  • Learn how to relax.

As your counsellor I will work with you to help release the feeling of being “stressed-out”. Together we will find ways for you to get your health back so you enjoy a better quality of life.

You have a choice about how to manage the stress in your life.

Let’s Get Started…

Contact me for a free 15-minute phone consultation to see how I can help you get your health back.

Trauma Resolution

Are You Struggling with the Aftermath of an Overwhelming Event?

If you are suffering from trauma, body-centred (somatic) counselling is one of the most effective approaches to recovery. Somatic therapy addresses the biology underlying the symptoms that cannot always be accessed by traditional talk therapy alone.

Trauma can result when you experienced an event that was overwhelming. It may have been a single event or repeated experiences. Some examples: a car accident, sexual abuse or assault, the unexpected death of a loved one.

Characteristics of Trauma:

  • You feel intense anxiety. You startle easily.
  • You have a low tolerance for stress. You overreact to minor incidents and feel moody.
  • You have problems sleeping. You find it takes a long time to fall and/or stay asleep.
  • You have intrusive memories or thoughts about the event.
  • You avoid things that might remind you of the event.
  • You feel depressed, angry and/or guilty most of the time. You cannot seem to shake these feelings.

If you can relate to some or all of the above statements, it may feel like it’s too much and can seem hopeless. You may have tried different things that do not seem to bring any long-lasting relief or maybe this is your first attempt to deal with the past. It doesn’t matter, whatever your experience or how long you have suffered, there is always hope.

Somatic Therapy Can Help You Resolve Trauma

If you have struggled with trauma for a while, you’ve probably realized that this problem is too big to overcome by yourself. Humans are social beings. Social support is vital to helping resolve trauma. What you need is to find a way to complete the survival response that was not able to complete at the time of the event.

You can benefit from the expertise, support and guidance of a counsellor who specializes in trauma resolution using a somatic (body-centred) approach. I know how difficult it is for you, and I know how to help.

You Can Heal From Trauma

  • Reduce the startle reaction. Increase your ability to self-regulate/feel more stable.
  • Develop effective ways to manage stress. Feel capable of handling daily stressors.
  • Recover from past abuse.
  • Find ways to process a devastating loss.
  • Feel more comfortable in and with your body.

As your counsellor, I will work with you to help release the feeling of being stuck and held back by the past. People often think that in order to resolve trauma you need to revisit the whole experience all at once. This is not necessary. We will work bit-by-bit so the process feels safe and manageable for you.

Together we will identify your resources and you will learn how to build on them so you experience deep, lasting change. Making the decision to seek help and attend counselling takes a lot of courage. It takes a strong desire to release the hold the past has over you so you can enjoy a better future.

If you are tired of struggling with the aftermath of an overwhelming past, allow yourself some peace of mind by taking the first step towards improving your health and happiness.

Are you ready to move forward?

Contact me for a free 15-minute phone consultation to see how I can help you get your life and your health back.

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