Therapy is about developing new insights into patterns of thought, emotions and behaviors that are currently impacting your life. Awareness is the precursor of change and engaging in a process of exploration will assist us in determining the unmet needs these patterns represent to identify alternative ways of knowing, being and doing.
Benefits of therapy
You will experience:
We will work in collaboration to create the changes that you desire in a way that fits your created. Safety, trust and change are co-created experiences between you and me that honor our respective boundaries and respect your individual needs.
"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it's about learning how to dance in the rain."
- Vivian Greene
The decision to begin therapy can often bring a myriad of uncertainties and questions about the process and how to determine if this therapy stuff is for you. Below I have listed the most common questions asked:
1. How do you determine if I am for you?
2. What is the frequency of sessions?
3. What do I need to bring?
1. The therapist/person fit is the catalyst for effective therapy. My skills and style must align with your needs. Scheduling an initial complimentary consultation call will provide us with the opportunity to discuss this in more detail.
2. Sessions are scheduled on an hourly basis. At times individuals request longer and more frequently. To ensure that this makes most sense for your needs and goals in therapy, we will discuss this together.
It is often most beneficial to meet weekly or biweekly at the start of therapy to build momentum. Anything beyond this (3 weeks or monthly) is often not encouraged as it can impede progress. Once you have determined that progress has occurred, it may make sense to shift sessions to every three weeks or thereafter.
3. Bringing a notebook to jot down any ideas, concepts that resonate with your, or to list the practice tasks discussed in the session can be of benefit to reflect on between sessions.
Healing is not about getting over or fixing something, yet rather a process for moving through and forward.
Determining what you hope to gain from therapy and a discussion of the techniques to achieve your goals is an important part of therapy. These however need to align with who you are as an individual.
More important, though is the connection, aka fit with your therapist. Experiencing a sense of feeling heard, seen and safety is integral to the therapeutic experience. Gabor Mate eloquently describes this felt a sense of safety as the presence of connection.
Practice is key. I often say the real change occurs between sessions as you are living your life. Applying the skills and practices discussed in sessions are key to affecting
the changes you desire.
Accessing that inner potential that exists in every person comes from shifting and doing and that requires practice and new knowledge. The take away-practice tasks can reinforce the concepts discussed in session. Takeaway tasks are discussed together and as always, need fit for you.
Each session will provide us with the opportunity to review the practice, the successes or shifts or new insights that may emerge and the challenges. Therapy is a dynamic process of ups and downs, ebbs and flows.
While progress is defined differently, it is important to recognize what feels and "is" different for you. A shift in your self-views, relationships, a decrease in symptoms, behaviours, or emotional intensity and willingness to establish boundaries can be considered as a measure of progress (though not representative of all progress indicators).
Committing to your personal needs is the greatest gift you can give to yourself and for many, this may present as a challenge. Creating these shifts in therapy may require additional resourcing between sessions- beyond the practice tasks discussed.
Recommended readings, podcasts, meditation, increasing physical movement or scheduling time in nature can support you through this process of change. Refer to the Resource page for lists of books if you wish.
Understanding the difference between the three can alleviate confusion and determine which service, to begin with. It is also important to confirm your Health Benefits as not all services may be covered.
Psychiatrists are medical doctors who typically require referrals from your doctor. They provide a diagnosis of mental health disorders and prescribe medications to treat them. They are covered by OHIP. Some Psychiatrists provide therapy.
Psychologists are not medical doctors, yet hold a doctorate or a master's degree and can provide therapy and educational and psychological assessments. They do not diagnose nor prescribe medication and are not covered by OHIP.
Psychotherapists help people move through recovery (this encompasses a myriad of mental health concerns) and life stressors. They utilize a range of techniques and interventions to help people improve their health and well-being, live self-directed lives, and connect to their inner potential. Psychotherapists are not covered by OHIP.
"At any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth or step back into safety. "
- Abraham Maslow