Approach to Therapy
My approach to therapy is one of collaboration based on the specific needs and goals of each individual client. To do this, I conduct an interview assessment during the first session to learn more about the client's strengths and struggles, to find out more about what works and where they are stuck, and to assess whether we are a good match and how we might most effectively work together.
I bring warmth, respect, compassion, and a strong ethic of care to my work with clients, in addition to years of experience and expertise. My goal is to create a strong collaborative relationship, in which therapy feels safe and manageable, but also appropriately challenging and forward-moving. Since the therapeutic relationship is one of the most important change-agents in counselling and psychotherapy, it is important that clients feel that I am a good fit for their needs.
The theoretical approaches that I have been trained and supervised in include Interpersonal Therapy (IPT), Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (EFT), Systemic Family Therapy, Gestalt Therapy, Satir Therapy, Narrative Therapy, relaxation and mindfulness therapies, and clinical hypnosis. Most of these approaches share common factors, including the need for a strong therapeutic relationship, an attachment focus, an experiential and emotion-focused approach, a perspective that childhood experiences shape who we are and how we cope in the present, an emphasis on learning new skills and strategies, a view that therapy needs to provide clients with an experience of something new and different, a strengths-based perspective even while sorting out problems, and an individualized approach that addresses clients' needs, goals, and commitment.
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT)
My practice is embedded in an integrated interpersonal therapeutic approach, which draws from interpersonal and attachment theories, cognitive theory, family systems, cultural and diversity perspectives, and developmental stage models. From this
relational, experiential, and emotionally-focused perspective, many problems and symptoms are seen as stemming from relationship patterns and styles that originally developed in childhood, and are maintained in current relationships. In therapy, we may explore different levels of interpersonal patterns of relating to self and others.
The role of therapy is to facilitate change that will allow people to create a richer and more meaningful life with others despite challenges.
The process of change occurs, in part, by facilitating clients to gain new insights emotionally and experientially about long-standing, ineffective coping patterns, dysfunctional relationships, unprocessed trauma, and associated problematic symptoms. From these patterns of feeling stuck, depressed, or frustrated, we can learn about the repeating themes that happen over and over in life, and use the therapeutic relationship to provide new interpersonal experiences that can then be transferred to other relationships and situations outside of therapy.