My therapy practice centers on resilience in the face of individual, intergenerational, and systemic traumas. I use a counselling approach called Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment (TIST), that can more simply be called “parts work,” which was developed by Dr. Janina Fisher. TIST uses elements of Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, which addresses the effects of trauma on the nervous system and body, and Internal Family Systems, which assumes that symptoms and stress responses are parts of us, not all of us.
Trauma Informed Stabilization Treatment, or "parts work," is built on brain science research, and very effectively helps people to more deeply understand their emotional responses as intuitive adaptations to the world around us. Even the responses that we come to therapy to get rid of, like our tendency to not feel good enough or to distrust others, have probably been useful in helping us to stay okay at some point along the way. With parts work we can get these automatic responses updated in order to fit better with what's really going on in the moment, and to resonate more with who you are and how you want to interact with the world around you. This is a trauma-informed counselling approach that most of my clients find useful, and can really benefit people who have experienced trauma, but also those who haven't faced trauma, or who are unsure if they've experienced trauma.
Understanding internal conflicts in therapy from a parts perspective helps us to see our reactions more clearly while staying connected to a wise self. It also creates a sense of self-leadership, in which we can be more understanding and attuned to all parts of ourselves, while still being able to separate ourselves from them enough to start to shape our ways of being in the world differently. Often this opens up new ways of doing things that we hadn’t thought of before, and shows us that we have more options than we realize.
Please note: I have completed the first level of TIST training with Dr. Janina Fisher and will be a Certified TIST Practitioner by early 2022. This means that I have studied and had supervision around the use of this trauma-informed model for several years, and now am completing the advanced training.
DIALECTICAL BEHAVIOUR THERAPY
My graduate work focused on Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, which uses Eastern practices of mindfulness and the idea of finding a Middle Path between our often polarized thinking. It also uses the idea of Acceptance and Change: that we can be accepting of ourselves, our relationships, and the process we’re in exactly as it is in the moment. We might even be willing to find inherent wisdom and “goodness” of the current moment to enter fully into the experience. At the same time, we can be oriented and committed towards change.
This counselling modality helps people to find centredness, stay calm in the midst of chaos, have clarity of mind, and tolerate intensity and pain. Counselling sessions offer mindfulness-based, practical techniques for bringing us out of states of distress and helping us to regulate our emotions, so that we can feel lighter, more responsive, and more creative in problem solving. Clients notice a tangible difference in their ability to shift out of states of overwhelm by putting the skills we practice in therapy sessions into digestible pieces each week.
Many clients find that they reach out to a counsellor to get help coping with things like depression or anxiety. Dialectical Behaviour Therapy uses mindfulness and practical skills to help people cope differently with emotions like shame, anger, and even the avoidance of it all, which can feel challenging or even unbearably distressing at times.
I recommend booking a consultation first, so that you can make sure that you're choosing the right therapist. A consultation is a chance for us to get to know one another and see if we would be a good fit to work together. It's also a chance for you to ask me questions about my approach, style, policies, and practice.
Brief Consultation (15 min): FREE
Individual Online Session (50 min): $135
Sliding Scale: I offer a sliding scale to a limited number of clients who encounter barriers to accessing counselling services. People with financial barriers, those without health insurance, or people with other unique intersectional needs are welcome to inquire. Priority is given to individuals who identify as trans, non-binary, indigenous and poc. These spaces are currently waitlisted.
Please note I am a Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment™ practitioner in training with Dr. Janina Fisher.
Trauma-Informed Stabilization Treatment, 12 hour, Level 1, Janina Fisher, Ph.D., Academy of Therapy Wisdom
Narrative Therapy 5-day Foundations Training, 2020
Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy 8 hour Skills Training, 2018
Mindfulness Based Somatic Therapy Workshop, 2018
Dialectical Behaviour Therapy Implementing Distress Tolerance Skills During a Crisis Workshop, Lifted Counselling, 2020
Introduction to Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Dr. Michael Sheppard, 2018
Trauma Essentials, CAST Canada, 2016
Queer Competency Training, Qmunity, 2016
Indigenous Cultural Safety Training, Provincial Health Services Authority, 2015
Book a free 15 minute consultation to ensure that I am the right fit for you. I usually respond within 1-2 business days.
COVID-19 UPDATE: I am currently offering online and phone counselling. If you are uncertain about online counselling, I really recommend giving it a chance. Video counselling can be as worthwhile as in-person counselling is, and often clients even prefer it to in-person meetings.