Counselling is a space to heal and grow. You may be confronting a specific issue like anxiety, depression, or relationship trouble. Or you might have a more general feeling of dissatisfaction. In our sessions, we will assess the situation and identify how to move forward. Counselling is a collaborative process that will build on your unique strengths and skills.
Although I am not currently accepting private practice clients, I hope that the following questions are helpful in thinking about counselling.
What will happen in our first session?
In our first session, I will work with you to identify your goals for counselling and understand what kinds of interventions and processes might be most useful to your specific situation. After learning more about your goals, history, and treatment preferences, I will partner with you to create a plan for our work together.
Will Counselling Help?
Hundreds of studies have confirmed the effectiveness of psychotherapy for a wide range of concerns, including depression, anxiety, and relationship issues. Counselling has been shown to be as effective as medication in treating depression, and more effective in preventing relapse. For a wide range of anxiety concerns, including social anxiety, panic disorder, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety, psychotherapy and medication appear to be equally effective, and psychotherapy is generally recommended as the first line of treatment. If you are interested in more information on treatment effectiveness, you may want to read this 2013 report by the Canadian Psychological Association.
Research suggests that something called "therapeutic alliance" is a big predictor of success in counselling. What does this mean? Choosing a counsellor whom you like and trust can help ensure that your counselling goals are met. I always encourage people to "trust your gut" when choosing a counsellor. Your initial feelings about someone can be a good clue as to whether or not you will work well together.