RESULTS ORIENTED COUNSELLING

Most people come into counselling in need of effective support with limited time and financial resources. The most efficient course of counselling will be recommended and through a process of informed consent the counsellor will help the client make important decisions about the course of counselling.

Information is also provided on the human change process and how to get the most out of counselling. Clients are assisted to clarify and stay focused on their goals and to set realistic expectations for the process. Education can empower people to make the desired changes and is an important part of a results oriented approach. Another key service is making skillful referrals to resources such as books, videos or even other practitioners for adjunct or primary services to enhance the client’s capacity to make the desired change.

Counselling involves helping people to let go of misplaced guilt and shame that keeps them blocked from pursuing their goals and dreams and to identify their strengths and values which can assist them in facing challenges and moving forward in life. Often clients are very isolated and need education about how common their experience is. It’s how people respond to life situations and not what happens to them that is the main focus. Often clients feel stuck and need a fresh perspective in order to see the myriad of choices they have in how to approach the problems of life in creative and meaningful ways.
Couples COUNSELLING

Couples may come to counselling to improve their relationship or with the intention to end it in a conscious and respectful way. The therapist will take time to clarify each person’s goals and to understand the dynamic within the relationship. 

Starting with the basic premise that being in the relationship constitutes a choice, couples will be assisted to move away from trying to fix what is wrong in each other to staying focused on what each person can take responsibility for and ultimately transform in the current dynamic. Couples are assisted to enhance interpersonal awareness by understanding how each person’s attachment style and family of origin dynamic contribute to the culture within the relationship. 

Skill development in assertive communication and taking responsibility for one’s own feelings, behaviors and needs, assists couples in moving out of unhelpful patterns of relating into greater levels of intimacy. The Crucible TM approach is utilized to help each partner develop a strong sense of self, learn how to calm their own mind and heart, get emotionally grounded and learn to tolerate discomfort for growth. Couples may be assigned individual or joint homework in order to maximize the benefits of counselling.
Family COUNSELLING

Families may be struggling with absorbing changes such as death, divorce, blended family dynamics, illness and addiction. Counselling can assist family members to recognize the impact of these challenges in each other and in the family as a whole, connect with resources and develop a plan to ensure the wellness of each person and to develop skills to work together in a pragmatic way while setting healthy, loving limits with one another. 

A systemic approach to relationships and families is utilized to assist family members to recognize the whole as well as the sum of its parts. People often take on roles in the family in order to maintain the status quo which may be destructive or hinder their growth and capacity as individuals. Effectively stepping out of family sanctioned roles can illicit strong reactions in family members and lead to a chaotic restructuring of the family system. Counselling can assist individuals to understand the changes that are taking place, calm emotional reactivity and develop a more open, flexible family system where individuals move beyond roles into heartfelt presence with one another.
Trauma, PTSD, and EMDR Therapy

When overwhelming events occur, the sensory experience gets stored in fragmented parts such as sounds, smells, sights, feelings and thoughts. These fragments are easily triggered and are often as disturbing in the present moment as they were in the past. Trauma and symptoms of PTSD often go unrecognized and untreated. 

Many people think that an event is only traumatic if your life is directly threatened. However, emotional injuries from childhood may impact self-esteem, identity, sense of belonging and relationship patterns into adulthood. Individuals may experience emotional injuries due to family of origin, gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, ability. 

Symptoms such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, feeling overwhelmed or numb, self-harming behaviors, substance abuse, and chronic pain or headaches may be treated as isolated instances rather than as a collection of symptoms stemming from untreated trauma. Moreover, trauma and addictions are highly correlated and it is vital that both be addressed to optimize healing. First responders and veterans often experience traumatic events while in the course of their jobs and may be left isolated and with few resources to recover. First responders and veterans have a unique trauma experience as their trauma is also attached to a deep sense of honor and pride in the sacrifices they make for public safety. Such individuals will be acknowledged and respected for the vital work they do and assisted to reduce symptoms of PTSD and increase their sense of self-efficacy and well-being in the present. 

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy is one of two treatments approved by the World Health Organization for treating trauma. It is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma and many other mental health and human problems. In EMDR the client is assisted to develop skills to stay grounded and oriented to the present moment and to be able to feel safe when they are safe. Target areas are identified and processing work begins. EMDR seems to allow the brain to process information and integrate traumatic events such that they are no longer disturbing when brought to mind. It assists people to connect to their resilience, identify their strengths and develop healthy strategies for maintaining change in the future.
Couples COUNSELLING

Couples may come to counselling to improve their relationship or with the intention to end it in a conscious and respectful way. The therapist will take time to clarify each person’s goals and to understand the dynamic within the relationship. 

Starting with the basic premise that being in the relationship constitutes a choice, couples will be assisted to move away from trying to fix what is wrong in each other to staying focused on what each person can take responsibility for and ultimately transform in the current dynamic. Couples are assisted to enhance interpersonal awareness by understanding how each person’s attachment style and family of origin dynamic contribute to the culture within the relationship. 

Skill development in assertive communication and taking responsibility for one’s own feelings, behaviors and needs, assists couples in moving out of unhelpful patterns of relating into greater levels of intimacy. The Crucible TM approach is utilized to help each partner develop a strong sense of self, learn how to calm their own mind and heart, get emotionally grounded and learn to tolerate discomfort for growth. Couples may be assigned individual or joint homework in order to maximize the benefits of counselling.

PhilosOphy of Care

HOLISTIC, RESULTS ORIENTED COUNSELLING

Many people come into counselling in need of effective support with limited time and financial resources. The most efficient course of counselling will be recommended and you will be given the information you need to make important decisions about the course of your care.

In order to ensure that you achieve maximum potential from counselling, tips will be offered on how to get the most out of the process. Your counsellor will collaborate with you every step of the way. You will be assisted to clarify and stay focused on your goals and to build hopeful and realistic expectations for the process.

Psychoeducation can empower you to make the desired changes and will be woven into the counselling process through conversation or handouts and other resources. Books or videos may be recommended to help you achieve the maximum potential from your sessions. You may also be offered referrals to other practitioners for adjunct services which can help you to integrate your growth in deeper ways. For example, body work (such as yoga, massage and acupuncture) can be a very important aspect of trauma therapy as your body gently releases the past.

This is an inclusive practice. People of all races, ethnicities, religions, countries of origin, gender identities, sexual orientations and abilities are welcome.

Services

Individual Counselling

Counselling is a collaboration between therapist and client in order to elicit the trust, support and momentum needed for navigating crisis and finding balance. Research strongly emphasizes the therapeutic connection is the most significant predictor in beneficial counselling outcomes, more so than the modality or approach used.

As human beings, we are wired for connection and are often wounded in the context of relationships. The safety and compassion in the counselling relationship can provide an experience of repair and emotional healing from past missing experiences.

It is important that you feel a resonance with your counsellor, to gradually build trust to talk about and process the deeper issues. While change and growth can be uncomfortable, you should feel safe and respected during the process. You will be encouraged to provide feedback to your counsellor so that services are continually tailored to your unique style and evolving needs.

emdr therapy intensives


Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR Therapy) is described in greater detail below. EMDR intensives are focused blocks of time of 2 hours or more, often delivered across consecutive days, designed to provide accelerated relief of PTSD and complex trauma symptoms. There is growing research suggesting this is a safe and effective treatment for PTSD and complex trauma symptoms that can significantly shorten the overall duration of therapy. This format of may not be suitable for everyone but please inquire if you are curious about how you might benefit..

Family Counselling

Families may be struggling with absorbing changes such as death, divorce, blended family dynamics, illness and addiction.
Counselling can assist family members to:
- Recognize the impact of these challenges in each other and in the family as a whole
- Connect with resources 
- Develop a plan to promote the wellness of each person
- Develop skills to work together in a pragmatic way while setting healthy, loving limits with one another. 

A pragmatic approach to relationships and families is utilized to assist family members to recognize the whole as well as the sum of its parts. People often take on roles in the family in order to maintain equilibrium. Although these survival strategies can maintain some semblance of order in the short term, they may be destructive or hinder the growth and capacity of individuals over time.

Stepping out of family sanctioned roles can illicit strong reactions in family members and lead to lack of harmony. Counselling can assist individuals to understand the changes that are taking place, calm emotional reactivity and develop a more open, flexible family system where individuals move beyond roles into heartfelt presence with one another.

Online and Telephone Counselling

Results oriented online and telephone counselling is offered to clients in remote communities, or those who are travelling or due to work or life commitments find it difficult to make it to appointments at the office. Other clientele may prefer the privacy of their own homes to talk candidly about their struggles. Online and telephone counselling gives clients access to confidential services when and where they need it and allows the therapeutic relationship to span geography.

Group Therapy

Group therapy assists people to:
- Recognize they are not alone
- Learn emotional fluency
- Learn boundary and assertiveness skills
- Practice new ways of being in relationship 
- Set goals and build capacity and accountability for realizing them

Check the Events & Consulting page for upcoming groups at Clear Coast!

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Approaches

Nicole has specialized training in Mindfulness based therapies, EMDR and Sensorimotor Psychotherapy, as well as DBT and CBT. She believes in drawing on the strengths, creativity and sense of meaning and symbolism that is unique to each client, in order to extend the benefits of therapy into everyday life.

Mindfulness Based Therapies and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT)

Mindfulness has become widely known for its incredible health benefits and has been used successfully to help people all over the world effectively manage a wide variety of health issues such as trauma, addiction, anxiety, depression, chronic pain or illness, and stress.

Mindfulness practices may include meditation, body scanning, pausing for mindful moments throughout the day to break the trance of thinking and other practices that lead to deeper embodiment of experience. Such practices are a powerful way to build self-awareness, inner stability and flexibility, through life's continual change.

Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) invites us to balance acceptance of ourselves and life’s challenges while working towards change. It is focused on developing skills in mindfulness, interpersonal effectiveness, emotion regulation and distress tolerance. DBT has proven effective in helping people to learn tools for responding to life stressors that improve self-worth and relationships.

Mindfulness and DBT skills enhance the counselling process by providing concrete methods for reducing stress, anxiety, depression and problematic coping strategies. They may also enhance the efficacy of trauma processing.

Trauma, complex trauma And PTSD

When overwhelming events occur, the sensory experience is stored in fragmented parts including sounds, smells, sights, feelings and thoughts. These fragments may be easily triggered and can be as disturbing in the present moment as they were in the past. Trauma and symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) often go unrecognized and untreated.

Symptoms such as depression, anxiety, insomnia, inconsolable shame, feeling overwhelmed or numb, repetitive unwanted behavioural patterns, relationship conflicts, and chronic pain or headaches, may be treated as isolated instances rather than as a collection of symptoms stemming from untreated trauma.

People often think that in order for an event to be considered traumatic, your physical safety must be directly threatened. However, individuals may experience profound emotional injuries in their family of origin or wider social environments or political structures. Prolonged emotional injuries during childhood can interfere with brain and nervous system development and impact a person's sense of safety, identity, belonging and relationship patterns into adulthood. This is known as 'complex trauma.'

When the body is in a state of fight, flight or freeze for a prolonged period of time, the development of effective communication, coping and problem solving skills, may be compromised as a result. Therapy can assist individuals to recognize symptoms of trauma and heal in ways that restore a sense of safety, honor and capacity for life.

EMDR Therapy

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR) Therapy is one of two treatments approved by the World Health Organization for treating trauma. It is an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma and many other mental health and human difficulties. Results are often rapid and long term studies demonstrate they are enduring.

In EMDR Therapy, the client is assisted to develop skills to maintain a sense of safety by staying grounded and oriented to the present moment while reprocessing the past. Target areas are identified and adaptive processing begins. EMDR seems to allow the brain to process information and integrate traumatic events and emotional disturbances so that they are no longer overwhelming when brought to mind. The past can be remembered and emotions can be felt and acknowledged without the person being disturbed by them anymore.

This leads to integration of previously overwhelming experiences into the overall narrative of a person's journey. EMDR assists people to find resilience and personal strengths, core values and needs, and to develop concrete strategies and self-care practices for maintaining desired changes in the future.

SENSORIMOTOR PSYCHOTHERAPY (SP)

Sensorimotor Psychotherapy (SP) is a body-oriented talking therapy developed in the 1980's by Pat Ogden. Informed by the work of Ron Kurtz and the Rolf Method of Structural Integration, it is enriched by contributions from the fields of attachment, neuroscience, and dissociation.

SP blends cognitive and emotional approaches, verbal dialogue, and physical interventions that directly address the implicit memories and neurobiological effects of trauma. By using the bodily experience as a primary entry point in trauma therapy, rather than the events of the 'story', we attend to how the body is processing information, and its interface with emotions and cognitive meaning making.

Working with the body is a powerful yet gentle way to stabilize the nervous system, learn to trust one’s inner experience, freely express boundaries, release patterns of activation and survival defenses, and reclaim embodied, joyful living in present time.

Access Bars

This very nurturing and relaxing treatment facilitates the clearing of limiting beliefs, thoughts and emotions in any areas of life where change is desired. The BARS are 32 points on the head, that when gently touched, promote clarity as well as a sense of choice and possibility.

The brain scans of Dr. Fanan demonstrate that The BARS clears the mind and generates deep concentration and focus second only to meditating monks.

The BARS combined with talk therapy is a rapid way to release stress and bring a sense of clarity and direction to life. If you want more ease and joy in your life, this is the treatment for you! It is also very helpful if you are feeling stuck in releasing something in your life that is no longer serving you or you simply want to relax and talk some things out..