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The Values of Oak and Cedar Counselling Services


Image Description: Tree rings. Photographers: Joel & Jasmin Forestbird


CORE VALUES:

​At Oak & Cedar Counselling Services, my commitment is to provide all clients with a safe, caring and relaxed environment that is free from judgement or discrimination. I value providing a service that is kind, patient, compassionate and respectful of your dignity, autonomy and inherent worth. I strive to ensure that every client will be provided with evidence-based support to encourage and empower you in reaching your wellness goals at the pace determined by you. I value a strength-based approach, which focuses on the skills, strengths and positive attributes that exist inherently within you, and using that as our foundation for building and creating the changes you wish to see. I also value an adaptive, relational approach that focuses on building trust, connection and respect between client and therapist; but, that shifts and evolves in its therapeutic approach in order to best meet your needs. The approaches that I utilize most frequently in my practice include EMDR, Ego-States Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Mindfulness, Solution Focused Therapy, Attachment Based Theories, Art and Play. Additionally, regardless of the approach we use in our sessions together, I believe in, and value, whole body wellness. This means that I respect and acknowledge the mind-body connections, including how trauma, our emotional and mental health influence our physical health, actions and reactions, and use holistic approaches to encourage whole person support. At Oak and Cedar Counselling, this also means supporting and validating your spiritual beliefs and practices, and welcoming them into therapy; faith-based counselling is available to all those who feel this will be beneficial for their healing.

At the core of Oak & Cedar's mission, I seek to empower and support you to:

 

RECLAIM Your Hope

I believe that Hope is vital for wellness. Hope is the anchor that secures us during life's difficult seasons. It is the light within that motivates us when we feel like giving up and giving in. Hope creates energy, excitement, trust, eager expectation, inspiration and joy within us. Without hope, we often wither and withdraw. When we lose hope, we can lose our sense of purpose and fulfillment, can become easily overwhelmed and exhausted, and often find ourselves depressed and defeated. We feel flawed and insecure, and slowly lose our ability to function well. When you come to counselling, I want to support you in reclaiming your hope, in turning on the light within you and reclaiming that anchor that grounds and steadies you in difficult seasons.

RENEW Your Mind

I understand that trauma, stress, grief and loss, financial hardships, mental health challenges and relationship struggles can all have a significant impact on our physical selves; in particular, our mind. Our mind is one of the most powerful things about us, shaping the way in which we view - and feel about - ourselves, others and the life we are living. When our mind becomes burdened by difficulties, it can create unhealthy and unproductive thoughts, attitudes, perspectives and ideas that deter us from our ability to maintain hope and wellness. Examples of unhealthy and unproductive thought patterns may include:

     * I am not good enough

     * I am not worthy of love

     * I am alone

     * No one can help me

     * I am not strong enough

     * I am not smart enough

     * My life is worthless

     * There is nothing worth living for

     * Nothing ever goes right

     * Everyone else has a better, and more exciting life, than me

     * Everyone except me is happy

     * Life is meaningless

     * I can't rely or trust anyone; I have to do everything myself

The greater and more frequent these unhealthy thoughts become, the greater influence they have on our emotions and behaviours. I believe change begins with the transforming and renewing of our minds and my role is to empower and support you through this process. This will include identifying patterns of attitudes, belief systems, thoughts and perspectives, recognizing how they hold you back from reclaiming your hope and restoring your wellness, and together, creating new pathways and strategies that will support you in reaching and maintaining your goals.

RESTORE Your Wellness

I believe that everyone deserves to experience a life in which they feel a deep sense of well-being. Some characteristics of wellness are:

     * An ability to connect with others

     * Establish and maintain healthy relationships with family, friends and others

     * Implement healthy emotional coping strategies when life is difficult

     * Ability to recognize and express feelings of anger, joy, sadness, hope, love, happiness and/or stress

     * To create and maintain peace and stability in your life

     * To establish values and live out those values in a way that is meaningful to you

     * To live with purpose and have a sense of fulfillment (as determined by you)

     * To acknowledge your responsibility for positively impacting your environment (i.e. home, work)

     * To be open-minded, accepting new ideas, perspectives and direction

     * To live with a desire to grow, learn and change in order to bring more joy and meaning to your life

     * To recognize when you are struggling physically and adopt healthier routines and/or lifestyle

I am dedicated to supporting you to develop an understanding of what wellness means to you and help you begin achieving whole body wellness - emotional, physical, mental - in your day to day life. My commitment is to empower you in identifying your own desired outcomes, recognizing the hurdles to achieving wellness and developing coping strategies so that you may not only attain wellness, but sustain it as well.

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