Emotionally Focused Therapy and Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy (EFT)
Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is a humanistic approach to psychotherapy developed in tandem with the science of adult attachment. Attachment views human beings as innately relational and wired for intimate bonding with others. EFT, validated by over 30 years of empirical research, is based on conceptualizations of individual growth, health and dysfunction and of relationship distress and adult love. It recognizes that we are emotionally attached to and dependent on our partners much the same way that a child is on a parent for nurturing, soothing, and protection. EFT focuses on creating and strengthening this emotional bond. Results have been shown to last, even in the face of significant stress.
Cognitive-Behavior Therapy (CBT)
Cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) involves understanding the powerful connection between how we think, feel and act. It is based on principles that psychological problems are based, in part, on distortions in thinking or unhelpful ways of thinking. Problems may also be based on learned patterns of unhelpful behavior and limiting beliefs.
CBT focuses on changing thinking patterns by learning to recognize one’s distortions in thinking, evaluating them in light of what is rational and healthy. We can also learn better ways of coping and problem-solving skills, as well as developing confidence in one’s own abilities and dealing with problematic interactions with others. Behavioral patterns can be changed including facing one’s fears instead of avoiding them, relaxation techniques, and sleep hygiene.
CBT has been shown to be an effective approach for depression, anxiety, fears, stress, anger, and self-esteem.
When words are not enough… Sensorimotor psychotherapy (SP) can help when traditional “talk therapy” is not enough. The effects of trauma, neglect and abuse are held in our nervous systems. SP is a therapeutic modality with decades of success in the treatment of trauma, attachment and developmental issues, that includes the body as an essential source of information in treatment.
When you mindfully pay attention to both body and mind, information often not noticed in talk therapies is uncovered. SP is a holistic approach that integrates the body, emotions and thoughts. Clients can choose to work with physical symptoms, trauma symptoms, intense emotions or limiting beliefs. It is informed by research in physiology, neuroscience, psychology, and sociology.
Integrative medicine focuses on the whole person, not just the disease, and on prevention, not just treatment. It uses evidence-based practices from both conventional and complementary/alternative medicine to facilitate the body’s innate healing response. It takes into account all aspects of lifestyle and makes use of all appropriate therapies including the latest nutritional approaches, botanicals and dietary supplements, mind-body techniques, energy medicine, physical activity, aromatherapy and more. It believes that natural, effective and less invasive interventions should be used whenever possible.
The Gottman Method
The Gottman Method, based on 40 years of research, is an approach to couples therapy that is grounded on what actually works in relationships that are happy and stable. A comprehensive assessment and interventions based on the Sound Relationship House Theory are used. Interventions help couples strengthen their friendship, deepen emotional connection, communicate effectively, manage conflict, repair hurts, increase intimacy and create shared meaning.
Clients who identify as Christian may feel more comfortable seeing a counsellor who understands their beliefs and is able to discuss issues with biblical principles and values and Christian worldview in mind. Counselling can include discussion of applicability of biblical principles, possible contradictions, using the principles to deal with challenges, and how to integrate faith into life and how to have life more abundantly.
When desired by the client, and respecting differences in Christianity, spiritual disciplines and interventions that the client can benefit from, and is comfortable with, are encouraged. Strength and hope can be derived from, and spiritual needs met, with the use of these disciplines.
Christians, as well as those who have a Christian background, may struggle with their faith or the role religion plays in their life challenges. They may experience anger towards God, religion, or religious authorities. Some have experienced spiritual abuse.
Non-judgmental Christian counselling can help with difficult questions, recovery from spiritual abuse, and help make sense of personal beliefs and practices. Christian counselling with me is informed by my studies in theology, Bible and spirituality, by Christian tradition and experience, as well as by science. I welcome people of all religious backgrounds, or none, and will not impose my beliefs on you.
Solution-Focused Therapy (SFT) or Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT) is a short-term, goal-directed counselling approach that focuses on solutions rather than on problems. It incorporates positive psychology principles. Clients are helped to describe how they would like their life to be different when the problem is gone. Client and counsellor then identify strengths and resources from the client’s previous challenges that can be used to implement a solution.
Emotional Freedom Techniques and Tapping
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) use focused and brief approaches that combine exposure, cognitive therapy and stimulation of acupressure points. EFT helps calm emotions and thoughts, and relieves physical symptoms.
EFT has been shown effective for anxiety, depression, phobias, PTSD, stress, sleep, academic performance and addictions. Studies also show the positive impact of EFT on a number of physical conditions as it downregulates stress markers and inflammation.
Healing Touch Program
The Healing Touch Program (HTP) is a complementary therapy based on the idea that human beings are made up of energy. Healing Touch (HT) uses gentle hand techniques on or above the person’s fully clothed body to work on the energy fields. This often produces a deep state of relaxation, a feeling of being nurtured as well as emotional release. Because of the connection between mind and body, healing touch supports the body’s natural immune resources to promote healing.
Recognizing touch as having healing properties, it can be a valuable part of psychotherapy. Touch is typically restricted in the scope of practice of counsellors; however, as a registered nurse I have the license to touch. And as a counselling therapist I am able to work with what comes up emotionally in a healing touch session.
Although energy medicine has not been convincingly proven by biophysical means, studies support the use of Healing Touch for anxiety, stress, fatigue, pain, improving immune function in people with cancer, trauma and PTSD. Recognized as a safe and effective form of therapy, The Healing Touch Program is taught in universities across the United States and other countries. The Healing Touch Program has been peer-reviewed and is endorsed by the American Holistic Nurses Association and the Canadian Holistic Nurses Association.
I practice from the Judeo-Christian perspective recognizing God as the ultimate source of healing, and that healing can come through various means and through me, but not from me.
Heart rate variability (HRV) is an important indicator of health. Emotional stress causes an incoherent heart rhythm pattern which indicates that the two branches of the autonomic nervous system, which regulate most of the body’s internal functions, are out of sync with each other. HeartMath techniques create psychophysiological coherence which can help restore HRV to healthy values thus reducing wear and tear on the nervous system and facilitating the body’s natural healing processes.
HeartMath uses tools, techniques and technology that are scientifically validated and easy to use. HeartMath tools can be used in real-time with eyes open. Unlike common breathing and relaxation techniques, HeartMath produces a state that is calm and balanced, yet an energized and responsive state conducive to performance of tasks. Results are achieved through persistent practice so that you reset your old patterns and achieve a new normal which is a more resilient and energy-efficient state.
By training your autonomic nervous system so that its two branches are synchronized, HeartMath can help with various physical illnesses, mental disorders and emotional issues.
Animal Assisted Therapy
The presence of a therapy dog can provide soothing, comfort and affection. Therapy dogs have been shown to help regulate emotions (such as anxiety, sadness and anger), lower heart rate and blood pressure, relieve pain, and reduce stress.
For clients afraid of dogs who wish to overcome their fear, the presence of a well-behaved and friendly therapy dog, can help with desensitization.