A counselling blog about mental health. Ever wonder about a particular mental health treatment or counselling strategy? Check out our blog to learn more about what is available and what works.

  • Overcoming Mental Health Stigma

    Overcoming Mental Health Stigma

    The month of May is recognized as Mental Health Month in Canada, with campaigns, events, and conversations happening around the country all aimed at boosting awareness of mental health and how it affects us. However, stigma still exists when it comes to mental health, making it difficult for many people to seek the treatment they

    read more…

  • The Power of Books: What is Bibliotherapy?

    The Power of Books: What is Bibliotherapy?

    The idea that reading books has a positive effect on our moods and minds is not new. Many ancient societies, including the Egyptians and Greeks, regarded libraries as sacred, healing spaces. Today, books can be used in a therapeutic way to support mental health. Reading specific pieces of literature and discussing them with a counsellor

    read more…

  • Play for Adults

    Play for Adults

    Play is most often associated with children. It’s how they make sense of their world, build skills, and create meaning. As we grow, we tend not to engage in play as much and let that part of us fade into the background. Our focus tends to shift to our work, family responsibilities, and finances. However,

    read more…

  • Comprehensive Behavioural Intervention for Tics (CBIT)

    Comprehensive Behavioural Intervention for Tics (CBIT)

    CBIT: Comprehensive Behavioural Intervention for Tics and Tourette’s

    read more…

  • When Anxiety Attacks

    When Anxiety Attacks

    What are safety behaviours and why do we use them? Anxiety is a very natural, but very uncomfortable feeling. To prevent ourselves from experiencing anxiety, we often implement behaviours we think will keep our fears from coming true and help us feel more comfortable in situations we are anxious about. If we think a situation

    read more…

  • Counselling Coverage with ICBC

    Counselling Coverage with ICBC

    Counselling through the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) Being in a car accident can be traumatic and have a lasting impact on your physical and mental health. Counselling can be an important part of recovery to help come to terms with what happened, develop coping strategies, and improve overall healing and wellness. Did you

    read more…

  • What is Compassion Fatigue?

    What is Compassion Fatigue?

    Are you a compassionate person who enjoys helping others? Does your job require you to be an emotional support for someone else or respond to traumatic events? If you spend a lot of your time caring for the wellbeing of others, you may be at risk for compassion fatigue. It is important to know the

    read more…

  • Acute Stress Disorder: What it is and symptoms to watch for

    Acute Stress Disorder: What it is and symptoms to watch for

    What is acute stress disorder? Acute stress disorder is a sudden reaction to an intensely stressful and potentially traumatic event such as an injury, accident, loss of a loved one, news of a life-altering medical diagnosis, domestic violence, or natural disaster. These events are emotionally upsetting and impact us on a cognitive, behavioural, and somatic

    read more…

  • Thinking in Extremes Ways

    Thinking in Extremes Ways

    The Impact of All-Or-Nothing Thinking “I didn’t get an A on my test, I’m a failure.” “My body doesn’t look like hers. I hate my body.” “If I can’t finish everything today, I won’t even start.” If these statements sound familiar, you may be prone to all-or-nothing thinking, a very common cognitive distortion. All-or-nothing thinking

    read more…

  • Rituals for Grief

    Rituals for Grief

    Self-created rituals for processing grief Grief is a very natural part of life, but a very painful one. Every loss is unique, and it can be hard to know how to process your feelings and move forward in a healthy way. Whether your loss is the death of a loved one, end of a relationship,

    read more…

  • Asserting Your Boundaries

    Asserting Your Boundaries

    Boundaries and How to Communicate Them Do you have a hard time saying no? Do you prioritize the needs of others over your own? Do you struggle to ask for help, but hate doing everything on your own? Healthy personal boundaries are essential to finding balance in your life and enjoying the relationships in it.

    read more…

  • Progressive Muscle Relaxation: What is it and why is it helpful?

    Progressive Muscle Relaxation: What is it and why is it helpful?

    Muscle tension is one of the body’s reactions to stress, fear, and anxiety. Our brain picks up on a potentially dangerous situation and sends signals to our bodies to prepare to fight or run away (often called the fight or flight response). This stems back to our initial development as human beings when this response

    read more…

  • Experience Nature in Winter

    Experience Nature in Winter

    Multiple studies have shown that spending time in nature has a huge impact on our physical and mental health. There is a distinct connection between exposure to nature and improved cognitive functioning, brain activity, blood pressure, physical activity, and better sleep. Time in nature may also decrease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and overall risk of

    read more…

  • Flipping Your Lid

    Flipping Your Lid

    Our brains are like control panels that are interconnected and communicate with different parts of our body to help us stay alive. Have you ever felt overwhelmed and had difficulty managing your emotions? Many of us have had times in our lives, especially when we have experienced high levels of stress. When the parts of

    read more…

  • Setting The Stage For Change?  Ready, Set, Goal!

    Setting The Stage For Change? Ready, Set, Goal!

    “If you don’t know where you are going, you’ll wind up someplace else”. Yogi Berra This quote by Yogi Berra highlights the need for clear direction and purposeful goal setting in our lives. Goals help to identify what you want to accomplish and how to get there. They empower you to take control of your

    read more…

  • Regret Teaches Us To Appreciate What We Have Now

    Regret Teaches Us To Appreciate What We Have Now

    I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done. –Lucille Ball What is regret? Regret is an all consuming often painful emotion connected to a belief that a past event should not have happened or should have happened differently.  Regret is often rooted in anxiety, disappointment, guilt, remorse, contrition, and

    read more…

  • Is Play Therapy Right For Your Child?

    Is Play Therapy Right For Your Child?

    Has play therapy been recommended for your child and you want to learn more about it?  Is it something you have considered but were not sure where to go or how to find out about it?  Read this post to find out more about play therapy and whether it is right for your family. It

    read more…

  • Understanding the Five Love Languages

    Understanding the Five Love Languages

    Establishing and maintaining intimacy is largely rooted in our ability to connect meaningfully with ourselves and the ones we love. When we connect and understand our loved ones, we can support them in way that make them feel validated, loved, and appreciated. The same is true for self-awareness: when we know what our personal needs

    read more…

  • Breaking the Cycle: Stop Suffering From Chronic Pain

    Breaking the Cycle: Stop Suffering From Chronic Pain

    Cognitive Behaviour Therapy for Chronic Pain (CBT-CP) What is the difference between chronic and acute pain? Acute:  Chronic pain: Individuals with chronic pain often end up stuck in the pain cycle.  The pain hurts: we decrease our activity level in response.  This tends to decondition us.  When we reduce capacity we often develop negative emotions

    read more…

  • Have I Experienced Disenfranchised Grief?

    Have I Experienced Disenfranchised Grief?

    Despite the vast amount of literature available for those experiencing grief related to loved ones such as parents, spouses, friends, and grandchildren, it does not always account for the relationship dynamics that are more complicated (or maybe unrelated to a death). For instance, some experience grief from a loss that that others minimize (i.e. “you’re

    read more…

  • Meditation Tips For First Timers

    Meditation Tips For First Timers

    Mindful Practices to Reduce Stress Are you interested in trying meditation, but not sure where to start? Given the number of options for mindfulness practices out there, this is completely normal! Finding the method that works for you and implementing it into your daily routine takes time but comes with many mental and physical health

    read more…

  • Finding Hope in the Storm

    Finding Hope in the Storm

    Suicide Awareness Month According to the Government of Canada, approximately 4,500 people die by suicide in Canada every year. September is Suicide Awareness month and we wanted to highlight a few common warning signs that might highlight that someone is thinking about suicide.  Research shows people who are having thoughts of suicide feel relief when

    read more…

  • Tele-Mental Health Sessions: Are They Right For You?

    Tele-Mental Health Sessions: Are They Right For You?

    In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual counselling sessions have become a popular method of accessing mental health services. But is Telehealth appropriate for everyone? Will the experience be the same as an in-person appointment? What are the pros and cons to keep in mind when deciding on the platform that will work best

    read more…

  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

    Acceptance and Commitment Therapy

    Acceptance and Committment Therapy: taking action in line with your values.

    read more…

  • Nature’s Medicine: Exercise and Mental Wellness

    Nature’s Medicine: Exercise and Mental Wellness

    Eliciting Endorphins We all know the good feelings we get after going for a run, completing a physical task, or finishing a workout.  We know from the research that engaging in exercise improves physical health.  For instance, exercise can reduce symptoms of high blood pressure, arthritis, and diabetes.  Research has also shown that engaging in

    read more…

  • Is EMDR Right For You?

    Is EMDR Right For You?

    Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) can be a highly effective therapy for trauma, PTSD, and many other types of concerns. But is it right for you? What can you expect? Here are some common questions people have about EMDR. If you are interested in learning more or think this might be a good fit

    read more…

  • A Trusted Tool for Stress and Mental Illness:  Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

    A Trusted Tool for Stress and Mental Illness: Cognitive Behaviour Therapy

    Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based therapy used for a host of difficulties and mental health disorders. This is the number one therapy treatment recommended by doctors and psychiatrists for anxiety and depression. CBT is also effective for: CBT is based on several core constructs. According to CBT, thoughts are connected to feelings and

    read more…

  • Virtual Support for Anxiety and Mood

    Virtual Support for Anxiety and Mood

    Mental Health Apps Review Have you been feeling overwhelmed lately by the large to-do lists or everyday stressors that come up in our lives? Big feelings, frustrations and stress are normal, we all have them. However, there are tools available that we can use and incorporate into our days to help support ourselves and those

    read more…

  • Need Help for BFRBs?  Try SCAMP!

    Need Help for BFRBs? Try SCAMP!

    Body Focused Repetitive Behaviours: SCAMP Body Focused Repetitive Behaviour (BFRB) is an umbrella term for behaviours such as compulsive hair-pulling, skin-picking, cheek-biting, lip-biting, teeth-grinding, etc.  Basically anything that involves repetitive engagement with your body that can potentially cause physical or emotional harm. While picking at one’s skin or pulling out a hair are very common,

    read more…

  • Learning to Love Ourselves: Mindful Self-Compassion

    Learning to Love Ourselves: Mindful Self-Compassion

    Mindful Self-Compassion Mindfulness has traditionally been described as the awareness that occurs when intentionally acknowledging, in a non-judgmental way, the flow of experience that is occurring in the present moment (Kabat-Zinn, 2003). In other words, staying focused on the here and now. Self-compassion is the state of “being open to and moved by one’s own

    read more…

  • Insomnia Strikes Again: When Sleep is Elusive

    Insomnia Strikes Again: When Sleep is Elusive

    What is insomnia? Insomnia is as condition described by many as stressful, anxiety provoking, and debilitating.  Insomnia is defined as the difficulty falling asleep and/or staying asleep.  Insomnia impacts an individual by impairing their ability to function during the day and is often associated with daytime fatigue.  Insomnia is categorized as either a chronic or

    read more…