The Many Elements of Stress and Anxiety
In Nunavik the Inuit have many ways to describe the snow, including both its element and the way it impacts or interacts with the one experiencing the snow. There is anik, for snow falling down, or aputi for snow on the ground, aniu for snow used to make water, or nilak freshwater ice, for drinking for example. Then there is maujaq the snow in which one sinks.
In over 2 decades of practice as a Counsellor and Psychotherapist I have encountered many ways people experience what they all call anxiety, or stress. Yet the terms are often used to describe both the state of being and the interactive element or context that the person is experiencing. Often the struggle is worse when people are unable to see the way in which the qualities of the environment, past or present is impacting them. Sometimes they also need to reveal the ways in which they experience the anxiety or stress from within may be impacting the ways they are interacting with their environment. Stress responses can be normal and helpful, or severe, stuck and maladaptive. Trauma responses deeply rooted in our survival system are often the most severe and require the most caution.
At our mental health clinic we work collaboratively, we seek supervision or consultation and continue to train on an ongoing basis in evidence based practices for effective therapy. We know that a good therapist needs to help differentiate and understand the person and their environments, co-creating goals and being clear about the process and pace for change. We talk about therapy with our clients and measure progress. We know the value of being genuine, real and warm and we do not hide who we are as human beings because trust in therapy also involves trusting the therapist.
Sometimes clients are impatient about change because they are suffering. If stress or anxiety problems are recent and external, and/or a person has good coping and motivation, therapy can help in a short time. However, moving too quickly without being informed about trauma, a therapist can cause, literally, a flood – much like melting an iceberg. The older and deeper the learning is, the more frozen patterns are and the more risk is involved. Our therapists working with anxiety are trauma informed, assessing the nature and the nurture of the client and their concerns. What happened, when, what are the resources, what are the supports in their environments, how can we chip away at old stuck things in a way that is controlled and empowering and reduces risk of harm? We work in psychotherapy with caution and warmth to the help illuminate what is stored in the ice blocks of the mind and body, to melt down patterned responses that can be strong and unrelenting and create new responses that are more helpful, and fluid.
Sometimes its just a little stormy weather, and sometimes the issues clients bring to therapy are the tip of the iceberg. Whether a person wants short or long-term therapy, we meet clients where they are at and agree on a plan that works with their needs. Nobody needs to feel alone and stuck. Effective psychotherapy helps whether short or long term. Reach out.
Seeking help for your mental health? It has never been more acceptable to do so. However, there are so many options out there. It can be overwhelming to know how to find someone. At Creative Transitions Psychotherapy group we all have at least a Masters' degree in Mental Health with additional training and supervision in providing Psychotherapy. We are all licensed and ethical therapists. We do not work in areas where we do not have training to help. We know good fit with your counsellor is important. You want to take advantage of free consultations with psychotherapists online or in person in order to determine who would be a good choice to provide mental health help. You may want to ask questions about psychotherapy methods and what to expect from the intake process. A psychotherapist should have training and experience in the mental health issues you are dealing with as well as having a personality that is a good fit. Together you should be able to determine some therapy goals to get you started on your wellness journey. At our mental health clinic we welcome you to work with another therapist if you meet with your choice and do not feel it is a great fit.
ADHD after the Pandemic
Counselling and Psychotherapy clinics like ours have seen a huge influx in clients looking for help with symptoms of ADHD since the pandemic. ADHD is actually a chronic neurological condition that usually is diagnosed in childhood. Its prevalence has not necessarily increased but there is a lot of interest in the topic. Symptom like problems with focusing, organizing and being motivated are common to a lot of mental health issues. Sometimes over use of devices, lack of proper sleep, vitamin and nutrient deficiencies, anxiety, trauma and other issues may be the source of the problem. Please do not self diagnose. Talk to a therapist or counsellor and explore what is troubling you and how to make improvements. If you need a diagnosis, a psychotherapist in Toronto can direct you to places to determine if you have or do not have ADHD.
Meet the Team
- Shirley Katz, Ph.D., Clinic Director
- Ella Rebanks, MA, RP.
- Audette Rose, MSW, RSW, Nurse
- Maria Ahmed, M.A., RP(Qualifying))
- Alexa Haslecker, M.A., M.A.C.P, RP(Qualifying)
- Victoria (Seun) Tuyo, M.A., MACP (In Prog), RP Qualifying
- Elissa McGillivray, M.A., MACP (In Progr), RP Qualifying
- Yael Leon, Admin
- Psychotherapy Services
- Interns/Low Cost Services
- Clinical Supervision