How To Go to Counselling Part II: How to tell if your counsellor is a good fit

In the first post about how to go to counselling, I went over some ways to prepare and make space for counselling. One of the biggest predictors of successful outcomes in counselling is actually the relationship between you and your counsellor.  A lot of this comes down to being a “good fit.” But what does that really mean and how can you tell if it’s the case?

Counselling Fee Changes

Hello Peak Resilience Community!

As of July 15th we will be changing our fees for incoming clients. We deeply appreciate and value the relationships we have with our clients (you!), so we are offering a grace period to our current clients. To show our gratitude and honour the relationships we have built with you, we will not increase our fees for current clients until October 15, 2019.

As a team, we’ve thought a lot about our fees, and our tendency to shy away from increasing them despite not raising them for 4 years. As women and counsellors we try to be aware of the messages we have internalized that make it hard for us to ask for what we’re worth - this is a part of our own work. The reason we are increasing our fees is to provide the best quality service and that also means being transparent. 

How To Go to Counselling Part I: Preparing for counselling

One of my favourite things about being a counsellor is working with folks who have never been to counselling before. I am always so jazzed (and in awe) that people take such a big leap of faith and make it into the office. I know from experience that it can be terrifying and terribly vulnerable to step into a room with a stranger and tell them about what’s going on. So how do you get ready for that?

Practicing Body Positivity

This time of year can be pretty tricky when it comes to what it’s like to be a body in the world.  It’s hard not to notice the ‘get a beach body now!’ messages popping up on magazine covers and hear people shaming themselves for eating ice cream. It’s also been heartening to see some pushback (especially on the internet) about this - things like memes about having a ‘bikini body’ (spoiler: have a body, put a bikini on it). 

PERIOD PRIDE FINALE: Luteal Phase and Period Party!

In the last Period Pride post, Dr. Joanna Rosenfeld will explore the luteal phase- the time from ovulation, to the start of your period. Unlike the follicular phase which varies drastically between women, or even between cycles, the luteal phase is fairly constant, and typically lasts between 12-14 days. Dr. Rosenfeld will even outline all the different types of PMS! Any suggestions or advice provided by Dr. Rosenfeld does not replace a visit to your health care practitioner.

PERIOD PRIDE PART III: Ovulation

The last few weeks have been horrifying for so many people with uteruses. The news of some states criminalizing abortion is so unthinkable it’s rendered many of us speechless. Canada isn’t innocent when it comes to abortion access either… but at least it’s legal.

In today’s period pride post, we explore what happens in our bodies during ovulation. Hint: this is a great time in the cycle to either try for or totally avoid pregnancy. We’ve added resources to the bottom of this article re: abortion access and how you can help.

Let’s dive in… Naturopathic Doctor Joanna Rosenfeld explains what’s happening in our bodies…

Ovulation

Ovulation occurs after estrogen levels peak, causing a surge of luteinizing hormone (LH), which allows for the egg to be released from the follicle. The egg then travels down the fallopian tube towards the uterus. A structure called the corpus luteum forms in the ovary where the egg just left, which secretes progesterone - the dominant hormone in the next phase of our cycle.

PERIOD PRIDE Part II: Follicular Fun Phase

In our last post, we discussed all the benefits of periods in general. Now Naturopathic Doctor Joanna Rosenfeld is going to explain what’s happening in our bodies for the first 1/2 of our cycle…

What’s Happening:

The next stage of your menstrual cycle is your follicular phase, which actually starts at day 1 of your period. At the beginning of the follicular phase, your brain releases a hormone called FSH (follicle stimulating hormone), which stimulates your ovaries to produce about 5-20 follicles.

PERIOD PRIDE: The Physical and Mental Health Effects (and Benefits) of Periods

People who menstruate have been discriminated against and shamed for centuries; which is ludicrous because, not only is menstruation a normal biological process, it is also a major reason the human race exists.

At Peak Resilience, we not only understand the effects of people’s menstrual cycles on their mental health,  we also acknowledge the politics of menstruation. That is, women and people who menstruate can experience conscious or unconscious shame about their cycles, pain, lack of appropriate medical care due to medical gender bias, and they can still be stigmatized for something that is totally natural (and necessary).

Burnout Series Part III: Why Self-Care just isn't Cutting it

As I described in Burnout Part I and Part II, there are aspects of managing burnout that are within our control:

  • Structuring self-care activities into our life

  • Being curious about the reasons that make it hard to slow down, take care of ourselves, and not take on so much

  • Getting support in learning how to approach ourselves with more kindness and develop self-compassion

But what happens when we do all that good work to take care of ourselves, hold ourselves accountable, get support, and we still can’t seem to climb out of that pit of fatigue?

Burnout Series Part II: Why is it so hard to find balance?

In our first post about burnout, we explored the importance of taking an inventory of all the things that serve to replenish you (e.g.- sleep, time with friends, moderate exercise), and things that deplete you (e.g.- unclear expectations at work, a conflict-ridden relationship, being preoccupied with work).

However, sometimes changing things up with regard to input/output doesn't have the intended impact. If this is the case, we need to take a deeper look at ourselves and explore the underlying issues that contribute to burnout.


Is my problem really that important?

This is a question I come across - both with clients at Peak, and within myself - on a pretty regular basis.

Now, more than ever, the intense suffering in the world (opioid poisoning epidemic, constant political drama, or various other crises) can feel pretty inescapable. Even if I try to avoid the news, it comes up in conversation, on my Instagram feed, or on newspaper covers as I’m walking down the street.

“Is my problem really that important?” also comes up a lot when folks find out about the work I do outside Peak Resilience supporting youth experiencing homelessness and street entrenchment. It’s hard not to to look at such extreme circumstances and think, “What am I so upset about? At least I’m not homeless”…

Brené Brown Facilitator Training: A Snapshot of my Experience

For the last few years, I have talked a lot about Brené Brown. I mean A LOT.

But to be fair, everyone seems to know who she is. For example, while getting my tattoo work on, I’m telling my tattooist about a training I’m going to in Houston. I ask, “do you know Brené Brown?” Without skipping a beat, he says, “is that the lady who talked about vulnerability on a Ted Talk?”. To be fair, he’s pretty much a therapist but the point is: Brené has become a household name…