About Deirdre


Photo by November Wild

When looking for a counsellor, alignment is important. You want to know that the person ‘gets’ you, and that they will help you in a way that fits with your worldview. Research shows that therapeutic rapport (trust and safety with your counsellor) determines success even more than the type of therapy used. Read on to see how my style resonates with you.

Anxiety and Depression Therapy

Even though anxiety and depression are very common mental health issues, they often make a person feel alone. Anyone who has ever struggled with anxiety or depression knows what a toll they can take, draining one’s life of enthusiasm and energy. If you’ve had anxiety or depression, you know how hard it can be to believe that you will ever feel better. Leaving the house can feel like an overwhelming task; so can getting up in the morning. This in turn can hurt your self-esteem, your relationships, your employment, and more.

Anxiety and depression can affect more than your mental health, as well. Anxiety can be a very physical experience: panic attacks fall under the umbrella of anxiety, and these can be incredibly intense. Many people have gone to the emergency room believing they are having a heart attack, only to learn that it is ‘just’ panic. Depression, too, takes a physical toll. One can experience exhaustion and lethargy, and have trouble taking care of basic tasks like bathing and eating.

Counselling can be helpful when one is struggling with anxiety or depression, for a number of reasons. To begin with, when one is suffering alone, it is a bit of an echo chamber. You only have your own experience with depressed or anxious thoughts, and your thoughts may be distorted. There’s a good chance that those thoughts are a part of the problem.

To begin with, there is a particular way that anxiety and depression talk, and bouncing your thoughts off another person can illuminate this. For example, when someone shares that they feel guilty or that they feel they’re letting their loved ones down, I sometimes point out that that is the way that depression talks. It can be surprising for people to learn that depression has a particular way of speaking that is distinct from their own, healthier thoughts.

Anxiety has a particular voice too. For example, if you find yourself worrying about the future a great deal, or avoiding activities because they make you feel uncomfortable, those can be signs of anxiety. The great news is that there are many ways to approach anxiety and depression therapy, including skills, mindfulness, and somatic therapy. Seeking out help is a step in the right direction. Isolating with anxiety and depression keeps one stuck in the same thoughts that created the trouble in the first place. Entering into counselling opens you to another perspective, creating space and more ways to think about things.

If you want to learn a little bit more about depression and anxiety, please give this radio interview a listen. In it, I speak about how prevalent anxiety and depression are, and how positive it is that the conversation is changing. More people are talking about mental health issues, and in doing so we destigmatize the fact that many of us suffer from time to time. I also did a segment about OCD, which falls under the umbrella of anxiety. You can listen to that interview ​here​.

The great news is that there are many ways to approach anxiety and depression therapy, including skills, mindfulness, and somatic experience. Seeking out help is a step in the right direction. Isolating with anxiety and depression keeps you stuck in the same thoughts that created or worsened the trouble in the first place. Entering into counselling opens you up to another perspective, creating space and more ways to think about things.

Anxiety and depression are inherently workable conditions. There’s a great deal that one can do and learn to provide relief from the suffering that these cause. ​ If you find it hard to believe that anxiety or depression therapy can help, then these words are meant for you: there is hope. ​ I have both helped and witnessed many people recover. ​ Call me​ today to work with anxiety and depression therapy. There is spaciousness and better quality of life awaiting you on the other side.

Anger Management Programs

Having facilitated many anger management programs through the years, I can say that helping people work through this difficult emotion is one of the more rewarding things I do. No one likes when anger gets the better of them: shame and remorse often follow, as well as repair work to damaged relationships and self-esteem. I help people gain insight into what causes anger (hint: it’s often fear), and gain tools to work with it in a more skillful way.

One thing I want to say is that anger is not the enemy: like any emotion, it has its place.

Maybe you grew up in a household where anger was expressed in a destructive way. If so, you are not alone. The trick is to learn how to transform the fire of anger into something that motivates and illuminates. Constructive anger management is not an inborn quality for most of us. If it wasn’t modelled to you in a healthy way, it makes sense if you don’t know what to do.

Healthy emotional expression is a skill. Like any skill, anger management can be learned. I can help you develop an anger management program that will allow you to express your anger in a skillful way. To read more about anger, check out my blog.

Clinical Interests

In addition to these offerings, I have special interests in addictions, eating disorders, gender and sexuality. You can read more about these by following the links to their individual pages. If you’re new to therapy, or if it’s been part of your self-care routine for years, I want to thank you for visiting. I hope you find something interesting or new to ponder, and reach out to me for a free consultation.

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