I have been an avid reader since I was a child. The world that books created never felt “fictitious” to me. It was all true for someone somewhere. As I grew up, I found stories outside of books and inside people. The ability to listen, perceive, understand the world from a different lens through lived experiences was all the motivation I needed to step into the mental health profession. To be trusted with someone’s story is the greatest responsibility and to be allowed to co-explore their journey with them is the greatest privilege.
Perspective. It is not only a space of growth for the client but for the therapist as well. Imagine you love something about a book you have recently read and recommend it to another person in the hopes that they would love the same thing as well. Not only do they resonate with the same thing, which makes you feel seen and heard, they also picked up on something that you missed on. So now you re-read the book with a new set of eyes and more things stand out for you. This back and forth of exploring new things in the same story is what excites me most about my work.
Seeking counselling is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. It is the first step in making your own self a priority. So it may feel selfish, there might be feelings of guilt and fear of rejection. But persevere. Because this is a journey of self exploration, of discovering who you are on your own terms. There will be challenges and side quests, and you will get through most of them with a guide by your side. Trust the process, but most importantly, trust yourself.
If the client is the author, then the therapist is the editor. The relationship that I hope to build with the client is based on authenticity, transparency, and mutual respect. The client is the expert and I am there shed lights on long forgotten pathways and explore them with the client whenever we feel ready. There are no instructions, only suggestions. “No” is a sentence that is practiced often and respected throughout. The process can be challenging, but the client does not have to go through it alone.
My greatest learning has been that there is no “right way”. There is the way that is right for you. We could all be exposed to the same things but how we experience and make sense of them is as unique as we are. Every new client that I work with reinforces this learning.
I appreciate being able to hold space for my clients to allow themselves to be. Change is a universal truth and will happen. But before it does, it is extremely important to allow ourselves to be who we are in the moment. So I am grateful for my ability to create and hold space for my clients to be and not be.
Therapy is a journey where the client and the therapist are co-explorers, trying and testing those paths which have been long forgotten and building new paths wherever required. And the starting of this journey lies in being as authentic as possible, meeting the client where they are at and accepting their humanness. Our work together will involve not just verbal expression but also non verbal expression - connecting to the body via movement and art. I also believe that each one of us has a story to tell and the answers often lie not just in the content but in the way we tell it. So you can also expect discussions about books, movies, series, plays - anything and everything that contributed to your story. It is an in-depth exploration of who you are.
I am extremely respectful of the identity of all my clients. I use queer affirmative language in all my paperwork as well as sessions. I also continue to expand my knowledge by reading LGBTQ+ literature and resources. Further, I regularly engage in reflection of my own upbringing, attitudes and beliefs; acknowledge areas of privilege; and work on recognizing bias stemming from living in a heteronormative and gender-binaristic society.
The Quote Mehr Resonates With
Come as you are and be
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