Why did you choose to become a counsellor?
Becoming a counselor was a natural calling for me, shaped by my innate traits and life experiences. As a child, I was a daydreamer and always felt drawn to listening to people’s experiences, their joys, struggles, and everything in between. This early fascination with understanding others’ stories and connecting with their souls laid the foundation for my journey into counseling.
What excites you about your work as a counsellor?
The most exhilarating aspect of being a counselor is witnessing the transformative power of human connection and healing. It fills me with joy to be a part of my clients’ growth and self-discovery journeys. The profound sense of empathy and warmth that I experience during sessions allows me to deeply connect with my clients, creating a safe and nurturing space for them to explore their emotions and experiences.
What do you hope for your clients to experience after their first session with you?
After their first session with me, I hope my clients feel a sense of relief and comfort, knowing that they are not alone in their struggles. I wish for them to leave with hope, a newfound understanding of their emotions, and a sense of empowerment to embark on their healing path. Most importantly, I want them to feel heard, validated, and supported as they begin their therapeutic journey.
What would you wish to tell a client who is thinking about seeking counselling?
To anyone considering counseling, I want to say that taking this step is an act of self-compassion and courage. It’s a powerful way to honor your own emotions and experiences. In counseling, you will have a confidential and non-judgmental space to explore your thoughts and feelings. Remember that you are not defined by your struggles, and seeking support is a strength, not a weakness.
Describe the relationship that you would wish to build with your client in counselling.
In counseling, I aim to build a strong therapeutic alliance with my clients based on trust, respect, and authenticity. I want them to feel comfortable sharing their deepest emotions and vulnerabilities without fear of judgment. My role is to walk alongside them as a compassionate ally, helping them navigate their journey while empowering them to make their own choices.
In your counselling work so far, what has been your greatest learning from your clients?
Throughout my counseling journey, my clients have taught me the profound impact of genuine empathy and deep listening. Their stories and experiences have reinforced the importance of being fully present and attuned to their emotions. I’ve learned that it’s absolutely fine to be vulnerable and not be fine at times. Life is a journey with ups and downs, and we all experience a range of emotions, which is a natural part of being human.
Healing is not a linear process and that everyone’s journey is unique.
What are some of your strengths as a counsellor that you value and appreciate?
As a counselor, I deeply value my patience, empathy, and ability to establish a strong therapeutic bond with my clients. My open-mindedness and constant eagerness to learn allow me to adapt and tailor my approach to meet each client’s unique needs. I am grateful for the emotional connection I feel during sessions, as it enables me to be fully present and supportive throughout their therapeutic journey.
What are some of the things you like to do in your free time?
In my free time, I enjoy reading, spending time with animals, nature walks, mindfulness practices, cooking, engaging in art, listening to music and podcasts, and connecting with loved ones.
What are the areas of concern you address in counselling? Do you work with specific populations?
As a counselor, my inclusive approach allows me to work with individuals from all walks of life. I address a wide range of concerns, including relationship challenges, anxiety, depression, trauma, self-esteem issues, body image issues, grief, self harm and personal growth. I am dedicated to fostering an affirming and safe space for people of all gender identities, castes, religions, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
What is the therapeutic approach you use? How would you describe it to someone who wants to consult you for therapy?
My therapeutic approach is primarily person-centered and psychodynamic. Person-centered therapy focuses on providing an empathetic and non-judgmental environment where clients can explore their emotions and thoughts freely. Psychodynamic therapy delves into the unconscious mind to uncover underlying patterns and experiences that shape an individual’s behavior.
In practice, this means that I prioritize creating a warm and accepting space for clients to share their experiences and emotions. Together, we delve into their past experiences and explore how these may be influencing their present challenges. By understanding the root causes of their struggles, we can work towards meaningful and lasting change.
How do you make your therapeutic practice a safe and affirmative space for queer and trans* folx?
As a counselor, I am dedicated to creating a safe and inclusive space for each and every individual. I stay informed about LGBTQ+ issues, evolving perspectives, and appropriate language. Respecting pronouns, maintaining confidentiality, and providing unconditional support are crucial in building trust with queer and trans* clients. I actively encourage open dialogue, avoid making assumptions or using stereotypes, and wholeheartedly welcome feedback to continuously improve my practice.
To enhance affirmative practices, I regularly read books and articles, engaging in continuous learning and unlearning. I actively collaborate with fellow mental health professionals specializing in LGBTQ+ affirmative therapy.
The Quote Vishakha Resonates With
The present moment is the only moment available to us, and it is the door to all moments.
Thich Nhat Hanh