I am a Jamaican Canadian Registered Psychotherapist (qualifying). I have a plethora of experience working with diverse communities, and individuals who have experienced sex trafficking. I am empathetic, approachable, and caring. I have a passion to see clients experience healing, health and wholeness, as they move closer towards achieving their short and longterm goals.
I believe that each client possesses a deep rooted resilience within themselves, that can sometimes be masked by our hardships, pain, disappointments and traumatic experiences, that can even occur epigenetically (through our family history/ experiences). I find great joy, when clients have those “aha” moments in therapy. When they begin to recognize the resilience from deep within themselves, and when they can look back after a few sessions, and notice the various levels of change within their therapeutic experience.
I am a therapist who will gently challenge clients at times, validate their feelings, while respecting their uniqueness as a person. The therapeutic relationship is incredibly important, and is foundational to successful therapy. My goal is to take time to understand each client, their perspective, and explore which evidence based modality would be a good fit for them.
"Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.”
- Brené Brown -
I am an integrationist in my approach to therapy, because I believe that therapy is not a one size fits all. Therefore, I adopt a person-centered approach to therapy. Each person is unique, and therefore, I believe that utilizing various treatments in an intentional way can be of great benefit to my clients. I use evidence based modalities such as Trauma Informed Cognitive Behavioural therapy, Dialectical Behaviour Therapy, Bowenian Therapy, Internal Family Systems, Mindfulness, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).
I have additional training in trauma Informed CBT (T-CBT) & CCTP 2, Level 1 & 2 EMDR, and i am a Prepare-Enrich Facilitator.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapeutic structured modality which was originally developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro. EMDR has been used to treat individuals who have experienced various forms of psychological trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), amongst other challenges. EMDR focuses on an individual’s present concerns. This model believes that past emotionally-charged experiences can influence a person’s present emotions, sensations, and thoughts about themselves. EMDR encourages clients to focus on a previous memory while experiencing guided bilateral stimulation. This type of processing helps to reduce the intensity and emotion which is associated with the traumatic event. Efficacy: EMDR is a heavily research evidence based therapeutic modality which has been proven to help individuals who have experienced Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), complex PTSD (C-PTSD), trauma, chronic pain, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), addictions, depression, anxiety, as well as other challenges or concerns (Mayfield, 2009). According to an article written by Shapiro & Forrest (2016), more than 7 million patients have experienced successful EMDR treatment by therapists globally.
What does EMDR do?
EMDR processing assists clients in breaking through emotional blocks that are keeping them from living an adaptive and emotionally healthy life. EMDR uses rapid sets of eye movements (also known as Bilateral Stimulation or BLS) to help clients update disturbing experiences, much like what occurs during our Rapid Eye Movement (REM) cycle when we sleep. During our sleep cycle, we alternate between regular sleep and REM (rapid eye movement). EMDR replicates this sleep pattern by alternating between sets of eye movements and brief reports about what you are noticing. This alternating process helps you update your memories with a healthier present perspective.
EMDR focuses on the brain’s constant ability to learn by taking past experiences and updating them with present information. Our Adaptive learning is constantly updating memory network systems. Past emotionally-charged experiences often interfere with our updating process. EMDR uses a set of procedures to organize our negative and positive feelings, emotions, and thoughts, and then uses bilateral stimulation, such as eye movements or alternating tapping or auditory or tactile stimulation, as a way to help you effectively work through those disturbing memories.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
CBT is an effective therapeutic modality which has been proven to be effective for various presenting problems such as addictions, depression, eating disorders, anxiety disorders, marriage issues, and other mental health challenges. CBT is a form of talk-therapy. The core principles of CBT would indicate that our challenges are based on our unhelpful ways of thinking and unhelpful learned behaviours. As a result, CBT assists clients with finding better coping strategies in order to alleviate one’s symptoms. Treatment often includes looking at our cognitive distortions and finding ways to reframe them in healthy ways. CBT often involves understanding our behavioural patterns and challenging ourselves to change unhelpful patterns by replacing them with new and more adaptive behaviours. This is often established by utilizing “homework” or weekly challenges, which can help reinforce the more adaptive ways of thinking, feeling and behaving.
Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT)
DBT is an effective evidence based modality which primarily focuses on helping clients manage their intense emotions which often causes feelings of distress. It uses 4 core principles and techniques which includes: Mindfulness, Distress Tolerance, Interpersonal Effectiveness. And Emotion Regulation.
I have worked with youth and their families through after school programming at both the Toronto City Mission and Scott Mission.
I have also co-founded an anti-sex trafficking organization which provides case management, and advocacy to those who have experienced sex trafficking and sexual exploitation for the past 10 years.