You know how when you go to the dentist, you brush your teeth REALLY hard the morning of the appointment, as if in doing so, you can hide the months of neglect from the hygienist so that maybe this time, you won’t get the usual lecture/ condescending speech about how you really need to floss
I hate that.
Yet, like you, I also hope that maybe this time, it’ll work. It rarely does, so that’s a part of the reason so many people don’t like going to the dentist.
Seeing a psychologist is quite a bit different. We are trained in the necessity to be empathetic and non-judgemental. We are not here to lecture or shame. We are here to support and help. In my practice, we do so through two main areas – counselling and assessment.
Most of us have been coached at some point. Not because we were bad at something; rather, the focus of coaching is to enhance performance. Counselling is the same sort of thing. There is nothing wrong with you that needs to be fixed. But there are areas where you could improve. In our counselling work, my team and I use a positive-psychology, relationship-driven approach to help enhance our clients performance in any number of areas (emotional, social, intellectual, academic, behaviour, among many others). Guilt, shame, criticism, judgement – none of these experiences are part of our approach.
Assessment is designed to help our clients understand themselves using solid data, which allows us to design specific strategies that again focus on enhancing your performance. Assessment is a healthy process that most people find to be quite illuminating. It is an investment that pays off almost immediately. Assessments help target strategies for our clients, which can significantly reduce a lot of frustration and school, work, home, and in relationships. For instance, a psychoeducational assessment can help reduce conflict at home around homework.
Wouldn’t that be nice!
A good assessment can help improve grades and decrease time spent on unhealthy or ineffective strategies. It can keep post-secondary students from having to repeat courses. A good, comprehensive assessment can enhance relationships and can pay for itself over time not only financially, but in terms of more positive understanding of how you learn and results in less risk of underperformance, which can be associated with depressed mood, anxiety, avoiding challenging tasks, reluctance to take risks, more self-criticism, and so on. Instead, you learn how you learn, what works for you, and how to become even more effective. While assessments can result in diagnoses of specific areas of challenge, it is far better to understand the attributes of such conditions than to live with them and struggle. It is all about approaching challenges openly, armed with good information!
So, give us a call or email – we guarantee that we will not criticize your flossing technique!