As of January 2020 Patricia has relocated her practice to Campbell and Fairweather Psychology Group in Victoria BC.

Patricia welcomes you to contact her if you wish to have online or in person individual or couple counselling sessions or to arrange a Private Hold Me Tight® Couple Retreat at

Trauma PTSD
Chronic Pain

Are you feeling down, irritable, anxious, lacking motivation and/or having negative thoughts over the past two weeks or longer which is starting to interfere with your enjoyment of daily life?Then you may be having symptoms of depression which are treatable through counselling. While moderate to severe depression may require medication from you doctor in addition to counselling for optimum management, mild to moderate symptoms of depression can be treated through counselling alone. Start to reverse the negative trend right now.

While you are waiting for your session, download the Starter kit to begin your journey of healing and wellness.
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Counselling can help you to notice your unhelpful patterns of thinking and feeling. As you talk through the issues that contribute to your mood struggle, you can release the negative feelings in a safe and welcoming environment and in collaboration with Patricia develop a variety of strategies to better deal with your life issues.

Depending upon the severity and duration of the symptoms, you can expect to start feeling better after the first session and consistently see positive progress in four to six individual counseling sessions.

If you are having suicidal thoughts, for 24/7 access to support and guidance, in Calgary call the Distress Line 403.266.4357 and for elsewhere in Alberta 1.800.303.2642. Alternatively go to your nearest Hospital Emergency Room.

Are you looking for help to reduce your worries, nightmares and/or avoidance of activities which started following trauma such as car accidents, witnessing violence, sports injuries or crime committed against you? Or want to use it to help with emotional coping, sports or other performance and simply to feel calmer and more in control of yourself?In the context of a therapeutic relationship and development of effective self management skills, Patricia uses two methods, the Flash Technique® and EMDR.

The Flash Technique® was developed in 2016. This technique is used during the preparation phase of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and allows clients to reduce the disturbance associated with extremely painful memories without actually feeling the pain. Defenses that are normally obstacles to processing are not activated because the process is not threatening or painful. Clients who dissociate have less need to dissociate and those who are afraid of the intensity of their memories can process without being afraid. Dramatic reductions in disturbance happen often in 5 to ten minutes. It can be a stand alone approach to disturbing memories or in conjunction with EMDR.

EMDR used in conjunction with other therapy approaches can make your counselling experience more efficient and effective. It is particularly applicable in reducing the medium and longer term impact of emotional trauma.

EMDR is an acronym that stands for Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is also known as eye movement therapy or accelerated processing. In 1987, Dr. Francine Shapiro made a chance discovery that has been developed over the years into an effective mainstream treatment option based in research on posttraumatic stress and endorsed by the American Psychological Association.

What is EMDR?

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EMDR is a brain based approach for reprocessing disturbing emotional content from immediate memory to long term memory. EMDR involves an eight step standardized procedure. It starts with a thorough history taking with a focus on early trauma that might be connected with the present difficulty. Once the background information is taken and the targets for reprocessing are identified in conjunction with you, there is less talking involved than with a traditional counselling approach.

EMDR is a process not a technique. It unfolds according to your individual needs, history, emotional resources and issues. It assists in the development of the you as an individual in the context of the therapeutic relationship EMDR is applicable to addressing many areas of difficulty you experience such as depression, anxiety, anger, addictions, chronic pain, and early childhood trauma, including physical and sexual abuse. It is also helpful in reducing or eliminating barriers to best performance in sports, public speaking, self confidence and effective work and task completion.

For example, if you witness or are involved in a car accident, it is natural to have disturbing memories, perhaps difficulty sleeping and nightmares, odd body sensations and emotional reactivity. If these last longer than three to four weeks, EMDR can be helpful for you to reduce these interferences in your daily life and regain calmness and improved day to day functioning. The number of sessions you might require depends upon your particular circumstances, personal history and present coping mechanisms.

While there is not a universal definition of chronic or persistent pain, it is generally agreed that it refers to pain that lasts longer than expected duration for a medical condition, in the range of three to six months.I have actually had clients tell me that a trusted professional said that directly or implied it when the pain did not lessen or go away as expected that it was “all in their head”. This is disheartening as well as potentially eroding trust between the client and professional and leaving the client feeling hopeless and helpless.

Most sufferers of chronic pain would do anything to get rid of it and spend enormous amounts of time, effort and financial resources seeking a medical resolution to no avail, even when the evidence points to the original medical condition no longer being an issue. This is very confusing and difficult to manage. Often those with persistent pain have depression and anxiety, which adds to their difficulties. Once trusting of the helping professionals, the person with the pain condition feels.

Make no mistake, your pain is real. You are not making it up. Psychological approaches cannot take away your pain but can help calm your nervous system, form new neural pathways and retrain the brain so that you can live a fuller life. In particular, psychology can assist you in managing depression and anxiety, learn emotion self management and self regulation skills and utilize self relaxation or mindfulness strategies to assist you in becoming less upset.

As with all of her clients, Patricia utilizes a whole approach encouraging you to develop strategies for mental and emotional, relational, physical and spiritual well being. A good place to begin is by downloading the starter kit.

Here is a link to a talk about pain, out of Australia, that you might find helpful as well. Don’t be put off by the statement that all pain is in the brain, both acute and chronic. It just means our brain receives the pain signals and reacts accordingly. That is true with all experiences. It does not mean your pain is not real.

Here is another interesting video The Neuroscience of Pain.

Well first off, congratulations on continuing your addiction recovery. Give yourself a pat on the back for having the basic building blocks to maintain a healthy lifestyle with addiction. Using a whole approach to addiction recovery you will be encouraged to challenge the patterns of thinking and feeling that you need to “do it all”, do it perfectly and don’t break a sweat. Using a positive approach you will be a collaborator in the counselling to move toward a kinder, gentler attitude toward yourself that minimizes the potential for mood.You will learn how to be enough and to tame the shame that is at the core of addiction. You will come away with a use-able customized, flexible plan for emotion, mood, trauma and relationship management.