Oakridge Counselling London Ontario
Are you feeling like you don’t know who you are anymore? Sure you’ve got great things and good people in your life; you take good care of your loved ones but… you’re wondering
“what about me?” or “is this it? I thought I would be happier” or “when will it be my turn?”
Your turn to do something just for you? Your turn to be the priority. To talk about what you need and want without interruption, worrying what others think and needing everyone to like you? When do you get to think about and talk your needs …without feeling guilty?
What if I told you “Your Time Is Now?”
Welcome I am Elizabeth Lacey
Registered Social Worker & Psychotherapist
Owner of Oakridge Counselling London Ontario
And I’m here to help you make time for YOU whenever you are ready. Maybe you don’t yet know what you want when it’s “your turn” – we’ll sort that out too.
but …I feel so guilty
I understand – really I do. Women, myself included, feel guilty a lot of the time. In fact many women even feel guilty about feeling guilty. I think this happens because of the ways women are socialized as nurturers, caregivers and peace keepers and with the “blessing and curse” of being able to multitask. Women are often juggling a few caregiving/peace keeping tasks at the same time AND feel guilty when nothing gets their undivided attention. And because women can multitask – they do but, the blessing becomes a curse magnifying women’s guilt and pushing any consideration of their own needs further down the never ending to do list.
When you imagine putting your needs ahead of others – especially the needs of your children – YOU WILL feel guilty. It feels wrong to even think it, let alone say it out loud or heaven forbid do it! So don’t – keep it to yourself. Yes really, keep it to yourself until you’ve processed the idea a bit more. You don’t need to expose yourself to the others reactions when you say it out loud – especially other women that probably feel “selfish saying it” just like you do. Once you’re feeling stronger about the idea share with women you trust, those you can be real with. Then support each other in making space for each others needs.
Set yourself up for success
Set yourself up for success in this way and remember the guilt will surround you whenever you do something different like this. Please don’t fight with it. Instead allow it to be there – it’s going to be there anyway – whether you allow it to or not. Feeling guilty doesn’t mean you’re doing something wrong. Remember guilt is just a feeling – it is NOT a fact!
I know this is hard and it’s that it’s really uncomfortable. If you have a trusted friend that “gets you” I encourage you to practice putting yourselves first in these ways together. You really do need support, validation, accountability, encouragement and to know you are not alone in this.
Counselling is a good place to practice
You’re always welcome to practice with me in counselling – one hour at a time. Yes. the guilt might be there when you book a session and it will likely come with you to the session. The good news is, you will learn ways to manage it. You CAN learn to live alongside of your feelings without letting them take over or change your mind about things you feel passionate about.
Feelings, especially guilt don’t go away …sorry I wish they did too. Instead, you learn to live in the presence of them, much the same way you’ve learned to live with the challenges of parenting young children. And I don’t mind telling you that you’re doing an amazing job of it too! If you knew before you had your child(ren) that you would be doing all of the things you’re doing now – I’m guessing you might have wondered if it was possible. And yet, look at you – you’re doing it!
the stories you tell yourself…
You’re already living in the presence of all kinds of feelings, pleasant and unpleasant. It’s the story you tell yourself about your feelings, that makes you feel worse. Could you accept that you’re going to feel unpleasant feelings (you don’t have to like it, just accept it, the same way you accept that you have to pay income tax) and that they are feelings, they are predictable and they are NOT YOU?
Then when they show up, you won’t be surprised. You knew you would probably feel that way. Feeling guilty doesn’t have to mean anything. Just like when your partner gets up before you, quietly does the morning routine with the kids and drops them off for you AND you feel happy. It doesn’t have to mean anything else. Feelings are just feelings. They are not you and you get to decide how you respond or react to your feelings. You are not your feelings. You are a wonderful, caring, considerate and probably exhausted woman, that feels feelings.
Table of contents
- Are you feeling like you don’t know who you are anymore? Sure you’ve got great things and good people in your life; you take good care of your loved ones but… you’re wondering “what about me?” or “is this it? I thought I would be happier” or “when will it be my turn?”
- What if I told you “Your Time Is Now?”
- Counselling is a good place to practice
- Imagine a Space Just for You…
- This is Counselling for Women and YOU ARE Invited
- You’re Invited – Will You Join Me?
- Who’s in Charge?
- Relationships Counselling or Therapy for One
- Do you feel Stuck?
- Counselling Helps Women Feel Better
- Would a Free 15 min. Consult Call Help?
- How Does Counselling Help?
Estimated reading time: 17 minutes
Imagine a Space Just for You…
The counselling space is reserved just for you. You CAN leave the worries of daily life behind and practice taking time for yourself.
a person – not a feeling
For more than two decades women have been telling me that they feel better when they realize that they are not their feelings. That they are a woman that experiences feelings. A woman that can choose how to respond to the feeling(s) she experiences. And when they recognize “me, as a person” and the “feelings I feel” as two as separate things that affect each other, they are able to intentionally respond to the feeling(s) they experience – instead of reacting on autopilot as if they don’t have a choice, as if they ARE THE FEELING.
This is Counselling for Women and YOU ARE Invited
Counselling for women is time and space reserved just for you. It’s a protected space where you won’t be interrupted – imagine! You can talk about whatever you want to talk about without distraction and know I am listening. Know that who you are matters – not just the you that is someones mother, someones daughter, partner or boss. It can be your turn. Yes you can make your self, your needs and your wants a priority and learn to manage the messiness that comes along with it.
When you share this space with me you will learn to take a step back from your experiences and embrace your SELF as the one that chooses how to respond to experiences …with guilt as a less powerful, though frequent visitor.
You’re Invited – Will You Join Me?
Who’s in Charge?
Thanks for joining me. We’re talking about feelings – how you are really feeling and who’s in charge – you or the feelings – remember these two are separate. There’s nothing wrong with feelings or being tuned into your feelings. They are often the strongest and most trusted information women have about their lives, relationships and experiences.
However, when you rely on feelings alone, you’re at risk of losing sight of your other ways of knowing. When your feelings become the whole story, it can be problematic. It can feel like your feelings are in charge of you, like the “feelings have you” and that they dictate your actions. Instead of “you as a person – having feelings” and consciously deciding what to do in response.
In counselling we explore your ability to be with your feelings without allowing them to take over and be in charge of you. I might ask “who’s in the drivers seat”? Or say something like, “how do you manage those strong feelings?” These questions are meant to help you see your ‘self’ and your ‘feelings’ as two separate things. They speak to the part of you that sees your feelings and chooses what to do and how to manage the feelings. Maybe you already are in charge of your feelings – that’s awesome. Keep reading you may find a few more helpful tips.
Responding versus Reacting
Do you notice that we’re not trying to get rid of feelings? Instead, I help you take the drivers seat, while your feelings ride along, instead of allowing your feelings to drive you around?
While valid and a big part of what makes you – YOU – feelings are only ONE part of who you are. The part of you that is aware of your feelings, that gets tired of being negatively affected by your feelings is your core self. The part I call your “wise woman”. Your wise woman part has a “gut feeling” when something doesn’t add up. You listen to that gut feeling, to that part of yourself, that’s a good thing. And when you think about what the gut feeling is about you are responding to something to feel, instead of reacting on auto pilot or becoming the feeling. See the difference? Someone watching would not likely see anything different.
In counselling I will help you become more aware of or familiar with the wise woman in you. I will teach you to respond to your feelings as the one in charge, instead of reacting to them on auto pilot. Your feelings are part of you and they are welcome to come along for the ride – we can’t really stop them anyway. It would be like leaving your preschoolers home alone. You’ll find the feelings a seat but, the wise woman in you needs to drive the bus. Yes, it is a bus, not a car or even a van we wise women drive. I’ll tell you all about this in counselling for women too. A little bit of humour goes a long way.
I would love to meet you. If you’re curious about counselling with me, but not ready to book a session yet, that’s completely okay. All new clients are welcome to get more information and see if we’re a good fit with a Free 15 minute consult call.
FREE 15 min. Consult Call
We can have a brief phone chat to see how it feels. You can tell me a bit about your life and ask any questions you have. You will know if we’re good together or not – yes, that really does matter. Book your free call online in a few quick and easy steps anytime day or night. I’ll confirm the call (during business hours of course haha) by email.
Ah yes, the couple relationship. It really can affect how women feel about themselves and their overall emotional and mental health. You share almost every aspect of your life with your partner; your home, family, children, parenting, your friends, finances, future plans, your body and your heart.
There are bound to be disappointments, arguments and hurt feelings when another person affect so many parts of your life. Please remember, that you are this person to your partner too. Yes even though it might seem like you’re not that important to your partner some of the time. You affect all parts of their life too.
When doing couples counselling, I see “being affected by your partner” as a “protective factor” and no longer being affected by each other as a “risk factor” to the relationship. So, while it’s hard to manage being affected by your partner in these ways, it is possible and preferable, especially when you have help from a couples therapist – in relationship therapy for one.
Relationships Counselling or Therapy for One
If you’re worried about your couple relationship, please make an attempt to connect with your partner, even in a small way, by doing what you wish your partner would do to reconnect with you. Please reread that last sentence and at least try it.
You’re right, it won’t fix everything, but it’s better than doing nothing even if it doesn’t go well. It is something you CAN DO today to try to make things better. Remember when you said “I wish there was something I could do to make it better”? Well there is your something – please do it. Your efforts are helpful to the relationship EVEN if it doesn’t look like it in the moment. The same way you notice your partners efforts to connect with you EVEN when you can’t receive it or acknowledge it in the moment.
Connection is very important in the couple relationship and even more so to women. I hope you’ll reach out and connect with me too – so I can support you as you work to improve your couple relationship and your own sense of connection and support with your partner in day to day life. It doesn’t solve everything, your right – but it’s better than not doing it and wondering why your relationship doesn’t get any better.
Do you feel Stuck?
Maybe you feel stuck? Maybe you act like “a people pleaser” and you can’t stop doing it but – you can’t keep doing it either. Sound familiar?
If you act like a people pleaser you know it’s a heck of a lot of pressure on you. You get emotionally exhausted and feel like you’re letting everybody down, but what about you? Yes YOU! You matter too you know.
I would love to meet you. I won’t judge you I promise. Instead I will help you understand how you got stuck doing things that are not good for you and help you get “unstuck” and feeling better about yourself. We would unpack the “pleasing behaviours” together and find small ways to start with, that you can start changing behaviours you choose to work on.
I’ll teach you ways to cope with what happens as a result of the changes you make. Yes, something unpleasant always happens when you change these behaviours – that’s why you feel stuck and feel like you can’t change people pleasing behaviours.
We’ll celebrate the changes you make and build on what works to reduce and in some cases eliminate the people pleasing behaviours all together. It might seem far fetched, you’ve been doing it a long time and you’re loved ones raise quite a stink when you don’t do it, but we’ll work through it together. Having someone to talk to that “gets it” helps so much. You don’t have to do it alone.
Ready to talk about getting unstuck?
Counselling Helps Women Feel Better
You’re not alone. Your feelings are valid and you do not have to keep feeling this way. In counselling I will help you manage your situation and your feelings in better ways. It might seem like everyone else has it “all figured out” and you might be embarrassed when you don’t but, you know that no one has it all figured out all of the time. We’re all putting on a brave face, just like you are. Really it’s true.
I know this because I have sat with hundreds of women in counselling that feel just like you do. We all want to look like we’ve got it all figured out. You don’t have to deal with this in silent isolation any more. I hope you will consider counselling, so a caring professional like me 🙂 can support you and help you feel better about your situation and your self.
It’s Normal to be Worried About Counselling
Starting counselling is a vulnerable thing to do, especially if you’re a private person and you’ve never done it before. I understand how hard it is to get started and I’d like to point out that you’ve already done a lot of the hard work. And I have made the next step easier for you.
Would a Free 15 min. Consult Call Help?
Yes, that’s right. You can book a Free 15 minute consult call with me. A call you can do in the comfort of your own space. You can book it online at any time day or night.
The consult call is only 15 minutes to make it easier to get started. It’s long enough to get a sense of how it feels to tell me about yourself and what you need. If we don’t have an “easy fit” it’s okay, it happens sometimes. At least you found out without leaving your space or spending any money. If it happens like this, I will help you find another therapist that does free consult calls and encourage you to try again. (see costs for counselling london ontario here).
You Don’t Have to Make Any Decisions on Our Call
You don’t have to make any decisions during our call. In fact, I will encourage you to take some time afterwards to think about it and get back to me if you have questions or to explore next steps.
If you want to get started, you can book online or email me for an appointment. You really don’t have to do this alone. I will be with you every step of the way and if you choose to go to someone else, I will still be happy for you because you found what you needed 🙂 Yes Really!
Are you Ready to try Counselling?
If you are ready, click the pink box below and book your call. You will go to our secure online booking site where you will be prompted to create a basic account that allows you to see my availability and book your call.
Once you have booked your call I will send you a welcome email, confirm your preferred number and call you at the time you chose. And there you go – you did it, you did something for you – that’s awesome!
If you’re not ready yet, that’s okay too. Please let me know if there is anything I can do for you. I am happy to answer any questions you have by email.
- When your experiences and feelings are validated, instead of being called “too emotional, needy or an over reaction” you feel a bit better.
- When you don’t have to “take care of the listener’s feelings” you can relax and get the benefit of being taken care of.
- When you don’t have to worry about being judged or hurting anyone’s feelings when talking about your experiences you feel less anxious.
- Many women answer their own questions when given the opportunity to process their experiences within a counselling relationship and find this very helpful.
- With this type of counselling support most women start to feel better.
Yes, you can feel better – really. In counselling for women you will learn to harness what you’re already doing and use these overlooked skills to help yourself going forward. Believe it or not you already have everything within you that you need to feel better. In counselling, I direct you inward to find what you already know. I help you locate your truths that have gotten hidden under and behind “the stuff” of life and guide you as you find your way through your life and relationships with access to those things that make you feel like you again.
Thank you for spending your valuable time online with me at Oakridge Counselling London Ontario. I hope you found what you were looking for. If not, please let me know and I will do my best to help you find it. Use the button below to contact me by email. I will respond personally within 1-3 business days.
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