"We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that caused them.”
- Albert Einstein
Find provided some common questions people have asked. If you still have questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have!
Who is my counsellor?
You can find a summary about your counsellor's expertise, years of experience, and the professional body to which they belongs in the Our Team section of our webpage. Each counsellor operates their own, independent corporations and are contracted by Mindful Lotus Psychological and Counselling Services to provide therapy to clients.
What happens if I am not happy with my counsellor's service?
If are dissatisfied with the service your counsellor has provided, we strongly encourage you to talk to your counsellor about it as it may present you with an incredible therapeutic opportunity for you and a chance for your counsellor to apologize if you were offended. Your counsellor will take your concerns seriously by listening to you and figuring out what to do to repair the situation; alternatively, they can help you find a therapist that can better help you with your specific needs with a therapy style that is best suited to you.
What if I run out of insurance and can't afford my sessions afterwards?
We would never want any of our clients to stop attending therapy due to the financial issues. Therefore, please speak to your individual therapist about fee adjustment options that they may be able to offer that work with your budget to ensure you get the results you hoped for.
What am I investing in? How can counselling help me?
Research has shown counselling can often help and may lead to better relationships with self and others, develop solutions to specific problems, equip you with better coping skills, or reduce emotional distress. However, every individual's experience is unique and thus, there are no guarantees about the success/ outcome of your therapy. By seeking therapy, you may make decisions about your life that you might not have made if you did not attend therapy. In therapy, you may experience feelings before, during and/or after sessions (e.g., sadness, anxiety, fatigue, body sensations) that may be uncomfortable/taxing. Therapy also requires a commitment of time and a financial investment. That being said, some of the ways therapy can help you include:
reducing symptoms of grief, loss, trauma, stress, anxiety, depression, and isolation
deepening awareness of various behaviours, thoughts, habits, and interactional patterns that are preventing you from moving forward
providing coping strategies and tools to help ground you and heal in a healthier manner
processing deep-seated issues from your past such as unresolved grief and trauma (including multigenerational trauma)
What is therapy like? Is it like talking to a good friend?
Unlike a good friend, your counsellor must adhere to the Code of Ethics set forth by their professional college or association, such as the College of Alberta Psychologists or the Alberta College of Social Workers. As a result, some of the things your counsellor must adhere to include: maintaining healthy boundaries, protecting your dignity and never becoming romantically involved with a client, they cannot profit from any outside service you may offer (such as business discounts), they cannot receive gifts from you (cards are welcome), they cannot have a social/business relationship with you, they cannot provide counselling to family or friends, and they must avoid "duel relationships" (you cannot be on the same sports team, have mutual friends, etc.).
So, what is therapy like? Every person's experience of therapy will be different, thus, their perspectives will be different. However, there is a general tone that you can expect when working with one of our therapists. They are trained to offer you a supportive, caring, and confidential space. At your own pace, they will invite you to explore and talk about your internal self-talk, beliefs, feelings, and actions that may be contributing to your wellness or limiting your ability to thrive. It is important to remember that you decide what works for you! If you have any questions please don't hesitate to talk to your therapist about your treatment plan and any interventions that may be suggested. You also have the right to change, modify or stop any intervention (including homework tasks) that you do not find useful or do not like. It is very important that you tell your counsellor what you do not find helpful about therapy so your counsellor can make the necessary changes.
Does the information I share remain confidential?
Confidentiality is essential for a healthy therapist-client relationship and in most situations, what you share with your counsellor will remain confidential. That means that all staff that work with Mindful Lotus will comply with the provisions of the Health Information Act. This Act tells everyone how to process, store, retrieve or dispose of private health information and how to use information management or information technology services so that your privacy is protected. Only employees, contractors, or agents of Mindful Lotus Psychological & Counselling Services who are engaged in Information Management Services and their direct supervisors will have access to your private health information. However, there are certain circumstances where your counsellor will not be able to or permitted to keep the information you provide confidential. These situations are called limits to confidentiality and they include:
A client discloses that they are planning to harm themselves or someone else in a significant way, like having a plan for suicide or homicide. This risk is discussed with your therapist and if they deem it to be a serious threat, the police will be notified.
A client discloses that a vulnerable person, like a child, elderly person, or animal, as an example, is being harmed significantly (abuse or neglect). Again, the risk is assessed and acted upon if deemed significant, reported to the police or Children’s Services.
The court subpoenas the therapist’s files for court.
Privacy can become convoluted and complicated when working with more that one individual at a time as the couple/family relationship is the client. When working with multiple clients at once (couples, relational, and family therapy), your therapist will make sure to meet with each person involved individually following the first session; and perhaps during subsequent sessions depending on the concerns being addressed. While meeting as a couple/group, your counsellor may, using their professional judgment, divulge information you shared during the individual session if they believe it is appropriate for the other person to know (such as an affair). This will be done as considerately and as kindly as possible. While your counsellor hopes you will be as honest as you can about your personal and relationship concerns, you get to decide what information you share, knowing it may be shared with your partner or family member.
As much as possible, your counsellor will involve you in the decision about what to share with your partner or family member. However, unless the two of you have a prior agreement about not sharing specific information, your counsellor will use their professional judgment in deciding what to share. Your partner or family member may ask that information not be shared with you, and your counsellor might agree to this. This can be upsetting for you if you find out later that your counsellor withheld information. It is important that you understand the different aspects of information sharing when receiving couples or family therapy. Ultimately, you have a choice about what you tell your counsellor in couples or family therapy, knowing it may be shared with your partner or family member