Mischa (she/her/elle) is a masters-level clinical psychologist registered with the Ordre des Psychologues du Quebec. She has over 15 years of training as a counsellor and psychologist specializing in the area of trauma and stress recovery. Her current scope of practice is with individual adult clients, primarily focusing on such areas as childhood trauma and attachment injuries, sexuality and gender-related issues, anxiety symptoms (including eco-anxiety), depressive symptoms, and spiritual/existential inquiry. Mischa is a firm advocate for diverse and authentic self-expression within intentional relationships. Her practice is LGBTQIA+ allied, sex positive and neuro-diversity positive. Clients who work with Mischa have reported greater access to qualities of self-acceptance, presence and aliveness, psychological ease, and improved connection with others.
Mischa is trained in Internal Family Systems (IFSCA ‘Stepping Stones’ Program and IFS Level 1) as well as having advanced training in Somatic Experiencing ® and level 1 Play Therapy training (CAPT Foundation). She also recently completed the diversity-oriented University of Guelph Sex Therapy intensive in 2021 to better serve the LGBTQIA+ community. She is known as a therapist that prioritizes creating a supportive healing space within which to witness what may be difficult or painful, in order to collaborate with the natural human instinct for healing and growth. This means starting with a deep acceptance of and inquiry into all parts of human experience- not only those far too familiar ‘sticky’ thoughts and beliefs but also the emotional, somatic and energetic patterns that may be at play at a subconscious level as well as qualities and identities that may have been exiled for many years.
Mischa now works almost exclusively from an IFS perspective, the evidence-based therapeutic model that she finds best aligns with these principles of compassionate witnessing and deep inquiry. Her years of experience working in expressive and somatic modalities create fertile ground for the profound internal inquiry that Internal Family Systems provides. Put simply, IFS invites and facilitates a relationship of kind attention towards aspects of the psyche so that these parts can be helped and healed and so that natural but exiled energy, strengths and gifts can be recovered and integrated. Rather than viewing certain parts of the self as needing to be managed or eradicated, all parts, however ‘maladaptive’, are recognized as holding the key to healing and growth.
Please enjoy Aesop’s fable, “The North Wind and the Sun”, which describes the philosophy of IFS perhaps best of all…
One day, the North Wind and the Sun had a quarrel about which of them was the stronger. Suddenly they saw two travellers coming down the road, and the Sun said: “I see a way to decide our dispute. Whichever of us can cause those travellers to take off their cloaks shall be regarded as the stronger. You begin.”
So the Sun retired behind a cloud, and the North Wind began to blow as hard as he could upon the travellers. But the harder the North Wind blew, the more closely the travellers wrapped their cloaks round themselves, till at last the North Wind blew himself right out.
Then the Sun began to shine with gentle and increasing warmth upon the travellers who soon found themselves naturally inclined to remove their cloaks and sit themselves down under the welcome shade of a tree to enjoy the warm breezes and fragrant scent that lingered from the blossoms all around.
The Sun smiled at the scowling North Wind and said,
“Gentle kindness effects more than forceful severity and all the effort in the world can never equal the simple power of aligning with the natural human yearning for aliveness, presence and joy.”