About Our Practice
Shlomo Radcliffe & Associates is a modern psychotherapy clinic providing psychotherapy and skills training to adults, teens, and children struggling with challenges related to anger and anxiety. We provide in-person and online psychotherapy services in Toronto, Ontario, and online and remote psychotherapy services throughout Ontario, Canada. Our team consists of warm, dedicated, and committed Registered Psychotherapists and Registered Social Workers.
Let’s be honest. Therapy is expensive! While some people have extended insurance coverage or the resources to afford long-term therapy, many do not. Without clear goals, therapy can be somewhat of an open-end process. It may be a positive experience, and you may enjoy the relationship you have with your therapist. Yet, you may feel like you are not really… getting anywhere! Goal-focused therapy lets you specify what you want to get out of therapy, allowing you and your therapist to develop a plan for getting there. Even if your goals for therapy are simply about having someone to talk to about difficult life circumstances or sorting out challenging thoughts and feelings, it is worthwhile for both you and your therapist to be clear on this. Goals also allow therapists to develop a plan that takes into account your resources and budget for therapy, ensuring we work within the financial and schedule limitations we need to. Therapists at our clinic are goal-focused and will help you both set goals, take steps towards helping you meet those goals, and continuously evaluate progress and your satisfaction with the direction of therapy.
Clinicians working at our practice primarily operate from a cognitive-behavioral theoretical orientation that places a strong emphasis on helping clients change their relationship to difficult thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Cognitive-behavioral approaches include modalities such as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Compassion Focused Therapy (CFT) and more. (For more on the difference between cognitive-behavioral approaches and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), see here!)While many of our therapists are also trained and experienced in a variety of other valuable approaches that can be brought in to support their work with you as necessary, our clinic’s emphasis on cognitive-behavioural approaches means that you can expect the therapy you receive to be practical, logical and intuitive, and provide you with clear skills, strategies, and resources that can be used in your life even outside the therapy session itself.
Now there’s a term that gets thrown around a lot! But what does it actually mean? Psychotherapy approaches that are considered evidence-based have been rigorously evaluated by researchers across many different studies and found to be effective in improving various psychological problems and mental health concerns. It is important to note that research often comes with many qualifiers including the fact that just because an approach is found to be effective in addressing one problem (i.e. a particular anxiety disorder) it does not mean that it is effective for all problems. Many additional limitations need to be made when interpreting research. At the same time, pursuing approaches that are validated by research is an important step to ensuring that you receive a high-quality therapy plan and preventing harm that can sometimes occur when receiving treatments that are not evidence-based for particular problems. For example, if you have OCD and seek out generic talk therapy or supportive counselling rather than an evidence-based approach for OCD treatment such as CBT or exposure therapy, not only are you unlikely to experience significant anxiety relief, but you can in fact experience greater problems with OCD. The therapists on our team have received a high level of training and utilize a variety of evidence-based approaches to help our clients. The specific approaches used will depend on your specific goals and needs. However, you can be sure that we’re not just applying a cookie-cutter model to everyone or just chatting with you and hoping something good happens. We’re committed to thoughtfully, responsibly, and mindfully considering how we can best help you while ensuring that our practice models and treatment plans align with the evidence base for best-practices in psychotherapy.
WARMTH, HUMOUR, AND AUTHENTICITY
As psychotherapists, we strive to provide you with not only a high standard of practice, but also a warm, engaging, and real supportive relationship. Psychotherapy needs to be more than just having someone tell you what to do - we need to be more to you than a talking self-help book! For that reason, our therapists work to develop strong working relationships with you and find that a good ‘bedside manner’ is essential to doing so. The therapists on our team are warm, sensitive, compassionate, and perhaps most importantly, real. We’ve all experienced our own life challenges and many of us have had our own real difficulties with anxiety, anger, panic, ADHD, and other mental health challenges. Our experiences do not dictate the kinds of help and therapy we offer you (“Oh you’re having panic attacks? Let me tell you what I did when I had the same experience…” unsurprisingly, this is rarely a helpful or desired approach!). However, our lived experiences do inform our understanding of some of your challenges, our passion for psychotherapy, and our commitment to helping alleviate the suffering that can come with these experiences. We offer support not from the stance of all-knowing experts, but from the position of fellow-travellers in this messy business called life, informed by our training and experience in professional helping. We also try to bring our personalities, personal qualities, and senses of humor into our therapeutic work, when we think this is helpful, likely to be appreciated, and in support of our therapeutic work with you.
People are different; an approach that works for one person will not work for all individuals. At our practice, our therapists use a person-centered approach that is catered to you and designed around your specific needs, goals, and life context. We do not take a ‘rinse-and-repeat’ or protocol-driven approach to therapy. Rather, based on your goals for counselling, we will co-develop a specific treatment plan with you, drawing on what we know as therapists and what you know as the expert on your own life and history. Practicing from a person-centered lens means as well, that therapy is about you - not us. We do our best to avoid telling you endless tales about our lives, the challenges we’ve overcome, how we experienced the same challenge at some point, and how wonderful and talented we are as therapists, yadda, yadda - you get the point! We’re happy to share information about ourselves when asked and when appropriate and we may occasionally self-disclose when it is very clear that it will be helpful to you and the therapeutic moment. However, at the end of the day, we strive to put you at the forefront of therapy and every therapeutic interaction we have. We’re not averse to challenging you or making you feel uncomfortable in the process of therapy, if this connects to your therapeutic goals and challenges. We also make ourselves completely open to any feedback or concerns that may arise for you as we work together - we can handle it, and we’ll work with you. Putting you at the forefront of therapy and adopting a person-centered approach does not mean it’s all roses and happy feelings. But it does mean that we are 100% clear that helping you is our goal, whatever form that may take.
Every clinician on the team was handpicked for their commitment to learning and their ongoing development as a clinician. Psychotherapy is an ever-evolving field, which is not surprising given that it is a practice designed to help people deal with ever-evolving problems in an ever-changing world. An ongoing commitment to learning ensures that therapists are as well-equipped as possible to help you with your particular needs and goals. At our practice, therapists participate in ongoing group consultation, receive as-needed clinical support, and pursue ongoing professional development opportunities to ensure that they are providing you with state-of-the-art psychotherapy and best practices. Psychotherapy is our passion and providing a high standard of care is our commitment.
If you have any questions about our practice or are interested in booking an initial consultation with one of our psychotherapists, please reach out below.