Should you see a counsellor?
Kristiina Vuorensivu is the Supervisor of Columbia’s Counselling Services team. She has a Master’s in Counselling Psychology and she’s a registered clinical counsellor in the province of BC with over fifteen years experience in agency work and four years in private practice. She’s also taught counselling within a college setting. Kristiina is passionate about student mental health and shares five reasons you should consider booking an appointment with the Counselling Services team, even if you’re not ‘struggling’ at the moment.
A counsellor can help you pre-plan for an all-around successful semester.
Seeing the close connection between your mental health, your overall well-being, and your academic success is vital. The World Health Organization defines mental health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Mental health really matters!
Here at Columbia we want to create a culture of openness around mental health. We’re also here to encourage good self-care and early intervention strategies. A counsellor can help you to set priorities and balance your life so you don’t feel overwhelmed. And the very best time to do this is at the start of the semester, before you experience any distressing symptoms.
A counsellor can help you with any challenge you face – big or small.
However big or small you may believe your issue is, a counsellor will get to know you and work through your struggles with you step by step. If it matters to you, if it’s something that disrupts your well-being or your life in any way, then it matters to us! Your issue could be related to school, relationships, substance use, or a coping mechanism you’re not sure is healthy. Whatever it is, we will walk through it with you step-by-step.
A counsellor makes space for you to reflect on your day-to-day life in a way no one else can.
Processing the daily stuff of life isn’t always easy. We replay conversations over in our heads, we wish we had done things differently, we can’t always figure ourselves out. A counsellor is trained to help you reflect on your everyday moments and help you consider different perspectives. Bonus: counselling sessions are 100% confidential, so you can confide in a counsellor without the pressure of people’s opinions and input.
A counsellor can help you explore your faith questions.
Columbia’s counsellors are equipped to walk alongside you on your unique spiritual journey. Coming to college can be hard: it’s a time to make sense of what we really believe and think through all the influences that have come before. When you’re on your own for the first time, “where is God in this?” can be a big question. You may also be grappling with questions about your future direction or career. We will not give you pat answers or quick solutions, and we won’t trivialize your questions. Rather we’ll walk beside you and use counselling tools to encourage a deeper exploration process.
A counsellor can help you find hope.
If you’re going through what feel like impossible circumstances, or facing a challenging mental health diagnosis, our team is here for you. It might ease your mind that know that here at Columbia, we’ve seen every type of diagnosis you could wonder about! There’s no shame here. Everyone experiences a range of distressing emotions and uncomfortable feelings, so you’re not alone. You and your counsellor will work together to develop a self-care plan and to manage whatever mental health issue you face. A counsellor’s role is to help you find the courage and resourcefulness you need. We believe you can gain the tools to manage your mental health well if you make it a priority and are willing to allow others to help you!
To book an appointment:
Columbia’s Counselling Services are available to all current Columbia students for a nominal charge per session. Get started by submitting the intake form.
*If you or someone you know is facing a mental health emergency, including imminent suicide, you can call 911 anytime or the Mental Health Crisis Line directly at: 310-6789