Author Archives: Victoria Lorient-Faibish

Recipe to be Totally Contented!

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on September 27, 2011 2:30 pm

My world at work is always more satisfying,  the more my world at home is satisfying. This is not as easy as it may appear to be.  So many therapists tend to make their practice the brightest penny in the bunch when it comes to their lives.  I contend that this leads to burn out pretty quickly. 

As a busy private practitioner for nearly 20 years, I am a fierce walk your talk person in favour of having a super, deliciously rich private life. Filled with good like minded friends, satisfying hobbies, a fun social calendar and personal spirituality… whatever it may be. 

This has been my recipe for feeling a deep contentedness in my professional life.  I am always happy to get back to work because my personal life has filled me.  I work a 4 day week and have done so for years. Initially I did this schedule to help me with my stress levels a while back but even though that quickly got under control I decided to keep the 4 day week.  It just made so much sense to me.

I now try and pack my Mondays to Thursdays and I feel very satisfied that at work, I am making a difference for my clients.  They can feel my enthusiasm and my clarity. And I am always so happy to know my Friday is off to pursue my personal life once again for 3 days.

This is my recipe for contentedness. What is yours?

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Real or Fake?

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on August 23, 2011 1:14 pm

There is something so fantastic about the crisper nights. I actually slept with our comforter and all the windows open last night. It was delicious to have the real air coming in as opposed to the fake air conditioned air. It got me thinking. Real versus fake.  Is it always better? Better yes. Easier… definitely not!

Being my authentic self-my real self is not always easy. Whether we are subscribers to the old adage “The truth shall set you free” or not…..There are some real consequences to always telling the truth. This was so evident recently when an ex client of mine wanted me to write a letter on his behalf because he was taking his former employer to court for a variety of stress related issues.

I had not seen this client in 7 months and when he was my client he took very unkindly to any sort of boundary setting on my part.  When I said no… he yelled and he threatened. When his employer said no he yelled and he threw things. When his mother said no he got violent.   That is, the way he coped and lived his truth landed him in a variety of self injuring experiences. It also meant that he could be very harmful to his family and others. I quickly realized that this person was beyond my scope and I needed to refer him to other professionals.  This was not received well to say the least! 

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

If You Can’t Take a Vacation….

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on August 12, 2011 12:00 pm

I found that this summer due to my husband’s schedule going on a family vacation will not be possible.   My disappointment has affected me. The reality is that I can go on vacation alone but I am really sad that it cannot be with him. And so here is where I begin to apply my 90/10 rule.  The event that disappoints me is the 10% of the issue. How I react is 90% of the issue.   At another time I might have sulked or fought or even hurled passive aggressive badgering comments at him in order to get my way.  I am not proud of my past reactions…. Although I do have compassion for myself because I know that when you know better… you do better. This kind of reactivity is purely inherited from my family culture and let me tell you we were a family of reactors!

The reality is that we really have control over very little. We don’t have control over outcomes, other people, timing or much of anything. But alas we do have control over our reactions, thoughts and attitudes. The truth is even those require a world of discipline. For me to stay away from negative and petty reactions I need to do my work. I need to meditate on what is really important versus what I think is important. In this case, I meditate of the fact that life is short and even though I cannot have my partner with me on my leisure time… I have leisure time and thank goodness, we are healthy, in love and all is well.

I have decided to be creative.  I take days off during the week here and there. My husband joins me at the beach on an occasional day off.  We go to dinner at different restaurants from different countries and we play act that we have gone on a trip to that country.  It is all very satisfying and brings us closer as a couple.  I get to feel refreshed and he does not have to feel bad that the summer may have been a bust due to his work schedule or my reactions. A win/win I would say.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Embrace the Learning Curve

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on July 15, 2011 12:00 pm

I work out with a trainer and I am always amazed when I am able to go beyond where I thought I had reached my limit.  My trainer says I am not at my limit at all; I am simply in a muscle confusion phase and my body is learning new cell and muscle memory.  Even though I often look at him like he is trying to trick me, I later find out that he is exactly right. The movement or activity that once confounded and exhausted me soon becomes so easy and like I have been doing it for so long. It becomes a part of me so to speak.   I am thrilled because my body is now doing things it seemingly could not do before.  My boredom, my plateau and my rut is broken and I am renewed!

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Life is talking to you…Are you listening??

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on July 8, 2011 12:00 pm

I recently reluctantly had to cancel a couple of days work due to illness.  I hated doing that as a self employed person but alas the body was not able to continue. I had a bronchial infection that left me flat on my you know what!

Life has a way of making its point known whether we like it or not. Clearly I had been pushing myself too hard and something had to give.   When going about your life there can be a tendency to go into the auto pilot mode. In this mode we tend to not pay attention to our needs, sign and symptoms that are dialoguing with us and trying make us stop and listen.

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

The Relaxation Response

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on June 10, 2011 2:30 pm

Today I arrived home after seeing five back to back clients and I realized my nervous system was in need of some deep relaxation because when the phone rang and I just about jumped out of my skin!
And here is where we all need to walk out talk. I meditate and visualize regularly but when I miss a few days I really feel it!

There is a need to turn on the “Relaxation Response” regularly. This essentially means that the parasympathetic nervous system is turned on.  When this nervous system is on line, the body then begins to deepen the breathing, strengthen the immune system, clear the mind, release tension in the muscles and increase ease of thoughts.   The brain is signaling to the rest of the body that the war is over and it is peace time. The corresponding biochemicals begin to emit and the body starts to let down and relax.

Not all relaxation exercises work for everyone. But here is a universal one that may assist to turn on your  relaxation response.

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Wow What A Conference!!

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on May 31, 2011 10:40 am

I just got back from presenting at the CCPA 2011 national conference!  I have to tell you, it was a magnificent experience that left me so renewed and enthused!

I presented on a topic that I am passionate about. As Holistic Psychotherapist I am always mindful that we are more than our brain and our emotions. We are bodies and souls as well.

My presentation was called “Somatic Focusing, Chakra Meditation, Visualization: Tools for Trauma Unwinding.”  So interesting for me to present this material to my peers.  I am used to presenting to the general public or to different professionals like nutritionists. But when it is your own peer group it can feel a tad intimidating!  Especially since my main message was that when working with trauma, the talking head just does not do it. That is, when we experience trauma our talking centre shuts down. So when addressing trauma there is evidence that supports the notion that the best way to tackle trauma is through a very slow process of visuals, body talk, sensing into the body and closed eyes work. This way the reptilian brain, where we registered the trauma memory and our most primitive brain area is communicated with more effectively.

I also demonstrated a technique called Somatic Focusing that originated from Eugene Gendlin’s work and Peter Levine’s work on trauma. Both speak of trauma unwinding and refer to the trauma being held and frozen in the nervous system as opposed to in the story or the event.

All in all the experience of being at the conference has been a professional highlight for me. The networking and trading of ideas has been so invigorating and inspiring. The different seminars were of such a high caliber that it made me realize how special it is to be accepted to present at one these conferences.

Being therapists, usually means we are alone with our clients all day and we cannot talk to anyone about our different specific success and dilemmas so that we do not violate privacy or ethics. Being at a conference of peers that understand this and live this,  is something that I will always want and need more of.

So self care for the counsellor includes attending events that are networking and sharing based so that loneliness and isolation can be lessened.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Explore New Areas

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on May 13, 2011 9:06 am

In order to maintain an excited and fresh perspective on the work you do make sure that you find interesting new books to read or new interesting seminars to take. This is the kind of thing that really stimulates newness and enthusiasm for the work you do currently.

Whenever I feel a bit bored and rather flat in my life I know for sure that I have not taken the time to become excited with a new technique, concept or area of knowledge.  Once I do explore something new I feel a real sense of renewal and a percolation within me.

Clients feel our vibe. They sense when we are bored and they have a knowing when we are not present.  They also sense when we are excited by our career and our work in general.

As a holistic minded person, I take into to account the mind, the body and the soul. I meditate often on the present moment and what it is offering me.
When I meditate I am contemplating the right here and the right now. This mitigates anxiety and depressive feelings that may be lingering about.

I know that hugging a tree may sound hokey but I often will move toward nature and being in natural surroundings as a way to feel renewal and a sense of exploration. During this past weekend I found myself drawn toward going for a long walk/hike in a nearby park in which I focused all of my attention on the new spring nature around me including the brilliant verdant green that was permeating the trees and the grass. The birds seemed to be so excited that the weather was finally a bit warmer. I found myself sitting and observing a mother bird flying back and forth feeding her chicks. Paying close attention to the sounds, the sites and the senses made my whole being wake up and feel alive.

This is what we need periodically to feel that we can cut through the quotidian potential hum drum of routine.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA


Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on May 3, 2011 9:48 am

Are you hungry, angry, lonely or tired? (Or all of the above?) If yes, know that it is time to halt; I mean stop everything as these are the beginning stages of burnout.

Watching out for the signs of burn out is so important to make sure that our job is one that is still enjoyable and helpful to our beloved clients.

Some signs you are starting to burn out and in need of HALTing everything are:

  • You begin to experience your empathy levels going down.  Or in your mind you hear yourself saying “Could you get the point!” when working with your client.
  • You start sharing your own personal story in a way that is not helpful to your client. Boundaries are starting to fade as you are not cognizant that this is going on.
  • Being late often because you are going overtime with the clients.
  • You are exhausted at the end of your day in a way that does not seem to be solved by a good night’s sleep.
  • You are losing passion and you are bored frequently.
  • You have not done any personal work in a while and you are losing touch with self.
  • You bring home your clients problems in your mind.
  • You feel resentful of your clients.
  • You are happy when they cancel.

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*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

Healer Heal Thyself

Posted by: Victoria Lorient-Faibish on April 15, 2011 9:48 am

Hello, my name is Victoria Lorient-Faibish MEd, CCC. I am a holistic Psychotherapist and I have been in my field, since 1990. In addition to my Masters degree in Educational Psychology, I have over 8 years of training in eastern philosophy body-centred modalities including, Polarity Therapy, Reiki, and Craniosacral. My passion for the holistic way has evolved into both a unique and powerful, transformational therapy, in which people of all walks of life successfully come to change, empower, recreate, and heal their lives. I provides brief and long-term Transformational Holistic Psychotherapy, Motivation and Inspiration, Life Coaching, Parts Integration Therapy, Meditation and Stress-Reduction, New Decision Therapy™, Couples Therapy, Polarity Therapy, Reiki, and Trauma Therapy.

Through the years I have learned that the most important thing to my practice is me! If I am not ok, my practice is not ok. I can only take my clients as far as I myself am willing to go. I need to be the example and really walk my talk. I have found that clients sense the therapist’s vitality or lack thereof.

One of the keys to maintaining a strong vitality is to set boundaries well. I find I am at my best when I am working with clear boundaries. For example establishing clear cancellation policies, staying within the timeframe set up, always working within a session context for all processing, and always getting paid for what I do are all examples of clear boundaries.

We can’t do everything for everyone! As therapists I feel we are not here to save our clients but to empathize, facilitate and to cultivate an authentic presence in which the client feels heard and seen and space to self transform. Preventing burn out is the name of the game since we will be doing this for a long time. Ideally we want to remain fresh and enthused all week long.

This brings me to taking time off. This is crucial. Having a life that is satisfying outside the office is so important. If during my time off I include a portion of time that is dedicated to doing exactly what I like to do, I am much more apt to arrive Monday morning in my office in a great mood ready to tackle the problems I am about to become exposed to.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA