Maureen Willis, Rockyshores Counselling
I have the wonderful opportunity to meet and photograph all kinds of amazing human beings.
While they are in studio, it is a privilege to learn about their businesses, or the work they do, their family, their interests, and hear a little bit about their story.
Maureen Willis, launched, Rockyshores Counselling, providing virtual counselling and therapy for adults and youth.
Maureen is a Registered Psychotherapist with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario. Maureen practices virtual counselling under the supervision of a Registered Psychotherapist. She completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) at Carleton University, followed by a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology at Yorkville University.
In addition, Maureen is also certified in Clinical Trauma Specialist, ASIST Suicide Prevention Training Program, and Crisis training and Indigenous Cultural Competency Training.
Maureen enjoys working with youths and adults who have mental health challenges.
What inspired you to get into therapy?
In High School one of my favourite classes was Psychology. I decided to go to University and major in Psychology, I always found the subject fascinating. My goal was to become a Psychologist and work with children. After University, life happened, I got married, had kids and focused on my family. My family was a priority at this time, not a career. After my divorce and and a new start in life, my thoughts went back to helping children, adolescents, adults and my previous dream. I decided I did not want to live with the regret of not pursuing my dream career. I would try it and start taking courses and if I did not finish then at least I tried. I had wonderful support from my family and a great friend of mine giving me that extra push to start my Master's Degree in Counselling Psychology. As soon as I started I loved it, it was not easy, I worked full time and went to school full time. My parents and children were an amazing support for me and have helped accomplish my dream. Now here I am, as a registered psychotherapist.
How have your priorities changed from when you first started?
My priorities have not changed. My priority will always be my family. Working virtually from home allows me more flexibility. My specialty has changed however, I am currently taking more courses to become a trauma specialist as well as specializing in betrayal trauma.
Knowing what you know now, is there anything you would have done differently when you were first starting out?
I would not change anything at this point. My life experiences have brought me here and it makes me a better counsellor.
What challenges did you have to overcome at the beginning of your journey?
I had to overcome my own fears; fears of not being able to work full time while going to school as well as fear of not being able to do the schoolwork. What helped me change my mindset was that all I had to do was try. Whatever happened, happened, but I had to at least give myself a chance. Once I started, I knew I would be able to accomplish anything I set my mind to.
How do you define success?
Happiness. Happiness is the key to success. I think it is important to enjoy your job/career and like what you are doing, people spend so much of their lives at work. In social conversations the question is 'What do you do for a living?' I think the more important question is 'What do you do that makes you happy?
What is keeping you up at night?
The amount of young people that have suicidal ideations. Talking about suicide does not increase the risk. Parents and friends should bring up the conversations if they have concerns. It is also important that people know they can reach out when they are struggling. It's ok to ask for help.
Describe some of your key routines or habits that you have to keep you going?
Self-care. I take my weekends for me, doing something that I enjoy. Spending time with people I love. In the summer I spend as much time on Georgian Bay as possible.
What are some hard choices that you had to make to get where you are?
A very hard choice was the decision to go back to school while also working full time.
What book and/or podcast are you enjoying right now?
I am currently reading More Than Just a Body, and I love reading anything by Brené Brown.
What is one thing people would never guess about you?
I don't think people know my drive, I can be a procrastinator but if I put my mind to it, I can do anything. I'm conquering one goal at a time.
What is one thing you wish people knew about you?
What my kids and I have been through to get here. I put in a lot of hard work to get here and am continuing to work hard to make my private practice a reality in order to help people that are having challenges or want to work on themselves.
Maureen is currently accepting new clients.
Where can you find Maureen
- In the News: "I think anyone can learn something from counselling"
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