Julie Hughes – Senior Associate Counselor
Julie Hughes is a Registered Professional Counsellor (RPC #3065) and a member in good standing with the Canadian Professional Counsellors’ Association. She is also a graduate from the University of Ottawa with a degree in Psychology and Sociology. With a passion for psychology and a career background that includes experience in community organizations, business and mental health, Julie offers a dynamic approach to her practice which focuses on individual and relationship counselling.
With an inquisitive mind, my goal as a counselor is to help identify where dysfunctional patterns or dynamics may be operating. Along with deep insight and compassion for people, I offer the opportunity to aid couples and individuals in recognizing their dynamics in order to learn new methods of communicating. I allow each person to approach the therapeutic process at their own pace and I gently help to guide my clients towards realizing a new experience for themselves.
I was led into counselling in a large part from my own personal experiences, I felt dissatisfied with the lack of fulfillment and joy that I had in my life at that time, something within me knew that there was a potential for real joy to exist within my life, and so I began to take steps to find that fulfillment and enrichment for myself. My experience and lessons in dealing with grief have also helped me to understand that the natural grieving process is unique and sacred to each individual, that it is not an experience that can be rushed, nor does it follow any linear path.
I work with individuals and couples where my hope is to extend the possibility of change to those who feel lost or like they are struggling with some aspect of their life or relationship. What you can expect during your time with me is that I may ask you to work with me in revealing some of the negative thought processes and deep rooted beliefs that may lead to behaviours that can cause mental or emotional suffering rather than to help you achieve the very thing you want. I may also ask you questions about your family of origin and some of the significant events that have happened to you in your life.
As a counsellor I like to explore the area’s where people feel stuck in their lives. The idea being that where ever there is resistance or emotional pain there is also an opportunity and a stepping stone for further growth to occur. These painful experiences can be something to teach us and to help facilitate a process of expansion and connection rather than to hurt us, or to cause us more suffering. By shifting our perception of the problem I believe we can invite openness and curiosity to a situation or a struggle as a way to heal what needs healing inside of us and in relationship.
This approach can help to remove you from a state of powerlessness, to one of being directed from the inside out and in having the ability to tap into and make use of your own personal resources. Where your biggest problems and struggles in life can be transformed into your greatest learning’s and gifts to yourselves and your relationships.
“Julie has helped me see potential in myself that I wasn’t able to see before, and she’s given me clear and practical steps to achieving that potential while being there to guide and support me through it at every step.
I noticed positive changes in my life and how I was feeling shortly after starting counselling with Julie, and that improvement continues to grow as a result of working with her. She’s professional, compassionate and genuinely cares.
Julie always listens with an open mind and an open heart and has so much valuable knowledge, experience and insight to share with me. Every session with her is a true gift.” J.C
“Julie saved our marriage. She helped my husband and I work through the crisis of infidelity in a gentle, caring and understanding way – for both partners.
Piece by piece she helped us rebuild our relationship with tools to help us better understand each other and communicate in a way we had never thought possible.” SH
“I always looked forward to my time with Julie, as she always made me feel comfortable and fully supported. She has helped me look at myself in a new and amazing way.” J.L
“Julie is a dedicated and professional practitioner, offering honest opinions with genuine understanding. Having worked with her in the past, I consider her a strong personality (worthy of offering support to those who are really going through a tough time) she is a resource when I am personally in need of help & a trusted therapist.” S.Y
“Every situation, properly perceived, becomes an opportunity to heal.” ACIM
Some of the counseling frameworks I draw from have their background in Bowen Family Systems theory, Gestalt therapy, Jungian therapy, Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP), Person-centered therapy, Emotion Focused Couples Therapy and attachment theory, as well as a Transpersonal Perspective; which involves seeing the human experience as being all aspects of the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual and how these are all interconnected to form a greater whole. In general I will use the counselling techniques that are best suited for each session and each individual or couple based on their unique set of needs.
Family Systems’ theory gives us a framework for how the early relationships we formed as children with our care-givers and siblings can contribute to the dynamics we play out in our present-day relationships, particularly with intimate partners. This way of seeing yourself and how you relate to the world offers you the chance to change your perceptions, and essentially your behaviors by empowering yourself to have the ability to chose who you want to be in the middle of a struggle. And often this choice involves doing the opposite of what your anxiety or fear-based reaction is telling you to do. With enough awareness and a willingness to do your own personal healing work, I believe that everyone is capable of having healthy, fulfilling and loving relationships.
Counselling can allow you to become an active participant in your own life and healing process. Where in a sense, we become the composers of our own lives. We can’t change the things that happen to us, but we can change how we chose to react to these events and situations.
Continuing Education & Professional Registration
- Registered Professional Counsellor – R.P.C. # 3065
- AEDP for couples: Transforming Relationships through Healing Relational Deprivation and Trauma – with David Mars (February 2019)
- Clearmind International Institute (2008) – Three Year Counsellor Training Program in Applied Transpersonal Psychology from Nonviolent Communication (NVC) Workshops & Training (2003)
- AEDP for Couples: Find Love Hidden in the Everyday: A Case that Inspires Building Bridges between AEDP and EFT with David Mars, Ph.D., May 2013
- Introduction to Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples, Vancouver Couples and Family Institute with RIchard Harrison, Ph.D. Certified EFT Therapist and Supervisor and Kristine Rea, M.A., Registered Clinical Counsellor and EFT Therapist, April 2013.
- Remembering Conversations with the Dying and Bereaved, The Vancouver School for Narative Therapy, workshop with Lorraine Hedtke MSW, LCSW, Ph.D. (March 2013)
- Healing and Treating, Trauma Addictions and Related Disorders – Workshop with David Burns (Sept 2011)
- Re-Evaluation Counselling – Training, Classes. Vancouver (2012)
- University of Ottawa – Bachelor of Social Science – Degree in Psychology / Sociology (2004)
- Mariannopolis CEGEP – Social Science Program – Major in Psychology (2000)
“Seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind about the world. What you see reflects your thinking. And your thinking but reflects your choice of what you want to see.” ACIM