Hi! I am Maryanne Nicholls,
My story may sound a bit like your own – In my life I have seen hardship, stress, pain and disappointments, as well as joyful moments, success in surprising places, and many second chances. With the help of counselling and therapy, I have found peace and fulfillment that in my darkest moments, I never thought was possible. I hope I can help you do the same.
I started living on my own at 17, at a time when women were expected to stay at home until they were married. Even though my family objected, I wanted to be independent and a success in my own right.
I believed that if I worked hard enough, I could gain the recognition I craved.
Banking was an unlikely place for a young woman, but I found my way in and worked my way to an extremely high position, ignoring the prejudices that many people had against ladies in the workplace at the time. A few years later, just as my career was really taking off, I fell in love and got married (which meant an end to working). I tried to make myself into the woman that my husband wanted me to be, but unsurprisingly, being a homemaker was not for me. We parted ways and I started over.
After ending my marriage, I sought out a different career path, computers! This was an emerging field at the time when computer interaction with humans was quite intimate. I learned to “communicate” to computers using binary language. I went to University and studied Philosophy, then Psychology, later on I earned a Computer Science degree. Many years later my initial training in psychology came in quite useful.
I made a lot of money, but the cost was too high.
I started my own consulting business, working in Operations, then Systems Analysis, then in Project Management. I lead IT teams and entire operations for large corporations in the investment and insurance sectors. I worked long hours, swallowed my anger as others raged around me, and took on too much, too often.
Stress and anxiety ran my life.
It was like paddling alone in a canoe…I was endlessly going in circles. Due to the stress, my body began to break down. I had to temporarily stop working because I became so unwell. I lost much of my savings as well as an important relationship. Things were at an all time low, and I knew that something had to change. For me, changing my life began with seeking out counselling from a professional therapist. Seeking outside help was crucial, I tried to go it alone and it did not work.
With the support of my therapist I was able to overcome the stress and burnout that I struggled with.
I brought awareness back into my body with yoga and got in touch with my spiritual side in an unexpected way, through the different parts of my heritage. With the help of genetic testing, I discovered that along with being Scottish, French, Jewish and Russian, I also have Indigeonous roots. I found myself drawn towards Indigenous spirituality and Shamanism and I studied Shamanic healing practices.
From all of these amazing experiences, and the positive impact therapy and counselling had on my life, I decided to become a psychotherapist. I studied Psychotherapy at The Gestalt Institute of Toronto, earning my certification and becoming registered with the College of Registered Psychotherapists. I have been seeing clients now for over 15 years.
I specialize in helping clients with stress, anxiety, anxiety induced depression, trauma, PTSD, and chronic burnout (healthcare, finance, caregivers, anyone who has been overly responsible, and giving too much of themselves for too long). I am an LGBTQ Ally.
How Can Therapy and Coaching Help Your Life?
I believe you are never too old or too young to heal. You have taken that first step, by reading this. If you feel anxious, depressed, haunted by experiences from your past, and yearn for a life with more peace and less stress, then you are in the right place. I am here to support you on your healing journey. I want you to succeed, live with peace in your life, and take your power back. We will work together to hold a light on the things that stand in your way, and once you can see them clearly, they are simpler to overcome.
You Can Change.
No matter what your circumstances, you can change your life for the better. It takes dedication – a willingness to look at your shadows as well as what brightens you, and the courage to act on what you learn. You are the one who decides the pace of our sessions, we can jump head first, or wade into the waters, you get to decide.
You have the power within you to change, with focus and dedication you can learn to listen to your instincts and follow your own internal compass. You can find your path and follow it, finally, with courage and confidence.
Ready to book a complimentary consultation? Contact me today.
Maryanne is a Registered Psychotherapist (RP) and a certified Martha Beck Life Coach. Additional certifications include: Narrative Therapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Brainspotting, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT), and Trauma & Attachment Psychotherapy.
Spiritually, the philosophy that Maryanne follows is one that is focused on nature and an appreciation of the earth. Her spiritual practices have their roots in Native American Shamanism; The group leaders that mentored her have given approval for her to share the knowledge she has gained with those who have a desire to reconnect with Nature. Maryanne actively fundraises and advocates for positive change in the Indigenous community.
Professional Affiliations – Vice President and President Elect of IAAGT (International Association for the Advancement of Gestalt Therapy – formerly known as AAGT)