Q. Where are you located?
A. Guidepost Counselling and Consultation is located in the Atrium building, at 800 Yates St in downtown Victoria. For more details, please see the 'Location' page, or call 778-678-7652.
Q. How do I book an appointment or get more information?
A. You can book an appointment or get more information by calling (778-678-7652) or by completing the contact form on this website, on the Contact page. You can also receive a free telephone consultation by calling or completing the contact form. Elizabeth will return your call or message within 24 hours, usually the same day, Monday to Friday. (If you have not heard back within 24 hours, please call, in case the website is experiencing technical problems.)
Q. When are you available to see clients?
A. Available session times include late mornings, afternoons and early evenings, Monday through Friday.
Q. What can I expect during my appointment?
A. In your initial session, you will be asked to fill out a few forms, to provide Elizabeth with some information about you and what you'd like to gain from counselling. Elizabeth will review this information with you, and will answer any questions you may have about counselling or about her approach and methods. The rest of the session and the following sessions will be spent in exploring the challenges that have brought you to counselling.
You may be asked to engage in reflection or be given a small task between sessions, and each session will then be focused on the challenges that brought you to counselling.
Q. How long will my session be?
A. Your counselling session will be 50 minutes long. Because the session begins at the start of the booked appointment time, you will receive the most benefit by arriving on time.
60 or 75 minute sessions are also an option for those who prefer more time; the session rate is adjusted accordingly.
Q. How many sessions will I need?
A. Every person and every set of circumstances is different, but you can expect to attend for at least 3 sessions, and 10-12 sessions is fairly common. Some situations will require more sessions. Clients who would like to resolve multiple challenges, or who would like to focus on personal growth may choose to work with a counsellor for an extended period of time.
Clients generally attend once a week, ideally, but may attend every other week if needed. Once therapy is complete, follow-up or 'check in' sessions can be arranged, and if a new challenge arises, further counselling is available.
Q. If I've booked an appointment and something comes up, how do I cancel the appointment?
A. Call 778-678-7652 (or text, if you prefer - please include your name in the text) to cancel all appointments. If you are able to cancel with at least 24 business hours notice, you will not be charged for the session. If you are unable to provide at least 24 business hours notice, the full session fee will apply. Please note, 24 business hours notice for Monday appointments (or after long weekends or holidays) is before the appointment time on the previous Friday or applicable business day.
Q. What is a Registered Clinical Counsellor, and why does it matter if my counsellor is Registered?
A. Registered Clinical Counsellors (RCCs) are members of a professional counselling organization that requires its members to meet specific, extensive criteria in the area of counsellor education and training. Its members must also adhere to a strict code of ethics in their work with clients. A counsellor with an RCC (or CCC) designation meets, and commits to continuing to meet, the highest standards for their profession. A counsellor without an RCC (or CCC) designation will not likely meet these standards for training and ethical behaviour.
Q. What if I want to bring a friend or family member with me to my first session?
A. Please feel free to bring someone with you for support if you'd like. Elizabeth's office has a very comfortable waiting area, and your friend or family member is welcome to wait there during your session.
Q. Is everything I tell you kept private?
A. What you share with Elizabeth within the counselling session will be kept private and confidential; this is the only way most people can feel comfortable sharing their experiences and feelings openly and honestly. There are three legal limits to confidentiality, however:
1) If a client discloses that a child is being, or is about to be, abused or neglected, the counsellor is required to inform the authorities.
2) If a client discloses plans to harm themselves or others, the counsellor is required to act to prevent this harm, including but not limited to informing the authorities.
3) If a client becomes involved in legal proceedings, their counsellor may be served with a subpoena and be required to provide the client's file to the court.