Woodstar Counselling & Consulting

Woodstar Counselling & Consulting is owned and operated by Danielle Ritsema, MSW, RSW. We offer in-person and online counselling and psychotherapy to individuals, couples, and groups as well as educational/training opportunities and clinical supervision.

Operating as usual

❤️ Happy Valentine’s Day! ❤️

Reposted from @adoseofreminders

This is to anyone who needed this today, whether you struggle to love yourselves or whether you’re feeling alone. This is for you. You are so deserving of the same love you give to other people. ❤️

#happyvalentinesday #valentinesday2021 #selflove #selfcompassion #griefandloss #traumatherapy #socialworker #psychotherapist #mentalhealth #selfcaresunday #loveday

Beautiful ❤️ Check on your people. We all need community, even in a pandemic!

Once a week I check in on my friend Bobby. This is me outside of his place. He had a stroke before Christmas, and spent a few weeks in the hospital. Now he’s home, and going through physical therapy to regain the use of his right hand and leg, so he can get back to managing the local bike shop. He lives alone, so I stop by his place, get his mail, maybe bring him dinner, banter about politics, and make sure he has what he needs.

Each day of the week a friend or family member stops by to check on him. On the weekends he stays with his mother. When my wife was in the hospital late last year, he checked in on us. Now I’m checking in on him.

And I have to say, I’m kind of touched by how all this came together. A hodgepodge of friends and family, who’s only real connection is this one man who needs help. And all of it, well... it’s given me an example of hope in an otherwise pretty dark 11 months.

And really, it’s not big deal for me. Only about 30 minutes or so once a week. But each time I stop by, I get the impression that it’s a big deal for Bobby. And honestly, if I were in his shoes, I have to assume it would be a big deal for me, too.

And listen, I’m not posting this for a pat on the back or anything. I’m just trying to say that right now, things are tough all over. And I think it’s pretty wonderful what people are doing for him. The fact is, we need to be looking out for each other. We need to be helping our neighbors, and checking in on our friends, particularly right now.
Take care of each other.
Love your neighbor.
That’s how change is made.

❤️

How we talk about substance use matters. We can help reduce stigma by choosing our words carefully and changing the conversation around substance use. This change may seem small, but you never know who is listening and affected by the words you say.

For a list of services in Algoma, please visit: http://bit.ly/2PBDH1r

It’s #bellletstalk Day! 💙 Let’s get talking AND doing 🥰

This day has been criticized in the past because it emphasizes awareness and talking about mental health issues rather than taking action to improve the situation. But I don’t think that we should throw it away altogether. I do think that it serves a purpose. Because the more that we think about something and the more that we talk about some thing, the more likely we are to do something about it. We don’t need to just know about the mental health struggles of our children, youth, adults, and older adults -which are at an all-time high- we need ACTION. We need funds to hire more staff and to cover the educational and training costs to so that people in all fields can support other people more effectively and efficiently. We need more prevention services so that our healthcare system isn’t overwhelmed with the mental healthcare needs of our population. We do need to talk about it, this is important and should not be whispered in the shadows. But we also need to DO something about it.

So today, let’s talk about it and let’s also do something about it.
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#bellletstalk #bellletstalk2021 #mentalhealthawareness #talkaboutit #takeaction #socialworker #socialjustice #psychotherapist #traumatherapist #mentalhealthrecovery #traumahealing

The power of words and the impact of adult mentors in shaping lives ❤️

“My mother was looking for a church, so she opened to a random page in the phonebook and chose Pentecostal Tabernacle. It was a very West Indian church. Even though there were a lot of immigrants, we were one of the few African families. The civil war had stranded my father in Liberia, so my mom was raising three girls on her own. We didn’t have any family members around. And it wasn’t the nicest neighborhood, so the church became our community. The pastor was such a warm man. Pastor Herman had worked as a missionary in Liberia, so he understood our culture. He’d laugh, and sing, and clap when he preached. And he loved young people. In many churches the children are expected to fall in line. But Pastor Herman would always speak to us. And never with condescension. As a little girl I’d always been told that I talked too much. Or raised my hand too much. Or had too many ideas. Most adults would make me feel small. But not Pastor Herman. He prayed for me when I ran for student council. And he comforted me when I lost. My ideas would be given undivided attention, no matter how impossible they seemed. Pastor Herman would tell me: ‘Chara, you’re a leader. I see leadership in you.’ Can you imagine the power of hearing that? At the age of ten? He planted that seed. And there wasn’t any motive. He never pushed me into the ministry. He said: ‘Whatever God has put on your heart, pursue it.’ He told me that I could be Secretary General of the UN. We stayed in touch when I went off to college. And after graduation he encouraged me to accept a fellowship position with the Liberian government. Other people were telling me to settle down in the US, but Pastor Herman said: ‘Chara, go. You’ve been called to help back home.’ I ended up serving as one of the youngest deputy ministers. And right now I’m teaching governance and leadership to young African scholars. But there have been many times in my career when I’ve struggled to be my authentic self. I’ve heard voices from my past, saying: ‘You’re too intense. Too loud. Too much.’ But in those moments I’ve always heard another voice. The voice of Pastor Herman, saying: ‘Chara— you’re a leader. I see leadership in you.’”

Great ideas! ❤️

#selfcare #SelfCareSaturday #ymhc

❤️ #bethelight

Reposted from @lindsaybraman “Our window of tolerance refers to how much we can handle, emotionally, before shutting down or blowing up. Healthy brains in optimal circumstances have a big arch that helps us stay present to listen, learn, and grow even when difficult stuff is happening. For brains that have experienced trauma, neglect, or some mental illnesses, the learning space grows smaller and we may move into shut-down or overwhelm more quickly.

What I want to remind you today is something you probably already know intuitively: Windows of tolerance shrink during times of high-stress. Even if you had a healthy window of tolerance before 8 months of pandemic, social distancing, and political instability, it's normal to feel tears well up much easier right now or to just want to check out. If your window of tolerance was already a little smaller, you may be noticing even less flexibility.

Rather than forcing yourself to engage when you can't, give yourself permission to ask for what you need in order to stay present (like breaks or tabling a conversation until after a meal/walk/etc). Often, just giving ourselves permission to move between "ok" and "not ok" without judgement can help make just a little more space to be ok.”
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#mentalhealth #windowoftolerance #stressmanagement #socialworker #counsellor #psychotherapist #traumatherapy #selfcare #staysafe #stayhealthy

Deep breaths today ❤️

❤️

2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣0️⃣ - a year of unexpected curve balls and opportunities for growth ❤️

Here are some of my highlights:

✨ officially launching my practice (online only at first)
✨ collaborating with @drtaraguzzond on the Elevating Women’s Wellness series
✨ many adventures with my family
✨ getting the keys to my office and seeing clients in-person (finally!)
✨ living in the moment and enjoying the little things
✨ filling my practice and having to start a waitlist
✨ connecting with other healthcare providers and local business owners (we have such an amazing community!)

#bestnine2020 #happynewyear #goodbye2020 #thankfulgratefulblessed #socialworker #counsellor #psychotherapist #traumatherapy #wellness #mentalhealth #saultstemarie

#TrustTheProcess

#Truth #MentalHealthTruth #ymhc

youtube.com

How do you help a grieving friend?

“The human soul doesn’t want to be advised or fixed or saved. It simply wants to be witnessed, exactly as it is.” -Parker Palmer

youtube.com (sharing this video? using it in a training! Great! Tag or email us and let us know, and be sure to give proper attribution.) It's so hard to know what to do...

❤️

Ways to support #anxiety #depression #mentalhealthmatters #ymhc

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Let's normalize going to a counselor or therapist for mental health issues
#mentalhealth #mentalwellness #ymhc

❤️

You know how people say, “running is my therapy,” or “yoga is my therapy” or “wine is my therapy?”

Today, a loving reminder that actual therapy is really good therapy.

I’ve seen a counselor/therapist on and off in several seasons of my life & just began with a new therapist recently & was reminded once again how helpful it is, especially in stretches of loss or change or recovery.

Being alive is such a gift...AND ALSO most of us are facing some very real challenges: the end of a relationship or the struggle of addiction, the loss of a family member or a crisis of faith—and the stories that we tell ourselves about these events are crucially important for our mental health.

Our culture does a few things really well: celebration, happiness, achievement, beginnings.

What we don’t yet do well, culturally: grief, struggle, loss, endings. We don’t know what to do with our badly broken hearts, crushed expectations, searing losses, raging grief.

Therapy helps build a safe container to hold all those wiggly, scary things we’ve been taught to ignore—and you know they won’t be ignored & they’ll find their way out sometime.

How to find a good therapist: word of mouth. Ask people in your life who seem to have a decent handle on their own mental health—chances are they have a good therapist.

And asking about it is valuable in another way: it normalizes therapy, which is important.

I rolled into a brand new city and absolutely asked every woman with great blond hair where she gets her color done.

And when I realized my grief & anger were too heavy to bear on my own, I sent an email to friends whose emotional wholeness inspires me, & that’s how I found this wonderful, wise new therapist. (Also how I found a tailor & a good butcher. It works on so many levels.)

We’re not responsible for what happened to us, but we are absolutely responsible for what we do with our pain.

Therapy, like almost every good thing: hard but worth it.

Make the appointment. :)❤️

Use This Domestic Abuse Hand Signal For Help

The social isolation measures necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic are making it more difficult for those who are at risk of abuse or violence to safely reach out for help. “Signal for Help” is a simple one-handed sign someone can use on a video call. It can help a person silently show they need help and want someone to check in with them in a safe way.

https://youtu.be/AFLZEQFIm7k

Isolation can increase the risk of domestic violence at home. If this is the case for you, use this hand signal on a video call to show you need help. If som...

I was nominated by my friend Jess (@lilydots_feltballs) to do an 8 random facts post, which has been floating around on IG. But life was busy and it just kept not happening. Today I realized that I have never really done an introduction post either, so here is my 8 random facts & introduction of me 🥰

1. I am a social worker, proud mama to 3 beautiful little children, and wife to an awesome husband.
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2. I grew up in a stone house in the country surrounded by farms in southwestern Ontario. Deep down, I’m a country girl at heart 👩‍🌾
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3. I am a classically trained vocalist with my grade 8 conservatory level and growing up, I dreamed of becoming a musical theatre performer.
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4. I love taking and enjoying beautiful photos 🌅 Before having kids, my husband and I spent much of our free time canoeing, backcountry camping, and hiking. He would lead the way, while I trailed behind snapping photos of everything.
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5. I love coffee. It reminds me of my dad and it is delicious ☕️
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6. I love travelling and learning about different cultures and languages. 🌎 I’ve slowed wayyy down since having kids, but before that, I had travelled to 14 different countries and I minored in Spanish in my undergraduate degree.
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7. I have worked in a variety of social service and health care settings over the years. Between my undergrad and masters degrees, however, I worked at a major accounting firm. I’m a fan of spreadsheets 🤷‍♀️
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8. My favourite colours are green and purple. 💚💜 Green reminds me of the outdoors and when I wear it, it brings out the green in my eyes.
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#8randomfacts #socialworker #mompreneur #psychotherapist #counsellor #countrygirl #huroncountyproud #singer #amateurphotographer #coffeelove #adventureseeker #writingmystory

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Ways to set boundaries in your life:
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1️⃣I’m not able to commit to that right now.
2️⃣I can’t right now, but would be open to you asking me again in 6 months.
3️⃣Block time in your calendar for self care and DO not delete it.
4️⃣ Have no regrets and do not apologize for prioritizing yourself.
5️⃣ Do not apologize for prioritizing yourself (and repeat it in your head again and again whenever that guilty conscience tries to sabotage you!)
〰️〰️〰️〰️〰️〰️〰️〰️〰️

Parenting is HARD. But it’s even harder if you’re feeling overwhelmed with your own thoughts and feelings!

It’s difficult to be a good parent when you’re struggling with your own emotions.

How we talk to kids about emotions has an impact on their social, academic, and psychological well being beyond the childhood years. That said, before we can teach kids to regulate their emotions, we must learn to manage our own emotions first.

Read about the five things to keep in mind to help you deal with your emotions: https://bit.ly/3cYvZMd

Looking for counselling? Unfortunately at this time my schedule is full, but I hope to have availability again soon. If you are interested in accessing counselling with me, please visit my website (woodstarcounselling.ca) and click on “book an appointment”. Create an account with my online platform, then I will send you some forms to complete. After the forms are complete, I will add you to my wait list. I hope to have some spots open up in 4-6 weeks, but stay tuned for more updates. Thank you for an amazing first 6 months! 🥰 ❤️

cbc.ca

The benefit of 'awe walks': How getting into nature could help your mental health

Nature can have hugely positive effects on your mental health, but intentionally being mindful to what you see, hear, smell, and touch while you are outside is even more impactful. Spend some time outside in awe! ❤️🌲

cbc.ca In this week's issue of our environment newsletter, we look at the concept of 'awe walks,' the countries with the most tree cover and why Nova Scotia wants to deliberately poison one of its lakes.

❤️🧡💛💚💙💜

Standing with you this month, and always. ❤🧡💛💚💙💜 🌈

#pail #pregnancyandinfantlossawareness #pregnancyandinfantloss

Today is Orange Shirt Day 🧡
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Today is a day for awareness of the inter-generational impacts of Indian Residential Schools. A day to reflect on our collective responsibility to take steps towards reconciliation. A day to listen to the stories of survivors and their families, and to remember those who didn't make it 🧡
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It's an opportunity for our children to develop compassion, empathy and resilience as they learn about a traumatic part of our past, to ensure that it is never repeated 🧡
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An orange shirt because of six year old Phyllis Webstad who was proud to wear the orange shirt her grandmother bought her for her first day at St. Joseph's School in Williams Lake B.C. On arrival at the Mission, however, she and all the other children were stripped of their clothes, and Phyllis never saw that orange shirt again. "The colour orange has always reminded me of that and how my feelings didn't matter, how no one cared and how I felt like I was worth nothing," she said. "All of us little children were crying and no one cared."

Today is a reminder that "Every Child Matters" 🧡
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Reposted from @qualiacbt
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#orangeshirtday #everychildmatters #buildcommunity #mentalhealth #OrangeShirtDay2020

Great new option for Covid-19 testing here in the Soo 😷❤️

A second location to get tested for COVID-19 is available in Sault Ste. Marie.

658 Second Line W. (next to Westend walk-in clinic)
Monday – Friday
9 am – 3 pm

Drop-ins accepted.

Staffed by physician(s) who will determine if a swab is needed.

👏👏👏👏👏

Thank you to local health care providers who have pulled together to provide this service to our community.

✅ Please be patient and respectful. If you are waiting in a line, follow clinic instructions, wear a mask, and stay 2 metres apart from others.

✅ Remember that testing is not appropriate for everyone, and will be prioritized for people who have symptoms.

✅ If you have symptoms and go for testing, please go straight home after your test, and stay home until test results are available.

COVID-19 test results can be checked online: https://bit.ly/3kQX4Ua

Want your business to be the top-listed Clinic in Sault Sainte Marie?

Click here to claim your Sponsored Listing.

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Hi. I’m Danielle.

Telephone

Website

woodstarcounselling.ca

Address


75 Elgin Street
Sault Sainte Marie, ON
P6A2Y4
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*Please note - *This page is for information and education and is not monitored 24/7. It is not a crisis service. If you are in crisis please call Crisis Services Canada at 1.833.456.4566 or Text 45645

Iris Counseling Iris Counseling
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Iris Bertrand

Anna Gartshore, MSW, RSW Anna Gartshore, MSW, RSW
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Triple P Algoma Triple P Algoma
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Brenna Lanktree and Associates, Inc. Brenna Lanktree and Associates, Inc.
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Mind Matters Counselling Mind Matters Counselling
Community Based
Sault Sainte Marie, P6A 6M8

Change description later.

Sheila Gallagher Paluzzi MSW, RSW Sheila Gallagher Paluzzi MSW, RSW
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Offering therapy and workshops for individuals, couples and families. Also creator of the ReLOVEution online course. #bethereloveution

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