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How I Work

I provide a unique blend of attachment focused, trauma informed, evidence based therapy with the healing power of horses and nature.  Decades of neuroscience tells us that the path to health and happiness is through connection with others (One example is the Harvard Study on Human Happiness).  I will help you understand, strengthen and restructure your most important relationships, leading you to a more satisfying life.  

My Qualifications

I’m Natasha Wakefield, a Registered Psychotherapist (College of Registered Psychotherapists Ontario) with a Master’s degree in Counselling and 20 years of clinical experience working with couples, families, individuals and groups. I am also a member in good standing of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association and the International Centre for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy. I work hard to ensure that all of my clients feel safe and heard to help them heal themselves and their relationships.  In my practice, I am deliberate and genuine in my creation of a safe, judgement free zone.

 

My therapeutic approach is primarily influenced by Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) where, “connection is everything”. I have deep gratitude for Sue Johnson and Emotionally Focused Therapy for not only catapulting my therapeutic skills but changing the trajectory of my life.  It fundamentally changed the way I practice therapy, but also changed how I approach relationships in my personal life, delivering deeper, more lasting connections and love.  

I have also been heavily influenced and find a lot of solace and power in Brene Brown's work.  She started off studying Happiness, which led her to study shame and shame resilience.  It turns out, those who are able to share their vulnerability with those who have earned the right to hear their story live the most wholehearted lives.  Brene can be found all over the web, has done inspirational Ted Talks, has numerous segments with Oprah, has published numerous books, and has 2 weekly podcasts.  Brene literally reminds me daily to stay awkward, brave, and kind.

I have also been heavily influenced by Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy.  This model is complex and simple at the same time.  It helps make sense of behaviour that at times seems unsensible.  Extremely simplified, it uses a Playful, Accepting, Curious and Empathic approach to explore and help understand challenging behaviours in children and parents, and create a different, lasting bond between family members.

 

Who I am

When I am not working with clients,  you can probably find me enjoying the company of my various animals or family.  I  live on a small horse farm outside of Toronto with my husband of 22 years, two teenage daughters and 3 horses, 3 dogs and 2 cats all of whom I adore!   My human and animal family are the most important things in the world to me, and I love learning with them, working with them, or just hanging out.  

I love to laugh and have fun.  I love playing games-both indoors and out.  I enjoy challenging myself to do things that make me uncomfortable; like Brene Brown says, "Choose courage over comfort".  In the last year alone, I have learned to use a jigsaw to cut patterns in wood, operate a chainsaw, and chop wood with an axe, just to name a few!
 

Matatoa

Matatoa is the name of my beloved horse farm that my family and I call home.  This farm was a dream in the making for a decade before we managed to make it a reality, to be honest it is still very much a work in progress.  The word Matatoa is a Maori word that means fearless, courageous or unafraid which are all qualities we needed to take the chance to move here, leave my position as Clinical Manager of a large Children's Mental Health Organization, and build our lives.  The Maoris are native New Zealanders, the original inhabitants of the country where I was born and to which I hold a deep affinity. Welcome to Matatoa!

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Over 20 Years experience working with Children, Youth, and Adults.

Specializing  in the treatment of :

  • Anxiety 

  • Depression

  • Family Conflict

  • Couple Conflict

  • Relationship Distress

  • Trauma and PTSD

  • Emotional Disturbance

  • Behaviour Issues

  • Self Harm

Using:

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What  can    I   expect?

Welcome to Matatoa!  I'm so excited to go on this journey with you!  

So, what's next?

First, you can either book an initial consultation using to "book now" button on this site, or drop me an email, and we'll set up a time to chat.  You can ask questions that may not be answered by this site, and give me a general sense of what you are looking for.  If we both feel like it is a good fit, you can set up a first session using the online booking system.  I am seeing people in person in my office located in my barn (if you have horse or hay allergies, in person work with me might not be a good idea!).  I have a Hepa filter, plexiglass barrier, and always have masks on hand.  I do my best to clean between each session.  Virtual sessions remain available as well via the Owl Portal.  

How quickly will it work?

This is a common question, and very hard to predict. It depends on your goals, who is attending, and what experiences have impacted your ability to achieve your goals. Most couples where neither partner has significant trauma history should expect to see significant and lasting results in only 12 sessions.  The more complicated your histories, the longer it may take.  Families may experience change more quickly.  It all depends on the complexity of what you bring, your goals, the connections that can support you along the way, and your work between sessions.

Will it be covered by my Insurance?

I am a Registered Psychotherapist, and most Insurance Providers do cover this designation.  Please check it out with your provider to avoid frustration and expense!

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