Tamara Smith: Counsellor, Therapist, & Coach

this is me:

Hi there, my name is Tamara, and I offer online counseling and walk and talk therapy services in Kelowna, BC. I am a strengths-based, person-centered and trauma informed counsellor who provides support to youth, young adults, individuals, parents and seniors who are seeking emotional support in dealing with various life challenges.

In my role as counsellor for over a decade, in private practice, as well as at a non-profit agency for several years, I have gained experience working with individuals from all walks of life: from the street entrenched homeless population to the upper-class margins of society. I have heard stories of all kinds and have held space for both the horrific and heroic aspects of peoples’ experiences. With this generalist approach I work across a wide variety of issues with specialized training in the areas of anxiety, depression, complex trauma/ptsd, substance use, self-esteem, vulnerability, shame, self-compassion, personal/spiritual growth, and grief and loss.

I believe in the healing power of storytelling and the resiliency of the human spirit. I believe in the strength, courage, and natural gifting in each one of us, and I’ve seen the fruit that comes, when walking alongside individuals who are ready and willing to grow. My great joy in my work is to see clients overcome whatever hardships they face, to once again live purposeful, joy-filled lives, while still honoring their past. Due to my personal life experiences I have a special interest in working with teen girls, leaders (of all kinds), practicing and retired athletes, university students, health care professionals, mothers, entrepreneurs, and individuals struggling with issues related to identity, spirituality or life transitions, but I am happy to welcome a wide range of cases.

I work from an integrative perspective and rely on a variety of clinical techniques, including Internal Family Systems Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Narrative Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Expressive Play Therapy, compassion and mindfulness practices, and EMDR. I am also a Certified Daring Way Facilitator™ and thrive on incorporating Brené Brown’s work on courage, vulnerability, shame and empathy into the work I do with people. I believe the principles found in Brené’s Daring Greatly™ and Rising Strong™ curriculum can literally change the world: recognizing the commonalities in shared struggles and connecting individuals to themselves and to one another.

So, who am I really? I am a small-town girl from Harrow, Ontario who once had a dream to play NCAA division-1 basketball, and with a whole lot of hard work, grit and determination realized her dream. I try my very best to be brave in my life, to live intentionally in relationships and to always choose the path of vulnerability no matter how scary or uncomfortable it can seem. I know personally the pain that comes from walking through trauma, grief and loss, as well as the challenges that arise stepping into new roles and identities such as wife and mother. I love open skies, fresh cut flowers, baby animals (of any sort), chai tea, music, laughter and real, salt of the earth kind of people. I believe in accountability and surround myself with people who I know will hold me accountable for showing up in the world as my best possible self. I have an amazing husband, a beautiful and spicy three-year old girl, and a tribe of women I am honored and grateful to do life with.

I appreciate the immense courage it takes to reach out and ask for support. I would consider it a great honor to walk alongside you as you take this step forward. You are worthy of safe, genuine care, and sacred space to be heard, seen and known. Counseling can involve hard work, but I do not believe it has to be unpleasant work. My hope is to bring a light-hearted and enjoyable dimension to your experience.

education & credentials:

I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Windsor and a Master of Arts degree in Leadership from Trinity Western University. I am a registered clinical counsellor in the province of British Columbia, committed to ongoing professional development, and accountable to a code of ethics.

Specialty Areas

Counselling & Life Coaching Athletes/Students – As a former NCAA student athlete, and college women’s basketball coach, I understand the various pressures athletes face both on and off the playing field. Whether you are struggling with your performance on the court or in the classroom, stress, anxiety, injury, body-image, identity, or the transition out of competitive sport, I value the opportunity to come alongside you and help you navigate some of these challenges.

Counselling for Working Professionals – Frontline health workers, high-stress and high-risk professionals are some of my favorites individuals to work with. Sometimes it can feel like you are carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders and running on fumes. I help busy individuals find calm amidst the chaos, prioritize self-care and practice self-compassion to help them sustain the important work they do.

Empowering Girls, Women & Mothers – As a woman myself, and mother of a young girl, I understand the many challenges that arise in the various roles we lead and stages we experience over the course of our lives. I come alongside girls, women and mothers to help them find healing and move towards reclaiming their voice and authenticity. Through empathic listening, creative engagement, and thoughtful dialogues, I support my clients in leaning courageously into the discomfort of vulnerability, and moving towards a wholehearted acceptance of themselves. My passion is to help each one embrace her own uniqueness and live from a place of freedom, authenticity and boldness.

Daring Greatly™

Daring Greatly™ is a highly experiential methodology based on the research of Dr. Brené Brown. The method was designed for work with individuals, couples, families, work teams, and organizational leaders. It can be facilitated in clinical, educational, and professional settings. During the process we explore topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. We examine the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that are holding us back and we identify the new choices and practices that will move us toward more authentic and wholehearted living. The primary focus is on developing shame resilience skills and developing daily practices that transform the way we live, love, parent, and lead.

The benefits of Daring Greatly™:

  • Learn what it means to live a wholehearted life
  • Explore topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, worthiness and trust
  • Examine thoughts and behaviors that are holding you back from living a life you want
  • Identify new choices and processes for being authentic
  • Deepen your ability for courage, compassion and connection
  • Develop a rich understanding of trust and the conditions that make trust grow
  • Increase your resilience skills
  • Get to know yourself in a new way

You’ll begin the journey of becoming the best, most authentic version of yourself.

Rising Strong™

Rising Strong™ – The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution.™ Rising Strong™ is based on the simple physics of vulnerability:  If we are brave enough, often enough, we will fall. This research-based resiliency building program explores what it takes for us to GET BACK UP after setbacks to live a more wholehearted and satisfying life.

Rising Strong™ teaches us that it is through owning our stories of struggle, big or small, that we find the resilience, strength and courage to rise strong and create a new and daring story ending.

Struggle can be our greatest call to courage and the clearest path to a wholehearted life.

services:

Online Counselling 

  • Clients have the option to do a phone or secure video session in the comfort and privacy of their own home. Please contact Tamara directly at [email protected] to set up an appointment.
  • 1 hour
  • $125 + 5%GST = $131.25

Walk & Talk Therapy 

  • Do you need to put your screens down and step away from all the noise and distraction in your life? Discover the benefits of walk and talk therapy! Let the outdoors in for a healthier outlook. Exercise, see the animals, feel the wind, hear the sounds of nature while talking to Tamara. Learn tools to lessen your stress on a daily basis. Enjoy the endorphins, the talk, the good feeling of being outside.
  • “The moment my legs began to move my thoughts began to flow.” – Henry David Thoreau
  • 1 hour
  • $140 + 5%GST

Complimentary consultation. 

Daring Greatly™ Session 

  • Daring Greatly™ is a highly experiential methodology based on the research of Dr. Brené Brown. The method was designed for work with individuals, couples, families, work teams, and organizational leaders. It can be facilitated in clinical, educational, and professional settings. During the process we explore topics such as vulnerability, courage, shame, and worthiness. We examine the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that are holding us back and we identify the new choices and practices that will move us toward more authentic and wholehearted living. The primary focus is on developing shame resilience skills and developing daily practices that transform the way we live, love, parent, and lead.
  • 1 hour
  • $125 + 5%GST = $131.25

Rising Strong™ Session 

  • The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution.™ Rising Strong™ is based on the simple physics of vulnerability: If we are brave enough, often enough, we will fall. This research-based resiliency building program explores what it takes for us to GET BACK UP after setbacks to live a more wholehearted and satisfying life.
  • Rising Strong™ teaches us that it is through owning our stories of struggle, big or small, that we find the resilience, strength and courage to rise strong and create a new and daring story ending. Struggle can be our greatest call to courage and the clearest path to a wholehearted life.
  • 1 hour
  • $125 + 5%GST = $131.25
Natalie Spooner Team Canada Olympic Gold Medalist-sports-psychology-barb-egan-alive-counselling
Testimonial

Natalie Spooner / Team Canada, Olympic Gold Medalist & Silver Medalist

The mental side of the game is extremely important. Having someone like Barb– who has been there as a player, coach, & mental health professional—is invaluable to help players perform their best on the ice, and in life!

woman-holding-mug-therapy-counselling-counsellor-kelowna-anxiety-stress-depression-student-university-life-guidance-calm-hope-tea-coffee-help-work-relationships-begin
Testimonial

Client M

The work I have done with Barb has changed my life. With her help I learned that I was not only worthy but, capable of helping myself. Walking with her has been one of the most meaningful experiences I have ever had.

Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come Alive.

– Howard Thurman

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