“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important
as what you become by achieving your goals.”
– Henry David Thoreau
Solution-Focused Coaching for Graduate Students
Let me guess. You feel some combination of: stuck, overwhelmed, and exhausted at the prospect of finishing your dissertation or thesis. You dread hearing the same question from your family, partner, and friends: "When will you be done?" You're feeling worn down and convinced that all of this is further evidence that you're not smart enough, good enough, or cut out for academia. You know that you need to change your strategy and approach, but aren't sure how.
Sound familiar? I offer solution-focused coaching to help you get unstuck. We'll work together to create an action plan and expand your coping toolkit with new organizational, emotional, and wellness strategies. As a registered social worker, this service is eligible for insurance coverage by health plans that include 'social work services'.
Solution-focused coaching is more practical and future-oriented than psychotherapy, while still attending to emotions, self-worth, and well-being. Coaching asks, "How is this affecting you now? What's the first next step toward change?" Coaching offers a safe, confidential space to work through self-doubt, imposter syndrome, and tough feelings that fuel procrastination (like shame and guilt). Solution-focused coaching seeks to uncover your skills, strengths, and capacity to overcome challenges. We'll work together to identify organizational, emotional, and wellness strategies to help you achieve your goals.
My Experience & Approach
I could rattle off my résumé here, but first I'll tell you this: I've been there, and I made it through. Graduate school has a way of tapping into deep self-doubt (actually, it's designed that way!) Like many grad students, I worried that I had been accepted to my program by mistake. I didn't have the mentorship I needed. Secretly, I feared that I wasn't smart enough to finish. I'm sharing this because I would not have wanted to see a coach who couldn't genuinely empathize with those deep fears and struggles. (Spoiler: I completed my research, and my degree!)
I draw on my professional and personal experience to create a safe, empathic, non-judgemental space for coaching clients. I'm a researcher, and won't give you a blank stare as you talk about your ethnographic study, branching questions in a survey, and the joys of transcribing focus groups. I co-authored a book, held a SSHRC award, and have designed and led multiple research studies and program evaluation projects.
I blend these experiences with my clinical skills as a social worker and my background in post-secondary student services, coaching students in learning, wellness, and coping strategies. Curious about working together? Learn more below or book a consultation.
How It Works
1. Free 10-minute Consultation
It's important to find a coach who is a good fit. I offer a free 10-minute consultation as an informal chat to explore your goals, my approach, and what it might look like to work together.
2. Book a Coaching Session
After the consultation call, we can get started! Learn more about the practical stuff (fees, location, availability) below.
The Practical Stuff
Who I Work With
I provide coaching services to adults (18+) who are residents of Ontario.
In-Person, Phone, or Video
I provide coaching in-person in Toronto, and by phone or video to Ontario residents outside Toronto. In my personal and professional experience, video can be as effective as in-person sessions. Some people prefer phone/video sessions out of personal preference, to cut down on commuting, or for accessibility reasons.
Hours & Location
My office is located near Christie Station (Bloor and Christie) in Toronto. I am available on weekdays between 9:00 - 5:00, with extended evening hours on Monday and Wednesday.
The fee is $140 per 60 minute session. Payment is due at the beginning of each session, by e-transfer, credit card, or cash. This service is eligible for insurance coverage under health plans that cover "social work services".
I require 24 hours notice for all cancellations, except in emergencies. Clients will be charged the full session fee for no-shows and sessions cancelled with less than 24 hours notice.
Please get in touch if you have questions or accommodation requests related to accessibility. If this poses a challenge, I also offer coaching by phone and video.
Frequently Asked Questions
How is coaching different from psychotherapy? How do I know what service I need?
Great question! I suggest setting up a consultation so I can learn more about your needs and goals. Coaching is a good fit if you're looking for a safe space to work through emotional and academic challenges (like procrastination, self-doubt, and perfectionism). Coaching offers accountability, practical strategies, and goal-setting related to your thesis or dissertation. Psychotherapy is a better fit if you are experiencing mental health challenges, like anxiety or depression, which are interfering with your daily functioning.
Will you read, edit, or write my dissertation?
Nope. I'm not a tutor, an editor, a graduate supervisor, or a committee member. Our work will focus on equipping you with the practical skills and strategies necessary to complete your thesis or dissertation. My work is informed by my experience as a researcher, but I don't provide advice or guidance on your methodology, ethics, data collection, etc.
I'm not a graduate student. Can we still work together?
Contact me so I can learn more about your interest in coaching and let you know if this service is a good fit.