Olivia Blander is a Canadian Certified Counsellor (CCC) with the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association. She holds a Master of Counselling Psychology from Yorkville University. From her experience as a professional musician in high-pressure, highly competitive environments, Olivia can offer a uniquely helpful perspective for any client struggling with performance-related issues, whether it be in the arts, sports or in any arena that is meaningful to them. She welcomes clients with diverse backgrounds, gender and sexual identities.
She currently offers counselling to individuals aged 13 and up who are experiencing a variety of concerns such as generalized anxiety, social anxiety, health/medical anxiety, depression, grief and loss, life transitions, work stress, lasting effects of trauma (complex, relational, medical), feelings of shame and self-doubt, challenges with perfectionism/harsh inner critics, and interpersonal struggles.
Olivia felt drawn to pursue her long-time interests in psychology and mental health after decades working as a professional cellist and music teacher. Though her musical pursuits continue to be both rewarding and challenging, she sees counselling as a way to offer others the support she has benefitted from in her own life. Inspired by the wonderful therapists she has been fortunate to work with, she feels honoured to support others through their healing process and as they seek peace, insight, growth and wellbeing.
Outside of work, Olivia enjoys time with her dog Roo, cross-country skiing, travelling, gardening, baking, reading, knitting, photography and watching baseball. For those clients who have an interest or curiosity in meditation and/or ideas from Buddhist psychology, you will find a very willing partner in Olivia – these ideas and practices have been central to her own journey.
Olivia’s priority is to create a safe, comfortable environment without judgment, to allow for a uniquely trusting relationship. In this place of trust and safety, she hopes her clients will feel the freedom to explore their experience from new perspectives, to find strategies to face life’s challenges, and to feel increasingly empowered in their own lives. Olivia strongly believes that each client is the expert in their life, and she strives to tailor her counselling approach to each person’s needs and desires.
Depending on your interests and concerns, Olivia may integrate mindfulness and self-compassion practices, and use strategies from Internal Family Systems (IFS), Compassion-Focused Therapy (CFT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). Her approach is also informed by neuroscience including current and established research about the effects of stress and trauma on our nervous system, the processes linking our brain and our body, as well as perspectives from evolutionary psychology.
Olivia offers in-person and virtual counselling on:
Looking for some support and guidance? Lynn Valley Counselling – we provide individual, couples, family, and group counselling for children, teens, and adults. Our registered therapists are trained in diversity awareness and committed to combating barriers to mental health. We’re here for you. Let’s talk.
We respectfully acknowledge that we live and work on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.