Welcome to Valhalla Therapy. I am Carla Duda, Valhalla Therapy's principal therapist and registered clinical counsellor. I practice both online and in-person in Nelson, BC, where I live in a blended family with my husband and sons.
I have chosen existential-humanism as my base for therapy because it speaks to what I believe matters so vitally: living a life of meaning in our finite time on earth. Often my therapy is dedicated to the examination and action required so that one can live a life more aligned with authenticity and choice in the freedom-responsibility continuum. In my life, and my life's work, I am committed to the search, to the importance of having patience with the process, to embracing mystery, and to sitting with discomfort. I am also committed to understanding emotion through a rational, sense-making lens because we make better choices for our present and future selves when are deliberative, contemplative, and consider clearly the impacts of our choices.
Growth in therapy is a psychological-emotional-behavioural process. If one sustains the work, moving through discomfort, it can lead to change. Working with a client's presenting symptoms, challenges, feelings, and concerns, together we move into a deeper understanding of what is happening, to make shifts. The essence of my work is to help clients harness their ability to heal and grow through deep examination, and concrete change, often related to wiser, more responsible choices, with a focus on one's ability to respond effectively.
I hold a Master's Degree in Counselling Psychology, a Bachelor's Degree Majoring in Literature and Minoring in Counselling and Human Development, a Certificate in Life Coaching, a Certificate in Complicated Grief Therapy, and a Certificate in Internal Family Systems Therapy. In addition I have completed numerous adjunct Internal Family Systems trainings as well as trainings in trauma, loss, and substance use/dependencies. My passion for lifelong learning, and deep curiosity about human development, means I am always studying and deepening my knowledge in the psychological sciences. I am a book lover and enjoy digesting a wealth and variety of ideas, which helps me to collect information into patterns of meaning.
Some of my most recent reads or open books include: "A Matter of Death and Life" (Irvin & Marilyn Yalom), "Rationality: What it is, Why it Seems Scarce, Why it Matters" (Steven Pinker), "The Middle Passage" (James Hollis), "The Biology of Belief" (Bruce Lipton), "Never Enough" (Judith Grisel), and "Dopamine Nation" (Anna Lembke). Never far from me is my copy of "Man's Search for Meaning" (Victor Frankl).
I also take great solace and joy from nature. I spend as much time as possible in the mountains, lakes, rivers, and ocean.
As an existential-humanist therapist, my work is relational and experiential, often working in the here and now of the therapeutic relationship or with Internal Family Systems. I combine this approach with a strong grounding in sense and meaning making, systems theory, and attachment science, offering you a blend of psychotherapy that addresses both intrapsychic and interpersonal change. I also draw strongly on emotionally focused therapy and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy.
Carla Duda, M.C. (Couns. Psych.), R.C.C. Copyright © 2022 Valhalla Therapy - All Rights Reserved.