Bart Begalka, RCC
We live our lives. We have our hopes, expectations and assumptions.
It’s a nice package. Or at least it’s manageable.
But sometimes life falls apart, everything that we count on comes crashing down through a sudden event or it slowly unravels.
Do we try to put things back together, or do we redefine our lives?
That is where I enter as a counsellor. I walk alongside you as a fellow human being, helping you sort through what life throws at you.
My Professional Bio
I have been a Registered Clinical Counsellor for over 30 years, including 11 years as the Clinical Director of a non-profit agency and 16 years as a faculty member in the Graduate Program in Counselling Psychology at Trinity Western University.
My counselling degree is an M.Ed. from Boston University.
I also have an M.A. from Seattle Pacific University in Christian Education which, after earning, I spent several years as a pastor. Additionally, I earned an Ed.D. from Simon Fraser University, and my research there focused on the praxis of critical theory in postcolonial relationships.
I was a child therapist for many years, but not only can my body not handle sitting on the floor for 8 hours a day anymore, but my interests expanded to trauma therapy and adult life transitions.
I count multicultural counselling as an area of expertise. I had the distinct honour of working with Canadian Aboriginals and in integrating Western models of counselling with non-Western ethos. I have had the privilege of working in Indonesia and India, where I trained counsellors and helped develop counsellor training programs.
My Counselling Approach
I use a Narrative approach in counselling sessions. This looks at the “story” the person is living and how this story serves them, or no longer serves them. The goal is to understand how the person sees him/herself in the world, and to “edit” their story to better fit their present circumstances.
Additionally, I draw on a foundation of Attachment Theory and psychodynamics to seek to understand the source of the story. I also draw on Relational-Cultural Theory (a feminist/multicultural approach) to help the person understand how their story is impacted by the context of relationships.
Within this framework, I bring an understanding of trauma theory. I am trained in EMDR, Observed and Experiential Integration (OEI) and Sensorimotor Therapy.
I also find dream interpretation to be impactful, and often use Short-term Solution-focused Therapy for initiating immediate changes in a person’s life.
For work with couples, I am trained in the Gottman Method Couples Therapy, and in Emotionally Focused Therapy.
My Areas of Practice
My joy in counselling is in walking with people through life transitions, whether these are set in motion by a traumatic event or through the natural course of life.
My counselling has largely focused on the following issues:
- Life changes due to accidents or natural disasters
- Post-divorce adjustments
- Career transitions, including entering the retirement years
- Pre-Retirement Counselling (click here to view my presentation Fullness of Years)
- “Non-events” – hopes that never materialized
- Faith crises
- Cultural adjustments for immigrants
- The death of a family member or friend
I provide in-person counselling in our Maple Ridge office (click here for our location), as well as virtually.
Book a 15-minute free consultation today with me.