Nicola Thackwell RCC

Registered Clinical Counsellor


Availability: Tuesdays and Thursdays (virtual and in person), Wednesday evenings (virtual and In person)

Rates: $165 + GST

Types of sessions
Individual, In Person, Virtual

Specializations / particular populations 

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Relational trauma and attachment
  • Immigration and assimilation
  • Prenatal/Postpartum difficulties
  • Personal exploration and growth

Approaches in Therapy

  • Psychodynamic Psychotherapy
  • Mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)
  • Integrative Somatic Trauma Therapy
  • Existential Therapy

Get to Know Nicola

What drives me to do this work?

I see being a counsellor as a great privilege. I get to bear witness to the lives of my clients, and hopefully collaborate in insight building and meaning making with them. Counselling is my second career  – I worked as a fashion stylist in retail, film, and print advertising for many years before. I changed my course as I was exhausted and feeling like my life had lost purpose and connection. Since then, the daily practice of building safe and strong relationships with clients is very gratifying for me and it has brought joy and renewal into my life in many surprising ways. 

We all come to therapy for different reasons and with different goals, but I think we all harbour a desire to be truly seen, known and accepted by another. I hope to provide the space, authenticity and openness for each of my clients to experience this. 

What can clients expect from working with me?

In a first session you could expect us to really dive into what has brought you to therapy, whether it be a particular problem, or a desire for personal growth more generally. As an integrative therapist I use a blend of approaches that are tailored to your presenting concerns and therapy goals. A treatment plan could include psychoeducation, resourcing and skills building, or could be less structured and open-ended, depending on what we decide would be most helpful. I am guided by the evidence base when recommending treatment approaches.

For clients who are experiencing the consequences of trauma (acute, chronic, relational, systemic), I offer integrative somatic treatment that aims to reintegrate the brain-body connection to reduce stress and tension and increase emotional regulation.

Counselling career trajectory

I completed a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and Community Counselling at Stellenbosch University in South Africa (2015). I went on to work in various hospitals, government, and community organizations as part of my clinical experience and training. I also worked in a correctional facility preparing prerelease offenders for parole. Before coming to Canada in 2020, I ran a busy private practice in Paris, France, where I worked with the English-speaking community as well as with students and teens at The American University and The British School. I also currently provide training on psychological health and safety in the workplace. I am registered with the BCACC and various other regulatory bodies in France, South Africa and the UK. 

I am very interested in the pursuit of ethical and just societies particularly in relation to the fight against discrimination and oppression. My research on systemic racism in medical training has been published in peer reviewed academic journals. 

Who am I?

I’m a mom to a lovely toddler, which makes me feel really lucky. Being a parent has helped me know myself in a new way. I once heard this quote in a lecture, and it stuck with me: ‘’parents lend their minds to their infants’’, in that we help them know the world, and their place in it, through our connection with them. I try to remember this on the difficult days. 

I grew up in a pretty wild African place and I love to reconnect with this side of myself at night, around a campfire – just listening to the crickets and talking and laughing with family and friends.