Mr. Ajay Sahota, MA, RCC

(He/Him)

EMDR Trainer

About Me

Welcome to my Page. My name is Ajay Sahota (he/him). I am a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) Psychotherapist and EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapist with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors (BCACC). I support people in Vancouver/Richmond and communities in the Lower Mainland area. I am a second-generation settler. I live/work on the stolen, traditional, sacred, ancestral shared homelands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. I am grateful to the ancestors who have cared for their land that I currently occupy. I am committed to being here respectfully, increasing my understanding of the impact of colonization, contributing to healing, and to take action against racism. I aim to create a safe environment for you during our counselling sessions. A place where you feel connected, safe, and free to be yourself. I honour your truth and your story, I respect your openness and vulnerability. I am excited to learn what makes you a unique person. My goal is to create a therapeutic connection based on empathy, nonjudgement, care, and kindness. Your mental health, wellness, and resiliency are my priorities. I listen, I challenge, and I empower. It is important to me that you are heard and I will listen to your truth. Where appropriate, I may challenge you with kindness so that you feel inspired to make changes towards personal growth and overcoming obstacles. Your life experiences hold wisdom. Your wisdom and strengths contribute to your healing journey and personal transformation. I welcome you to reach out to me if you have any questions or would like to explore the possibilities of working together.

Education & Experience

I hope to share some more information about myself. I am truly honored to have you learn more about me. I received a Masters Degree in Counselling Psychology from City University of Seattle and am a Registered Clinical Counsellor (RCC) with the BC Association of Clinical Counsellors (BCACC). As an RCC, I follow a code of ethics, and have met specific training requirements to provide you with the best care possible. My work experience includes working as a counsellor in a federal prison. I have helped adults impacted by their social, economic, and cultural situation in society. Each person I supported had a painful story about events that led them to prison; many had experienced trauma, victimization/oppression, and struggled with their mental health. I have also worked with a Health Authority, providing individual and group therapy to people from diverse backgrounds. By working with clients in both in-patient and outpatient settings, I have learned to help my clients apply what they learn in therapy to their daily lives. I appreciate that each person learns differently, and I hope to adapt my approach to healing to your personal needs and goals.

Professional & Volunteer Affiliations

The following core values guide my life and my work with you: acceptance, courage, freedom, self-compassion, and hope. These principles are the foundation of my moral compass. Here’s why these values are important to me. Acceptance Acceptance is important for change. This means first acknowledging hardships, struggles, and one’s self before growth and change can take place. I live this core value by acknowledging painful experiences and taking action for my own healing. Acceptance and change are difficult. In addition, my practice is built upon accepting you in as you are. This includes welcoming what makes you different. I accept others with cultural humility. Courage Taking steps to acknowledge a painful reality and work toward change takes courage. Yet we need courage and able to be vulnerable to grow. I was 15 years old when I formed my first therapeutic relationship. Accessing counselling at a young age helped overcome my fears and worries about being vulnerable to a stranger. Having a safe space to voice my personal truth led to greater self-awareness and authenticity. This could be true for you too. Freedom Freedom to decide how you want life your life and live your truth is vital for happiness. I understand that there can be many variables that can make it hard to be yourself and live freely. I celebrate freedom in general and especially having the freedom to be different. I understand how outside pressures and fear about what others think can stifle freedom. In my own life I have found that connection with like-minded and supportive people bolsters freedom. In my practice I place great value on freedom of thoughts, freedom to have different and various viewpoints and expression, and the freedom to conquer barriers to freedom. Self-Compassion When I feel nervous, a little down, or lonely, I practice self-compassion. It helps me let go of negative feelings and thoughts and instead be present in the moment. Recognizing your suffering and sending it compassion is, as is hope, at the core of my practice. I find it tremendously helpful for myself but also for clients who are struggling with everyday challenges as well as those experiencing depression, anxiety, or trauma. Practicing self-compassion helps you heal and focus on the present and the positive things in your life. Hope It is important to me as a therapist to foster a sense of hope in my clients. Hope fosters optimism and agency in your life. Hope is, in my practice, at the heart of therapy. Even though you might be uncertain, you enter counselling in the hope that you will experience a change for the better. Hope has a lot to do with the idea that where there is a will, there is a way. We may explore together how you were able to manage difficult situations before, or times when you were very much in charge to foster hope as you make your way through tough times.

Specialty Area

  • Abuse/Neglect
  • Anger Management
  • Anxiety/Panic Attacks
  • Attachment Disorders
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Depression
  • Family Issues
  • Marriage/Relationship Issues
  • Mood Disorders
  • Personality Disorders
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Race, Culture, Ethnicity Issues
  • Self-Harm
  • Spirituality
  • Stress Management
  • Suicide Risk
  • Traumatic Incident

Population Served

  • Adolescents (13-17)
  • Adults
  • Community Mental Health Center
  • Correctional Facility
  • Couples
  • Families
  • First Responders
  • Group
  • Immigrants
  • Juvenile Correctional Facility
  • LGBTQ+

Language

  • English