Photo of Nicole Penak, MSW, RSW, PhD
Dr. Nicole Penak, MSW, RSW, PhD
Social Worker, Psychotherapist

Hi I’m Nicole.  I’m a psychotherapist in the downtown Toronto area, with over 13 years of counselling experience.

My practice is all about healing, through all the love, fear, pain, beauty, messy, magic, and complicatedness of life. My approach is deeply relational, compassionate, creative, trauma & structurally informed.

I’ve come to see that North American society is organized in a way that isolates people, cutting us off from family, community, creation, even from a full sense of ourselves. This disconnection impacts us all in different ways, and has pressed me to pursue wholeness in therapy, where all aspects of our realities can be taken up, nurtured, and addressed in the space. Where thoughts and feelings are connected to shifts in our environments, movements in our communities, and conversations about colonialism, capitalism, or cis-heteropatriarchy. The counselling relationship is too significant and vulnerable a space to feel nervous bringing up the impacts of racism, or systemic oppression to your counsellor for example, and yet I know this is a common experience for folks seeking out supportive services.

As a mixed race therapist, with extensive experience within diverse communities & practice settings, I’ve supported folks like you, through life’s incredible joys & hardships. From grief & loss, trauma, relationships, family conflict, life transitions, student life, parenthood, self discovery, depression, anxiety, & chronic and acute illness. As well as supporting other helpers & community workers to continue to care for themselves and others.

I believe healing happens in relation, and I am dedicated to nurturing an authentic, safe, and compassionate space, where we can build trust, care, creativity, even humour in the counselling process.  When relevant or requested we can also draw on specific counselling approaches or tools, from Narrative Therapy, Emotion-Focused Therapy (EFT), Existential,  Systems, Psychodynamic and Liberation Psychology, Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT), to cultural and creative, to support the therapeutic process.

Finding the right counsellor can be tough, I know.  Its more than just picking a name off a list. Forgive me for the cheesy simile, but finding the right therapist is a lot like searching out a great pair of shoes, you cant know they fit just by looking at them, you need to try them on and walk around a little. So please contact me if you want to chat, ask some questions, & explore whether we could be a good therapeutic match.  I look forward to hearing from you.

Nicole is a member in good standing of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (registration # 818432), the Ontario Association of Social Workers (membership #17299), and the Canadian Association for Social Work Education. Licensed to practice psychotherapy as per the Regulated Health Professions Act and Social Work and Social Service Work Act of Ontario. Nicole has a Masters of Social Work (MSW) from York University, and a PhD from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of Toronto.

Services Provided: Psychotherapy, Clinical Supervision, Case Consultation.

Book a Free 15 Minute Consult with Nicole today, here at this link.