Kimberly Sogge PhD CPsych

I am a registered doctoral trained psychologist with a special interest in Third Wave psychological interventions, Compassion Focused Therapy, and Mindfulness based interventions for promoting well-being and human growth. In therapy I intend to offer presence and skills which empower people to reconnect with Self Leadership, to challenge stuck patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving, to understand and dissolve inner barriers to peace, and to take action on living a life of vitality.

I intend that my work with you comes from a place of integrity and my own embodied, authentic Self leadership as a clinician.  As a practitioner with over 30 years of experience in mental health and psychology, I value living what I teach.  I have been exceedingly fortunate to train with some of the best teachers of psychotherapy, from my mindfulness training in the Behavioral Health residency at the University of Texas at Austin, to the health psychology team at the Alberta Children’s Hospital, to supervision and mentoring from leading ACT, Compassion Focused, CBT and Mindfulness teachers across North America.  As a Registered Clinical Health Psychologist  I intend to put my contemplative practice and doctoral level psychological training in the service of the inner healing and Self leadership of my clients, and in the service of developing the next generation of wise, values-led clinicians in Third Wave Psychology, Compassion Focused Therapy and Mindfulness Based therapies.

How I Left Management and Research for Clinical Work

In 2006 I was working as an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at the Texas A&M College of Medicine.  I was writing grants, academic papers, and leading professional conferences applying the science of psychology to improving teaching and assessment of teamwork, clinical coordination, clinical skills, and clinical communication in the profession of medicine. I was the first Director of Research for their 11 million dollar state of the art Medical Simulation Center. They were exciting times, and my research nerd/statistics mind loved the thrill. However as I got deeper into research and saw the thrilling pathways ahead, a small voice in my heart said “you know you are a clinician at heart”. As I encourage my clients to do, I listened to my own inner wisdom, and decided to pivot from a promising and prestigious career as an academic to working in clinical contexts.

There were still a few detours to make.  As with many of my clients, I have a passion for not just 1:1 work, but for creating contexts that allow greater access and greater support for the delivery of high quality mental health services.  I worked in community and academic teaching hospitals including Alberta Children’s Hospital and Peterborough Regional Hospital, and later as a professional practice lead for the professional psychologists in all the clinics at the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group.  In 2010 I left my work as Chief of  Psychology Professional Practice at the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group in Ottawa to focus entirely on my first love: clinical work supporting others in psychological growth.  I always intended to have a quiet solo practice as a clinical health psychologist focused on mindfulness and compassion within the third wave of psychotherapy.  However between 2007 and 2017 wonderful colleagues kept reaching out to join me, and our combined efforts began creating change for many people. By 2017 our group practice had grown to the point where I decided I needed to step out of the way in order to let Third Wave, Compassion Focused and Mindfulness Inspired clinical work in Ottawa grow and develop further. In 2018 I founded the Ottawa River Psychology to support the flourishing of outstanding psychologistswho shared my values and passion for Third Wave Psychology. In 2022 following the splintering of many psychologists into private solo online only practices, Ottawa River Psychology differentiated into the twin practices of Ottawa River Psychology (myself and supervised practice psychologists) and Ottawa River Integrative Mental Health (regulated health care professionals from a variety of professions including but not limited to psychotherapy, social work, counselling and other regulated healing professions).

Besides a deep commitment to professional ethics and Third Wave Psychology values, I also value the depth of wisdom that comes with contacting lived experience in an authentic way.  I am not interested in work that does not create change and growth or bring out the best in individuals, our community and the world.  In psychotherapy and consultation, I offer clients genuine compassion and mindful presence.  I know that living through pain offers opportunities for wisdom and growth. I know that when based on both science and true compassion,  psychotherapy works to change lives.  You may feel stuck in your life, but psychotherapy can assist you in developing the clarity, compassion, and skillfulness you need to build a life you can love. No matter what your symptom, your challenge, your pain, vitality is available. My job as your psychologist is to offer you the best psychological skills, based on the best evidence from behavioural science, to overcome barriers and live a life of vitality as you define it. Are you ready to get to it?

Professional Registration

I am fully registered with the College of Psychologists of Ontario as a doctoral level psychologist in autonomous practice (Certificate #4531) with dual registration to serve children/adolescents and adults in three specialties: clinical, counselling and health psychology.   I was previously registered in two other jurisdictions: the state of Texas and the province of Alberta.  All of my psychological services are conducted with the utmost care and respect for client confidentiality and privacy according to the rigorous requirements of my professional college.  As a psychologist in Ontario I conduct all professional services according to the high standards set by the College of Psychologists of Ontario.

I am a professional member of the:

  • International Mindfulness Teachers Association
  • Association for Contextual Behavioral Science,
  • Canadian Psychological Association,
  • Certified MSC Teachers of the Center for Mindful Self Compassion/University of Southern California San Diego Mindfulness Based Professional Training Institute
  • Ontario College of Psychologists (CPO #4531)
  • Ottawa Academy of Psychology
  • Ontario Psychological Association

Advanced Training in Psychology & Psychotherapy

I hold a doctorate from the American Psychological Association accredited program in psychology at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.  In my doctoral studies I developed research projects for the Texas A&M College of Medicine’s Family Medicine department, where we studied communication, teamwork, and how personal history and emotional factors affected student physicians’ clinical reasoning and interactions with their patients.  I have been privileged to follow up this research in in roles as both as a researcher and educator in  medicine, and as a clinician for clinicians.  More generally, in my clinical training I completed clinical rotations in psychotherapy, neuropsychology, clinical health psychology, student health services, hypnosis, post traumatic stress treatment with veterans, women’s health, military sexual assault, and mindfulness based interventions for stress-based physical symptoms such as headaches, IBS, pain, and sleep problems.  My doctoral residency was in the cutting edge Primary Care/Behavioral Health track at the University of Texas at Austin’s University Health Center in Austin, Texas.  I hold dual registration with the College of Psychologists of Ontario to offer services to children/adolescents and adults.

I have been on the “third wave” of the cognitive behavioral stream of psychological interventions since encountering this approach in my residency at the University of Texas at Austin in 2004.  The “third wave” of psychological interventions emphasizes the science and art of mindfulness as a base to shifting entrenched patterns of thought, emotions, physical sensations, and behaviour.  (You can see my introduction to the Psychological Flexibility Model at the hear of many third wave approaches on my blog.)  I have pursued continuing education with teachers such as Jon Kabat Zinn and Saki Santorelli (MBSR),  Zindel Segal (MBCT), Stephen Hayes, Kelly Wilson and Russ Harris (ACT), the Beck Institute in Philadelphia and Christine Padesky (CBT), Daniel Siegel, Sara Lazar, Sharon Salzberg, Shinzen Young (Mindfulness teachers and researchers), senior teachers in EMDR for trauma, and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT).   I am registered as an MBSR teacher at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare and Society at the University of Massachusetts.  I continually seek out cutting edge approaches to the integration of mindful awareness  with other compatible evidence-based psychological interventions. Most recently I have completed yoga teacher training (2012) am a Senior Certified Mindful Self Compassion through University of California San Diego (2014).  I am continually exploring the territories of heart and mind through annual silent mindfulness retreats and have completed several multi-year training programs in mindfulness, such as Spirit Rock Meditation Center’s program in meditation and yoga teacher training (Class of 2016) and Awake in the Wild Mindfulness in Nature Facilitator Training (inaugural two year program in 2018).

Sub-specialties

I have several subspecialties which grew naturally from my past clinical experiences.

  1. Psychotherapy with Physicians.  The first is a natural subspecialty which came from my dissertation project on Physician-Patient Working Alliance, and my past work in the Dean of Medicine’s office at the Texas A&M College of Medicine. I have spent many years now working with physicians, residents and medical students facing burnout, stress, mental health and physical health challenges in their training and practice of the profession of medicine. I frequently work with Physician Wellness Programs and the Physician Health Program sponsored by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons to assist physicians and residents in return to work, building resilience and sustaining compassionate practice for the long term
  2. Trauma Recovery. The second subspecialty emerged from my work in a PTSD Military Sexual Assault Unit at the Olin B. Teague Veterans Administration Hospital in Temple Texas as a Post-Doctoral Psychologist.  In this role I learned about the cultivation of awareness and the power of compassion in recovering from overhwhelming traumas.  I am trained in Foa’s Prolonged Exposure training and value evidence-based methods for the recovery from trauma including Somatic Experiencing, EMDR, cognitive processing, Third Wave CBT, and ACT. My true passion is the continual evolution of psychotherapy strategies for healing high performers in high stress occupations from long term relational and occupational traumas and assisting them to shift into compassion, self leadership and inner alignment from self-alienation, reactivity and self-fragmentation.
  3. Eating Disorders, Body Image, and Body-related Distress.  The final subspecialty stems from my work at a publicly funded hospital in Eastern Ontario from 2007-2009.  While working at this publicly funded hospital, although I loved the individuals, families, and interdisciplinary teams with whom I worked, the experience was overwhelming due to the stark lack of adequate ED resources in the entire eastern Ontario region.  While serving as a consulting psychologist for both children and adult ED programs, I quickly was made aware that I was the only OHIP funded dually certified psychologist treating eating disorders in rural eastern Ontario.  I saw the devastating effects of raging untreated eating disorders, and the gaps in a stressed health care system that resulted in many children and adolescents  in particular being in grave medical danger without adequate treatments available.  As a private practitioner, I vowed that I would work to change the availability of evidence based psychological services for everyone doing battle with eating disorders, particularly adolescents, at the first opportunity. I am now pleased to announce that in several weeks, in late 2014,  I  completed requirements for full registration as a provider of the Maudsley Family Based Treatment (FBT) protocol with the Training Institute of Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders.  Maudsley FBT is one of the very few evidence based protocols for the effective treatment of eating disorders in children and adolescents.  Maudsley FBT training for professionals, offered out of the Training Institute for Child and Adolescent Eating Disorders, is taught by outstanding academic and clinical faculty from American academic medical centres including the University of Chicago Faculty of Medicine and Mount Sinai hospital in New York City.  To my knowledge I am one of the few psychologists in private practice Eastern Ontario/Western Quebec who offers this service to families seeking help for their loved ones doing battle with eating disorders. For those individuals and families for whom FBT is not a match, I am able to offer Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for eating disorders (CBT-E) and other treatments for those farther along in recovery who are looking to recover vitality and lost time in their own development.

Experienced Mentor for Other Clinicians

I have offered group and individual psychotherapy, assessment, and counselling services for 30 years now, and I still love every moment of my work.  I stay active in the professional community, and am currently hosting a monthly professional consultation group in Compassion Focused Therapy.  I now work in private practice exclusively, although frequently I teach workshops, seminars, or collaborate on research projects with colleagues in hospitals, the community, and academia in Ottawa.  A large proportion of my clients and collaborators are now drawn from the medical, professional, foreign service and public service communities in Ottawa and their families.

I enjoy teaching and training the next generation of psychologists and other health care providers.  For the past few years I have enjoyed teaching Mindfulness Skills to post-graduate students and faculty at the Ottawa Faculty of Medicine.  I frequently teach academic half days and workshops or retreats for difference academic departments in the University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine. I am also frequently invited to teach retreats and workshops to physicians and other professionals on Compassion and Mindful Self Compassion approaches to leadership and leadership resilience. I have taught Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to fellow clinicians through the Canadian Association for Psychotherapists and Counsellors.  Until 2013 I provided mentorship and clinical supervision to doctoral students as a clinical faculty member at the Centre for Psychological Services at the University of Ottawa. I have provided clinical teaching and supervision to doctoral students, and have taught as an adjunct faculty member at Trent University, University of Lethbridge and University of Calgary.

I believe that learning is lifelong.  When we meet you can be assured that your psychologist is actively involved with the latest developments in psychological science, mindfulness, and evidence based integrative health.

Volunteering

Since moving to the Outaouais region, I have enjoyed offering pro bono talks and volunteer support to multiple community groups.  Recent talks and training include the Nakkertok Nordic Ski Club, the Ottawa Women’s Business Network, the Ottawa Mindfulness professional association, the National Capital Region chapter of the Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, the Hopewell Eating Disorders Support Centre, and others.  Volunteer support has been as  Psyching Team volunteer for marathon runners and pro bono mental training to competitive athletes at various community sports organizations.

I am happy to speak to community or professional groups about psychology for health and performance topics including: Compassionate Mind Training, Mindfulness for Life, Mindfulness in Nature, Mindfulness in Sport, Mindful Self Compassion (MSC), ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy), MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) and topics related to mind body health such as weight loss, eating disorders, Maudsley FBT (Family Based Treatment) for eating disorders in adolescents, ED recovery, mindful eating, and body image.

I support the promotion of healthy exercise and mental health through membership in professional and athlete organizations including the Canadian Psychological Association’s professional section on Sport and Exercise Psychology and through my own involvement as an umpire, recreational coach, and master’s rower with the Ottawa Rowing Club.

(Photo credits: Roberta Gal)

 

Kimberly Sogge PhD CPsych

Ph.D. (Texas A&M), M.Ed. (McGill)

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