Veronica Rose Connolly-Bagshaw
"True healing does more than just restore a physical state. It is an alchemical process of transformation, illness being less of a problem and more often the solution. At least 60% of illness is a wake up call from the soul, bringing opportunities for change unlike any other catalyst. Alchemical healing requires us to move away from the concept of merely "fixing" or removing the disease towards a deeper appreciation of an individual's journey.'
~Dr. Christine Page
I am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in Washington State. This qualification requires Department of Health approved Masters-Level Curriculum, plus 3000 hours post-graduate supervised clinical experience, a minimum of 100 hours of consultation with a licensed professional; and passing the National Mental Health Counselors Examination (NCMHCE) administered by the National Board of Certified Counselors. Below I list additional credentials & certifications.
Using a broad base of clinical, evidence-based techniques, I work with you to achieve your defnition of wellness, to create the quality of life you seek. My approach is grounded in systems theory (all parts of the whole connect and influence one another), cognitive-behavioral theory, narrative, experiential, and body/somatic psychology. I believe that you are the expert of your life, that you are more wise and well than you realize. It is my role to help you acquire the skills and experience to realize that for yourself. As you do the work, your increasing wellness is reflected in all aspects of your life ~ body, mind, emotions, social relationships and spirit.
Professional and Personal Background
My professional and personal background is a unique blend of science, health care, social service, dance/movement arts, mind-body and general fitness, traditional counseling & psychotherapy, adventure based counseling & experiential education. Having previously worked in the dental profession as a registered dental hygienist for 26 years, I have had a strong foundation in and pursue ongoing continuing education in general science, medical issues and chronic health conditions, nutrition,
pharmacology, and other aspects of general heatlh principles. After a serious neck and back injury 20 years ago, I experienced significant physical limitations, chronic pain, and changes to my sense of self and my life course. In the midst of these challenges, I strived to live a life as full and active as possible through complementary medicine, dance and movement, nutrition, and various mindbody practices.
A year long 10,000 mile fundraising kayak and bicycle expedition around the coastal United States with my amazing husband back in 1995 was a pivotal point in my life ~ that adventure gave me the gift of tapping into incredible forces, energy and wisdom both within and outside of me. I finally learned the vast choice and options I had in maximizing my healing and wellness, and the power of Nature to heal and teach us about Life and wellness. I vowed to share that with others, in service of their growth and healing.
Experiencing so profoundly the link between mind and body, spirit and Nature, I studied with physical and occupational therapists, doing volunteer work with OT and PT clients in adaptive recreational programs, hospital & school settings. I completed my Masters degree in Applied Behavioral Sciences/Systems Counseling, became certified in Challenge Course facilitation, and Adventure-Based Counseling. I completed my clinical internship at Youth Eastside Services in Bellevue, WA, and later worked for several years at a local domestic violence agency as a crisis line advocate, DV community advocate and support group facilitator.
During that time, I observed the profound effect stress, trauma, and less than optimal life styles has on one's ability to be well, on any level. I broadened my studies to include Mind-Body Medicine, nutrition and its influence on mental health, dance & movement as medicine via Yoga and Nia, two powerful mindbody practices, and the role of Nature in healing and wellness. Knowing firsthand the importance of experiential learning and body awareness, for several more years, I used my skills to provide volunteer support to Warrior Spirit,
a powerful, transformational program designed to connect one to their sense of personal power and wisdom through physical movement/taking action, community, and facing fear and confrontation, of all things! (Very potent and exciting work!)
Most recently, I had the honor of caring for my dear mom over the course of her later years, through her cancer illness and her passing, in our home. That experience, along with several other elder family caregiving experiences, further inspired me to explore the link between science and spirit, mindbody medicine, and family relationships in the realm of healing and wellness, and life transitions.
Professional Licenses and Certifications
- National Certified Counselor ~ NCC
- Washington State License in Mental Health Counseling ~ LMHC
- Nia Technique® Mind-Body Fitness Instructor & Somatic Educator certification
- Yoga Alliance-registered -200 level Yoga Instructor ~ RYT
- American Council of Exercise ~ Certified Group Fitness Instructor/Educator
- AASDN ~ Nutrition Specialist / Educator Certification
- EMDRIA ~ EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing) Level I certification
- MA Applied Behavioral Sciences ~ Systems Counseling, LIOS, Bastyr University
- BS Biological & Behavioral Sciences, School of Dentistry, University of WA
- AS Dental Hygiene, Foothill College
Post-Graduate Studies and Training
- Collaborative Health & Medical Family Therapy ~ Seattle Pacific University
- Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Skills ~ Professional Training with Saki Santorelli, Ed.D and Jon Kabat-Zinn,Ph.D of U Mass Center for MMHC & Society
- Mind-Body Medicine Skills ~ Professional Training with James Gordon, MD of Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Washington, DC
- Adventure-Based Counseling~Professional Training with Project Adventure
- Challenge/Ropes Course Facilitation Professional Training, Waterhouse Ctr.
- Domestic Violence Advocacy & Group Facilitator Training ~ Eastside Domestic Violence Program
- Ongoing Continuing Education courses in areas of Behavioral and Mental Health, Trauma & Domestic Violence issues, Nutrition, Complementary & Collaborative Medicine, Yoga Therapy, Integrative Health Sciences & Wellness
- American Mental Health Counseling Association
- Collaborative Family Healthcare Association
- American Association of Body Psychotherapy
- International Association of Yoga Therapists
- Yoga Alliance
- IDEA Health & Fitness Association
- American Council of Exercise
- American Academy of Sports Dietitians & Nutritionists
- International Association of Experiential Education ~ Therapeutic Adventure