OUR TEAM OF THERAPISTS


Our team consists of expertly trained Social Service Workers, Social Workers, and Psychotherapists, each with diverse experience in various modalities, trainings, and specializations. If you have any questions about our services or therapists please call or email us.

Serena Manoochehri

Psychotherapist, BA(Hons), MACP, R.P (CRPO)

Areas of focus: Anxiety (incl. social anxiety), Phobias, Depression, Self-Esteem, Interpersonal Conflicts, Trauma, Communication and Boundaries, Grief/Anticipatory Grief, Borderline Personality Disorder, and Emotion Dysregulation. 

My Style & Approach

I believe everyone has a unique story to tell, and my goal is to listen, hold a safe space, and validate the experiences and worldviews that have influenced my clients. Therapy is a journey of growth and discovery, and I feel grateful to walk alongside my clients as they increase their self-awareness, heal, and begin to make positive changes in their lives and relationships.  My therapeutic approach is integrative, drawing from cognitive-behavioural, psychodynamic, and mindfulness-based techniques to create treatment plans to each individual’s unique needs and goals.

Education, Training & Personal Development

Serena is a Registered Psychotherapist with the CRPO and a graduate of Yorkville University with a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology. She has over 6 years of experience working with Adults & Teens (13+) and offers in-person, virtual and phone appointments. Serena is also a Group Therapy facilitator for Worthy, Women’s Self Esteem Group here at Balanced Life Therapy. 

Serena uses Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Solution-Focused Therapy (SFT), Gottman Method Couples Therapy, and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). She also incorporates techniques from Polyvagal Theory, Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), Compassionate Inquiry and Motivational Interviewing in her sessions.

Serena is dedicated to improving her client’s level of self-regulation emotionally, cognitively and physically. Serena focuses on helping clients experiencing a number of concerns such as anxiety (incl. social anxiety), phobias, depression, self-esteem, interpersonal conflicts, trauma, communication and boundaries, grief/anticipatory grief, executive functioning, borderline personality disorder, emotion dysregulation. 

Personal Interests 

I enjoy the simple pleasures life has to offer. One of my favourites is being outside in the crisp air on a winter morning. Music, another simple pleasure, transcends the ordinary and has continuously helped me in my own healing journey. Music has the power to uplift the soul and evoke a sense of wonder when words are not enough.  The pleasure of music is a deeply personal and subjective experience, shaped by individual preferences, experiences, and cultural influences.  Regardless of its form or genre, music enriches our lives, brings us joy, and serves as a source of inspiration and comfort. 

Melissa Masci

Psychotherapist, BA(Hons)Psych, BSW, MSW, RSW

Areas of focus: Stress Management, Emotional Dysregulation, Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders, Depression, Symptoms of Childhood/Adult Trauma, Abusive Relationships, and Suicidal Ideation and Prevention (ASSIST)

My Style & Approach

Navigating life’s challenges can feel overwhelming, especially when we’re unsure of where to start. Seeking help also requires both vulnerability and courage. With this in mind, I take a collaborative approach to supporting clients in identifying their challenges, setting attainable goals, and honouring their values, as they chart a way forward. While therapy can challenge us, I employ Trauma-Informed practices to foster a safe, judgement-free environment so that clients can progress and heal as comfortably as possible.

Education, Training & Personal Development

Melissa has Bachelor’s Degrees in both Psychology and Social Work and a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree. She works as a Registered Social Worker (RSW) and is registered with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW), and performs the controlled act of psychotherapy. 

Melissa holds Bachelor’s Degrees in both Psychology and Social Work, and a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree. She is a Registered Social Worker (RSW) with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW), and performs the controlled act of psychotherapy. Melissa has over 7 years of experience and offers in-person, virtual and phone appointments for Adults & Teens (13 +).

Melissa has extensive experience supporting clients with stress management, anxiety, depression, emotional dysregulation, suicidal ideation and prevention (ASSIST), abuse in relationships, interpersonal issues, grief, and working with symptoms of trauma. Melissa uses therapeutic modalities, such as: Solution-Focused Therapy (SFT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Internal Family Systems (IFS), Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), incorporates tools in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT), utilizes Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), and Trauma-Informed approaches.

Melissa is currently accepting new clients, no referrals necessary.  To book a free 15 minute phone consultation, please contact us.

Favourite Quote

“Always remember that you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and loved more than you know.” – A.A. Milne

Selena Jain

Therapist, BEd, MA, RP (Q)

Areas of focus: Anxiety, Self-Esteem, Depression, Grief, Life Transitions, Adult Emotional Regulation, Relationship Issues, Family Conflict, Parent-child Attachment & Connection, Child Development Concerns.

My Style & Approach

Growth and connection is our birthright. It can be difficult to grow when we are stuck in “survival mode” or doing the same things over and over again expecting a different result.  Oftentimes, this can lead to feelings of emptiness, shame, anxiety or  instability with a deep and painful sense of disconnection from self and others. These feelings can seem insurmountable to face alone.

Selena brings an innate curiosity, drive and passion to understand, support and challenge her clients to be their most brave, authentic selves. It’s a collaborative approach tailored to each client’s strengths and pace, drawing on evidence-based modalities such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Person Centered Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy (SFT), Psychodynamic and Attachment Based Relational Therapy.

Education, Training & Personal Development

Selena graduated from York University with an honors degree in Psychology. She went on toattain her Bachelor of Education and is currently completing her master’s in Clinical Psychology at Yorkville University. 

As a qualifying member of the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO), Selena enjoys working with adults, families and couples. Her areas of focus include anxiety, self-esteem, depression, grief, life transitions, adult emotional regulation, relationship issues, family conflict, Parent-child attachment and connection, child development concerns, effective parenting techniques such as resilience and independence training in addition to sleep and tech hygiene solutions for young families.

Personal Interests 

With over 20 years’ experience teaching in public/private settings (including at-risk youth), she founded a private preschool implementing best practices across western teaching models and eastern/yogic philosophy. A depth of experience in the “trenches” of early human development, offering her invaluable insights into how early caregivers/relational experiences combined with personality and temperament, can have lasting  effects on our connections to self and others.

“By replacing fear of the unknown with curiosity, we open ourselves up to an infinite stream of possibility. We can let fear rule our lives or we can become childlike with curiosity, pushing our boundaries, leaping out of our comfort zones and accepting what life puts before us” – Alan Watts

Jennifer Shea

THERAPIST, RSSW

Areas of focus: Anxiety, Depression, Self-Esteem, Emotional Dysregulation, Grief, Trauma, Life Transitions, Self-Harming Behaviours, and Family Dynamics and Work Environment.

My Style & Approach

Starting therapy can be difficult. I welcome each client with respect and understanding, offering a space to work collaboratively with them to work towards their  therapeutic goals. If you are new to therapy, I know this can be a challenging transition as I have been there myself. In session, you can expect to have the space and freedom to speak your concerns freely without judgement and be offered solution-focused interventions using evidence based practices.

Education, Training & Personal Development

Jennifer graduated with honours from the Georgian College Social Service Worker program and is registered with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service workers (OCSWSSW) and the Ontario Social Service Workers Association (OSSWA). Jennifer uses solution-focused interventions and evidence-based practices such as Cognitive Behavioural therapy (CBT).  Jennifer is working toward the completion of Schema Therapy training and Trauma Informed Therapy training in 2024.

Jennifer has over 3 years of experience and works with Adults & Teens (13+) and offers in-person, virtual and phone appointments. Jennifer focuses on helping clients experiencing anxiety, depression, self-esteem, emotional regulation, grief, trauma, life transitions, self-harming behaviours, and familial challenges.

Personal Interests

Being a mom of a young child has been the most rewarding, humbling and challenging experience in my life. Parenting has driven me to consistently be outside my comfort zone, both physically and mentally. I have become brave, vulnerable and accepting that there are uncertainties in life. Becoming a mother has helped me become the person who I am today.

Jennifer is currently accepting new clients, no referrals necessary.  To book a free 15 minute phone consultation, please contact us.

Magenta McDonald

Office Manager

As the Office Manager at Balanced Life therapy, I am dedicated to ensuring that our clients receive the highest quality of care and support throughout their therapeutic journey. With a passion for mental health advocacy and a background in administrative management, I bring a unique blend of organisational expertise and compassion to my role.

My primary responsibility is to oversee the day-to-day operations of our office, ensuring that everything runs smoothly and efficiently. From scheduling appointments and managing client intake processes to planning and coordinating with therapists, I strive to create a warm and welcoming environment where clients feel valued and supported. 

I am honoured to be a part of the Balanced Life Therapy team and look forward to serving our clients with professionalism, empathy, and dedication

meet the founder

Cindy McAfee

FOUNDER | RSSW

Areas of focus: Partner Betrayal, Infidelity, Relationship Challenges, Intimacy Reunification, Life Transitions, Grief, Anxiety, Depression, Alcohol and Drug Addiction, Relapse, Symptoms of Childhood/Adult Trauma, Self-Esteem, and Emotional Dysregulation.


My Style & Approach

Signs of a stressful marriage or relationship can manifest in various ways. Have you and your partner lost intimacy or sexual satisfaction? Do you feel resentment or bitterness towards your partner?  Have you or your partner been emotionally distancing from one another or feel a sense of disconnect? As an individual, do you have increased levels of stress, anxiety or depression? Persistent feelings of unhappiness or dissatisfaction in your life and relationships? Are you concerned about substance abuse? Ongoing problems in our lives can lead to feeling overwhelmed and alone.  I use a client-centred approach sprinkled with a little humour from time to time throughout the therapeutic process to accommodate each client’s unique experience, needs, and goals for therapy.

Education, Training & Personal Development

Cindy is  a graduate of the Georgian College Social Service Worker program and is registered with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and The Ontario Social Service Worker Association. She has over 15 years of experience working with Adults and supporting Individuals, Couples, and Families. She is a Group Therapy facilitator for Worthy, Women’s Self Esteem Group, and has facilitated groups at Barrie Withdrawal Management Services. 

Cindy is certified in Gottman Couples Therapy and is a Gottman 7PP Educator.  She is trained in screening for Domestic Violence, Family Mediation, New Ways for Families Mediation, and has worked with Gabor Mate through his Compassion Inquiry for childhood developmental trauma. 

Cindy uses evidence-based modalities such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Solution Focused Therapy, Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP), Applied Suicide Intervention, and Addictions Counseling. 

Cindy works with clients who may be experiencing alcohol and drug addiction, relapse, grief, anxiety, depression, self-esteem, life transitions, relationship challenges, childhood trauma, partner betrayal & infidelity,  and emotional regulation.

Personal Interests

Aside from running my practice and my work as a Counsellor, I am a proud “Glama” of two boys that bring immense joy and fulfilment to my life. It is a blessing witnessing their growth and development, from infancy to childhood and beyond, and being part of their milestones and achievements. I too get to be childlike by having playful moments, and share laughter by engaging in fun activities and shared experiences together.

I pray I am sharing wisdom, values, and family traditions with them, and being a source of guidance and support as they navigate life’s challenges and opportunities. Overall, being a grandmother of two boys is a precious role filled with unconditional love, joy, and the opportunity to make lasting memories together.

I also enjoy spending time on my motorcycle; riding offers a sense of freedom, adventure and connection to the outdoors. I enjoy the thrill of speed and the immersive experience of freedom and liberation that comes with being on the open road. The fragrance of a clover field or a freshly cut field of hay while I am riding often brings back childhood memories of being raised on a farm.