In my practice, I approach therapy as a form of healing so that you can begin living the life that you want. It’s important to me that we build a relationship where you feel safe and willing to work with me to take positive leaps toward change.
I have collected a series of insights over the years, which have influenced the naming of my business. Some of these insights include:
Early childhood experiences affect how our current relationships function.
Anxiety and depression are signals that something needs to be addressed.
Physical and emotional health are bi-directional—they influence each other.
Trauma can affect the physical body.
Unprocessed emotions can be stored in the body.
Food intolerances can cause behavioral changes and physical symptoms.
All behavior is communication.
Emotions give us clues as to what we want and need.
Disease is an invitation to re-evaluate and realign life to be more authentic and connect with your spirituality.
Beliefs influence our experience; when you challenge your beliefs, you can change your experience.
Being authentically yourself is the ultimate freedom.
Being unique can create beauty and diversity.
Learning to be present is a form of healing.
Essentially, we are all spiritual beings having human experiences.
All of these factors (and many others) connect one to another in a complex web that makes up our perspective, attitudes and experiences. This is part of the reason “It All Connects” is part of my philosophy. I don’t believe we can isolate therapy to simple thoughts or emotions; we are multifaceted individuals embedded in multiple communities, which impact how you experience life.
Research is increasingly showing that connection to oneself, to others, to community, to nature, to a sense of contribution and to the universe at large are powerful healing modalities. Connection is the antidote to depression, anxiety, addiction and trauma. Creating connection is a golden thread to living a whole life as a whole person. These experiences influence the types of therapies I find to be effective. Therapy is part science, part art and all relationship.
Each form of counseling I pull from is supported by evidence-based research. However, each of these therapies have room to customize and personalize the experience—for both you, the client, and myself, the therapist.
I draw from many modalities of therapy that focus on what might work best for your situation. I consider myself an existentialist, which means I like to look at the big quests in life: discovering your authentic self and your purpose, and aligning your relationships and time usage to meet your values. Changes in life are difficult enough, especially when you look at the short-term effort involved. When you keep the long-term goal in mind, however, change becomes more manageable. By living in alignment with your values, life will become much more enjoyable and meaningful.
One of my favorite tools that I like to use with clients is incorporating Mindfulness into daily life. Research shows that Mindfulness is effective for treating anxiety, depression and addictions, and managing stress. This is such an effective tool because it helps you stay focused on the present moment. Remaining present allows you to experience life as it occurs without adding unnecessary drama, and you can take a step back to observe what you are experiencing. It gives you the freedom to choose how you will deal with life events. Additionally, I utilize ACT, which is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. This is a combination of Mindfulness and CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) to work with thoughts, emotions and behaviors.
If trauma is part of what brings you to counseling, I am a trained EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) therapist. This therapeutic approach is useful in reducing or eliminating the emotional charge that sometimes exists with painful or traumatic memories. This charge can hijack your ability to function effectively in the present moment. When we use EMDR, your memory is desensitized to the triggering elements of the original experience. Instead, it puts distance and perspective into your present recollection of your trauma; your memory is reprocessed so that you can revisit that time in your life without having an emotional reaction to that memory. Imagine no longer spending your emotional energy to avoid your painfully charged memories!
John and Julie Gottman
John and Julie Gottman have always been heroes of mine, which is why I incorporate their knowledge into my practice. I appreciate their research and clinical guidance on creating effective relationships. They are best known for their couple’s counseling, in which I am trained. However, they also teach how to parent your children through strong and unsettling emotional experiences. I find these skills can be applied to individuals and all of their relationships, whether these relationships are casual or intimate ones.
I believe that a healthy balanced life looks at the whole person. This might include lifestyle factors such as nutrition, exercise/movement, sleep, supportive relationships and spirituality. Making adjustments to any of these areas can significantly improve your ability to function daily. I have developed a network of integrative and Functional Medicine doctors who can investigate further if that is something you are interested in pursuing.
I keep gentleness, humor, love and respect as operational guidelines during my sessions. I want you to feel seen, heard and understood. You can be assured that we will work with your strengths in mind, and look at areas of struggle as a way to uncover current obstacles before creating a plan for change.
If nothing else, I strive to create hope. Hope that you are beautiful, wonderful, worthy and whole.
If you’re curious whether I’m the right therapist for you, I invite you to contact me at 330-705-9521 for a free 15-minute consultation.