As a social worker, I believe in the importance of human relationships and in the dignity and worth of the person. I therefore approach every client as an individual and focus on establishing a strong therapeutic alliance. I believe in each person’s ability to grow and change. I believe that we are inherently well intentioned and are simply learning who we are and how we want to show up in this world.
I offer an interpersonal style of Cognitive Therapy, combining the belief that it’s the relationship that heals, with an active, educational, and skill based approach. I hope to inspire a fascination with our minds, ultimately supporting clients in developing a strong and healthy sense of self, where you are no longer servants to your “thinking mind” or “conditioned self”, but rather live from the truth of who you are. I believe that the work lies not in getting rid of the unpleasant or uncomfortable thoughts, feelings, and emotions, rather in changing our relationship with them when they arise, based on a more integrated and clear understanding of ourselves.
While I was originally trained in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, most of my clinical experience has been through interpersonal styles of therapy. I believe that the relationship established in a counseling setting is the main priority and factor in the work and growth that is achieved. I therefore aim to foster a relationship with my clients that cultivates authenticity. Through the relationship, grounded in empathy and compassion, I establish a safe and comfortable environment allowing for honest, genuine feedback, ultimately leading to learning and personal growth. I am supportive and directive, while working collaboratively with the client to target issues, minimize symptoms, increase overall wellness, and improve self understanding.
Trained in a variety of approaches, I often incorporate many of them in to my treatment based on the individual. My training and experience includes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Trauma Focused CBT (TF-CBT), Depression Care Management, Motivational Interviewing (MI), Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT), and Mindfulness.
These approaches are well suited for the treatment of depression, anxiety, addictions, trauma, stress, low self-esteem, relationship challenges, and phase of life problems, aiming to teach people to allow for what is happening in the moment without the pressure of trying to change it or fix it, which more often creates increased suffering. They teach us that we do not have to act on every thought and feeling that arises, but we can learn to engage in behaviors that are in line with our values.
My approach will often include experiential activities, behavioral experiments, skill building, psycho-education and between session practice. I believe that much of the work done in counseling actually happens between sessions and will therefore check in with you from week to week regarding use of skills, observations of self, and insights gained.
“The human soul doesn’t want to be advised or fixed or saved. It simply wants to be witnessed — to be seen, heard and companioned exactly as it is”.
Parker Palmer (https://onbeing.org/blog/the-gift-of-presence-the-perils-of-advice/)