Heidi F. Yoder, M.F.T.
|Professions: Marriage & Family Therapy|
|License Status: I'm a licensed professional.|
|Primary Credential: Marriage and Family Therapist - 47168|
|Secondary Credential: MfT - 47168|
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People usually come to see me because they have reached state of distress over a repeating pattern of behavior or a situation/relationship that isn't working for them. Or they know a part of their lives SHOULD be working better, but they don't know what to do about it. They often feel stuck, out of options, exhausted, and ashamed to be dealing with whatever the issue is.
My first instinct is to listen, to hear what is happening, what is being thought and expressed both verbally and through the body about that, and to let the person know...I can understand, and I don't judge. When people feel unconditional respect and care, it so often can change the quality of how they view their stories.
My practice is Collaborative meaning that if you have articulated choices along those lines, we will use those for the direction and style of the work. But some people don't really have strong ideas in mind as to whether they want clear goal setting, or a more body centered approach, for example, so I ask if we can start with something and then I check in with how effective it seems. We may try something else, and I will be encouraging you to be open about hating it, if that's the way you feel. Many of the people who come to see me have struggled for a long time not knowing what they are feeling in the moment, and then never daring to express it if they did. I try to create a place where experimenting with emotions, communication, ideas, Life Skills, identity, different ways of working on things or leaving them alone feels natural, taking oneself lightly feels like a practice that is healthy and not about denial, and each person taking chances on trusting their own instincts at least as much as they trust others opinions, sounds like a good idea. It may be shocking to hear after all that, I consider Psychology a "hard science". But after over 20 years of being able to study the brain, there is scientific proof for what we always "knew". And isn't that validating!
Couples (or Moresomes) usually come to me complaining about issues that are keeping them from living the richness of their relationship. I first set up a framework where the work can take place in somewhere people can feel somewhat safe. We all agree to the rules we develop together, some of which are non-negotiable, and then we move forward. I listen, a lot, I learn their culture, and together we track down where the misunderstandings have taken place, where shared meaning and connection have broken down and resentments have festered. We practice Non Violent Communication to keep defensiveness low and hearing high. Together we focus on what is working and find solutions for perpetual issues. I help partners remember the amount of time and energy they were putting into their intimacy and romance when they first got together and assess where they are with that now. I am very sensitive to partners feeling like they are getting less attention and so I am fastidious about working with the Relationship and keeping things clear.
Email or Call Heidi F. Yoder, M.F.T. at 1-800-651-8085 ext. 09637
More Info About My Practice
For many people it's hard to seek help from a therapist. But just as you would go to your doctor or dentist for medical or dental needs: it makes sense to turn to a therapist for help developing healthier patterns of behavior and more positive coping skills. Achieving balance mentally and emotionally is an important part of improving the health of the whole self. I offer a free consultation to honor the client/therapist connection which is so crucial to therapy being successful. I have offices in the East Bay and convenient hours.
What I Love about Being a Psychotherapist
I am passionate about therapy as a tool for growth and change. I feel it can offer people a level of quality of existence they couldn't have accessed without it. It did that for me. So many of us look up at some point in life and feel lacking in resources and tools. Sometimes, even with a lot of work under our belts, that can happen again when a big transition or unexpected change comes about. However we get to that place, finding some way to develop emotional intelligence becomes crucial as we see the same patterns (some self-destructive, some self sabotaging, all painful) occurring over and over in our lives. I am lucky. I have gotten to watch therapy transform the lives of so many wonderful people that I no longer have any doubt that it will continue to do so as long as there are people who take the time and energy to train in emotional/cognitive skills and those who have the courage and willingness to call them.
On the Fence About Going to Therapy?
If what you have been doing was working, you wouldn't be considering something else. If you have been considering therapy for some time then there is something about it that resonates with you. Do some research...look up therapists in your area and read their sites. Make some appointments. The great thing about trying something is you can walk away at any time. Each time you meet with someone, talk about your ambivalence and hear what they have to say. Do they support you, understand your feelings, encourage you to sit with a few people and see how your "gut" feels? Or do they respond in a way that makes you feel like you have to commit to sessions with THEM right now. Urgency is a false emotion. It might tell you a lot about who you are sitting with. After sitting with a few therapists, you will know the next step to take. And if you don't, honor that feeling and do some more research. Having agency in your life means you get to make your own decisions, why make future regrets? When you find your mouth saying, "I want to move forward with working with you", you can trust you've found the right person. Let yourself have your process.
Services I Provide
- Family Therapy
- Individual Therapy & Counseling
- Marriage, Couples, or Relationship Counseling
- Online Counseling / Phone Therapy
Ages I Work With
Groups I Work With
Low Self Esteem, Chronic Self Doubt/Self Criticism, Trauma, Sex Addiction, LGBTQQI, Co-Compulsivity/Addiction Issues, Questions of Monogamy/Polyamory, Sex-Work, Spirituality, Intimacy Issues.
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