My Approach to Helping
I offer an affordable counseling, educational and consulting service that provides assistance in coping with, and learning from, the crises and challenges we face in living. The counseling I offer is solution - focused and brief when possible, but I also am skilled in offering assistance to those who need assistance for a longer period of time. I believe that a client and a counselor have a working partnership. I want to help you define what you want to change in your life, and to help facilitate the work that you will do to bring about that change. Counseling, is in large part, an educational process: education is essential for any change to take place. I believe that each of us has, within us, the capacity to grow and heal. And so, I see my part as one who wants to help you find those resources within yourself. Please be aware that it is impossible to guarantee that you will reach all of your counseling goals. It is my guarantee that I will do everything within my power to see that you achieve as much as you can through our work together. Change is much more likely when you are actively involved in the process. To facilitate this process, I will often give assignments for you to complete between our visits together. And I always encourage my clients to do reading about their own particular problem or situation. It is likely that you will see some initial rapid improvement. Permanent change takes time and a continuing commitment to effort on your part. My approach is aimed at helping you begin to meet your goals in a brief period of time and my techniques are typically solution-oriented. Sometimes, problems are of such a nature that a longer process aimed at gaining insight into the behavior dynamics and their cause, is also needed. We will discuss what I propose, and come to an agreement as to what will be the best approach. Initially, I will listen and ask questions so that I may understand the nature of the current problem. I will also ask you some questions about your past, and gather other information about your current situation, so that I may get a more global sense of the problem. I will help you set some goals for our work together by the second or third time you see me. We will need to agree on the focus of our work together as well as any methods I choose to use. We will also estimate the time it should take to reach these goals so that you may be aware of the time as well as the cost involved. We will then come to an agreement on a plan to which we will both adhere. After an agreed number of sessions, we will evaluate our progress and make any needed modifications to our plan. Techniques that I typically employ include actively listening to what you have to say and checking my understanding of it as we go along. I commonly use strategies from a therapeutic approach known as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. For counseling that is aimed at gaining a deeper insight, I use a variety of techniques from the psychodynamic school of thought, especially the theory of Carl Jung. When I see couples, I use strategies that are a combination derived from the work of Harville Hendrix (Imago Therapy) and John Gottman. For parents seeking help with parenting issues, I use an educative approach which draws on many sources. I may ask you to see a physician for a physical examination, so that we may be more certain that some physical ailment is not part of the problem. I encourage you to ask me any questions about my techniques that will help you understand and feel more comfortable.