My Approach to Helping
I believe that therapy is a collaborative process in which we work together to discover your strengths and challenges and explore avenues for lasting change. If you are struggling with feeling stuck or hopeless, issues with anxiety or feeling depressed or seemingly insurmountable relationship challenges, then therapy may be for you. I know how painful it can be to feel helpless to change aspects of yourself or your life and I want you to know that there actually is hope and that help is available. Sometimes the most powerful thing we can do is be willing to ask for help and be honest with ourselves about what we see and feel in ourselves.
My particular approach to individual work is body-based and sees you as a whole person, rather than a head with thoughts and feelings. I will work with your experience in your body and help you learn how to read your body's emotional signals and work with those signals to handle difficult situations.
More Info About My Practice
Now accepting Medi-Cal / Partnership Health Plan of California
I currently see clients on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
My license is under the name Jessica Berkana (MFC 47647) while my business name remains Jessica Smith.
My Role as a Therapist
I see myself as a guide and a facilitator in service of your wholeness. My job is to hear, see and feel your experience and offer avenues for working with what I observe. This is your journey, your relationship and your life - and my work is to help you discover the clarity and insight you are seeking by providing reflections and feedback and asking questions about what I see and hear. Sometimes I am more directive and will make recommendations for areas of focus but it is always up to you. I cannot give you answers about how to live your life but I can give you possibilities for alternative ways of approaching the stuck places. I believe that my most important function is to help empower you to create the life and relationships you feel good about. We can be in this together and you get to be the expert on your own life and challenges and I then bring my knowledge and awareness of how to navigate those challenges and offer you nonjudgmental support to that end.
On the Fence About Going to Therapy?
Successful therapy is a commitment - it takes time and focus. But that does not mean that you have to sign on the dotted line and promise undying resolution towards working your stuff. The only way you will know if therapy is right for you is if you take a chance and try it and possibly with more than 1 therapist. You may think that therapy isn't what you want or need until you sit with the right therapist for you. People are often afraid of looking too closely at themselves and those parts that are not so nice or pretty and they are afraid to be judged by another (ie. Therapist) and afraid that nothing/nobody can help them. All of this is normal and I recommend taking a risk and trusting that you get to choose your path. Most therapists expect that the beginning is a trial and it is the time for both parties to determine if this is a good fit. Whether you are a couple or an individual, it is essential that you feel heard and seen by the therapist and comfortable enough to get vulnerable. Once you have that, anything is possible and you may be surprised at just how satisfying it can be.