My Approach to Helping
Please, call me JJ. Truth is, it's all about connection. You need to feel connected to your Therapist as you both work together. No matter how many theoretical orientations a therapist has at their fingertips, it will never replace human connection. My job is to create a safe therapeutic relationship that will allow you to explore and possibly heal past (or current) experiences. My passion is working with relationships... and communication... communication is the foundation of most relationships! When relationships become challenging, or when LIFE becomes challenging, you can become stuck in old, possibly negative patterns. I believe there is always a way to become unstuck and evolve through the challenges. My style relies heavily on Gottman method (an evidenced based framework used with couples), Nonviolent Communication (NVC), Attachment (how has your experience growing up impacted current relationships?), Psychoanalysis (do your current relationships indicate a past pattern or experience that is "haunting" your ability to be authentic? Did experiences in your past create insecurity, shame, guilt, fear or anxiety?), and finally humor. Yep, humor. Because who says therapy can't have moments of lightness? I might argue that the lightness is a guide through the darkness, and that's what I hope to offer to you.
My View on the Purpose of Psychotherapy
Psychotherapy is not about one type of theoretical orientation (CBT, DBT, Psychoanalysis, Emotion Focused Therapy, etc) it's about custom tailoring all styles of therapy in a way that works only for you! No matter how many theories a therapist knows, none of it works if it doesn't fully take you into account. Especially working with couples I believe the process is delicate and requires an expert touch to contain large emotions. Psychotherapy needs a skilled artisttherapist (a Thartist... I made that up) at the helm that can fluidly move with you while you work in session. I also see the Client as an active participant that week after week works hard to unpack challenging events during sessions too. The therapist-client relationship propels the work towards the goals you determine for yourself. It's a dance. And a good Thartist knows how to dance!
My Role as a Therapist
My role as a therapist is to be an enlightened witness to your journey. I do not believe a therapist should offer advice or a quick fix or tell you what you "should" do in order to be happy. As a therapist, I believe strongly in unconditional acceptance (I'm not the judgy type) so I can be a source of support for you while you move through emotions and vulnerability. And here's the thing, nothing shocks me. Seriously. You need to be able to freely talk about all aspects of your life and not feel as though you need to "take care" of me. My job as a therapist is to contain any and ALL information you need to discuss. If you do not feel safe enough to talk about the uncomfortable then let's figure out how I can support you so you can experience the freedom you need to work through everything that is alive for you.