My Approach to Helping
Managing life's stressors can be challenging. There are many times in our life when we find ourselves stuck or overwhelmed, not knowing how to move forward. Depression, anxiety, relationship issues, low self esteem, or other life issues can seem daunting and leave us feeling as a victim to life's circumstances. As a counselor, I will encourage, support, and assist you to move beyond your current situation by helping identify those beliefs or areas of your life - your blind spots - that keep you stuck repeating patterns that often are at the core of the issue. Using theories or techniques of cognitive psychology, I help identify the distorted thought patterns that no longer work for you and teach the tools necessary to grow and move beyond your current challenge. Counseling can help you move beyond a state of helplessness by assisting you to examine new possibilities, and to make the changes necessary to create the life you want.
More Info About My Practice
I offer sessions online via Skype, Facetime, telephone or email. You can have your session literally anywhere you feel comfortable. You can have the comfort and convenience of your home or office, sit down with a cup of tea or music or anything else that contributes to your sense of well-being. Online counseling has been found to be equally effective and offers privacy, convenience and flexible counseling times that are appealing to many. The counseling boutique is a boutique practice and chooses clients carefully in order to provide the most specialized and individualized counseling and improve the chances for success and life change. Personality Assessments are also available.
My Role as a Therapist
Through cognitive, Adlerian and person-centered therapeutic techniques, my role as a counselor is to assist you to regain a sense of control, to improve your mental functioning and to improve your reality adjustment. As you deal with the repercussions of past events, your situation may seem overwhelming. You may describe the situation as hopeless or resign yourself to the idea that your current misery will continue indefinitely. These negative expectations tend to be fulfilled as you situations in order to validate your beliefs. These beliefs or thoughts become automatic and contribute and maintain the feelings of helplessness. These thoughts become patterns that are repeated time and time again. My job is to have an objective eye and help you identify these automatic thoughts and the role they play in your current situation.
What I Usually Need to Know to Help
In the broadest terms, the elements that are important for me to know about you, are the key life events that you feel have shaped you into who you are. While we certainly will discuss your past, the focus is more on how you perceived or interpreted events of the past and how those interpretations and your responses to those events are shaping your present and dictating your future. I will be able to get a sense of your general outlook on the world and start to identify patterns of thought and behavior that are consistent through out your life. Generally speaking, the details of your story aren't as important as the way you have interpreted and responded to those past events and subsequently how those events have shaped your outlook on life.
My Guiding Ethical Principles
I follow or adhere to the APA or ACA code of ethics as dictated by state licensure. I act on your behalf and my underlying ethic is to do you no harm. Any particular questions you might have, I am happy to address in as much detail as you would like.
On the Fence About Going to Therapy?
Therapy doesn’t have to be daunting and miserable. The process of therapy can be fun and empowering because it allows you to take an active role in your own life and create new possibilities. It’s normal for people to fear or dislike opening up and feeling vulnerable with a counselor. It’s important to remember however, that the counselor isn’t there to judge you, but rather to support, encourage and guide you as you navigate through a troubled area of your life. If a you are contemplating therapy yet ambivalent about it, I’d challenge you to give it a try. Get the most out of your life. You have nothing to lose.
Had a Negative Therapy Experience?
There are bad therapists and bad therapy experiences just as there are bad doctors and bad medical experiences. It's prudent however not to generalize one bad experience to the entire therapy process. The success of therapy depends on both you, your commitment to the process, and on the skills and style of the therapist. If you've had a bad experience with counseling, it is important to discuss your experience with a new counselor. Discuss what made it a bad experience. Its important for you and your counselor to establish goals and clarify what you are hoping to accomplish through counseling. It's beneficial for to know what both you and your counselor expect from the process, and periodically assess whether those goals and expectations are being met. My advice is, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater because of a bad therapy experience. Find a new therapist just as you would find a new doctor. Counseling can be extremely successful and be just the thing you need at this time. Take the time to find the right counselor for you.
How My Own Struggles Made Me a Better Therapist
in general, knowing myself, the struggles of my own life, and my own experiences with therapy have made me a more effective counselor. The more self-insight a counselor has, the more effective he or she can be in helping you. There have been several key moments in my life that have been traumatic, and while I would not choose to repeat them, they ultimately have made me stronger and a better counselor.
Importance of the Client-Therapist Alliance
The counseling relationship is important to the successful outcome of therapy. By building a relational foundation you can begin to lessen your defenses and open yourself to the possibilities for change. This foundation enables you to explore yourself and your situation, to gain a clearer understanding of any self-defeating behaviors, and to make the steps necessary for change. You are an active participant in the counseling process. My approach is warm and empathetic, yet also direct and authentic. It is my goal to help you, the client, identify the blind spots that have you stuck, to challenge you, support and encourage you as you make the steps necessary toward the change you want.
The Duration and Frequency of Therapy
In the beginning sessions, you and I will establish goals and a time frame for counseling. You and I will periodically assess if the goals are being met. It is my goal to move you through the counseling process in the most efficient manner. I have no desire to have you as a life long client. I'm If I am doing my job well, I will teach you the skills to mange your life more effectively. You will get to the place where you feel confident and able to move forward. While each person and their situation requires an individualized treatment plan and may vary in the amount of time required in counseling, I recommend assessing whether the goals of therapy are being met approximately every 6-8 sessions.