My Approach to Helping
Everyone has a story and I find it a great privilege to enter into my clients' stories and walk with them for a period. Life is both incredibly beautiful and incredibly difficult and I believe that we are unable to experience the highs unless we do the hard work of diving into the lows. My job as a therapist is to provide clients with the tools, the motivation, and the encouragement to explore their own stories in order to move forward into a fulfilling future. I would be honored to enter into your story, whether you are struggling with anxiety, depression, life transition, relational difficulties, or the effects of past trauma.
My View on the Purpose of Psychotherapy
Most of us have a tendency to avoid "unpleasant" emotions (fear, anger, anxiety, shame) and relational pain. As a result, we tend to sweep problems under the rug, we numb our emotions, we avoid conflict, we push people away... we come up with all kinds of creative ways to avoid the "bad" in search of the "good". Unfortunately, life doesn't work that way. We must allow ourselves to experience those unpleasant emotions if we want to experience the pleasant ones. And we must risk rejection and failure if we are ever going to have a chance to experience intimacy and success. Psychotherapy, then, is a place to learn the tools and gain the support to venture into these uncharted waters. In therapy, we will explore the past for the purpose of making better decisions about the future. We will dive into pain for the purpose of more fully experiencing joy. Psychotherapy is not for the faint of heart. I am ready to stand with you and guide you when needed, but you will do the lion's share of the work. And, in my opinion, it is generally well worth the struggle.
The Duration and Frequency of Therapy
Generally I encourage clients to begin coming to therapy once a week in order to become comfortable with the therapist and the process. Once we have settled into a rhythm, we will adjust the session frequency based on client needs. As far as duration, every client experience is different. For some people, six to eight sessions is really all that is needed to get them moving in the right direction. For others, counseling is a longer-term commitment that stretches into multiple months. I will say that I see counseling as a stepping stone toward client independence. My goal with each client is to work myself out of a job. Therefore, we will continue with therapy for as long as it is needed and no longer.