If you are reaching out for a pathway to change, an avenue to endure a painful life event, or a place to get grounded and find your direction, I am honored to provide the following information:
I’ve been in Private Practice for 30 years working with individual adults, adolescents, couples and families. Issues for those seeking help have included relationship struggles, substance abuse, career identity, parenting challenges, anxiety, depression, OCD, eating disorders and self worth concerns.
Making the decision to participate in a therapy process takes bravery and vulnerability. Having been both educated as a therapist over many years of instruction and sitting “in the seat” on the other side of the room to participate in my own therapy work, I’ve grown a deep appreciation for the value of this process and the willingness it takes to do it.
FORMAL EDUCATION and THERAPY APPROACHES:
In 1980 I graduated with a major in Psychology from Brown University followed by a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Wright Institute in Berkeley California earned in 1990. I have been trained in multiple treatment modalities including both individual and system therapies. My post doctoral work focussed primarily on family therapy where I became deeply interested in the power of our personal family stories. The most effective work I've experienced with clients over the years combines a dedicated awareness to one's individual history while implementing a variety of evidence based strategies that are undertaken to move forward into a more satisfying experience of living. Most of us don’t come to therapy unless there is a fair amount of emotional discomfort and often acute emotional pain. Since it's human nature to attempt to go around pain rather than to face it and take it on, it seems counter intuitive to delve into places in ourselves that hurt. The use of cognitive therapy strategies and mindfulness calming techniques can be very helpful. To sustain the growth and gains made in therapy I incorporate ongoing practices that are encouraged between sessions.
The other important piece of the work I do involves the focus on resilience. This means that it's equally important to look at whats right with the picture as it is to identify what's wrong. People are endowed with true strengths of all kinds. It's never the case that clients are without something quite essential inside of themselves that can assist in a profound way with their own healing and growing. The work is to discover these aspects and put them to use in solving challenges and cultivating self appreciation.
The integration of evidence based and scientifically supported modalities of therapy provide a comprehensive approach to the work which is often multi-layered and complex.
Cognitive Therapy, Psychodynamic Therapy and Interpersonal Therapy as well as Body Awareness Mindfulness work in collaboration to address present day dilemmas along with longer standing patterns and challenges. A brief description of each of these approaches is shared below.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy addresses self defeating thinking patterns and counterproductive behavioral habits that perpetuate emotional distress.
Psychodynamic approaches help you to uncover the unconscious cognitive and emotional processes that keep you stuck.
Interpersonal therapy addresses the way in which your beliefs about relationships and patterns of relating to others can sometimes impede genuine and intimate connection.
Minfulness Body Awareness assists in grounding oneself in the present moment which can clarify what have become unconscious triggers resulting from past events. This can expand the experience of having a choice over one’s emotional responses and reactions in the present moment.
Important to note regarding the work of psychotherapy in this present era vs. historic approach is the transparency offered by the therapist. The understanding of the work we do, the reasons for certain techniques, the role of the therapist-client relationship are shared openly and any curiosity about the mode of therapy is welcomed and supported.
At the heart of psychotherapy is the opportunity to learn a beautiful means of putting ourselves in our own hands through the guidance of the therapy relationship. In our own hands we can learn to appreciate our efforts to live life on terms congruent with our values and desires.