People enter therapy for many different reasons and with a wide range of goals. And yet we all are basically seeking growth, within ourselves and within our most important relationships.
Sometimes the goals individuals and couples present will require only a few sessions. Other times longer-term work is called for. The length of our collaboration is something we would discuss early on and, as the work continues, revisit as needed.
I welcome the opportunity to work with individuals and couples regardless of religious, cultural, and ethnic identity; sexual orientation; gender; citizenship; physical ability; or socioeconomic status.
Like many therapists, I was oriented towards this work by a natural fascination with the human experience. While my style is warm, informal, and truly nonjudgmental, I believe it is at times essential for our default positions to be challenged within a safe context. At its best, good therapy can provide the help of someone trained to see and artfully communicate what we sometimes cannot see ourselves.
I have found time and again that empowerment is a natural outgrowth of real understanding. This extends to the self: when we understand ourselves deeply - when we see why we act and feel the way we do, why certain thoughts and decisions and relational patterns persist - we may begin to cultivate an empowered self-compassion that can truly be transformative.
I believe so deeply in the opportunity and value of the therapy experience. Where we once felt passively stuck within ourselves and our relationships, with the help of the right therapy relationship we may acquire the tools of real change - change towards more a more confident, peaceful, spontaneous, authentic life.
The path towards more fully knowing oneself - and then using that knowledge productively towards growth - is different for everyone, so my work with each client will be different.
That said, certain principles guide all my work. My own style results from the influences of several schools of thought, including psychodynamic, interpersonal, and existential theories; cognitive and mindfulness-based approaches to change; and Eastern psychology. I would be happy to discuss these influences with you in person or by phone.
I have yet to encounter a relationship that didn't have its occassional disappointments, frustrations, unspoken or poorly-spoken resentments. Over time layer can build atop layer and soon the once effortless core of what brought two people together can be obscured.
While different couples seek therapy with different goals in mind, my couples work is generally built around the simple (if challenging) goal of self and other understanding; that is, coming to see one's feelings and behaviors in a context that makes sense, and openly witnessing (and even helping) one's partner do the same. True mutual understanding and acceptance of the depth of needs within the romantic bond is extremely helpful. It diminishes self-pity and creates room for real honesty; and real honesty contributes greatly to self-respect and forms the basis of any truly nourishing relationship.
I'm a fervent believer in the power of group therapy. In fact, the majority of my clinical research has explored what it is about groups that make them so effective in eliciting positive change. Group can help people truly know themselves in a unique, healing, and extremely growthful way. I find that most people know little about it or have misconceptions about what group work is like.
The groups I run are not built around any single "theme." Instead, the common elements that bring members together is a desire for growth and a shared commitment to an experiment in authenticity. Lasting 90 minutes every week, and usually comprised of 6-8 adults of varying ages, these "process groups" are so-called because the focus of much of the work is the process by which the members interact as they share themselves and their lives. They offer a safe, supportive, and at times challenging space for people to talk about their experiences and explore how they go about relating to themselves and others. And since most people would say that their relationships form the heart of their lives, learning and growth in this area can have a profound impact.
These groups are ideal, for example, for those who wish to gain better insight into patterns within their intimate relationships, and learn how to cultivate closer, more satisfying, more nourishing ones.
Time and again I have seen how these groups become enormously important for people. The group experience creates the space for members to become important to each other, to care about and support each other's efforts in life, and - unlike in individual therapy - to know the healing power of giving as well as receiving. This can be extremely powerful work. I welcome the opportunity to further discuss this option with you.