Individual Therapy

We all face so many challenges…

…but we don’t have to let them rule our life. There are alternatives…

Replace fear and anxiety with a new point of view.

Keeping it together day by day is tough – in the face of challenging events, relationships, and sometimes groups, it can be even worse. We fear we will lose our safety, the people who love us, the beliefs that we’ve held about ourselves and others.

We wonder, “Maybe I’m wrong.” … “Maybe they are wrong.” … “Is it worth the risk to change things?”

Would you like to find a new context for your feelings? Sometimes there is an explanation that will reduce your feelings of anxiety and fear. It may not be what you expect, and it can sometimes feel like a risk to look at something from a new point of view. I invite you to try, and I will walk with you down that path and make it worth taking the opportunity so that you can find comfort and peace.

Exhaustion and Depression… meet Curiosity and Engagement.

Have you been getting through the day feeling flat, not sleeping well, always on edge?

You may feel powerless, hopeless, empty. You have given everything you’ve got, and for what? To whom? You perform but know it will never be good enough to those who matter most to you.

Imagine feeling rested and restored. By engaging in individual therapy, you will understand why you feel empty. Those feelings will be replaced with curiosity, knowledge, and a deep awareness of your real strengths and who you really are.

Your mind will be opened to choices you never knew you had. You will find your voice and rediscover your passion. Once again, you will feel connected to the world around you.

Let shame and blame become love and acceptance.

You are feeling unloved, rejected, and taken advantage of. You don’t know if it’s your fault or the fault of someone you love. Perhaps it’s because of what you’ve been through. You are never really sure; you know that you feel sad, scared, and un-loveable. It never seems to stop. You are often angry, at others and yourself.

I will guide you to peace, calm, and genuine self-acceptance. You will begin to love yourself again and learn how to find those who are truly worthy of your love. I will help you learn who you can trust and why, how your sense of trust may have been distorted through no fault of your own, and how to feel more secure about your choices.

Isolation in relationships can change to connections and reconnections.

Isolation can be extremely painful. When you feel rejected or unloved, it can make people physically ill. Not being able to communicate with the people you care about can likewise feel isolating. Mastering the art of communication involves learning new skills, like learning how to listen, figuring out what is important and planning on how to say it.

It may be hard to trust. You don’t know if you can trust yourself, your friends, your family – if you still have any. You have stopped saying anything, you have stopped communicating, your thoughts are locked up inside you so that you can be safe.

I will help you learn to be authentic, learn to set new boundaries so that you can feel safe again, and help you process the grief of lost relationships. I can help you become independent without fear – and break through your isolation.

Discover your identity and purpose – find the true you.

You no longer feel like the fun person you once were. You watch everything you think and say. You are afraid to set new goals for fear of failure; you aren’t sure what to believe anymore. What groups to get involved with, if any. You wonder how to make friends. You want to show your real self, but you don’t dare, not even to the ones you love, your spouse, your kids. You don’t know how to become the partner/parent/person you want to be.

I will help you learn to become the person you want to be. We will explore your past and the things that have gotten in the way. We will work on finding what works best for you, and I will support you in the changes you want to make.

Develop motivation to removing roadblocks.

You no longer know how to feel motivated. Reasons for caring seem to have disappeared. You know you want to do better but for whom: your family, your boss, your friends, yourself? Who are these people and why do they matter?

Together, we will find the parts of you that you love and bring them back to life. We will dust off the things you have not let yourself care about. We will find the things blocking you from connecting to the things that matter in your life and move them or go around them so that you can feel competent again.

Release traumatic flashbacks, and experience peaceful memories.

Sometimes you have experiences that you are not expecting. They can be moments that take you back to the past when you feel as if nothing has changed, repetitious patterns that make you drift off, or memories that sometimes flood you without warning.

These experiences may be scary; they may be bittersweet – you may find navigating them hard to cope with, or you just want them to end. You may even want to understand them better – to know why they keep happening and whether there is anything that can be done about the disconnections they create.

I will explain the reasons for your flashbacks, disorientation, distraction, and spacey feelings, changes of mood, and help you stop them. Your feelings toward them and yourself will change in a positive direction.

Drugs and Alcohol – Feel Great Without the Shame

Scary events, especially in our youth, can make it easier to become alcohol and drug dependent as we get older. Perhaps you find yourself wondering if you have a problem that you can’t talk about. You want to trust someone not to make you feel more shame than you already do. Do you want to quit but don’t know how?

I can help you sort this out in a safe and nonjudgmental way. I can guide you toward a life that does not require these things to live pain-free. I will be there with you every step of the way.

Parenting and School – Learn and Feel Competent in What You Do

You want to become a parent or perhaps a better one. You want to identify the strengths and weaknesses you have to parent a child but aren’t sure where to start. You may be struggling with a child with issues and want to know more about how your biological or adopted child’s past has affected his present. You know that feeling calmer and clearer will help.

Together, we can review your concerns about parenting. We can talk about how it may have been affected by your own. We can identify the next steps for you or your child.

If you or your child is having difficulty with school and you have ADHD, Executive Function problems, and you sense that it’s not about ‘reading’ or dyslexia, it may be time to learn new ways to deal with life tasks. It may be more about things like setting priorities and planning (you may even be having these problems at work). You keep telling yourself or your kids that it’s about “will-power,” “just do it,” but they don’t or can’t. You are tearing your hair out.

I work with children and adults who are struggling to get through high school, college, or function in the workplace. I love helping people with strategies to help get the job done. Executive Function issues and ADHD are two likely culprits, and together we can find out what’s important to you or your child and find nondrug-based options for making life a lot easier. I also work with people on medication to help them maximize their success.

High-Intensity Group Involvement – Feel Secure Again!

You may have just left a high-intensity group (cult, school, church, etc.). You may have nowhere to live, no job, no idea how to write your resume – you are starting over. You need help just getting stabilized, sorting it out. You know that your experiences with your group have been intense and that you need to address them. You have no idea where to start.

Many ex-members start over from scratch, and it can be a daunting task. I am happy to help you with this transition. I have much to offer in this area and have worked with people who have left cults since 1980, when I left one myself.

This is a one-on-one relationship with a trained therapist or counselor.

It’s a little bit like discussing your life with a trusted friend, but there are some distinct differences…

I’ll be nonjudgmental and will not be upset by things you tell me.

Your isolation, your failings, your despair will not push me away. I will help you find the person you love inside of you, and your feelings that you are not loveable will go away.

I want to help you with the changes you want. What you do, how you see things, who you know, or what memories to carry forward. I can help you sort through choices, experiences, learn new skills or experience feelings.

I’ll be your ally in your change process.

I’ll give you clarity, insight, and new skills.

I’ll help you sort out what it is you feel, figure out what happened, learn new scientific things about your experiences, show you new ways to communicate, set priorities, handle successes and disappointments, and find new ways of making new friends.

You can then use these skills to resolve current and future problems.

Individual therapy is a little bit like learning to ride a bicycle.

It’s a learning experience that supports your independence.

Riding a bike is a process that engages all aspects of the brain; planning where to put your hands, feet, and body and what to do with them; using your muscles to move the bike; and maintaining your balance. It also requires planning where you are going, watching for traffic and other obstacles, and how to manage falling – especially at the beginning. In the end, it frees you to go where and when you want to go.

In therapy, you and the therapist figure out where you want to go, the therapist coaches you on how to access feelings (muscles) without losing your balance (the big picture), and how to keep an eye out for roadblocks and obstacles – like communication or avoiding emotional pitfalls. Eventually, you will develop the memory of successfully navigating life, much like the muscle memory of bike riding.

Help without religion, philosophy, politics, or gimmicks…

I will help you learn about the ways you think and feel and show you some techniques that will help you change your thoughts and feelings. These might include a combination of psychodynamic therapy – a way of helping you gain insight into your past patterns of thinking and behavior, cognitive therapy – a way of looking at your present ways of thinking or behavior, or internal family systems – a form of therapy which believes that at our core, we are all made up of different parts… ’part of me wants this… part of me wants that…’ and that sometimes they need to be integrated to heal.

If you have been influenced by groups, trauma, or intense relationships, I will use psychoeducation – a form of education about the problem you are dealing with, which will help you deal with it in the best possible way. This will show you how your experiences were influenced by group or relationship dynamics. It will free you to choose alternative responses to these experiences.

If you need help with daily task management, I will assess your struggles by looking at ADHD or Executive Function abilities and finding the best techniques to help you manage your most challenging behaviors. Also, I will help you with the feelings and relationships that have been affected by these struggles.

If you are having problems with trauma-related flashbacks, I will suggest the best solution for you. I currently work with other therapists who provide EMDR – Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, a way of reducing the impact of traumatic or triggering events through the use of eye movements guided by a therapist, and neuro biofeedback training – a form of therapy using a computer to harness brainwave activity to reorganize or retrain the brain with the use of visual or sound-based signals. I soon will be getting training in Accelerated Resolution Therapy (ART), which is similar to EMDR above.

For everyone, I will provide some education on the new brain science and how the latest discoveries explain your biological and psychological responses to stress and trauma.

Ready to take that first step to feeling better?

Our communication will be private. I will be there for you no matter what. I have lots of experience, ideas, and resources that can help you. Let’s chat for a free 20-minute consultation and see if we are a fit.

We can do individual therapy in my office or via telehealth, a computer audio/video app that is HIPAA-compliant and has become quite popular during this age of social distancing. No matter where we meet, know that our relationship’s privacy is protected by law.

Call me today and let’s schedule your free 20-minute consultation:
(860) 717-4400.