“My specialty is in helping women overcome depression and anxiety caused by abandonment, relationships, perfectionism, horrible break-ups, poor time management, life transitions, and childhood traumas.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
My specialty is in helping women overcome depression and anxiety caused by abandonment, relationships, perfectionism, horrible break-ups, poor time management, life transitions, and childhood traumas. I was able to overturn these same issues and radically change my life. These same problems ignited my desire to help people suffer less and love themselves more. Hence, I chose to take the role of psychotherapist to do just that.
What should someone know about working with you?
I grant my clients permission to trust in their own abilities to make bold shifts in their behaviors. According to those I’ve worked with, I bring light to their problems with compassion, wit, and a lifetime of tools. A supervisor once recognized me as the most approachable and in-demand therapist. My clients leave therapy knowing how to triumph through the rough times. My virtual private practice is friendly and welcoming. In ongoing sessions, I ask clients to complete a mini-questionnaire to evaluate their weekly progress and emotional status. I may assign homework, too, as a vehicle to support clients during their week.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
Most people hesitate to try therapy for three reasons: cultural stigma, resistance or not believing that they need help, and cost. I would invite everyone to consider whether these beliefs are theirs or if they’ve been given to them by others. It’s important that people know that their struggles don't define them as individuals. Therapy is non-judgmental. If economical challenges are a barrier, most therapists offer a sliding scale and free referrals. It takes a courageous person to break the cultural stigma and accept professional support. A perfect life involves imperfect people who experience imperfect circumstances. Knowing how to deal with rough times in a skillful manner can lead to greater joy and satisfaction. Everyone needs help with their mental health one time or another.
Have you done any research-based work that you found particularly exciting? How does it inform your practice today?
It is refreshing to learn that more psychological studies point to the benefits of Eastern modalities. In my internship at a recovery clinic for women, I researched the benefits of yoga therapy, the results of which led me to conduct my sessions quite differently. I weave together traditional psychology, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, healing modalities, and my academic background in spiritual psychology to create an all-encompassing practice. I enjoy working with clients of diverse backgrounds and I encourage them to utilize their own spiritual or religious beliefs during challenging times. Depending on the client, a specific holistic technique may enhance the healing process.
What made you choose mindfulness as one of your power tools in therapy?
Around eight years ago, I was experiencing my own turmoil and I decided to sign up for a mindfulness retreat at a Buddhist monastery. My time there was gold, as I learned to create a mindfulness that revolutionized my life. This involved practicing self-compassion on a daily basis. I decided to use these methods in my sessions with clients and the results were incredible. Children with ADHD focused better and adult clients who experienced panic attacks became asymptomatic. Ever since, I haven't stopped teaching people how to master self-compassion inside and outside of therapy. I host workshops worldwide on radical self-compassion and guide meditation sessions through an app.
“I grant my clients permission to trust in their own abilities to make bold shifts in their behaviors.”