“I specialize in creating an atmosphere of extreme empathy, acceptance, validation, and occasionally, insight.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
This is actually the third career for me. After a brief stint in journalism (and many blue-collar and white-collar jobs along the way), I became an advertising copywriter and creative director and worked on Madison Avenue for 15 years. I was using my skills of understanding people to sell them things they didn’t really need and I realized I wanted to go into helping people in need as well as others. By working in clinical settings, which have ranged from prisons, nursing homes, hospitals, and mobile crisis teams to my offices in Brooklyn and Manhattan, I've learned there is much I know and much I do not know. I have completed specialized training in trauma, addictions, sexuality, and mindfulness-based stress reduction.
What should someone know about working with you?
I generally like working with human beings. I've worked with people who come in with very specific problems and issues and those who are under such stress that they are simply looking for relief. I specialize in creating an atmosphere of extreme empathy, acceptance, validation, and occasionally, insight. The sessions are co-created between the client and me and humor is definitely welcomed. I bring an open mind and heart, all the flaws and strengths of a man trying to make sense of this life and the very temporary nature of this life, to every session.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
Before New York began requiring continuing education credits (CE) for psychologists, I received specialized training in dealing with anxiety, depression, and personality disorders. I specialize in mindfulness and meditation and have attended many seminars, webinars, and discussions online and in person on mindfulness-based treatments. I am an exhaustive reader of psychological theories and particularly like books exploring mindfulness and Buddist-related themes, which can help everyone (including me, of course).
How do your core values shape your approach to therapy?
I come to my work with the Buddist-shaped realization that life involves suffering but that suffering can be overcome by realizing that it is our own thoughts and perceptions that shape our realities. In other words, it is not so much the actual event or reality that we face but our perception of that reality that shapes our mental outlook. I never forget that positive behavioral change is the goal of each and every session.
What is the purpose of therapy?
Positive behavioral change and a new understanding of oneself. It also offers a valuable therapeutic relationship with someone outside of your friends and family.
“The sessions are co-created between the client and me and humor is definitely welcomed.”