“Progress may look different for different people, but it usually involves increased self-esteem, increased self-awareness, and the recognition of areas of strength and areas of challenge.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
My path to becoming a therapist started when I first began my studies at New York University in music therapy. I always knew I wanted to be a therapist and my interest in music led me to learn how to use expressive therapy techniques as a vehicle for helping people achieve therapeutic aims. After completing my master’s degree at NYU in music therapy, I became interested in community mental health and worked in outpatient settings, such as day treatment centers and rehabilitation centers. As I gained clinical experience, I began to develop a strong interest in the mind-body connection and learned about somatic therapies. Eventually, I studied massage therapy and got certified as a medical massage therapist. Today, I draw on all of these experiences to help people work through pain, anxiety, depression, trauma, and grief. I have completed training in mindfulness and meditation and often integrate these concepts into my work.
What should someone know about working with you?
My intake process is a conversation where I ask the client to explain reasons for coming to therapy, historical information, primary supports, chief complaints, and prior experience with counseling and therapy. I try to understand what the client is hoping to gain from therapy, and I try to answer any questions he or she might have at this point. Usually, the first few sessions are places to identify current and past issues as well as areas of focus. Progress may look different for different people, but it usually involves increased self-esteem, increased self-awareness, and the recognition of areas of strength and areas of challenge. Progress can also be gaining self-control or learning to let go of control. Sometimes, progress is acceptance and sometimes, it’s moving out of one's comfort zone. I will assign worksheets or homework if a client feels they can benefit from this. I like working with clients who are interested in learning about themselves.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
I have an interest in mindfulness, anxiety, depression, PTSD, and addiction. I take many online courses on these topics. I have attended Pesi seminars, TZK seminars, the Zur Institute, and many more continuing education groups. I have attended both recorded and live seminars and workshops on DBT, stress and the brain, rewiring the anxious brain, and mindfulness. I continuously enjoy reading and taking online classes on the subjects of trauma and recovery, anxiety disorders, and somatic therapies. I have attended monthly supervision groups and learn by listening to other providers talk about their work. I have a colleague who also shares interest in neuroscience, mindfulness, and the brain and we often exchange resources and meditate together.
“I like working with clients who are interested in learning about themselves.”