“Therapy is a place to explore your relationship to the unknown and learn tools that can empower you to feel less anxious and avoidant of this inevitable part of life-- leaving you energy to focus on the things you can control.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
As the daughter of two therapists, the idea of becoming one myself was never far from my mind. I’ve always been highly attuned to the emotional states of those around me and have felt the greatest sense of purpose when I am supporting people I care about during difficult times. First, I felt this most acutely with friends and family, then with peers and colleagues. I earned a reputation as someone who could be trusted to both listen and give advice that felt intuitive, not preachy.
I ultimately think these experiences are why I gravitate towards working with young, highly motivated professionals in transitional times. I myself have an understanding of the unique challenges my generation faces and use this as a baseline to build rapport with clients as they ease into the therapeutic relationship and give me access to their inner hopes, fears and experiences.
What would you want someone to know about working with you?
I am committed to providing services that are compassionate, practical and action-oriented. I listen to my clients with an empathetic and nonjudgmental style and provide direct feedback to try to facilitate whatever healing or help they seek. Some people come to therapy to address a concrete issue; others come out of a more abstract sense that something in their lives could be different or more fulfilling. First, I want to understand how my clients are experiencing the world and get a sense of what has worked (and not worked) for them in the past.
What do you think is the biggest barrier today for people seeking care?
Stigma and lack of access. We all know the feeling when it dawns on you that your (lower back/throat/insert-whatever-body-part) isn’t magically getting better with a couple of over-the-counter pain relievers and a good night’s rest. Most of us intuitively know that the next step is to make an appointment with a trained medical professional to address what is distressing us.
In theory, mental health could be no different. In reality, the same instincts that lead us to seek help for physical ailments are often waylaid by stigma, fear and lack of access to good information about therapy and treatment options.
I wish that when people lie in bed tossing and turning in emotional anguish or lost in obsessive thoughts they would consider how it might feel to acknowledge this pain like they would a physical pain and seek the help they both need and deserve.
If there was one thing you wish people knew about the therapy experience who might be hesitant to try it, what would that be?
I wish people understood the incredible power and luxury of having the dedicated time, space and attention of skilled clinician to help them comprehend and cope with how they respond to the stress and emotional fluctuations of daily life.
Unexpected change and lack of control are among the most disruptive and unnerving experiences people face. Therapy is a place to explore your relationship to the unknown and learn tools that can empower you to feel less anxious and avoidant of this inevitable-- leaving you energy to focus on the things you can control. This skill set is sometimes called “psychological flexibility” and while it doesn’t always minimize your pain, it helps you learn to tolerate it better.
Do you utilize a specific therapeutic approach?
My approach to therapy is eclectic and depends on what treatment modality I feel would be most helpful for each individual client. Each person brings a unique set of strengths and experiences and I work hard to tailor my approach to reflect this. I am flexible and receptive to feedback, as my commitment is first and foremost to make my clients feel that their time and money spent in therapy is maximized.
As I get farther along in my training for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, I find myself increasingly integrating aspects into my work. Specifically, when people are in distress, they are often not seeing things clearly and have difficulty understanding how their thoughts or core beliefs about themselves and others have the potential to filter and distort their experiences. I work with my clients to teach them how to first identify these thoughts, evaluate their usefulness and respond appropriately.
“I wish people understood the incredible power and luxury of having the dedicated time, space and attention of skilled clinician to help them comprehend and cope with how they respond to the stress and emotional fluctuations of daily life.”