“Through creative therapeutic approaches, I quickly engage and make the counseling experience meaningful, relatable, and sometimes even fun!”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
As a teenager and young adult, I participated in my own therapy for about eight years and decided to become a clinician right out of high school. I guess you could say it has been a lifelong calling for me and I have most definitely done my own work! Over the last 22 years, I have had the privilege of providing therapy in domestic violence and sexual assault centers, community-based mental health programs, a local hospice program, and private practice. I am heavily seasoned and I've clocked over 200,000 clinical hours! One of my unique specializations and gifts involves working with children and teens. Through creative therapeutic approaches, I quickly engage and make the counseling experience meaningful, relatable, and sometimes even fun!
What should someone know about working with you?
The best way I can explain my approach is a blend of compassionate, empathic, and nonjudgmental support mixed with effective therapeutic techniques and feedback to foster growth. Sometimes, therapists just offer support and listen, which feels nice but doesn't always result in change. Sometimes, therapists come in hard with a heavy focus on directive feedback and confrontation, which can feel intimidating and a little too vulnerable. My therapeutic approach blends these together; it’s supportive, warm compassion mixed with a focus on change and growth. The first sessions provide an opportunity for connection and a chance to see if I am the right match. Together, we will identify the problems, the strengths in the situation, and the right solutions. I utilize a variety of clinical frameworks and continually learn new interventions and approaches to provide the most effective and efficient therapy. However, the most important aspect involves creating a safe, nonjudgmental space to allow for healing.
How do your core values shape your approach to therapy?
The most important value in my life revolves around creating authenticity and being real, so it makes sense that I would extend this in my therapeutic practice. I value vulnerability and find that this allows therapy to go deeper into lasting healing and transformation, rather than just insight and behavioral change. I believe it makes more sense to find and heal the core issues rather than just focus on behavioral changes. My approach involves combining science and evidence-based therapy practices with the healing and more creative aspects of counseling. I believe we all have gifts to share in the world, and I know that mine involve creating a bridge between the scientific approach and the art of therapy. I appreciate diversity and differences in thinking and life experiences and often enjoy the many perspectives others share when telling their stories.
What professional accomplishment are you most proud of and why?
While a therapist helps inspire and guide change for clients, it becomes imperative that the helper also continue to evolve and grow in their own right. I recently stepped outside the safety and comfort zone of the four walls of my therapy office to write and publish a highly successful book called, The Self-Love Workbook For Women: Release Self-Doubt, Build Self-Compassion and Embrace Who You Are. Writing a book feels vulnerable and I found myself sometimes asking, "Who would want to read what you have to say?” I never anticipated the book would reach over 100,000 people in nine months! Authoring this book has allowed me to help others on a more collective scale as well as opened doors with podcast interviews and other writing and speaking opportunities. I share this to reflect on how hard it can feel to step outside our comfort zones, believe in ourselves, and push ourselves to grow. As an introvert, this has always felt challenging to me. While clients come to therapy to heal and grow, therapists must continually do their own inner work and challenge themselves to create the best potential for healing and change in others. I am proud of myself for growing as a clinician and now as an author. I also know and relate to how vulnerable it can feel to start therapy!
“The best way I can explain my approach is a blend of compassionate, empathic, and nonjudgmental support mixed with effective therapeutic techniques and feedback to foster growth.”