“I believe that it’s important to learn how to discuss our emotions and thoughts; some of the best work can be done through talk therapy!”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I have been a helper all of my life and I’m known as a kind, generous person who loves doing things for others. I initially went to college to become a high school social studies teacher. But, deep down, I really wanted to become the “cool teacher” and someone students could go to with their problems. After a chance meeting with a psychology professor, I realized that my true calling was in the mental health field. I chose social work as a profession because I enjoy the client-centered approach and mentality of the field. I am certified in DBT and these skills influence my practice and help develop my therapeutic style.
What should someone know about working with you?
My style for both intake and ongoing therapy sessions is a blend of talk therapy and skill development. I believe that it’s important to learn how to discuss our emotions and thoughts; some of the best work can be done through talk therapy! I am an advocate for developing new ways to manage our feelings, behaviors, and relationships. I enjoy setting ongoing goals for the patient and/or families and working together in weekly therapy sessions to achieve these goals. I have an easy, gentle, and personable manner that allows me to interact well with children and adolescents, facilitating comfort in people just learning to identify and discuss their emotions.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
I believe that everyone needs a good therapist! It’s typical for us to talk to friends, family, and others about issues in our life - we do this as a matter of routine. Speaking with a therapist is just the next step in the equation! I believe that it’s important to find a therapist who makes you feel comfortable and helps you feel like you are making progress towards your goals. I don’t believe in the classic “lay on the big red couch” approach. Instead, I foster a collaborative environment and open conversation that welcomes you to honestly express your needs.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I love that providers are growing willingness to embrace new approaches and new ideas. I believe in using variety in my practice and that, by embracing different processes and methods, we can treat a wider population of people more effectively. I am also excited about the way society is opening its mind to mental health treatment. School districts, city organizations, and people all over are becoming more invested in treating mental health issues and discussing stress, anxiety, and mental illness in everyday conversation.
Who do you prefer working with and why?
I have always preferred to work with children and adolescents because I, myself, am an eternal teenager at heart. I enjoy video games, comic books, technology, and professional wrestling. I tend to keep the conversation lighthearted, using humor when needed, and delving into difficult topics with ease and support. I weave easy topics into the conversation if the session becomes too overwhelming. I also enjoy involving the family in treatment to help the entire in-home dynamic improve.
“I believe that it’s important to find a therapist who makes you feel comfortable and helps you feel like you are making progress towards your goals.”