“I developed a strong interest in mindfulness and rational emotive behavior therapy, and they have become the foundation upon which I build my approach.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
Becoming a therapist was one of the few things in my life that I felt truly certain about. From the very beginning, I set out on this course. I attended university to study psychology, where several experiences in the field of research made it clear that my love and passion had to do with my desire to understand and connect with people in need. After graduating, I enrolled in a master’s program for mental health counseling, which is a terminal degree designed for the sole purpose of becoming a therapist. Through supervision, I developed a strong interest in mindfulness and rational emotive behavior therapy, and they have become the foundation upon which I build my approach.
What should someone know about working with you?
Experiences may vary, but there are some things you should expect. I like to jump right in by working together to establish goals in the very first session. I am a firm believer in my clients and their ability to create meaningful change in their lives. This change is partially accomplished through the work we do in session, but also by the work that is done in the time and space between sessions. I may assign homework, which can be challenging and uncomfortable at times. But it’s important to remember that change sits just outside our comfort zones.
How does collaboration with other providers inform your work?
Having worked in hospitals, schools, clinics, and private practice, I learned how important it is to collaborate with a team of caring individuals dedicated to helping those they serve. Working on a multidisciplinary team and toward a common goal gives us the valuable chance to observe clients outside of therapy, provide and receive feedback from staff and family members, and collaborate with others. The work of a therapist in private practice can feel very removed and isolated at times, so the prospect of working with others in order to serve my clients more effectively is always exciting.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
Therapy is not easy; it requires time, effort, patience, introspection, humility, persistence, and flexibility. That being said, therapy is also a place where you can be yourself, explore ideas, experience vulnerability in a safe space, and receive feedback and support without judgment. It’s a place and time for you and only you. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to take care of yourself, but please understand this: You are every bit worth the time and effort. So take that first step and I’ll meet you there.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I’m very excited about the rapid development and implementation of mindfulness in mental health. Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment. It is a powerful grounding technique that helps people self-soothe, quiet any internal noise, and focus on the here and now. I’ve been practicing mindfulness for the past ten years, completed my thesis on the subject, and I rely on it as a therapist to effect meaningful change in the lives of my clients. The results have been inspiring and I look forward to discovering new ways of incorporating it into daily practice.
“I am a firm believer in my clients and their ability to create meaningful change in their lives.”