“My greatest takeaway to date is that as humans we are really more alike than we are different and we all deserve someone with whom to connect and develop a genuine and supportive relationship.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
My path to becoming a therapist was one that came natural from an early age. While I did not know that I would become a clinical social worker, I did know without a doubt that I was supposed to be a helping professional. Early experiences with grief and loss shaped my path such that I became even more determined to create meaning from these experiences. Time and education illuminated my trajectory more clearly and led to fulfilling my purpose as a therapist. I have had the honor of working in many environments, including the public, private, and federal sectors. I encountered many individuals who struggled with basic needs and the desire to have meaningful connections with others. Most of all, I discovered that these basic needs are largely the same for everyone and often just packaged differently. My greatest takeaway to date is that as humans we are really more alike than we are different and we all deserve someone with whom to connect and develop a genuine and supportive relationship.
What should someone know about working with you?
Clients can expect that I will seek to gain an understanding of who they are and their needs in the first 2-3 sessions. We will then establish a rapport and a good foundation to build upon. Progress will look different for everyone, so I think it is important to first recognize your strengths and begin to visualize change. Taking these important first steps sets the stage for our journey together. I enjoy watching individuals grow and have a profound respect for the human will to move toward change even in the face of fear. Over the years, my work with substance abuse and trauma has broadened my appreciation of the core instinct to fight for survival. No matter the issue at hand, I enjoy helping clients shift their visual lens more adaptively to change negative messages that can keep us stuck. In therapy, my clients will work in the moment and receive resources and assignments for exploration and self-reflection between sessions.
What do you do to continue learning and building competencies as a provider?
I think it is important to continue engaging in education that supports refining your craft. I engage continually in training that focuses on new developments in the field as well as skill-building. I believe highly in ethics in the therapeutic process as well as learning more about culture and differences. Currently, I am spending a focused amount of time to better understand the nuances related to the mind and management of chronic pain so I can best support clients with this issue. I also enjoy focusing on issues of personal development to include health, wellness, and emotional self-care.
How do your core values shape your approach to therapy?
My core values shape my approach to therapy by influencing how I live my life daily. I believe it’s important to live a life outwardly that is congruent with who you are when no one else is looking. My hope is that my clients feel a genuineness that creates a sense of safety and comfort in therapy sessions. Overall, I believe the core characteristics of the heart are what fuels lasting change. The attainment of knowledge, embodiment of faith, and willingness to engage in new experiences add to this foundation.
“Progress will look different for everyone, so I think it is important to first recognize your strengths and begin to visualize change.”