“Together, we’ll create a safe space—like a trapeze artist performing with a net—that encourages you to delve into your past with courage, and, in the ensuing sessions, take leaps and gain insights that enable you to move forward.”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
I’ve always been fascinated by people who know who they are and get where they want to be. In my youth, I was forced to cope with demanding learning differences that led to emotional turbulence—so things seemed overwhelming for me. I hadn’t yet developed the tools to understand the “problems,” nor the internal resources to address them. I worked with a therapist to understand how to build on my strengths to reach my goals. I felt drawn to delve into human nature and motivation, and working with others to enhance their innate capacities for healing—to help people respond to challenges rather than merely react to them. Naturally, I decided to become a therapist.
What should someone know about working with you?
I pride myself on being an extremely attuned and attentive listener. In addition, my bicultural upbringing has made me aware that there is no right or wrong—only different, appropriate, or inappropriate behavior, depending on the context. I treat each client as unique, and I play devil’s advocate to help you tackle each problem from different angles. After your initial phone call, we’ll set goals. Together, we’ll create a safe space—like a trapeze artist performing with a net—that encourages you to delve into your past with courage, and, in the ensuing sessions, take leaps and gain insights that enable you to move forward.
How does collaboration with other providers inform your work?
Collaboration for me starts with establishing a trusting relationship with the client. However, recognizing that therapists, like anyone else, get stuck or need help, it can be beneficial at those times to consult with colleagues. Over the years, I have established relationships with primary care physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, group psychotherapists, nutritionists, and other social workers. With our clients in mind, my colleagues and I often consult with each other to broaden our understanding of cases. It is extremely important when a client is treated by multiple providers that they work as a team to maintain the continuity of the client’s care. This collaboration is crucial to a truly holistic perspective, and is often key to client success.
What advice would you give to someone who is hesitant to try therapy?
No one wants to need help, so feeling hesitant about reaching out to a therapist is understandable. After all, you are contemplating sharing and addressing difficult emotions—you are thinking about traveling through uncharted territories with a perfect stranger. The first step is to find the therapist who is right for you—a therapist who elicits trust and confidence, who encourages you to ask questions and to set your own pace. If you and your therapist are a good fit—a team that works well together—they can help you navigate those painful, frightening, or complicated territories. It is my job to accompany you as you navigate roadblocks and explore possible new routes that will enable you to move forward with greater ease and better understanding.
Why do you think therapy is valuable?
Michelangelo stated: “It is by subtraction from hard stone that the living image within appears.” Art history taught me to approach a work of art by its fragments to describe what I see. Each work contains nuances, and the connection between each detail guides our perception. It is the small parts of a picture that have the power to change its meaning and message. The same process of observation can occur in therapy. By following this thought process, we can gain valuable information for assessing an individual or a situation. We discover parts of ourselves that were submerged, that don’t work anymore, or don’t produce desired responses—parts that need to be repurposed or recycled to keep our systems healthy.
“It is my job to accompany you as you navigate roadblocks and explore possible new routes that will enable you to move forward with greater ease and better understanding.”