“We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.”

T.S. Eliot

The psychotherapy process can be difficult to explain; but in general, I feel that therapy offers a unique opportunity for you to safely explore important areas of your life in greater detail, while you gain a new understanding of how both present and past experience has influenced your current emotions, thoughts and behaviors. With this understanding, you will begin to feel a greater sense of control in your ability to move forward and make important changes in your life.

In general, my therapeutic style is straightforward, engaged, understanding, and collaborative – meaning that I will listen to your concerns in an attentive, compassionate manner, and will freely share with you my thoughts and ideas about your situation. My general orientation to the work is guided by a few important assumptions and principles, which I have outlined below:

People are highly motivated to change

Most of my clients enter therapy when they have come to realize that despite their best efforts and motivation to change, they continue to feel that they are being held back in some aspect of their life, or that some part of their thoughts or behaviors has become self-defeating. My role as a therapist is to understand how you are attempting to change and create an environment in which you feel safe enough to begin to look at yourself in new ways that facilitate change.

People’s problems often stem from distorted beliefs about themselves and others.

In my experience, people enter therapy with certain beliefs and expectations about themselves and their relation to others which impede their ability to move forward in their life. An example would be the belief “If I say what I really feel, people will be upset with me, or I will be judged for it.” These beliefs are often unconscious, or semi-conscious, and are usually experienced as feelings of sadness, guilt, anxiety, etc. Often a person may just have a sense that something “feels” wrong. In therapy, clients often find enormous benefit in identifying these beliefs and gaining a better understanding of these how these beliefs developed over time and are currently impacting their lives.

There is no single path toward healing.

There are many paths towards healing. Just as I believe that each person acquires his/her problematic beliefs and expectations in a unique and individual manner, I also believe that people also heal in ways that are unique and highly individualized, with each person needing something slightly different in order to move forward. A good therapy is one that is uniquely structured and responsive to your particular situation. As a therapist, it is my task to work collaboratively with you to create a treatment plan that does this.

The most important aspect of any psychotherapy is a “good fit” between the client and the therapist

The vast majority of the psychotherapy research points out over and over that the most important factor in a positive outcome in psychotherapy is the quality of the therapeutic relationship between the therapist and client. To me, this makes not only empirical sense, but intuitive sense, when you consider that we become who we are in the context of relationships that occur throughout our lives. Each relationship is unique and offers opportunities, as well as barriers to growth. Therefore, I would encourage you to meet with me for 2-3 sessions to personally evaluate your level of comfort with me and my ability to be of help to you in overcoming your problems.

Specific Treatment Modalities

I use a combination of treatment strategies that are supported by empirical research.  In particular, I use two models of psychotherapy:  Acceptance and Committment Therapy and a Cognitive-Relational Model of psychotherapy known as Control Mastery Theory.  I am happy to discuss each of these models of treatment with you if you have questions about them.