Why see a Therapist?
There is a not a person alive, at least one that I have met or read about that has not been scared or wounded in some way. All of us have battle wounds. Therapy is a safe and confidential environment to take off the band aid and allow a professional, to help you clean out the wound and heal again. When wounds are healed a scar often remain, but when “touched” by actions or words of another, the scar does not scream back in pain as the unhealed wound once did.
If you answer Yes to any of these questions, please do not hesitate to call:
1. Is your overall health declining for no apparent reason?
2. Have you experienced a trauma and it seems to be replaying over and over in your mind?
3. The things that made you happy in the past no longer do?
4. Does your life seem to be passing you by with no direction?
5. Are you using a substance (social media counts) to cope with life stress?
6. Are your current relationships strained?
7. Do you feel there is a better life out there but are unsure how to get there?
8. Do you feel disconnected?
9. Do you feel anxious in social situations?
10. Has it been awhile since you belly laughed?
What can you expect?
You can expect me to listen. You can expect me to ask you questions. Not just the “how does that make you feel” question. I may ask, “Well, why does that matter?” This intentional question in a counseling session, allows you to pause and use the thinking part of your brain instead of the emotional part. It causes you to go deeper inward to find the motivation behind your behavior. Ask yourself this same question four times and then you may experience the great, “Ah Ha! That is why I do what I do”.
Sessions last 50 minutes, begin on time, and end on time. Payment is expected at each session. Often work to be done outside of session may be given. Examples of homework might be writing down the cycle of an argument, tracking moods using a daily chart, breathing exercises, reading a chapter in a book, or just following through on the plan you developed during the session.
You can expect me to take a few notes. I want to move forward each session and not take time for you to retell what I forgot the session prior. Also, you can expect no distractions. I do not answer my phone or check emails during session. In turn, I will expect the same from you. Our time is limited and I want to make the most of it to help you leave my office more clear minded and confident than when you walked in.
Above all expect confidentiality. What is spoken in a therapeutic session must remain in the counseling session. As a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist I must follow a code of Ethics created by the American Psychology Association (APA) and also the Healthy Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, (HIPPA). However, you may share your experience with your friends or family. I am bound to protect your privacy.
How long does therapy last?
The length of treatment is up to the you. Recommended is once a week to begin with, the first session an overview. If you are doing well the time between sessions will expand. If needing help, we stay on the once a week track until there is consistent healthy momentum. You are able to stop coming at anytime. Typical therapy last 6-8 sessions depending on the issue brought into the therapy office. Sometimes I may see a client 4 sessions, then 6 months later they come back again. That is the benefit of having a therapist you connect with. I will be here when you need me. As long as you are working on becoming mentally healthy, I will work too.
What is the goal of therapy?
The goal of therapy is client driven. What do you want to have accomplished when our time together is up? Often a client wants to understand a specific situation and is having difficulty seeing it from a different perspective. In that case, I sit on an imaginary hill and tell the client to walk 5 steps to the right and he or she will be out of the imaginary forest. A therapist does not give advice, but by asking questions the client discovers the answer that has been hidden inside. A conversation between a therapist and client that is authentic and transparent, not always pleasant, is an empowering dialog. Other times, a client comes in with multiple childhood emotional wounds and trauma. Although this can be challenging, the healing process is wonderful for both the client and myself. Inner child work is difficult but very rewarding. We all have some type of childhood wound, why not heal it and only see a scar?
Contact me if you would like to ask a question to see if therapy might be helpful, or you just want someone to talk to. I offer 15 minute free phone or face to face consultation.