My approach to working with individuals is holistic, in that I bring the body and the mind together for deeper self-awareness and healing. We know that the early experiences that shape the brain and the stress response system occur before conscious memories can be stored; this is why using the body for healing and integration is so critical. Not only are early memories stored in the body, but all the physical and emotional experiences (traumatic or otherwise) we have throughout life imprint the body. The best way to create new patterns in how we think and feel is to access the wisdom of this “somatic awareness”. There are a range of ways to do this that we can explore together in session including mindfulness, yoga, breathwork, and other subtle movement therapies.
Now for the mind. Oh, the creative and ruthless pursuit of the mind to keep us stuck in patterned ways of thinking and perceiving. No judgment! However it is we got to where we are today is the crafty work of a mind determined to keep us safe, and we are thankful for this. It’s just that the first order of business is to realize that not everything we think is true. Once we understand this point, we can form new narratives and update our internal dialogue to be more helpful for the circumstances we are facing today.
The mind is complex and confusing; and, we will never fully get to the bottom of things- but we can try. To begin sorting through all the mental chatter I’ll take you through an experience I call “Cast of Characters”, informed by Richards Schwartz’s Internal Family Systems model. We all have a diverse and interesting cast which includes our inner child, inner critic, masks, shadow material, wise adult, and essence. Our mindset is based on who (of these characters) is large and in charge. When we can observe our thoughts and feelings as just a part of ourselves (just one of the characters taking over the scene) and not our whole selves, we can begin to make progress towards feeling and thinking in healthier, happier ways.
My intention as a coach and somatic therapist is to boost your confidence in a few (impactful and effective) sessions and get you out into the world feeling better. This is one of the differences between my work as a coach and a typical psychotherapy practice. I’m happy to see you on a weekly or bi-monthly basis, but my goal is to get you off the couch, not book you out on my calendar for a weekly session from now until the end of time. Don’t get me wrong! I see my therapist weekly as a part of my overall wellness plan. But I like to work in short, intensive spurts and have you come back as needed over the years. Once we get to know each other, and you have invested in sharing your story with me, we can stay in touch across time; then there’s no need to begin again with someone new.