How do I think about therapy…

9 Apr

How do I think about therapy… therapy is a relational healing workspace. Our lives are often organized around our relationships with others. Psychotherapy can serve as the working field where we train and practice for the important relationships in our life, kind of like vocational training for the heart and mind. This work allows us to develop new ways of looking at ourselves and our relationships and then to have other behavioral options.

I think that most unhappiness arises out of our reluctance to meet life head-on. Sometimes the life we wish we had interferes with the life that, in fact, we have at this time. This stepping up to meet ourselves can be aided by the help of another, a skillful guide who knows this territory. As someone said, “My mind is a dangerous neighborhood. I don’t like to go there alone.”
Mindfulness is the basis for the work I do with clients. Mindfulness is a simple technique to direct and sustaining our attention wherever we choose. This is especially important because how we use our attention is the only real freedom we have. Mindfulness creates an inner space that allows us to move through pain, fear, and confusion.
From another perspective the job of the therapist is to hold the mirror for us to see ourselves more clearly. Real changes comes from clearly seeing our patterns over time, and not ducking out via food, drugs, drink, sex, TV, or other compulsive behaviors.
In addition to psychotherapy and counseling I also offer training in mindfulness meditation. My grounding in mindfulness comes from many years of practice and work in Buddhist meditation centers. I have a MA in Counseling Psychology from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto, CA. and have worked effectively with teenagers and their families, couples in difficulty, and individuals dealing with life-changing upheavals, chronic pain, depression, anxiety and grief.

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