Psychotherapy is both simple and complicated. In its simplest form you come into the therapist’s office talk about the people and events that are important to you, and the therapist makes comments. Through this process of “talking” you begin to go deeper into yourself. As children we are taught many things about ourselves and the world. We learn these things before we are old enough to “vote.” We may not be fully aware of our own beliefs.
Many of these ideas and beliefs are secrets from ourselves, hidden in our memories. We have feelings we do not understand and cannot control. We act in ways that surprise us. We find it difficult to behave differently even when we want to.
Through this simple process of talk therapy, you can begin to hear yourself. As you hear your internal dialogue you will also hear the ways you speak to yourself and about yourself. It is an opportunity to say out loud all the thoughts you have hidden from yourself and others. The complicated aspect of therapy is the relationship with the therapist.
The most important ingredient in making therapy work is choosing the right therapist. This person needs to be warm, interested and curious about you. It is your ability to connect with this person and to believe he/she can help you that brings about change. As an experienced therapist, once you feel connected and comfortable, I can help you begin to have a better understanding of why you think, feel and act the way you do. As you begin to better know and understand yourself, we can build resources so you can begin to take action. We will work on how to use these resources and strength to take action in your life.
My method is grounded in two operating principles. The first, and most important, is to help you feel that you are safe from criticism and judgment. When you feel safe, we will go on a journey of self-discovery where you can have a greater acceptance of yourself. The second principle is that of self-awareness – as you become more aware of what is going on inside of you and in your life, you can develop the ability to change. We will begin to identify the patterns in your life that bring you conflict and unhappiness. This sense of understanding will begin to (re)build your internal strength.
We will work on how to use these resources and strength to take action in your life. I will provide support so that you can move forward, in a manner and pace which fits your needs. And together we will find new ways for you to relate to yourself and others so that you can create a happier more productive life.