INDIVIDUAL COUNSELING

 
The light of love is always in us, no matter how cold the flame. It is always present, waiting for the spark to ignite, waiting for the heart to awaken.
— bell hooks
 

My approach to therapy is rooted in understanding, encouragement and a commitment to providing a safe space for you to express yourself. Since every client's needs and values are unique, I integrate several modalities of psychotherapy in addition to my lens of somatic counseling. My work is informed by somatic psychotherapy, Gestalt therapy, family systems, attachment theory, feminist theory, the neurobiology of human development, as well as my own movement and spiritual practices. 

A healing relationship with a therapist provides space for the unwinding of painful patterns that get in the way of your birthright to feel whole and self fulfilled. This unique relationship between therapist and client is a powerful foundation for growth and transformation.

An important part of therapy is the reclamation of the parts of yourself that have been denied expression. We all feel that certain parts of us are acceptable and other parts are not. This belief can cause painful cycles of self-protection and disconnection. The therapeutic relationship serves as a model for being with self, teaching you how to lovingly attend to and care for the parts of yourself that you may unconsciously avoid, dislike or be afraid of. I will gently guide you towards your compassionate witness, the part of yourself that can hold all other parts with care and acceptance. When you learn to attend to and integrate these parts of yourself, you will begin to feel more connected to yourself and to others, ultimately bringing a great sense of satisfaction to your life. 

 
Your body is the ground metaphor of your life, the expression of your existence. It is your Bible, your encyclopedia, your life story. Everything that happens to you is stored and reflected in your body. Your body knows, your body tells. The relationship of your self to your body is indivisible, inescapable, unavoidable.
— GABRIELLE ROTH
 

My approach to counseling is somatic psychotherapy. In somatic therapy, body awareness is seen as the central element in learning how to know and heal yourself. Your body, thoughts, emotions and behavior share an important connection with each other. Deep inner transformation occurs when you get out of your habitual roles and bring attention to what is true in your body in the present moment. Developing awareness of your embodied experience helps to open new pathways of healing that cannot be reached through verbal processing alone. The ability to be self-reflective of your somatic sensations will enable you to know yourself deeply, feel more in charge of your life, feel a greater capacity for empathy and increase awareness of your needs and boundaries leading you to make healthy decisions in your relationships.

Through new experiences in counseling, you can begin to rearrange old patterns that arose to protect you. As you feel understood and cared for, you will replace old painful patterns with new feelings of warmth, compassion and acceptance. I will gently support you to develop a new relationship, filled with kindness and understanding, with your body and yourself.

When something challenging happens, your body can have strong reactions which may feel distressing and overwhelming. A vital part of the work I do is guiding you to attend, with love, to the reactions of your body. This practice will teach you how to heal yourself by bringing compassionate presence to your emotions, sensations, thoughts and behaviors. 

The process of tending to the body with care is different for everyone. It might mean becoming aware of a sensation, following an impulse to move, or simply noticing where your body makes contact with the seat. All of these experiences will bring you into a greater sense of knowing yourself, enabling you to be authentic in your life and feel more connected in your relationships. When you are aware of what is real in the present moment, it is much harder to feel stuck in life's past difficult experiences.

Therapy looks and feels unique to everyone. We will create the process of therapy together, checking in about your goals, needs and values along the way.