Treatment specialization includes:
Work and Career Issues
I use Cognitive Behavioral and Humanistic Existential approaches in my work with a wide range of emotional and behavioral issues that span from therapy for depression and grief counseling to parenting support. I also specialize in the use of Radically Open Dialectical Behavior Therapy to enhance psychological flexibility, openness, and connection with others in those who may have a more rigid approach to being. In a comfortable and supportive atmosphere, I offer a highly personalized approach tailored to each of my clients' individual needs to help attain the personal growth they’re striving for.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) aims to solve problems concerning dysfunctional emotions, behaviors and cognitions through a goal-oriented procedure in the present. There is empirical evidence that CBT is effective for the treatment of a variety of problems, including mood, anxiety, personality, eating, substance abuse, and psychotic disorders. Therapeutic techniques may include keeping a diary of significant events and associated feelings, thoughts and behaviors; questioning and testing beliefs that might be unhelpful and unrealistic; gradually facing activities which may have been avoided; and trying out new ways of behaving and reacting. Relaxation and mindfulness are also commonly included.
CBT has been successfully used as a treatment for many disorders and behavioral problems (Cooper, 2008). For example, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Insomnia, (CBT-I) has been found to be effective in reducing benzodiazepine usage in the treatment of insomnia (Morgan et al., 2004). The American Psychiatric Association Practice Guidelines (April 2000) indicated that among psychotherapeutic approaches, cognitive behavioral therapy had one of the best-documented efficacies for treatment of major depressive disorder (Dimidjian et al., 2006). CBT has also been shown to be effective in the treatment of generalized anxiety disorder, and possibly more effective than pharmacological treatments in the long term (Gould, Otto, Polloack, & Yap, 1997).
Humanistic Existential therapy uses a holistic approach to human existence by looking at an individual's meaning, values, personal responsibility, human potential, spirituality, and self-actualization. Focus is placed on the individual's unique perception of reality, along with the notion that inner conflict within an individual arises from their confrontation with the dilemmas of human existence. The aim of existential humanistic therapy is to help the client attain a more healthy sense of self, also called self-actualization. It believes that people are inherently good and celebrates human capacities and strengths while simultaneiously addressing universal limitations. As an Existential Humanistic therapist, the pathological aspects of a person's life are downplayed in favor of the healthy aspects.
Radically Open Dialectical Behavior Therapy (RO DBT) differs from other treatment approaches, most notably by linking the communicative functions of emotional expression to the formation of close social bonds and via skills targeting social-signaling and changing neurophysiological arousal. RO DBT treatment involves both individual treatment sessions and skills training classes, and centers around five OC themes: inhibited and disingenuous emotional expression; hyper-detailed focused and overly cautious behavior; rigid and rule-governed behavior; aloof and distant style of relating; and high social comparison and envy/bitterness.
Psychological health or well-being in RO DBT is hypothesized to involve three core transacting features:
- Receptivity and Openness to new experience and disconfirming feedback in order to learn.
- Flexible-control in order to adapt to changing environmental conditions.
- Intimacy and social-connectedness (with at least one other person) based on premises that species survival required capacities to form long-lasting bonds and work in groups or tribes
Cooper, M. (2008). Essential Research Findings in Counselling and Psychotherapy: The Facts are Friendly. SAGE Publications. ISBN 9781847870421.
Dimidjian, S., et al. (2006). "Randomized Trial of Behavioral Activation, Cognitive Therapy, and Antidepressant Medication in the Acute Treatment of Adults With Major Depression". Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 74(4), 658–670.
Gould, R.A., Otto, M., Pollack, M., Yap, L. (1997). "Cognitive behavioral and pharmacological treatment of generalized anxiety disorder: A preliminary meta-analysis" Behavior Therapy, 28(2), 285–305.
Morgan, K., Dixon, S., Mathers, N., Thompson, J., Tomeny, M. (February, 2004). "Psychological treatment for insomnia in the regulation of long-term hypnotic drug use". Health Technology Assessment (National Institute for Health Research), 8(8), 1-68.