Mental Health Services
(Information concerning fees is at the bottom of this page.)
Caring, confidential, personalized and life-changing -- that's the type of individual therapy experience I strive to create for my clients. While each session will involve me getting to know you better, the first few sessions are critical to helping me understand what your concerns are, and what brought you to this point. Next, we focus on where you want your life to go and how you'd like things to be different. We will collaboratively develop a treatment plan which is the road map for our work. Each week we will focus on helping you achieve the goals we established in your treatment plan.
Our sessions are individualized, based on your needs and goals. In each session I will ask what you'd prefer to focus on, especially if something occurred during the past week that you would like
to discuss. We will do a lot of "processing" in our sessions together. This means we will explore events,
experiences, and turning points in your life, and we will strive to uncover your thoughts and feelings
about these things. There is something wonderful that occurs when you speak out loud those things
that have been mulling around in your mind. By speaking out loud, your brain can hear and process
things differently than if you were only thinking about them. And talking about these issues with a caring, objective person who is not emotionally tied to your circumstances makes a world of difference!
Remember that you are the only person in this world that you are able to change. Through counseling, you can examine your patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviors. You can consider doing things differently, and make changes. If you want your life to change, the change starts with you. Life can be different for you, and working with a counselor can accelerate that process.
Trust is the main ingredient when working with teenage clients. If you are a teen considering counseling, know that it is important that you are comfortable with your counselor and feel that you can trust them. In my work with teens, I stress to parents that their teenager is the client. In the first session, parents are invited to share their concerns and hoped-for outcomes of counseling. Parents understand that it is essential that no conversations be held with me outside of your sessions. If parents have a concern, or want an update, they will be invited to join us during our counseling time.
As a teen, you are probably aware that counselors are "mandated reporters." This means that if anyone is hurting you in any way, I am legally required to report this to Child Protective Services. Your safety is my number one concern. While most of what we discuss is confidential, if I think you are going to hurt yourself, or hurt someone else, I cannot allow that to happen and will have to disclose the circumstances to the appropriate people, including your parents.
Now that you understand the boundaries of teen counseling, please know that my counseling office is one of the safest places on Earth to express your thoughts, feelings, hopes, dreams, concerns, and frustrations. Unless one of the above mentioned exceptions occurs, our conversations are confidential. We will create a plan of topics to discuss in our sessions, and you are always welcome to discuss whatever is on your mind or heart, regardless of whether or not it's part of our plan.
Many adults in therapy say that they wish they had started counseling in their teenage or young adult years so that some of their serious problems could have been resolved earlier in their life. That's the best gift you can give to the rest of your life -- addressing your concerns now in order to pave the way for the future you are dreaming of.
There is a direct connection between our thoughts, behaviors, and feelings. I tend to believe that we become what we think about, and sometimes those ways of thinking are detrimental to our well-being. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) seeks to identify and rebuild our faulty or unhelpful ways of thinking, as well as learned patterns of unhelpful behavior. People suffering from mental or emotional distress can learn better ways of coping which may relieve symptoms and improve well-being.
Through CBT, we learn to identify distorted ways of thinking that can be causing problems. We also learn to compare the distortions to reality and adjust our thoughts accordingly. We uncover automatic ways of thinking that are not in our best interest, and we challenge those thoughts. We also search for core beliefs which are operating at a subconscious level. Once identified, these core beliefs can be examined and evaluated for their effectiveness. CBT also helps us gain a better understanding of how and why people do what they do, develop greater confidence in our abilities, facing fears rather than avoiding them, learning to calm and relax one's body, among others.
Not all CBT strategies are necessary with every client. We will work together to understand your situation and develop a treatment strategy that best addresses your situation. Also, CBT tends to focus on what is currently happening in a person's life rather than the past. However, historical background is often helpful and sometimes needed. But CBT primarily focuses on identifying current stressors and coping strategies to help your life more forward more effectively. Also, CBT skills can be helpful for a lifetime. For example, once you learn to identify and readjust distorted thoughts, you should be able to do this yourself anytime.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a psychological treatment approach that has been shown to be effective in helping with a wide range of problems including anxiety, depression, substance use, relationship problems, and other severe mental illnesses. According the American Psychological Association, "Numerous research studies suggest that CBT leads to significant improvement in functioning and quality of life. In many studies, CBT has been demonstrated to be as effective as, or more effective than, other forms of psychological therapy or psychiatric medications."
Your life following abuse of any type, can be different. Abuse, in its many forms, steals some (if not most) of our joy. It is possible to overcome the damage that drastically impacts lives. However, it is not an easy or instant process. Things didn't get this way overnight, and they won't change overnight. It takes time to explore the impact of the abuse, to make meaning from the events, and to develop a plan to rebuild and move forward.
Using cognitive-behavioral therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, and positive psychology concepts, we'll work together toward greater mental and emotional health. Concepts that may be helpful to explore include boundaries, trauma, anger, resentment, and self-esteem, among others. For greater understanding of abuse, education regarding the characteristics of psychological abusers may be helpful. Many clients benefit from examining red flags of an unhealthy relationship.
Self-Help refers to self-esteem, self-confidence, self-compassion, self-acceptance, self-assertiveness, and all the other aspects that help us build a healthy self-image. Unhealthy relationships, trauma, and mistakes can erode self-esteem. Abuse, neglect, and abandonment are also circumstances which can diminish self-worth. Some types of abuse cause us to hate ourselves, blame ourselves, and feel shame. SELF-Help Coaching examines these beliefs, and challenges them.
It is common for someone with low self-esteem to believe they have no good qualities. SELF-Help Coaching will help you discover and explore your primary character strengths, as well as your good qualities, skills and talents. When appropriate, additional concepts explored in SELF-Help Coaching may include (but are not limited to): Self-esteem, self-confidence, self-care, boundaries, self-talk, self-compassion, assertiveness training, self-respect, and unconditional love.
Life Coach support is for those who want to improve themselves, improve relationships, increase their motivation, find answers to life's problems, learn new skills, set and achieve goals, or get unstuck. Coaching helps people move forward by asking questions, providing options, considering alternative ways of thinking, boosting self-confidence, and making decisions. With an objective perspective, a life coach assists people in achieving their personal or professional goals.
My life coaching support usually consists of three stages:
1. I help you evaluate your life and/or career from an objective standpoint.
2. I help you identify who you really are, what your true desires are, and what you want to achieve in life.
3. I provide support, tools, and techniques to help you achieve your goals and dreams.
When working with any life coach, your participation is 100% required for your success. As your coach I will offer suggestions, perspectives, reflection and guidance. You decide what works for you and apply it outside the sessions. Your active role assures that you achieve your goals.
I am an in-network provider for Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield. For all other insurance, I am an out-of-network service provider. Many insurance companies will reimburse for out-of-network mental health care. I will issue receipts to those clients whose insurance will reimburse for mental health services. My hourly session rate will be discussed prior to our first session. This fee is due through Paypal, Zelle, or check prior to the beginning of each session. Other fees include:
Brief Letters (one or two paragraphs) -- $25 each
Letters - Fee will be based on the letter requirements
Forms -- $50 each
Phone call to collaborate or coordinate services with other medical providers -- No charge
Phone call to advocate for you -- No charge
Fees for other needs outside our therapy sessions will be quoted as they occur.