As a counselor, I utilize evidence-based treatment methods and our therapeutic relationship to assist you in adapting and changing unhealthy behaviors, thoughts, and feelings to help you to achieve your desired outcome. Counseling is a collaborative treatment between the counselor and the individual, you.
I provide a warm, safe, and supportive environment which will allow you to speak openly, free from judgment. Counseling is a very personal process, and every individual will experience this process differently. Although this is a collaborative relationship, you will be the one to determine the focus, methods, frequency, and duration of the therapeutic process. I may offer choices and suggestions, but you will be the one to decide what is best for you.
Individuals seek counseling for a variety of reasons. Whether it be a something easily identifiable (such as depression, the death of a loved one, or relationship issue) to something more difficult to name (such as unwanted emotions or feelings). Typically we seek change when we are in distress and when this distress has impacted our lives and relationships.
In addition, we tend to seek out counseling to address mental health issues, for additional support, learn new ways to cope and communicate effectively with ourselves and others. Others might be seeking counseling to gain a deeper understanding of self, asking “Who am I? What do I want? Why do I do what I do? Why do I feel how I feel?” The desire for self-exploration and personal growth is equally important.
Ultimately we are all seeking an improvement in our quality of life and our relationships. We are seeking understanding, support, connection, growth, and change. You might be contemplating attending counseling for one of these reasons or maybe something very different. Whether you are aware of what the issues are, ultimately you may feel something inside of you pulling you towards the counseling process.
As with any form of treatment, there are possible risks and benefits. As you begin to consider if counseling is right for you, I would ask you to make a fully informed decision by reading the following information so you can make the right choice for you.
I’ll encourage you to share your story. What brings you to counseling? What positive changes do you wish to see in your life?
I create a safe, inviting space for you to disclose anything troubling you, causing you pain or grief.
We will begin to explore and clarify your values, beliefs, goals, and desires for your life. These elements will be used to help guide you towards making critical positive changes.
After exploring those elements which ultimately shape who you are and by identifying what positive changes you wish to see in your life - together, we will form a plan of action to help you succeed.
Together we will identify a step-by-step plan to help move you towards healing and lasting change. These steps will be small, realistic, measurable steps to help propel you forward. Too often we expect too much of ourselves, setting ourselves up for disappointment if we don’t immediately achieve our goals.
I will help you learn to celebrate your process and successes along your journey, no matter how big or small. I always liked the saying, “Progress, NOT perfection.”
Throughout this journey, I will be in your corner! I will help to prepare you for the road ahead with the necessary knowledge, tools, skills, encouragement, and support you need.
The answer to each of these questions varies slightly with each person. Although this may vary and depend on a few factors – ultimately – it’s up to you.
YOU are in CHARGE of your treatment. You get to decide.
However, to help you decide what is best for you, feel free to read the additional information I’ve provided. I also encourage you to think of this as an on-going conversation and apart of treatment.
Like with most things, consistency, commitment, and practice yield the best results.
Most people in counseling come the same time each week, promoting consistency and lasting relief.
But what if I’m really struggling?
Occasionally, people require more support due to the intensity of their symptoms or current difficulty. In these instances, it’s common for people to choose to attend counseling twice per week for a short period until they begin to experience relief.
What if I need a little support? Or I’m attending counseling for personal growth?
There are many personal reasons why people come to therapy. Folks who want to learn specific skills might attend only a few sessions. Others who wish to sustain their achievements from previous counseling might come in for "booster sessions" once per month or as needed.
I trust you to know what you need, although I hope you would welcome feedback along the way.
Standard Counseling Sessions are 45-50 minutes.
However, I often have folks who prefer extended sessions. The length of sessions can vary from 45 minutes up to 2 hours depending on your preferences and needs.
What if I scheduled a 'Standard Session' then I need more time?
As long as I do not have another person scheduled, I would be happy to spend more time with you; Helping you to sort through the heavy stuff.
What if typically ask to extend my time in session?
You can choose to schedule extended sessions consistently. Planning for your needs ahead of time would ensure you get the support you want - without worrying there's someone else scheduled and waiting.
In regards to the length of treatment, there are two types. The first is Short-term therapy (also called brief therapy) which is considered 12 sessions or less.
The second is long-term therapy which as you might have guessed is 12 sessions or more. However, long-term treatment could last months or even years.
Which type is best for you?
That’s up to you. However, it’s important to keep in mind some issues might be more appropriate for entering counseling for a brief time. For instance, leaning a skill or getting additional support as your adjusting to a change or transition in life.
While other issues might be more appropriate and produce better outcomes for a more extended period. Such as if you are attempting to make a long-lasting behavioral change like addressing addiction issues, you have experienced significant trauma, or you have a severe mental health or personality disorder.
I would love to work with you for a just a brief period or a more extended period!
Often I find many clients choose to remain in counseling longer. They express how useful therapy is and how they wish to work on new goals after having accomplished those who initially brought them to counseling. While others might stay, do to the nature of the issue or due to experiencing on-going stressors or significant life changes.
It’s important to keep in mind – you can change your course of treatment anytime.
You also don’t have to decide at any point which “type” of therapy – short or long term. Most of my clients keep showing up, week in and week out, doing the work, and making steady progress we get to celebrate.
As you begin to recognize and appreciate the progress you've made, you'll let me know when it’s time to slow down, letting you take the reins.
As you make process in therapy, you may decide to taper off sessions gradually slowly. You’ll likely attend therapy once a week and overtime determine every other week is best. Eventually, you might even come to counseling once per month for a few months as a check-in or “booster session” to help you maintain the progress you made over time.
Ending can be difficult. I ask my clients to come back for at least one session before the leaving counseling so we can properly say goodbye, look back on the progress you have made, and provide you any additional resources.