Beginning the process of therapy, whether you’re a veteran or brand new, can feel daunting and overwhelmingly vulnerable. I aim to create a space that evokes a sense of comfort, ease, and is judgement-free. I would characterize my therapeutic style as gentle, inclusive, and authentic, and I value using the relationship we build as a method for creating deep self-reflection and honest connection. My approach applies a holistic lens that is structured around your individualized goals, and incorporates the unique qualities that make up who you are, including your personality, your interests, and the difficulties you are struggling with.
Together, we explore and experiment, while also looking at certain factors that have impacted your emotional life, such as culture, environment, systemic influences, and specific incidents that have caused intense stress. Using a process that embraces the “both/and” to our experiences of life, I combine my clinical training with an acknowledgement of traditional forms of healing, led by examining one’s ancestral lineage and the nuggets of wisdom your cultural background holds in high esteem.
In taking an integrative approach, some tools I draw upon are Humanism, Attachment, Psychodynamic, Art therapy techniques, as well as Mindfulness. However, my approach is primarily founded upon the lenses of Family Systems, IFS, Self-Compassion, and the principle of Cultural Humility.
Here is a closer look into the key concepts of these four specific ideologies:
THE TOOL OF
Despite our culture’s focus on the individual, all of us exist in a collection of “systems.” Beginning with our family unit, friendships, relationships, workplace, greater communities, culturally, and even globally, a family systems perspective seeks to understand the nuanced ways we behave in a particular grouping, and how our interactions within a collective shapes our perspective, our experience of the world, and our frustrations. This can be helpful in noticing how and why similar patterns show up in different aspects of our lives, particularly when it comes to locating root issues within our relationships.
THE TOOL OF
Internal Family Systems
Have you ever found yourself starting a sentence with, “a part of me…” when clarifying how you are feeling? IFS utilizes this concept by dividing our inner-world as “parts” that make up our own internal system by identifying parts as serving a function in our survival. These parts often protect the most tender aspects of ourselves, particularly in the aftermath of excruciatingly painful experiences. IFS helps to integrate all the roles we’ve had to play together to function in symbiosis, fostering a deep-dive to understanding the intricacies of who we are, and getting us in-tune with our most authentic self.
THE TOOL OF
So often, we indulge in a mental story that is cloaked in shame, staunchly believing that we are inadequate and unworthy. Many of us have never learned to be kind to ourselves, leading to the creation of a tough inner-critic that can place us in a fog-like state of self-loathing. Self-compassion is a research-based antidote to our inner-critic, using kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness to provide the permission needed in treating ourselves with the same love we freely give to others. Self-compassion is also a useful tool in teaching us how to hold and tend to the emotions we seek to avoid feeling.
THE TOOL OF
Many of us exist in a way that embodies the traditions and mentalities of more than one culture, and yet, therapy can often focus on the values of our broadly American way-of-being. Cultural humility acknowledges the many layers to a multicultural existence, and examines these layers with openness and curiosity. The lens of cultural humility acknowledges the realities of oppression and injustice that communities of color have, and continue, to face, while actively recognizing the truth of how our nation’s history specifically impacts YOUR personal mental health.
When it comes to your goals…
My hope is to help you:
Feel free to experiment
Learn how to sit with difficult feelings
Unburden yourself from distressing thoughts
Listen to the messages your body is telling you
Gain a deeper understanding of who you really are
Identify intergenerational pain and trauma
Get in touch with what you want and lean into choice
Clarify what is working well vs. what needs to change