Our approach to therapy draws from a range of psychological/behavioral theories. Each therapist tailors their approach to the unique needs of each individual client. More specifically, we synthesize aspects of the following approaches as needed:
Cognitive-behavioral theory: This approach is very useful when clients need tools and strategies to interrupt negative thought patterns and behaviors. Cognitive therapy includes looking at one‘s internal dialogue, seeing where thought patterns may be self-defeating, and shifting these patterns to more optimal and self-nurturing ways of thinking.
Attachment theory: This approach considers the quality of one‘s current intimate relationships and explores how emotionally secure one felt in early relationships with parents. Attachment theory provides a useful framework for psychotherapy because it can pinpoint vulnerabilities in relation to self and others and help clients gain insight into dysfunctional patterns of relating.
Mind-body techniques: It is often very helpful in psychotherapy to provide behavioral tools that enable clients to better manage stress and experience a greater sense of well-being. The mind-body approach utilizes various relaxation techniques such as meditation, visualization, and even simple breathing exercises.
Psychodynamic theory: This approach looks at how early experiences affect current feelings about oneself (e.g., self-esteem) and current relationships. Oftentimes when a client feels caught in repetitive thought and behavioral patterns that do not facilitate growth and joy, it is useful to explore how she/he has made sense of early life experiences.
Dialectical Behavior Therapy: DBT is a modified form of Cognitive Behavior Therapy. This therapeutic modality is designed to help change patterns of behavior and is largely skill based. It is typically composed of four main modules. It works well for individuals that want to work on regulating emotions, increasing mindfulness or awareness, tolerating stress and improve interpersonal skills. It has been proven effective for those with mood disorders such as BiPolar and personality disorders such as Borderline Personality Disorder. It also can be beneficial for those struggling with self harming behaviors and anyone who would like to improve these skills.
In order to benefit fully from counseling, the following recommendations are offered:
- Be specific about the concerns that led to your decision to seek counseling
- Establish with your therapist desired goals for your work
- Discuss your progress with your therapist as you go along
- Participate actively, and be as open and honest as possible