Areas of Expertise
The areas of life which pose challenges may be related to personal history, relationships, work stress, family dynamics, identity, spiritual or existential beliefs, and many other matters. But counseling is not the same as receiving advice on such things. Rather, it is a collaborative exploration aimed at clarity, self-determined direction, and empowerment.
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy
Life only happens now, in this moment. But most of the time we are caught up in dwelling on past events or worrying about the future. We may suspect that living in the present would help, but in our busy day-to-day existence, this is no easy task. Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy combines Cognitive Therapy (see below) with meditative practices to better manage stress and ground us in the "Now."
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
The way we interpret situations has a profound impact on how we feel. CBT focuses on identifying unhelpful thoughts, addressing them with skillful means, then responding wisely. CBT strategies strengthen emotional regulation, improve overall functioning, and increase happiness.
When we first meet, we'll discuss your history and your concerns. We'll articulate goals for your treatment and establish a clear direction aimed at the outcomes you are hoping for. It will also be an opportunity for you to ask questions and feel comfortable in the work we will soon embark upon.
To attain your goals it will be important to understand the nature of anxiety. So often I meet with clients who have had previous therapy experience, but without ever having learned why anxiety exists or how it it functions within the mind and body. Once you possess this knowledge, we can more effectively implement strategies for change.
The word “mindfulness” has been in vogue for some time now. However, there are very few therapists who actually practice it, formally. In my (admittedly biased) opinion, it is of vital importance to work with a therapist who has a consistent mindfulness practice, most likely meditation of some kind. Otherwise, it's kind of like going to a personal trainer who has never exercised before. They may understand that exercise is healthy, but have no true experience. In order for the power of mindfulness strategies to work, you need an experienced coach.
I have been practicing meditation daily since 2001. Having benefited from various traditions, I currently facilitate a secular meditation group in the Wilmington area. I spent part of my career bringing mindfulness to a local drug and alcohol rehabilitation center, and have trained in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) with Jon Kabat-Zinn, the pioneer of contemporary mindfulness work.