Licensed Professional Counselor
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Helping people to heal and grow in their lives.

My Approach to Counseling for Depression, Anxiety, and Relationship Problems

Counseling does not need to be an unstructured endeavor that aimlessly meanders around the vast and complex landscape of your life. My focus is on helping you to pinpoint and transform the core underlying issues that will impact your healing process most effectively.

I have a present-centered focus, which means that together we identify the important aspects of your life that you would like to change. Then using specific counseling techniques, I support you to address the barriers from your past that are blocking you from achieving your goals in the present. Thus, the past is only utilized as a means of creating greater freedom and fulfillment in the present.

My approach works toward strengthening your sense of wholeness and empowerment. If you've had painful experiences in your past, it’s easy to doubt yourself or to start believing that you are flawed. You may have even begun to overlook your own internal resources. My role is to help you release the barriers that hold you back from reconnecting with your inner-strength and confidence.

Because I have an integrative counseling approach, I combine a wide range of therapeutic skills to meet your personal needs and facilitate deeper healing. I draw on years of experience with my own meditation practice and from facilitating guided meditation, relaxation, body-awareness, and visualization exercises. This tends to significantly enhance the therapy techniques that I use, including EMDR, Brainspotting, The Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy, and Body-Mind Therapy. This approach also helps to draw on your intuition and wisdom as part of the healing process.

By utilizing a psycho-spiritual counseling orientation, I am able to blend methods and perspectives from Western psychology and the Eastern spiritual traditions. Western psychology is especially strong for identifying and working through the painful feelings, distorted beliefs, and unhealthy behavior patterns that are at the root of anxiety, depression, and relationship problems.

Eastern spirituality offers another dimension in the quest for optimal mental health, facilitating a deepening into your true nature, which contains the inherent qualities of love, happiness, presence, and inner-freedom. A deeper connection with your true nature is a powerful antidote to feeling unhappy and dissatisfied. Utilizing both perspectives – East and West – offers a very effective approach to growth and healing.

I take a holistic approach to help you develop the skills and behaviors that will support you to become more empowered and effective in all areas of your life. Physical, emotional, cognitive, relational, and spiritual resources are drawn upon to help build new skills. For example:

  • Physical - Develop stress reduction and breathing skills; learn to use your body to ground and center yourself; exercise regularly; create a mood-boosting diet
  • Emotional - Build awareness of, understand, process, and express emotions; learn to enjoy life more fully
  • Cognitive - Develop mindfulness, awareness, and planning skills; transform negative thinking
  • Relational - Strengthen boundary-setting and communication skills; understand and express core needs; develop a healthy support system
  • Spiritual - Create opportunities to connect deeply with your true nature (e.g. meditation, yoga, quiet time in nature, prayer, contemplation)

My passion is in helping you to release the painful patterns and ways of thinking that hold you back in life, so that you can live more fully in the present.

In my approach to counseling for depression, anxiety, and relationship problems, I draw upon a highly effective 3-Part Healing Process, with the goal of helping you to: my aim is to help you to:

1. Release the Emotional Pain Associated with Trauma and Attachment Wounds

Traumatic reactions occur when something inappropriate and unhealthy happens to you - resulting in an accumulation of emotional pain; attachment wounds occur when something positive and healthy that you needed for your emotional well-being was absent - resulting in a deficit. I utilize specific counseling techniques that are geared toward releasing past trauma and strengthening your sense of self. This step is designed to neutralize the emotional charge associated with anxiety, depression, and relationship struggles.

2. Transform Negative Thinking

Based on difficult experiences from earlier in your life, you may have developed certain negative beliefs that reinforce your anxiety, depression, and relationship struggles. Sometimes these beliefs are obvious (conscious) and sometimes they operate outside of awareness (unconscious) - either way they have a very powerful impact on your life. Together, we can work on transforming your negative thoughts into a positive, empowering mindset. Imagine how much different your life would be if you experienced thoughts that were affirmative, constructive, and supportive of your life goals!

3. Develop Healthy Skills and Behaviors

Developing new skills and behaviors that can be used to prevent and counteract anxiety, depression, and relationship problems can be a very effective part of the counseling process. Learning how to manage emotional reactions, overcome perfectionism and self-criticism, strengthen boundaries and self-care, and improve relationship skills, can help you to experience more happiness, confidence, and a better relationship with yourself and others.

The ultimate goal of our work together is to help you experience a greater sense of empowerment, fulfillment, and satisfaction in all areas of your life.

For Counseling in Portland, feel free to call me today at (503) 887-3309, email me, or use my Contact Form to book a counseling session or to set up a FREE consultation.

Office located in NW Portland, Oregon. Serving the Portland metro area, including Beaverton, Hillsboro, Lake Oswego, Tigard, West Linn, Milwaukie, Oregon City, Tualatin, Gresham, and Vancouver, WA.