Individual Therapy

Individual Therapy

 

“Life is Difficult.”

M. Scott Peck said that in his book, The Road Less Traveled. When I read that I felt like someone was finally being real with me. Being real and authentic are important in my work as a therapist. What this means for the people I meet with is that you can relax because I am transparent. I don’t have a hidden agenda. 

One of the most indelible images in our culture is of a person reclined on a sofa while the psychotherapist sits in a chair asking probing questions. You can recline on my sofa if you want but the kind of relationship I offer to my clients is very different than the Freudian psychotherapist of the past. In addition to the authenticity that I mentioned before, I also offer compassion. Whatever you are facing in life, while I may not have direct experience of, I am familiar with the pain that comes with being human.

In Individual Therapy, I don’t categorize my clients according to “mental illness” but rather according to where we are together on the road to understanding.

Viktor Frankl believed that meaning was at the core of being human. I think at the core of being human is the desire to be loved and to love others. This is the most meaningful experience and truth there is in life. While you may not agree with me, that is the perspective I bring to therapy, and whether it is true is not as important as whether it helps the people I meet with. The truth is supposed to set you free, not just be true.

Being human is a vulnerable thing.

Humans have tried to make life as secure a possible. We have laws, governments, borders, guns, rights, constitutions, medicine, insurance, and many other things that are supposed to keep us safe. Perhaps these securities exist because life is inherently insecure and scary, or maybe humans are just evolutionarily scaredy cats because it helped us to survive. Whatever the case may be there are better ways of dealing with the scariness we experience in life then ignoring it or bottling it up inside. There is actually an incredible amount of power that comes with being vulnerable.

Taking off the mask or putting down the sword that we use to hide behind isn’t the first step; it’s actually oftentimes one of the last.

The first step in Individual Therapy, for some, is just admitting to yourself, or to me, that you feel scared. Once you acknowledge this and actually allow your self to feel it ripple through your body change becomes possible. Of course for some this vulnerability is very familiar and it’s actually the opposite that they need. “Good fences make good neighbors”, said Robert Frost in his poem Mending Wall.

We need healthy boundaries in order to have healthy relationships.

There is no golden mean or balance that can be applied to every person and relationship. While we are all human, we are also each a unique individual. We have our own unique fingerprints and DNA, so why wouldn’t we need unique boundaries and needs? I am not usually one to argue by analogy, since it can be abused fairly easily, but I don’t know anybody who would disagree with me in the point I am making. But if no one would disagree with me then why am I defending my use of analogical arguments? I am a very thoughtful person not just with regard to human relationships, but also with regard to the underlying assumptions and beliefs that shape our culture, identity, and worldview.

While my own beliefs shape the lens through which I see the world and do individual therapy, I am constantly aware of my own perspective and curious to understand how you see the world.

It is impossible for anyone to remove their lens completely and put on someone else’s. But because we share in having human hearts we can connect in a much more profound way then our minds are capable. There are so many questions that emerge as we live life. If you have some really important ones that need answers I would love to help you search for them.

Individual Therapy is $80 per session.