What made you decide to become a counselor?
Several things I guess: (1) Growing up, we had a teacher who asked us to write one nice sentence about each of our classmates and then pass them out and I noticed some of mine stated that I was someone people could come to and that theme had a tendency to follow me through life. (2) When I was a kid, I was taken to therapy, and did not have the best experience. I felt that there was a hidden agenda and I wasn't being heard and I wanted to do better. (3) Then later in life and early in my career, in a non therapy job, I noticed that my job at the time was only part of what could be helping families and I saw a need for more therapists.
If you could teach the world one skill or technique to improve their lives, what would it be?
The importance of breathing. I think sometimes we get caught in the hustle and bustle of things and don't realize its effect on our body and how much breathing plays into that and how helpful a tool it can be.
Have you personally been in counseling and if so, what did you learn about yourself?
Yes, I learned that the world isn't carried on my shoulders and in setting boundaries we can also help others as well as ourselves.
If you could recommend one book to all your clients, what would it be?
Over the years I noticed I really like watching the movie version of things sometimes rather than reading (yes, I can be that person) but that I also really like text books so I would recommend Self-help That Works: Resources to Improve Emotional Health and Strengthen Relationships by John C Norcross, PhD, Linda F. Campbell, PhD, John M. Grohol, PsyD, John W Santrock, PhD, Florin Selagea, MS, and Robert Sommers, PhD. I think everyone learns and takes in information differently and this helps facilitate that.
Who is your ideal client?
I don't know if there is one. Anyone seeking therapy is already doing a really big step and that itself is awesome.
How do you personally practice self-care?
I have grown this toolbox over the years and have found I'm a HUGE introvert and regain some of my energy through time alone sometimes, but I also LOVE my family so creating a balance of time with them and time for myself either indoors, outdoors, in the kitchen, listening to music, organizing things around my house while listening to music, and several others. Oh and ice cream!
How do you relate to Mindfulness? How do you incorporate it in your sessions?
I find Mindfulness extremely useful in my own life and in sessions. Since we all take in the world differently and come into sessions with our own experiences, I tend to give several options to my clients to practice Mindfulness. I personally tend to gravitate more towards mindful eating and mindful walks.
Your favorite quote?
It's definitely hard to choose a favorite. Lately this one seems to resonate a little bit more "I can't change the direction of the wind but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination. " -Jimmy Dean
If you are hosting a dinner party, who are the 3 people you would invite and why?
In our 2020-2021 world, probably 3 close friends and relatives I haven't seen in awhile.