As children, we learn messages about how the world works, who we are, and how to survive. These messages come from our families, our teachers, the media, and our peers, and they help us “organize” our life experiences. While these messages are often well-meaning and not consciously meant to cause us harm, they do not necessarily serve us as adults. Some of the messages we might have learned include:
--you have to be “good” to be loved --don’t take up too much space --don’t get too emotional -- cover up your emotions with a distraction (alcohol, food, busyness, shopping, etc) --don’t show your love or enthusiasm fully, or you’ll pay --the world is not safe --men/women can’t be trusted --your sexuality is dirty/bad/dangerous --success is dangerous or out of reach for you --money is bad/evil/out of reach for you --it’s not okay to ask for what you want --it’s not okay to say “no”, or “I don’t know”, or “why?”
In therapy, one of the main tasks is to help you identify and “differentiate” from these messages. To differentiate is to grow past the messages that have been blindly handed down to you, so you can adopt more realistic and empowering messages that you choose to live your life by.
Often, until we identify exactly what unconscious beliefs we’ve carried with us since a young age—beliefs that continue to shape our view of the world—we can’t grow into the strong, confident, trusting people we want to be.
I’d like to help you identify the messages that have shaped your life and may still be limiting you. Together, we can challenge these beliefs and look for more adaptive beliefs and actions that help you live a more worthwhile and self-directed life.
Who do you work with?
I work with those ready to take a closer look at their life, and learn new ways of relating to themselves and others. I work with men and women, students and business owners, adolescents and older adults.
What can I expect from a consult session?
During a consult session, I will welcome you to my office and let you orient a bit. After settling in, I'd invite you to talk a little bit about how it is that you have made it to my office, how it feels to be here, and why you're interested in therapy at this time. If you know of what goals you have, we will discuss those; if not, we can work to identify what some good goals for you might be, based on the life issues that we discuss. I will ask you some questions about your life, and seek to listen closely as you describe how you've been doing and what you'd like to change. Based on what we identify as most important for you at this time, I can give you an idea of what it feel like for us to work together, what might be expected of you, what my role will be with you, and an estimate of how long it might take to meet your goals. From there, we'd develop a plan for moving forward which may include one or more of the following: a schedule and timeline for individual and/or group therapy; community resources which may be valuable to you; referrals to other mental health or healthcare professionals which may be helpful; and/or an idea of the next steps you can take on your own to start addressing your needs.
What benefits can I expect from therapy?
How do I identify my goals for therapy?
Sometimes, when people enter therapy they don't know exactly what their goals are. They may have a vague sense of dissatisfaction in their life, yet they aren't sure exactly what they need to change things. It's my job to help you identify what's not working in your life, what you're wanting instead, and to provide a clear path to move toward what you want. If you happen to already know what you want to work on, great! We'll develop a treatment plan and timetable in our first couple sessions so you'll have an idea of what to expect.
How often would I go for therapy? Weekly is best, at least in the beginning, so we can gain some momentum in helping you meet your goals. If, for whatever reason, you'd prefer biweekly sessions, we can arrange for that. We'll make sure to discuss how that may affect the progress of our work together. Some clients who have worked with me for awhile and feel like they're doing quite well report that monthly sessions are enough to maintain their well-being. We have options, which we will discuss in the consult session and continue to check in on along the way.
How long would therapy take?
How will we know when the therapy is finished?
What if I'm not sure I'm ready for therapy? No problem. It's a good idea to educate yourself as much as you can on the risks and benefits of therapy, and make a thoughtful decision on whether or not it's right for you at this time. Either way, it's important to find the type of support you most need--whether it's individual therapy, a therapy group, a self-help group, better health care, or more willingness to take the actions you know have helped in the past. Sometimes a therapist can help you decide this. There is no commitment in coming to a consult session to see if therapy might be a good fit for you at this time.
What is "Hakomi" and how might it make a difference for me? Hakomi is a mindfulness-based, body-centered approach to psychological healing. This means that healing takes place through present-moment mindfulness of one's own physical sensations and impulses when working through difficult thoughts and feelings.
During a session, I may ask you at times to inquire into your own experience— your thoughts, feelings, images, felt sense, and impulses—to help identify where we can deepen our work together. Through a warm, curious inquiry, we would then continue to explore this experience, and learn where there might be room for you to have a new, more adaptive and flexible experience. We might do little "experiments" which are designed to help you experience something you haven't gotten enough of in the past--such as feelings of acceptance, love, nurturing, or self-trust. These experiments may or may not involve touch, depending on what you're comfortable with, and what would be most helpful.
This practice is meant to be guided by a well-trained and skilled therapist who can help you to safely experience and reframe painful past events, and more easily welcome in more adaptive and flexible present experiences. In this way, you can more fully "show up" in your work, relationships, spiritual practice, and life in general.
"Hakomi is the absolute cutting edge of modern therapeutic technique." — John Bradshaw, author of Bradshaw on The Family
"A visionary contribution in bringing mindfulness to our therapeutic community." — Daniel Siegel, M.D., author of The Developing Mind and The Mindful Brain
The Hakomi Method can be a helpful treatment for anxiety, depression, problematic behavior patterns, and low self-esteem.
What are the risks to therapy?
How long will it take for me to see results? Will you work with my other treatment providers, or family members? Absolutely. I think it's very important to stay current with other providers and family to provide you the best, most informed support you need. I often consult with doctors, psychiatrists, family members, group leaders and other individual therapists when working with clients.
Do you accept insurance? No. However, as a Licensed Professional Counselor and Licensed Addiction Counselor, some insurance plans will reimburse for out-of-network mental health services. It would be your job to see if that's the case with your insurance plan.
What are your fees? Group session: $40 50-minute individual session: $110 75-minute individual or couples session: $145 Package of five 50-minute sessions: $522.50 (5% savings) Package of ten 50-minute sessions: $935 (15% savings)
Do you offer a sliding scale? If you cannot afford my regular fee, I can offer a reduced fee schedule based on income. We would discuss this more during the consult meeting.
What is your cancellation policy? I ask for 48 hours notice if you need to cancel a session. If I can reschedule you within the week in less than 48 hours notice, I will do so free of charge. Otherwise, you will be responsible for the full fee.
What are the next steps? You can schedule a free 15-minute consult call via the pop-up contact card on my home page, you can call me at 303.551.3923, or you can send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You are also welcome to inquire directly about an initial consult session if you are ready to schedule. If you'd like to learn more, feel free to visit my blog, which I update periodically.