I try to keep the work as grounded and focused on the present as possible. For example, I may revisit the past with a client, but we don’t stay stuck there. There is no benefit to staying focused or morbidly fixated on things we can’t erase. That’s a victims consciousness. We only revisit the past long enough to explore it, to mourn losses, to validate and appreciate our history, to learn how we adapted to the dysfunction of that time, and to rework the narrative so that it’s more cohesive.
As we gain insight, we become more articulate and clear-minded. This then increases our consciousness, which expands our understanding, and allows us to make new decisions, as opposed to endlessly repeating the past and caulking life up to fate.
My primary training is psychodynamic, supervised by premier psychoanalysts of their time, yet I am not a psychoanalyst.
My focus is on the therapeutic relationship, and theory is useless unless it has a practical application.
Many clients like the idea of a solution or a quick fix. I don’t give homework unless a client asks, which usually involves underlining overarching and emotionally resonant themes from the day’s session to be reflecting on through the week. This feels collaborative and manageable, and it creates a sense of ownership and accountability.
I’ve worked with clients across the lifespan and from all walks of life- from children and families in a head start program, to clients facing the end of life events with autoimmune diseases and cancer, to women in homeless shelters. The majority of my time was spent working for seven years counseling first-generation young adults at the Baruch College Counseling Center, which is one of the most diverse campuses in the world. Because of these experiences, I have heard many stories that have reinforced my beliefs in human diversity, social justice, and human dignity above all else.
My current focus is with clients and colleagues who want to become the authority in their lives, who want to access their emotions and become more assertive. Through my personal experiences and the work, I’ve discovered that when people gain clarity about how the past influences the present, they can break out of repetitive patterns.
In the end, of primary importance is finding the fit – someone relatable, grounded, engaged, curious, collaborative, and who makes you feel accepted and safe so that you can explore.