Q: What kinds of people come to see you? A: I work with people during tough times in their lives, and yet I also work with people who just want inspiration, and to be lifted up. Do you want someone to hear your story and advise you with a direct, clear sense of purpose? Do you long for specific guidance and fresh ways of looking at things? Do you hope for a conversation with someone who can inspire you to live life more fully? My clients come from all walks of life: professionals, tradespeople, teachers, farmers, students, musicians, ministers, entrepreneurs, housewives, lawyers, teenagers, stay-at-home moms & dads, just about anyone you can think of.
Q: Are there any people you don't work with? A: The only kinds of folks I don't work with are those who are seriously and persistently mentally ill, and the reason for that is because people who are struggling that mightily need more than just little old me. See the bottom two questions for more on that, and if you are not sure whether I can work with you, feel free to give me a call and we can chat about it. If we aren't right for each other, I can get you to a referral.
Q: What does M.S., L.P.C. stand for? A: Master of Science, Licensed Professional Counselor. My license from the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services is #3717.
Q: What sort of counseling do you do? A: The "official" title for the kind of talk therapy I do is Mindfulness-Integrated Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. However, my true love is traditional, hands-on healing. In my first career, I practiced Rolfing® Structural Integration. Working with the body for many years has influenced everything I do. How we live inside ourselves is directly related to how we live in the world around us. When people feel better about themselves, they can treat themselves and each other with more love and respect, and that makes for a better world. Over the past few years I have reintegrated bodywork back into my counseling practice, utilizing Biodynamic Cranial Sacral therapy and other traditional healing practices. Click on this link to find out more about that aspect of my practice.
My counseling style has also been affected by studies in a number of different areas, some of which are mainstream, and others decidedly more esoteric: classical ballet, barrel-racing quarter horses, yoga, meditation, travel to places other than Oklahoma, spelling bees, interfaith ministry, improvisational movement & spontaneity, Buddhism & other Eastern philosophies, poetry & writing, chi gong, tai chi, complementary medicine, reiki, cranial-sacral therapy, indigenous wisdom traditions & healing practices, and an ancient Japanese healing art called Seiki Jutsu....these and more experiences have all deeply influenced me as a person, a healer, and a therapist.
Another tool in my therapy toolkit is a brain-based type of therapy called EMDR. Go to this page to find out more about this potentially life-changing therapy. It's one of my favorite things to do with clients whose thoughts are driving them crazy, or who feel stuck in a pattern that they can't seem to get out of. Additionally, I am working towards full certification in clinical hypnosis.
Q: Are you going to judge me when I tell you all the c-r-a-z-y stuff about my life? A: These words were spoken by Sri Ramana Maharshi, one of the great sages of modern India. It's a very simple quote but, like a lot of awesome Truth, it has some deep meaning: "There are no others". We all share basic human characteristics like greed, vulnerability, anger, fear and judgmentalism of self and others. To quote Tupac, another great poet, "Only God can judge me" (and you), BUT, I certainly might help you see that what you are doing simply isn't working for you anymore. And then I will give you some ideas, counsel or advice.
Q: Will you be able to help my anxiety and depression? A: People feel things. That is normal. However, there are some good ways of working with our dark sides so that they don't take over our whole lives. One of the most important ingredients in the recipe for success in counseling is your willingness and desire for change and growth (for example, are you willing to give up saying "Yes, but..."?) When you put good counsel together with the desires of your heart and your willingness to take new actions, you can create a pretty unbeatable combination.
Q: Is it really possible for me to learn to be more free of this awfulness I am experiencing? A: You bet it is. Not only have I seen it happen over and over again in the lives of my clients, but I am living proof that a person can go from miserable and suffering to an incredibly joyous and full life.
Q: How can I have a healthy relationship with my partner or with other people like family, colleagues and friends? A: Relationships are mirrors and triggers...they show us what we need to look at in ourselves and they trigger us in ways that can make life really hard. One of my favorite discoveries is that we can make a difference in our relationships without the other person having to change, which is a good thing, because we can't change anybody else anyway. Come see me and we can talk about this some more. And read this page for some of my thoughts on working with couples.
Q: Do you counsel gay and lesbian people and couples? A: I am LGBTQ-affirmative, and an outspoken advocate for marriage equality. Love is love.
Q: Do you work with children? A: Sometimes...the youngest child I generally work with is typically around 12 years of age, and I especially love working with teens.
Q: What if I am contemplating suicide? A: If you think for even one minute that you might be ready to take your own life please call 918/744-4800 RIGHT NOW. This will connect you to COPES, a group of incredible local volunteers who specialize in saving lives, and they do an awesome job. They are really good people.
“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” ~Buckminster Fuller