Our lives are lived in our relationships to ourselves and to others and to the world at large. Relationships permeate every facet of our experience, and yet we so often feel challenged by relationships, often not understanding the subtle nuances that can cause a relationship to go one way or another. Whether it be romance, work, family, or friendships, we all may find that we struggle to achieve or maintain the kind of relationship we desire at times. In my work with those seeking assistance in this area, I strive to help uncover the barriers to creating the preferred relationship and assist in developing more effective interactive styles. We can all so easily get caught in patterns of interacting and communicating that are not providing us with the kind of relationship we prefer, so I hope to provide a space to explore these patterns and assist in the creation of new, more preferred, patterns and ways of communicating.
Being human brings with it many challenges, internal and external, and I find that we are often not equipped with the knowledge or experience to successfully navigate all that life has to puts in our path. We are all informed by the life that we have led and the ways we have been taught to see the world. Individual therapy, in my view, is about bringing awareness to the ways that we are stuck in the patterns that are leading to an unfulfilled life. As we gain this awareness, from a place of compassion, we can begin to break free from the chains of our conditioned ways of being and pay attention to the ways of being we prefer to embrace. While there is much in life that is outside of our control, we always have the power to choose our response to any given situation. From this framework, I aim to assist clients in discovering the power they hold, helping them to see what they are truly capable of so that they can face the challenges of their lives with more confidence.
Anger Management and Domestic Violence:
Anger is an emotion that we all have, and, contrary to popular belief, there is nothing wrong with experiencing anger, it is very simply a part of being human. From this point of view, it is not necessary, nor is it preferable or possible, to stop feeling angry. Instead, we must learn to be with the anger in effective ways, letting it tell us what it needs to say and then choosing how we want to respond to this experience. There are many situations in life that invite anger to appear, and often it makes complete sense, when we look into it, to feel this way. However, the tendency is to let anger dictate our behaviors, and this is where we can get into trouble. Therefore, rather than getting angry with anger and trying to not feel what we feel, my approach is to assist people in feeling what they feel and then tapping into their preferred response so that they can learn to effectively take care of whatever situation requires their attention.
In this way, I work with individuals and couples in the typical therapy format, as well as men in a group format as described below. While I fully understand that women also struggle with managing their emotional responses, I do not have a women’s group option at this point. I hope to at some time soon.
Court Approved Domestic Violence/Anger Management Classes for Males
Monday – 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Thursday – 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
These are open groups and meet the requirements for the 52 week Domestic Violence program as mandated by the probation department. For those seeking the 12-week Anger Management component, you will be invited into these groups, if space is available, as the content is the same. If there is more interest in Anger Management, and space is unavailable in the groups listed above, I will consider adding a dedicated Anger Management Group.
This location is a satellite to the Center for Mindful Relationships (http://www.firstave.net/domestic-violence.html), which oversees this Domestic Violence Program.
Conflicts are a part of life. Anytime we interact with another human being, we are at risk of getting into a conflict. This is not because someone is inherently a “jerk” or totally unreasonable. Instead, conflict occurs because we are all seeing the world from our own perspectives and, thus, have our own ideas about how life should be. It is completely understandable, and important, that there be some disagreement as the sharing of perspectives is how we grow and understand more about life. The challenge comes when we are attached to our own perspectives and are unwilling to listen to, or be influenced by, other points of view. Similarly, the way that we share our ideas also plays a role in how those ideas are received. Effective communication is essential in being able to resolve conflict and allow the conflict to help us to grow. However, communication is not the only aspect of a conflict and in order to truly come to a resolution, we must be willing to also shift our attention towards ourselves and what leads us to engage in the conflict in the first place.
Adolescence is a profoundly important period of life that is wrought with challenge as young people navigate their ways through social minefields and attempt to prepare themselves for the upcoming adult world. This stage of one’s life can often be associated with pressure and anxiety, and loneliness, and a desperate need to belong or be seen. It can also be a period of tremendous thoughtfulness and creativity as teens are not yet so rigidly confined to their points of view and can engage in critical thought that can change the world, if harnessed and supported effectively. In my work with teens, I want to help foster the vast curiosity and creativity they possess while assisting them in navigating the trials and tribulations of a tumultuous social environment. Becoming an adult can be a very scary experience and teens need to be prepared for what to expect, something that seems to be getting lost as family dynamics are shifting and school expectations are becoming overwhelmingly focused on academic achievement. As many adolescent clients have pointed out to me, no one is teaching them what it means to be human and what it means to be an adult, so this is where I hope to be a sort of bridge for those who are interested