My relational approach to working with children, teens, or young adults is similar in that regardless of age I want to know their story. I do all that I can to make sure my patients feel seen, heard, and cared for. I take their ideas seriously. I create a warm, safe holding environment that communicates unconditional acceptance, nonjudgmental curiosity, and allows them the freedom to explore all aspects of themselves without criticism or shame.
I walk alongside my patients as they become more present with their inner world: what they're feeling, what they're thinking, how they're experiencing the people and events around them, and what meaning they make of those experiences. I help them become more aware of how they cope with uncomfortable feelings like sadness, anger, loneliness, disappointment, frustration, hopelessness, or guilt. We look with curiosity on the effectiveness of those coping methods, and when appropriate, I teach practical skills drawing from a range of modalities intended to help my patients increase their sense of agency in being their own problem-solver where they can be, and more accepting of things that can’t be changed.
I also take a systems approach with my patients. This means that I examine with them the symptoms that have brought them to therapy, which include thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and relationship patterns that are presently a source of pain, frustration, or discomfort in their lives. Together, we reflect on how those same symptoms may actually have been necessary and adaptive at some point in the patient's life, though at a cost to the him or her that is only now becoming more apparent. In a thoughtful way, I help my patients acknowledge feelings they might not expect when trying to eliminate those symptoms, such as ambivalence. And together we examine the implications of what change might mean, the upside and the downside.
When a person is able to see and understand their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and get a better sense of what they all mean, what function they may be serving, when they become more aware of their feelings around change and the implications of changing, then, if they decide that they do want things to be different and make efforts to get there, then those changes are lasting. This process is a worthwhile journey.
Executive Functioning Coaching
Running late a lot? Losing things? Having trouble keeping track of important dates? Missing deadlines? Stuff scattered all over the place? Overwhelmed by large projects... or small ones? Good at starting things but struggle completing them? Slow starter? Independent living skills lacking?
Whether you're in 4th grade, high school, college, or working, if any of the above applies to you, you could benefit from some executive functioning coaching. My coaching is practical, collaborative, and tailored to you. We'll tackle your challenges one at a time, step-by-step, and through a process of trial and error figure out what works for you.
If you're a parent looking for help for your child, not to worry, you'll be an integral part of the process, in the know about what your child is learning, and I'll teach you how you can reinforce it home and at school.
Parenting has the potential to be filled with numerous moments of love, joy, connection, milestones, dreams, growth, fun, wonder, and awe. And, at the same time, there is also the potential for plenty of moments filled with self-doubt, uncertainty, sleepless nights, times you wish you could take a mulligan, lots of laundry, sudden changes of plan, impatience, stepping on pointy toys in the dark, car sickness, you name it. It's all a part of the journey! But there are ways to make the journey more enjoyable, more special, more memorable for the right reasons. And if you're having a hard time at the moment, parent coaching might help equip you with the tools you need to navigate the inevitable trials in a way that feels right and is good for you and your child.
Parent coaching with me involves introspection and reflecting on your own upbringing; education on development and what developmental tasks kids are trying to accomplish based on their age; practical tips for intentionally creating moments of connection; improving your ability to manage your own reactions and emotions; planning ahead; being responsive to your child's needs and not reactive; making repairs in your relationship with your child when necessary; taking care of yourself; setting appropriate boundaries and being consistent; discipline; being truly present; raising the fun factor, and more.