People often ask me: What can I expect in the first session of therapy? I answer, I want you to feel as good as I did in my first session of therapy. I was 25 years old and a Graduate student in Psychology. I was aiming for a Ph.D. but I wasn't sure what I wanted to do with my degree. One day I was talking with a friend and he started telling me how much he was getting from being in therapy. He was so convincing that I entered therapy the same week. In my first session, I remember that my therapist said that it is normal to feel nervous which was such a relief to me. I was raised to believe that all feelings are bad and should be suppressed. When the therapist said that is normal to feel nervous, I started to feel so much lighter. The fact that he took such a non judgmental approach to my feelings made me feel like all my feelings are good and I can accept myself the way I am. When we were done with the session, I walked away feeling more confident than I ever had before. I realized right there and then that if one session of therapy could make me feel so good, think of the impact I could have by offering a series of sessions to others. I jumped back into my Graduate studies with gusto and have never looked back. Now I have 30 years of experience guiding people to feel strong, confident and empowered. If you chose therapy, you can expect to receive compassion, acceptance, support and guidance.
One book that I recommend to almost all of my clients is a book named: You can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay. I recommend it so highly because it gives people hope. If you came to me with a symptom, like anxiety, depression, self esteem issues or codependency, you might be feeling hopeless. That is very normal. That is where the book comes in handy. She shares her story generously. She talks about that she was raped at an early age, physically and sexually abused. She describes how she went from feeling like a victim to feeling like a victor. She makes you feel like if she can do it, you can do it too. In addition, she gives you empowered beliefs to install in your mind. Also, she gives you a list of ailments, like headaches, or back aches, etc. and shows you how a hidden belief can cause pain in your body. For example, while we are doing video therapy, if you notice a headache, we can explore the probable mental cause from her book. For headaches, the probable mental cause is invalidating the self and in other words, making yourself wrong. Once you discover that, you can replace that pattern with a new pattern, such as: "I love and approve of myself." She is the world's foremost authority in the field of loving yourself. So as a result of reading this book , you will feel inspired , hopeful and learn to love yourself more love and approval.
When people ask me what kind of therapy I do, I answer that after being a Psychotherapist for 30 years and after trying out so many methods and approaches, I would have to say that I am eclectic. In other words “one size does not fit all .” You are unique and the kind of therapeutic approach that you need should be as unique as you are. .In addition to being eclectic , I also have created an approach called "subconscious reprogramming". What this means is that if you come to me with an issue, like depression or anxiety, I help you dig down and find the cause of the problem,. For example, I was working with a client the other day who suffered from anxiety. He didn't realize the the old self-limiting belief that was causing the problem was, "Everything I do has to be perfect." Do you have a belief like that? I used subconscious reprogramming with my client and helped him to see how that old belief was installed in his childhood. Once he realized that he didn't need that belief any more we released it and replaced with a more Empowered belief, like "I am perfectly imperfect , like everyone else." That new belief, helped him enormously to move forward in his life and he became "unstoppable".
Adoption & foster care
Impulse control issues
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Emotionally Focused Therapy
Training in Compassionate Communication
CA, Psychologist, PSY4399
M.A. Psychology University of Southern California
B.A. Sacramento State University
Ph.D. Psychology University of Southern California
When I first began my private practice, it was 1981 in Berkeley. I worked low income people who were supported by Med iCal. They brought in a wide diversity of issues from anxiety and depression to self esteem and life transition issues. It was my pleasure to watch them grow. Then I moved to Southern California and began a private practice in Newport Beach. While there, I worked with high income people with a unique set of issues. I began working mostly with women and found that they reported that they were tired of sacrificing themselves for their husbands, their families and anyone else around. I did some research and found out that this cluster of behaviors was called Codependency. It was based on a self limiting belief that others needs were more important then theirs. They had lost themselves and desperately needed to find themselves. I was fascinated by the process of learning to bring people back to their authentic selves.
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