For Adult, Adolescent and Child Psychotherapy
Individual counseling is basically a collaborative effort between you and I. My goal is to provide an open, supportive, and confidential environment for you to address the issues that are concerning you. In treating individuals with symptoms of anxiety and depression, I often incorporate techniques of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Cognitive behavioral therapy addresses negative patterns and distortions in the way we look at the world and ourselves.
As the name suggests, this involves two main components:
Cognitive therapy examines how negative thoughts, or cognitions, contribute to symptoms of anxiety and depression. The basic premise of cognitive behavioral therapy is that our thoughts—not external events—affect the way we feel (depressed or anxious). In other words, it’s not the situation you’re in that determines how you feel, but your perception of the situation. Cognitive therapy techniques include identification of automatic thoughts and core beliefs, logical analysis based on probability and evidence, development of multiple alternative perspectives, behavioral testing of predictions, and decatastrophizing. Cognitive products from these interventions are then used in self-control desensitization to provide frequent practice in shifting to adaptive perspectives in response to incipient anxiety cues.
Behavior therapy examines how you behave and react in situations that trigger anxiety or mood disorders. I use adaptive coping interventions that include relaxation training, self-control desensitization, and cognitive restructuring. Within these interventions, I teach you multiple techniques. This allows you to experiment with a variety of strategies to determine what works best for you and helps to establish flexible choices to combat previous rigid modes of responding. Relaxation techniques, including pleasant imagery, slowed paced diaphragmatic breathing; progressive muscle relaxation, differential relaxation, meditation, and cue-controlled relaxation are taught within an applied relaxation framework. You are also trained in self-control desensitization to provide frequent rehearsals of the application of relaxation skills to eliminate imagery-induced anxiety cues and worrisome thinking. I will give homework assignments aim at encouraging frequent applications of all of the techniques to increasingly early detections of anxious responding.