Integrative perspective on psychotherapy
I understand clients’ experiences holistically through an integrated biopsychosocial lense
❁ I’m attentive to relevant biological factors such as genetics, temperament, physical illness, ability level, physiological changes, medications, impact of stress and trauma on the nervous system and body, etc.
❁ Psychotherapy of course focuses on the psychological part including conscious and unconscious thoughts, feelings, wishes, and behaviors related to ourselves, others in our lives, and the world around us.
❁ I also understand the client as an individual embedded in a social/political context and I try to be attentive to the intersection between the person and factors such as culture, race, socio-economic class, political context, gender, sexuality, and larger systems of oppression.
Type of therapeutic approach I practice
I consider myself an integrative psychotherapist. That means that I draw on elements from different psychological perspectives. I work from a base of trauma trained relational psychodynamic therapy and incorporate some elements from various other therapeutic approaches I have had training in (e.g. cognitive behavioral therapy, dialectical behavioral therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, narrative exposure therapy).
Overall, my approach is anchored within values of intersectional feminism and social justice.
My therapeutic approach is pragmatic, fluid, and considering of each person’s particular life journeys, needs, vulnerabilities, and strengths. At the same time, my approach is based on the belief that meaningful change and healing often occurs through the curative “ingredients” below.
I believe therapy can help people by:
❁ Encouraging them to develop insight about themselves and their lives, including identify patterns between past and present, and between thoughts, feelings, relationships, behaviors, bodily experiences, etc.
❁ Helping people weave a narrative of their life and how they came to be the person they are. I find that such a narrative lessens the feeling that there is something “wrong” with a person or that they are “defective”, “bad”, “weak”, “broken”, etc.
❁ Being attuned to people’s emotional experiences, and helping them understand, experience, and work through various emotions with someone who will listen deeply, witness, and hold.
❁ Helping people develop the capacity to hold and tolerate painful emotions and aspects of their lives. This includes helping them decrease their efforts to cope with difficulty and pain by excessive distraction, denial, seeking to escape, or fighting with their painful experiences.
❁ Being attentive to important relationships in people’s lives, both from past and present, and helping them understand the impact of these relationships on their lives, and the interactions between themselves and others.
❁ Helping people identify directions of meaning and value in their lives and supporting them as they seek to live in congruence with their values.
❁ Helping people understand the impact of larger structural, political, economic, cultural, environmental, etc factors on their self and wellbeing.