My Areas of Expertise
Trauma treatment involves a number of different components. The first phase of trauma treatment is to establish a sense of safety. This includes external safety, developing emotional safety within the context of the therapeutic relationship as well as skills building to develop a sense of internal safety or containment. After safety has been established, some clients find it helpful to work directly to heal a remembered traumatic experience, although this is not always necessary. I utilize a number of different modalities in for this component of treatment, including IFS (Internal Family Systems). I also draw from the indigenous healing tradition of Soul Retrieval. The final component of trauma treatment involves integrating the healing into one's being, which involves a shift in attitudes and perspectives on the original traumatic experiences and a recovery of one's innate power, strength and resiliency.
“The opposite of addiction isn't sobriety. It's connection. It's all I can offer. It's all that will help [you] in the end. If you are alone, you cannot escape addiction. If you are loved, you have a chance. For a hundred years we have been singing war songs about addicts. All along, we should have been singing love songs to them.”
- Johann Hari
Along with compulsion, the hallmark of any addiction is a deep sense of isolation, shame, and emotional pain. Due to the multiple factors that contribute to an addiction, I approach addiction treatment in a multifaceted way. I stress the importance of learning new skills and utilizing techniques such as mindfulness to more skillfully work with cravings. Healing from an addiction requires a radical shift in lifestyle and a relearning of how to connect with others and one's world in a healthy way, and how to compassionately connect with oneself. In addition, treatment with me will include a trauma focus as I see an intimate link between trauma and addiction.
Spiritual emergence is a term used when there is a radical rapid shift in one's consciousness, either spontaneously, due to engagement with spiritual practices, or through the use of psychotropic substances. It can feel like like you are "going crazy" or "losing your mind". Common symptoms include having a radical shift in perspective as to the nature of the universe, hearing voices or having visions of things that do not seem to be there and making contact with spiritual dimensions of reality or other spiritual entities. This is often accompanied with strong physiological sensations, and it can be a very scary experience. It can also be a very lonely one. Because of our culture's misunderstanding, people experiencing spiritual emergence often get pathologized with the belief that they are experiencing psychosis. I have a great deal of experience exploring what is called non-ordinary reality and can help you to determine if what you are going through is spiritual emergence or some other process. If it is a genuine spiritual awakening, I can normalize and guide you through your experience by providing you the tools that you need to navigate what can be a very difficult time.