415.254.6565

"You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life?"

– Rumi

Therapeutic Approaches

My work with clients goes well beyond traditional “talk therapy.”

I utilize a range of powerful approaches that help clients resolve issues quickly and achieve deep and lasting change.

I use the following methods along with traditional talk therapy to create a process uniquely suited to each client's needs.

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Specialties

Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (EMDR)

is an evidenced based practice. It is one of the most powerful methods of psychotherapy in resolving difficult to traumatic events through childhood and the adult years (e.g., physical, sexual and/or emotional abuse, relationships issues such as divorce, partner having an addiction or personality disorder, etc.).

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These traumas can produce anxiety, phobias, depression and negative beliefs. EMDR has helped millions of people of all ages and backgrounds repair many types of psychological stress and trauma that lead to many negative emotional, cognitive, behavioral and physiological states. EMDR taps a person’s natural higher state of wholeness involving clarity, wisdom, calmness, compassion, and hope.

EMDR seems to have a direct effect on the way that the brain processes information. Normal information processing is resumed, so following a successful EMDR session, a person no longer relives the images, sounds, and feelings when the event is brought to mind. You still remember what happened, but it is less upsetting. Many types of therapy have similar goals. However, EMDR appears to be similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM (rapid eye movement) sleep. Therefore, EMDR can be thought of as a physiologically based therapy that helps a person see disturbing material in a new and less distressing way.

Our bodies and minds have a lot of wonderful processes to help us heal ourselves. REM sleep, or the stage of the sleep where we dream, is one of these tools. Our brain uses REM time to heal emotional trauma (among other functions). These traumas can come in many forms, the capital "T" kind like robbery, rape, abuse, or grief, and the lowercase "t" kind like everyday conflict, a rage-filled relationship full or fighting, or moving to a new place.

Sometimes, this natural system gets disrupted. An overwhelming Trauma or a lot of little traumas can add up and throw off your natural ability to heal through them. When this happens, we can't find our balance again. These unhealed injuries jam up the system and can manifest in a variety of ways, including anxiety, depression, and self-destructive behavior.

Here is where EMDR steps in as a powerful healing tool. EMDR uses painless and gentle electronic impulses of sound, light, and sensation to replicate a conscious state of REM. Through this guided treatment, we can reprocess those distressing events, people, or things. EMDR allows us to connect with the deeper, positive truths about ourselves, without unprocessed wounds mucking up the waters.

Our conditioned states often come with unhealthy messages like "I'm not good enough," or "It's not okay to ask for what I want," and EMDR moves them to a state of recovery. When we know are good enough, we can also express and protect ourselves. EMDR separates out those conditioned responses so we can see things more clearly without the panic, fear, anger, or shame.

In a therapeutic setting, clients almost always feel better immediately. In one client's words, the therapy process works by "focusing on changing my feelings, reassessing my distress levels as we work to let my distress drop down to zero, and installing positive feelings (and) affirmations.”

EMDR allows us to take action from a centered place where we feel even-keeled, we we are interacting with the present, instead allowing past trauma to color and impact the present. Through EMDR, the client’s whole self is leading their life.

EMDR is an evidenced based practice as recognized by the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the International Society for Trauma Stress Studies, and the Department of Vetran's Affairs—as well as numerous insurance companies—as an effective treatment in post traumatic stress and working through other patterns of anxiety, depression, etc.

Internal Family Systems (IFS)

is an evidenced based practice for improving general functioning and well-being and is shown to specifically improve phobia, panic, and generalized anxiety disorders; physical health conditions; personal resilience/self-concept; and depression.

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IFS is a highly rewarding and collaborative approach that integrates psychology and spirituality. It draws on a client's intuitive wisdom in a way that offers transformation through Self-leadership. It is based on the belief that, at our core, we each have an authentic Self in addition to the many aspects or 'parts' that make up our inner world.

The IFS model helps the individual learn to lead from the true Self by helping build relationships with these inner parts that have become very stuck, on edge, constrictive and even traumatized (e.g., work, alcoholism, co-dependency, perfectionism, controlling behaviors, etc.) so they can repair and heal.

NREPP—the National Registry for Evidence-based Programs and Practices which conducts independent, rigorous scrutiny, and studies—has deemed IFS as an intervention method to show significant impact on individual outcomes relating to mental health.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

involves a combination of self-exploration, symptom and problem resolution, improving quality of life, and working toward life goals.

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Clients are taught strategies and are given life assignments and coaching to help them to develop skills for daily life. Treatment is time-limited. It varies in length depending on the problem.

Research has shown that CBT is effective with children, adolescents, and adults. The therapy helps clients by increasing their awareness of thoughts and, when necessary, correcting errors in thinking. It helps clients identify and label emotions, then learn strategies to improve emotion regulation. Finally, it helps clients change behavioral patterns that cause problematic thoughts and emotions.

From her initial clinical training, to her work with renowned CBT pioneer Dr. David Burns, M.D., author of The Feeling Good Handbook, Connie has successfully helped hundreds of clients with this highly effective therapy and uses it in all parts of her practice.

CBT is effective in treating depression and anxiety including social anxiety, specific phobias, obsessive/compulsive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. It routinely diminishes anger, habit disorders, impulsive behaviors, thought disorders, ADHD, behavioral problems, social skills deficits, and family and relationship problems.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT)

is a cognitive behavioral treatment for individuals extremely sensitive and reactive to their emotions which often lead to actions such as self-injury, angry outbursts, or abruptly ending important relationships.

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Although these actions temporarily reduce emotional pain they often wind up causing other problems that can make life even more difficult.

DBT is successful with depressed adolescents and their families, as well as, adults. DBT-based therapy is also effective in treating eating disorders, substance use, and anger management.

DBT teaches all of us that we are doing the best we can. At the same time we need to learn alternative ways to manage our problems more effectively. DBT targets the issues that cause distress and teaches skills to deal with them without having to resort to self-destructive behaviors.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP)

The core belief of this theory is that people do not react to their environment as it is, but rather they build their perception from their experiences as they relate to the world around them.

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Each person develops his or her own map of his or her world and, by doing such, no one ever possesses a map that fully represents the true environment. Because each person experiences different life events and, subsequently, different reactions to those events, no two people will ever be guided on the same journey.

This technique allows a person to view the steps that have led them to where they are and to examine the negative and positive influences, behaviors, and choices that brought them there.

NLP also examines areas of success and uses these as a springboard for developing other successful emotions and determines the most efficient way to use these experiences and emotions in every day situations.

Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy

Connie’s extensive training and certification of “Heart-Centered Hypnotherapy” involves hypnosis incorporating Gestalt therapy, Transactional Analysis (TA), transpersonal psychology, Reichian body armoring, NLP, existeial therapy, meditation, and a family systems perspective.

Accelerated Experiential Depth Psychotherapy (AEDP)

Developed by Dr. Diana Fosha, AEDP is a transformational modality that helps clients access a core state of calm, clarity, confidence and true self being.

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Through the process, clients are empowered to unlock their own innate capacity for self-healing and self-righting, which they can apply in all aspects of their lives.

Enneagram Theory

Building on centuries-old wisdom and concepts, the Ennegream is a tool for understanding how each personality type has a blind spot that drives us into patterned ways of feeling, thinking and behaving.

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Interpreting our personality type and helping us learn how to see our limiting patterns aids us in breaking out of them and enables us to act more freely and create a new way of being.

Somatic Practices

Somatic Practices are body-oriented approaches that can include relaxation, meditation, breathing, movement or other techniques to promote a deeper physical awareness and expand one's capacity to feel and express emotions.

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Clients often feel increased awareness, peace and clarity as part of this therapy.

Meditation

Meditation facilitates a state of being aware. When the mind is focusing on one thing – whether it's the breath or birdsong – and is free from other distractions, a meditative state has been accomplished.

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This state promotes deep relaxation and a clarity of mind from which to better explore the self.