I received my Ph.D. in the Counselor Education and Supervision program at the University of Iowa in 2009. I also received a Master of Divinity degree with courses in pastoral care and counseling from Asbury Theological Seminary in 1995. I have approximately 25 years of counseling-related work experience in a variety of settings (college, schools, and community mental health settings). In addition, I have taught counseling courses in graduate mental health programs. I have worked with a variety of populations including children, adolescents, college students, and adults at various life stages, as well as couples, families, and groups. I am also trained to conduct a variety of assessments for learning disabilities, ADHD, personality disorders, mood disorders, and vocational/career interests.
What can clients expect to take away from sessions with you?
Therapy is a professional relationship involving support, growth and change. Thus, I support and help you grow or make the changes you wish to make. Sometimes individuals entering therapy know changes are needed but are overwhelmed, in crisis, and do not know what to do or how to go about making changes. I work collaboratively with clients to help them sort through their issues.
What treatment methods and tools do you utilize?
I use a variety of approaches in my counseling practice. Because I believe everyone deserves respect and care, I use a client-centered approach that incorporates listening, empathy, and unconditional positive regard.I use both EFT and EMDR for trauma-related incidents, anxiety and stress. I also draw upon a developmental approach to help identify and work with typical life transition issues (school adjustment, vocational concerns, aging loss, grief, etc.). I use cognitive-behavioral approaches in working with most mood issues, cognitive learning concerns, and behavioral issues. Finally, in dealing with relationship issues, I pull from family systems approaches to address the influence of family dynamics on present concerns. Assessment instruments that I may use include: PREPARE/Enrich, MBTI, WAIS-IV & WISC-IV, WJ-III and others as needed depending upon the concern or issue.
Explain to clients what areas you feel are your biggest strengths.
Every client I meet has a unique story to tell about their life and current concerns. I count it a privilege to listen to both challenges and successes. My past clients have stated that I provide a safe and warm place to air their concerns, and it is rare for me not to make that all-important connection with clients. Life adjustment issues, depression, anxiety, and trauma tend to be the largest part of my practice. I blend both supportive listening as well as introduce skills and practices that are helpful with each issue presented. I believe my education and years in practice allow me to help in the growth and change process.