Deborah Alter, LCSW - Connecticut Therapist at Grow Therapy

Deborah Alter

Deborah Alter

20 years of experience

A bit about me: A native New Yorker, I acquired my MSW following a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from CCNY. Essentially, I view myself as a Life Coach, a motivator who recognizes that we’re all unique individuals, but do share many of the same thoughts and feelings. Most of us have struggled with anxiety, uncertainty and self-doubt- yet we’ve also experienced feeling confident, grounded and secure. Our backgrounds and early childhood experiences, our genetic predispositions all serve to shape our personalities and the essence of our being. To that end, as a clinician, I strive to guide individuals to examine their beliefs- in order to gain insight into their potentially self-destructive behavior- or whatever they perceive as getting in the way of their success. Together, we explore why you’ve sought treatment Now and what you’re looking to achieve or gain. What do you identify as the challenges or issues, what have you tried so far and what’s gotten in the way? Is it apathy/complacency versus a burning desire? How do you keep the momentum going and is FEAR getting in the way? The power of ignited vision means becoming laser-focused, but how? Let's identify the roadblocks (obstacles) while developing strategies to combat them. I have helped many clients build high performance habits, starting with self-talk, sharpening their self-awareness and being intentional. Let’s get started. As Anthony Robbins would say, “when would now be a good time?!”

What can clients expect to take away from sessions with you?

If you are meeting with me for the very first time, I am “all ears” but also “all hands on deck”. It’s all about listening intently while providing emotional support and checking in with you to confirm my understanding. Your thoughts expressed are critical (how you view your situation), which will determine whether I provide feedback and how much. At the beginning of treatment, I want to establish a rapport with you where trust is paramount. Vulnerability comes only when trust is established between us, which takes time to build. My priority is for you to feel comfortable and safe to convey your story, without feeling judged. As I partner with you, we develop a treatment plan and goals that are measurable and specific from 1 session to the next, thereby keeping therapy both dynamic and fresh.

Explain to clients what areas you feel are your biggest strengths.

My greatest strengths as a provider are my ability to Listen, non-judgmentally. To truly hear you, objectively (which takes skill and lots of patience). I’m perceptive and can usually interpret the nuances (reading between the lines), while never presuming that I “know” what you’re going through. I’m particularly sensitive to unresolved early childhood trauma and history of abuse. I apply DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) as well as CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy, depending on the client's needs.

About Deborah Alter

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My treatment methods

Cognitive Behavioral (CBT)

I take pride in individualizing treatment for each client, tailoring strategies to correspond with their specific needs, while factoring in their goals and expectations. Using CBT, I can help clients manage their problems, by shifting the way they think and behave- particularly if there is anxiety and depression. It works by identifying one's thoughts, feelings and actions while recognizing that they're interconnected. You're shown how to change negative patterns to improve the way you feel. Let's explore some practical ways to improve your state of mind on a daily basis!

Dialectical Behavior (DBT)

Using compassion and support as a standard practice, I incorporate the client’s belief system while gently challenging assumptions. This is a different type of talk therapy, especially geared toward people who experience emotions very intensely. The main DBT skills are: mindfulness, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness and emotion regulation. Radical acceptance is the skill, commonly identified as the most life-changing.

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