― Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
Like many therapists, I draw on a number of traditions of thought and practice within Western and Eastern Psychology. I’ve had the benefit of training in each of the major theoretical orientations to psychotherapy (psychoanalytic/psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, gestalt, family systems, and humanistic/existential/transpersonal). I would also include some of the Asian meditative traditions, the progenitors of what is popularly called ‘mindfulness’, as additional modalities that have influenced me on professional and personal levels. All these traditions are rich in theory, observations, and quantitative research and constitute a vast territory to draw upon, integrate, and uniquely apply to my work with any given individual. They do not, however, individually or even as a whole, reflect an exhaustive understanding of what it means to be human. It is always a deeply mysterious thing to be alive.
In my practice, I integrate across and within orientations, with a particular emphasis on the psychoanalytic and humanistic-transpersonal traditions. These traditions are sometimes called “insight” and “depth” approaches because they emphasize the importance of knowing ourselves often through knowing what lies below conscious awareness. I am interested in how common problems such as depression, anxiety, obsessions, anger, aloofness, issues of identity and of intimacy are tied to the depths of who we are and where we come from, in addition to the more obvious life-circumstances and biological factors which also have a significant impact. I apply the same curiosity to more severe and debilitating problems, such as psychosis and the so-called personality disorders.
Not all therapists share my interest in exploring the depths of the mind. Many today, if not most, prefer to work in other ways to relieve symptoms. For depth and insight-oriented psychotherapists, such as myself, symptom alleviation is important, but rarely a sufficient outcome for treatment. We are well suited, by virtue of training and personality, to explore the subtle and secret parts of the psyche, which can determine quality of life and capacities for love, work, and play.
If we were to work together, I would be curious about many dimensions of your experience such as current relationships, on-going emotional difficulties, cultural background, childhood, spirituality, sexuality, dreams, fantasies and even your experience of me. My sincere hope is that you will feel respected throughout the process and sense that this curiosity comes from a place of warmth and goodwill. Ultimately, I hope that our collaborative exploration will bring you relief from suffering and a greater sense of freedom, possibility, and meaning for your life.