THERAPY

 

Something isn’t working. Sometimes, nothing is working.

Life isn’t what it used to be. For a while, you seemed to have everything figured out. These days you wonder what is even worth figuring out.

Do you ever ask: “Is this what my life comes down to?”

Maybe you worry it’s too late to change, that your foundation is already laid, that life is constrained by inescapable circumstances; that past mistakes, hurts, and injustices cannot be undone…

But maybe worst of all are the moments you think your best option might be to settle for the short-lived comfort of familiar ways. After all, cold comfort feels better than no comfort.

I suspect if you’re reading this, you have been feeling curious if there might be another way. At the same time, you may also feel conflicted on how far you are able to go, if trying to change is worth the effort – if it will only make the pain more real.

Let’s talk about it…

I’m Paul – a psychotherapist, past professor of psychology, researcher, speaker at psychology conferences, and the author of a forthcoming book.

But I wasn’t always a therapist…

My interest in therapy began 20 years ago. By day, I worked in a nursing home. I sat with residents at bedside, sometimes in their final moments, only able to offer my presence and a listening ear. I heard a lot during those years. But at night, I was a recording and performing musician from Boston to New York City.

One day, I picked up my first psychology book. I discovered that a whole literature of wisdom existed for thinking about life that, up to that point, I had only known how to process through the ineffable medium of music. This discovery, combined with my experience as a “helping listener” in the nursing home, revealed a new path to me. Simply put, becoming a therapist just felt right.

After 7 years in higher education, then 2 more years working toward licensure, I went from collaborating with musicians on songs to collaborating with therapy patients on their life narrative.

Along the way, I augmented my understanding of the mind with various cross-cultural immersion experiences. For six months, I lived in a Korean-inspired Zen Buddhist Sangha, where I trained daily in Zen meditation and took five precepts. At other points, I immersed myself regularly for several years in both Latin and Indian cultural experiences. Finally, I took up personal study in European philosophy, anthropology, various religions, history, and a post-graduate fellowship program in psychoanalytic therapy, with an emphasis on “intersubjective” and “relational” theories within psychoanalysis.

These experiences all helped to shape my stance today as a therapist; my reverence and appreciation for the infinite ways that our human experience can be, at once, both universally shared, and yet, entirely unique. Everyone has a story. I will look forward to getting to know yours.

With 12 years of counseling experience, some of my clinical areas of interest include:

  • Relationship Issues
  • Trauma/ PTSD
  • Depression
  • Stress (career, financial, home)
  • Control
  • Shame and Guilt
  • Family Dysfunction
  • Sociocultural Issues (race/ethnicity, immigration, gender, social class)
  • Sleep or Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Perfectionism
  • Codependency
  • Personality Disorders (Borderline, Narcissistic, Obsessive-Compulsive)
  • Self-Esteem

Our work begins when you book a free 15-minute Zoom consultation with me. If we both feel it seems like a good fit to do some work together, we will schedule weekly meetings and begin our initial attempt to find some understanding around what is going on. Sometimes I may recommend we meet more frequently. I offer both in-person/office and Zoom options for meeting.

Regardless of your initial goals or how they may evolve over the course of our work, my way of working strives to promote for all people the following:

  • Insight into the reasons why you and other people are the way they are
  • Flexibility in the ways you respond to life stress
  • Improved communication skills
  • Balancing self-reliance and interdependence with others
  • Enhanced ability to feel present in the world (not just being there physically)
  • Enjoyment of professional work
  • Improved ability to manage emotions in the face of adversity
  • Self-esteem that holds up in the face of disappointments and setbacks
  • Increased empathy for yourself and others
  • Forgiveness of yourself and amends with others where possible
  • Enhanced capacity for experiencing realistic love
  • A sense of aliveness and purpose in everyday life
  • Acceptance of imperfections, limitations, and things that cannot be changed
  • Learning how to use your unconscious patterns for growth, rather than being used by them

My approach is to adjust the therapy to fit the person rather than make the person fit the therapy. You and I will be talking together about your life in a way that is intended to help you. I will ask you good questions, be interactive, curious, offer my insights, and hold space for you to do the difficult but necessary work.

I realize I am a new person in your life. You may need some time to feel like I am someone familiar to you who you can be messy around. By now, I have heard and seen it all. If you want, I will go the distance with you.

Book a free 15-minute Zoom consultation with me now by filling out the form below, and I will get back to you within two business days.

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao Tzu