What do you specialize in?
I treat a variety of different issues, but I mostly specialize in working with those dealing with issues of depression, anxiety, bipolar, addiction, and relationship conflicts.
What do you think is important about your role as a therapist?
I think the most important aspect of my role as a therapist is to be a teacher and guide. I teach my clients how to solve their own problems and guide them through the change process rather than telling them exactly what to do or how to do it. I believe that it’s really crucial that the individuals I work with have a sense of ownership over the decisions they make so that change can be long-lasting and not dependent on them remaining in therapy.
How do you help people, in your opinion?
In my opinion, I help people by validating their experiences and helping them to better understand themselves and those around them. I approach clients with unconditional positive regard, and I listen to them empathically and non-judgmentally. By doing this, I give them a safe place to explore their issues, learn and practice new coping skills, build upon their strengths, and implement positive change.
What is something you wish people knew about your specialty, or about therapy in general?
I wish people knew that therapy is worth it. Historically, there’s been a lot of stigma attached to mental health concerns and therapy, and that has often caused people to prolong asking for help when they needed it. Things are improving now though, and people are really realizing that therapy is a worthwhile investment. Whether you are living with a severe mental illness or going through a temporary adjustment issue, working with the right therapist can make a major difference in improving the quality of your life.
Name an influential person or experience in your life.
Working as a community mental health case manager was an eye-opening and humbling experience and one that I believe helped me to be a better clinician overall. I provided home and community-based services to individuals living with severe and persistent mental illness in the greater Pontiac area. The experience was challenging given the many barriers often faced, but it was also very rewarding. I had the pleasure of serving some incredibly resilient individuals, and I’m honored that I was able to be a part of their recovery process.