Earlier in life I became compelled to understand what created healing and inner freedom, determined to find answers to my own difficulties. The various therapists I saw told me I had to feel my feelings, however, I was unable to do that. It occurred to me that my body was so anxious and constricted, I wasn't able to relax enough to feel what was going on. That was when I discovered meditation. The meditation was necessary to unwind the tension and anxiety in my body so I could finally experience my feelings. Eventually meditation allowed me to change the location of my identity, returning to a part of myself that is already effortlessly here. And the therapy was crucial in that it allowed me to address the obstacles I had with my own development, emotional patterns and relationship with self and others.
My previous training in Psychoanalysis, Somatic Psychology and Mindfulness Meditation provides the unique perspective that unifies my clinical psychotherapy practice. Having discovered that talk, insight and intellect alone were not enough to create the necessary healing, I sought training in many different modalities including non-verbal energetics, Somatics (the body,) Eastern Psychology and meditation and the neuroscience of Attachment Theory. Assisting people in studying how they are experientially organized helps them better understand how their thoughts and emotions can work together to help them feel more joy, confidence and freedom.
In my therapeutic work I blend a relational, mindfulness and emotionally focused approach that utilizes the body as an instinctual source of wisdom. I have trained for over 30 years in the healing arts field, and my early training with Jon Kabat-Zinn in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) at the University of Massachusetts inspired me to integrate mindfulness principles into relational psychotherapy. More recently I have expanded my training to include Dynamic Emotion Focused Therapy (DEFT) and Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP). The integration of these disciplines is an area of my ongoing research, practice and exploration.
I have worked as a psychotherapist, group facilitator, and educator at Cottage Hospital, The Psychiatric Foundation of Santa Barbara, The Cancer Center of Santa Barbara, Sansum Psychiatric Department and Hospice of Santa Barbara. Currently I am in private practice, and working with Mental Health Matters and The Soldier's Project. Areas of specialty include depression, anxiety, trauma, identity, relationships, self- worth, aging and illness.
I am passionate about actively collaborating with you through the process of regaining your confidence, building inner resources and connecting with your truest self. I am dedicated to delivering excellent results in the shortest amount of time possible.
Education and Professional License
1991 BA Psychology, Antioch University, Santa Barbara, California
1996 MSW Master of Social Work, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts
2000 Board of Behavioral Sciences LCSW, LCS19951
I specialize in individual adult psychotherapy in Santa Barbara, California, as a licensed clinical social worker. My practice is founded on the view that we can use our depressions, anxieties, traumas, and problematic relationships as bridges to transform ourselves.