Therapy is about stories and the role these stories have in our lives and our understanding of ourselves. These can be stories from ourselves, stories others tell us, familial stories, cultural stories, etc. Through therapeutic work we are able to better understand all the intersections of these and empower ourselves to become an agent of change in our own lives. Therapy is the process of looking at the stories we tend to ignore, the ones that hold our unrealized capabilities, strengths, and possibilities. I think of all the moments in our lives as the stars in the night sky. Every culture that has looked at the stars has seen something different, and each have created constellations to make order of the seeming chaos based on their specific cultural world views and beliefs. We too look upon our stars (our experiences) and draw meaning in the form of narratives. But sometimes we create narratives or constellations that do not serve us, and we attend only to the stars that follow this pattern. Together we will look at the stars, or experiences and stories, that we ignore or gloss over. The ones that could help us craft new narratives around our abilities and self-understanding. Therapy is about creating New Constellations.
The ability to access these new constellations rests on building a genuine trusting relationship, rooted in non-judgement and authentic care. We will examine the patterns in your life, explore the impactful relationships you've had, and approach your life stories with openness and curiosity. With compassion and no shortage of the healing power of laughter we will work to explore who you are becoming. Creativity is vital to any story, and we will use your strengths and unique talents to find inspiration.
To accept and celebrate individuals in their myriad of experiences, intersecting identities, beliefs, and dreams with openness and a non-judgmental stance so that they can bring their full authentic self.
To acknowledge that we are all always becoming, always changing, and always evolving – none of us are perfect and we must approach ourselves and others with compassion and respect.
To validate that systems of power, stigma, privilege, oppression, and marginalization cause harm and impact the work in the therapy space, these systems exist in all spaces, and that they can and should be acknowledged and addressed in the therapeutic work.
To challenge the powers, systems, and beliefs that harm, oppress, and restrain us - be they internal, external, or both.
To express that individuals have everything inside of them, or in their relationships with others, necessary to enact change in their own life, and it is the role of the therapist to help the individual access these parts.
Our relationships with others, be they alive, close, distant, ancestral, communal, or deceased are deeply important to our existence, ongoing growth, and development and they need to be respected in whatever form they take and however they may evolve.
To appreciate that therapy is a two way relationship, rooted in mutual respect, and that both therapist and client are impacted and positively influenced by the work together. “We cannot hear the story of another without being changed."
To bring awareness that there are many ways of being in this world, and it is not the job of the therapist to tell the client how to exist in it, rather to help the client define and achieve their own version of “best self".