What it's Like to Work with Me
Many people wait for months or years before they seek counseling. They are expecting something to magically change in their situation. They are hoping that their spouse, their circumstances, their mental state, their environment, their job is going to change.
“Hope is not a strategy”
Don’t hang your hat on “hope” to make something change. YOU have to be the instrument of change in your life. YOU have to DO something in order for change to take place. You don’t need to wait until you are at your wits end before you go to counseling. Counseling should not be a last resort, a last ditch effort for relief, guidance, solutions, etc…. Yet it often is for most people. Most people feel like they can handle it on their own or the problem will go away on its own. Counseling can certainly be useful for when you are in a crisis, but it doesn’t have to be. It could help you to avoid a crisis in the first place.
I encourage people who are considering counseling or who have been to counseling before and say, “It didn’t work,” to keep trying until you find the right fit.
By this I mean, the right personality, the right chemistry, the right gut feeling that this counselor is the one I should be working with…. whose ideas, approach and counseling style resonates with mine. Someone I believe can help me, help myself. Counselors take no offense (at least they shouldn’t) if they are not the right fit for a client. This can work both ways too. If I don’t feel like I can best help a client, I will gladly refer them to someone who I think is better suited either personally or professionally. All that matters is that the client gets the help they need. And in the end, we all do our best work when we are in the presence of those who will draw out our best work.
My approach to Counseling is predominantly psychoeducational, which is to say that I focus on educating, and informing my client of the disorder or the issue that they are presenting, the various interventions that are available to address their issue and teaching the myriad skills they can use to deal with their issues and help stabilize and/or prevent future occurrences. Because what I have found in working in psychiatric hospitals and community agencies, is that most people are doing the very best they can at any given time. But their best is not getting them to where they want to be.
They are generally stuck because they have never learned or had access to the tools, resources and strategies to get beyond the barriers.
They simply don’t know what to do. But they know they want to get back to feeling the way they were before. I look at people as much more than a diagnosis. A diagnostic label shouldn’t be “attached” to people for the rest of their lives.
A diagnosis doesn’t take into account all of a person’s unique talents, creativity, and adaptations that are required just to survive.
I am curious about who you are and what you need. I will take the time to find out why you do what you do and think what you think. We will work together in a mutual exploration of yourself.
I have dedicated my practice approach to empowering people with the appropriate tools, skills and education to effectively manage their disorder or course of mental illness.
This way people can practice their newly learned skills while they are in therapy and eventually be able to carry that forward on their own to address any future challenges.
A little about me personally
I previously worked at Beaches Recovery in Jacksonville Beach, doing Group therapy for clients in the substance abuse treatment program. I have worked part-time for four years at Baptist Medical Center downtown in their inpatient behavioral health unit as well as Wekiva Springs Psychiatric hospital and Great Strides Rehabilitation as a Behavior Instructor for children with autism. I am a true Northeasterner, having lived in North Jersey, Princeton and Philadelphia for most of my life (and about 7 years in Houston, TX). I spent 17 years in the corporate world developing marketing and advertising programs for high tech companies. I am married with three teenagers and a quirky white boxer. I’ve rescued and fostered boxers for about 8 years and this has been among the most rewarding family activities, although it’s hard not to get attached to all of them. I also volunteer for St Johns Cares, a local non-profit organization that assists charities and those in need. I love photography, The Walking Dead, amusement parks, Halloween, and food truck dining. I keep meaning to take up yoga, but it hasn’t happened yet.
I would consider it a privilege to work with you on your journey to better mental health. I encourage you to contact me here or by phone: 904-543-6055 to schedule an appointment or free 15-minute consultation. Your inquiries will always remain confidential, and I return calls within 24 hours, usually sooner!