What do all the letters after your name mean?
The MSW signifies a Master’s Degree in Social Work. It means I graduated from an accredited University and Social Work program with a Master’s Degree. The ACSW stands for accredited social worker. It represents two years of formally supervised clinical work after I earned my Master’s Degree. I then had to be rated by my clinical supervisor and pass a National Exam. In a nutshell, it means I’m experienced and well trained. The CH represents certified hypnotist. It means I was formally trained as a hypnotist and underwent clinical supervision. I also successfully completed a two year, graduate level program in Adlerian Psychology.
In addition to my formal education, I have spent a small fortune on training to become adept at other innovative, effective change methodologies.
Beware: Someone could have all these letters after their name, and even more, and still be a terrible clinician. It’s not about the letters. It’s about the person. My personal bias is that you want someone well trained, experienced and versatile. You don’t want someone locked into old, ineffective methodologies. However, above all, trust your intuition when selecting a helping professional.
What Issues do you help with?
In my previous work at a mental health center, I was exposed to a host of issues. I can help you successfully address the following:
Weight and body image
Healing / Recovering from surgery
Harmoniously integrating seemingly disparate parts of yourself
Substance abuse / Addictions
Generative Change / Human Potential
Cognitive (learning and processing ability)
Performance (athletic, artistic, writing, …)
The powerful modalities I employ are remarkably flexible, so I’m comfortable dealing with most issues.
How will you help me; what methods do you use?
I have a rich repertoire of techniques and skill sets to help you evolve. Some areas of my expertise follow:
Humanistic Neurolinguistic Programming
Harmoniously integrating seemingly disparate parts
Creating a new part
Emotional Freedom Methodologies / Tapping
Adlerian dream work
Higher Order Therapies
The Wholeness Process
12 Step Sensitivity
Other modalities to help you gracefully evolve.
Warning: Someone could be adept at all of the above and still be a terrible change agent. As powerful as these methodologies are, they are simply that, methodologies. Implemented without ‘heart’ for a lack of a better term, they are sterile. There’s a subtle, yet profoundly powerful, energetic component to any significant interpersonal reaction. Above all, follow your intuition when selecting a helping professional.
Everyone is individual. You can count on me to professionally assess the situation, be flexible and select approaches that will work for you. I am open to your input.
What I will not do is practice traditional, long term therapy. I believe this serves the therapist, not the client. This reflects my belief, as noted elsewhere, that with an effective change agent, you can quickly and effectively meet your goals and even enjoy the process. Seeing a helping professional should be a way to get on with life – it should not become a way of life.
How long will the process take?
Not long. Indeed, if it takes session after session for months as in traditional therapy, I’m doing something wrong! Did I say months? Sadly, and unethically, I believe, some therapists keep you coming for years!
I believe you’ll be surprised at how quickly you can change with the right change agent. Clients typically report significant movement after just a few sessions. While you are always free to come back in the future, you very well might not need to.
During the sessions I impart many methodologies you can use yourself. I believe good change agents makes themselves unnecessary. Beware if you find yourself dependent on a therapist. Dependency serves their pocketbook, not your growth.
Confidentiality / Do other people have access to my file?
The short answer is no and the long answer is absolutely not! Files, nor any information that could identify you, are not shared with anyone. No one can access your record but me. I take confidentiality seriously.
What is generative change?
Generative change refers to something you already do, but would like to do even better. What a fascinating concept – improving something you already excel at! In other words, you don’t have to be feeling stuck to see me. Artists, athletes, students (especially before important exams), and professionals in a host of fields have used me to improve in areas they already do well in. Generative change is a creative way to employ powerful, evolutionary methodologies to make your life even better.
Generative change also refers to cultivating the ability to master new skill sets. This is big. Your existing skill sets have served you well, but you can gracefully incorporate new ones. Please note I used the word ‘gracefully.’ With new methodologies, growth does not have to be painful or onerous. Yes, growth and learning can actually be fun. Indeed, the most successful and happiest among us employ this concept.
Once again, you don’t have to be feeling stuck in an area to schedule a session with me. You simply might want to grow in new directions.
How much time do you devote to each client outside the session?
A lot! No doubt by now you’ve gathered that my practice is a passion, not simply a job. As such I’m always immersed in studying and learning new approaches. This has been a lifelong endeavor. I’ve spent a small fortune and countless months in advanced training over the years. The actual session time I spend with you is the tip of the iceberg in terms of the energy I devote to the field.
Why don’t you practice long term therapy?
Because the vast majority of times long-term therapy simply serves the therapist, not the client. Not only that, I believe long term therapy can actually be detrimental to the client. The following true story highlights this.
Years ago I worked at a prestigious mental health clinic. A new patient proudly presented me with a large notebook documenting marvelous insights into his problems. He had compiled the notebook over the course of 8 years of psychotherapy with three different therapists. Tragically, he was still stuck and wrestling with the same issues nearly a decade later! He believed he was actually in worse shape than when he first began therapy years ago! How tragic. What a waste of time, money and lost life opportunities. What’s going on here?
My client exemplified a deep rooted, flawed belief that’s imbedded in the mainstream therapeutic community and our culture at large. It’s the erroneous belief that insight is a necessary precursor to change.
Our culture worships the intellect. It’s considered the epitome, the crowning achievement of humankind. With this ingrained, unexamined, almost unconscious mindset, it’s no wonder insight is considered the moving force behind change. Not so. Other indigenous cultures, wiser cultures, know better. They acknowledge insight may or may not occur after significant, transforming change. But they realize insight is irrelevant in terms of having caused the change.
Einstein embraced the value of the intuitive mind guiding the rational mind, not vice versa. He said it best; “The intuitive mind is a Sacred Gift and the Rational Mind is a Faithful Servant.” An over reliance of the rational mind’s insight reverses Einstein’s wisdom – to our detriment.
Does this mean traditional counselors and helping professional are bad?
Absolutely not. People usually enter the helping professions for noble reasons. They tend to be caring people. The problem isn’t with the people, it’s with their training and the system they operate within. Systems are extremely powerful and can exert tremendous pressure to conform and adopt the prevailing mindset. Unfortunately, in the mental health field, this is not to your advantage. I stand firmly in my belief; insight may or may not occur after change, yet it is a woefully inadequate method to actually initiate meaningful change. This is why I no longer practice traditional, long term therapy. Indeed, I no longer even view myself as a therapist. Rather, I’m a ‘potential catalyst’ or change agent who can help you quickly, gracefully evolve in areas of your choosing.
Early on I had all the traditional therapist training, please don’t consider me one. I went beyond that long ago. Rather, consider me as an effective change agent, a personal consultant who employs innovative, powerful change methodologies to meet your goals.
If you want to see a traditional therapist for months and months, or even years, I’m not for you. Do consider me if you want to gracefully evolve and positively move on with your life.
How much do you charge?
$110 an hour. Veterans, physical, sexual abuse, trauma clients, first responders and referrals receive the reduced rate of only $88 per session. I receive a lot of referrals from past clients and other sources hence the discount for clients who have been referred. In addition, I offer a 10% discount when sessions are prepaid paid for in blocks of three. All applicable state and local taxes are included.
I’m an adept change agent so you will end up spending only a small fraction of what you would seeing most therapists. I know that with the right change agent, people can evolve and quickly move on with their lives, usually in just a handful of sessions. Even if you are paying out of pocket, you will actually end up saving money by seeing me. Especially those with insurance who would have to meet a health plan deductible plus a co-pay. Most importantly, by seeing me, you will be able to quickly move on with your life. This is big. You don’t want to see a counselor and not evolve. This only reinforces your issue. It won’t happen with me.
Will my insurance company reimburse me for seeing you?
Maybe, but probably not. I have joyfully opted out of the dysfunctional and ever changing medical insurance system. With my MSW, ACSW, some insurance companies will provide reimbursement if you submit a claim. However, my jumping through the hoops and billing process to accept all insurance would add substantially to the cost of a session.
The billing process for insurance reimbursement is so onerous and complicated that most therapists have to hire a specialist just to process the claims! The good news is that you have total privacy by not involving your insurance carrier. With me, no digital diagnosis will follow you the rest of your life.
I pride myself on helping you quickly resolve your issues. My bias is that even paying out of pocket you’ll spend far less than if you saw a traditional counselor. My ideal caseload is only ten to a maximum of fifteen clients a week. My choosing to have a small caseload is definitely to your advantage.
Why do you limit how many clients you serve?
When I worked at a prestigious mental health center, we were encouraged to meet with at least 30 clients a week. Some counselors in private practice see as many as 40 plus! While scheduling a lot of sessions is good for a therapist’s pocket book, it’s not good for you.
You don’t want a burned out therapist! You want a helping professional who’s doing the work for the joy of it, not financial necessity.
I’m accessible a few hours one day a week and on most Saturdays. When I’m fully booked, I keep a waiting list.
Do you train others or do speaking engagements?
Absolutely. I am available to select groups for speaking engagements and training. I’ve spoken to organizations comprising “high stress” professionals. A partial list follows:
Child protection workers
Educators / School Districts
Nursing home staff and patrons
Students under stress
12 step programs
Crisis hotline workers
Savvy managers know job satisfaction and performance skyrockets when individuals effectively deal with stress. An associate of mine even consulted with a United States marksman team and Special Forces to improve their performance. It worked.
I can also meet with athletic groups or clubs whose members periodically are injured or in enough pain to inhibit their performance.
Tennis and golf clubs, high school and college athletic programs, etc.
I’ve also worked as a consultant to businesses.