What Are Counseling & Psychotherapy?
Counseling and psychotherapy are powerful methods for increasing your self-awareness, enhancing your personal growth and development, learning new skills, and healing emotional wounds that may be interfering with your ability to live the most satisfying and meaningful life possible.
In our sessions, we will talk about the challenges you face, the issues that cause you pain or distress, and the patterns that get in the way of your leading the life you want to live.
I will ask you questions to increase your awareness of these issues, offer alternative perspectives to deepen your understanding of patterns that may not be serving you so well, and gently challenge you to make changes that will help you more effectively get your needs met in the world and in your relationships. When appropriate, I will also offer tools and strategies for addressing specific issues or work with you to develop skills that will help you overcome particular challenges.
Individual counseling or psychotherapy can help address a wide range of presenting concerns or goals. Some common issues that bring people to counseling include:
• depression or anxiety,
• adjustment to life changes such as moving abroad, marriage, divorce, birth of a child, or career changes,
• difficulties in intimate or family relationships,
• more general interpersonal difficulties or patterns (such as having a hard time connecting with others, difficulties with confidence or assertiveness, loneliness, fears of abandonment, or discomfort with intimacy),
• self-criticism or self-doubt,
• grief or loss,
• lasting impacts of past traumatic experiences,
• a general sense that something is missing or a desire to create more of a sense of meaning and authenticity in your life.
While these are some common concerns that bring people to counseling or psychotherapy, this list is by no means exhaustive. I work with both adults and adolescents to address whatever issues may be causing them distress or interfering with their leading the most meaningful and satisfying lives possible. No issue or goal is too big or too small.
For more information about my style/approach and how I work, please see here.
In addition to seeing clients in my office in Lyon, I also offer distance (online) counseling services for those living in other regions of France as well as worldwide.
What To Expect:
Initial Phone Consultation
During our initial phone consultation (which is free of charge), I will ask you some questions to get a better sense of what brings you to counseling and what you’re hoping to get out of our work together. This conversation will help us both begin to consider whether there is a good fit between us.
If you have had any previous experiences in counseling, I will want to hear about what you may have found helpful (or unhelpful) in these experiences.
Learning more about your current needs and goals will help me tailor my approach in working with you — or guide me in making referrals to another counselor who might better fit your needs and preferences.
First Session (and Beyond)
In our first session, I will ask you some questions about your background and life history to help me get a better sense of the experiences and contexts that have shaped who you are today. We will continue to discuss your current struggles and goals and begin to develop a deeper sense of what our work together might look like.
During this first session, I will likely take some notes as we talk to help me remember what we’ve discussed. This is probably one of the few times I’ll take notes during our sessions or come in with a particular agenda to structure our conversation. In future sessions, I will look to you to bring in whatever feels most important for us to focus on. However, if you’re unsure what to bring in, that’s ok. That’s part of the process, and we’ll figure it out together.
Periodically, I will check in with you about how you’re feeling about our work together — whether you’re getting what you want from the process and how you’re feeling about the progress we’ve made toward your goals. We’ll also discuss whether these goals have shifted at all or if we need to alter our approach.
Any feedback you have about our work together is valuable information and helps me know how best to help you, so I genuinely welcome any thoughts and reactions you might have.
What Will Counseling or Psychotherapy Really Look Like?
Even though I’ve been a counselor for over 10 years now, it’s still challenging to put the process into words so that someone who’s never experienced it can get a good sense of what it’s really like. Each person’s journey will be a bit different.
The main ingredients of effective counseling are a strong therapeutic relationship, the space to explore and develop greater awareness and insight, and the freedom and security to experiment and try out new ways of being in relation to yourself and others. What’s more, one of the most basic and yet most transformative elements of counseling is often the experience of being truly seen, understood, and accepted by another living, breathing human being.
For some, the process of working toward your goals may involve learning some new skills. For others, it may be more about clarifying your values and needs in relationships and learning how to communicate these more effectively. For many, it also involves a process of understanding and removing the barriers to growth and change.
Whatever your journey may be, I encourage you to trust the process and to know that you don’t have to travel alone — I would be honored to join you and to navigate this road together.
I invite you to read more about me and how I work to begin to get more of a sense for my approach to counseling. You’re also welcome to schedule an initial phone consultation free of charge to start the conversation — sometimes the process is more easily understood through experience than through words.
Ready to Get Started?
If you have any questions about counseling or psychotherapy or if you would like to schedule an initial phone consultation with me (free of charge), please get in touch.
I look forward to hearing from you!