Mood & Anxiety Disorders
We all deal with experiences of depression and anxiety in our lives. It is when they become continuous and stop us from living the life we want that professional help is needed. I will collaboratively work with you on relieving your symptoms, and explore various interventions that are personally tailored to fit your individual needs.
I use relational, mindfulness-based, and integrative approaches when working on anxiety reduction and relapse prevention for major depression in my clients. For symptom reduction, I incorporate mindfulness-based techniques to help clients notice when shifts in mood are occurring, and help them find more adaptive ways to challenge negative thought patterns. You will learn how to notice thoughts and their impact on physical and emotional experiences, accept these thoughts and experiences, and use this information to develop a different relationship to thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations. The core skill that you learn is the ability to recognize and disengage from anxious and depressive mind states.
When symptoms of depression cloud your daily experiences it’s easy to feel like no one can understand your problems, and you have only yourself to count on for coping. This often results in feeling as though you’re fighting a losing battle.
Depression can also make you feel ashamed, which results in fear of seeking help from others. You may believe that being depressed means you are a weak person or that others will reject you. As such, many individuals who could be helped by treating their depression remain isolated and untreated. But breaking free of shame and asking for help is the best thing you can possibly do.
As your therapist, I’ll help you reconnect with lost feelings of hope for your future. More than any special technique or modality-usage, the relationship you and I will develop will make the most impactful difference in your return from major depression. Together, we’ll work through the experiences that led you to your symptoms of depression in order to free you from future symptoms. While you will be doing the important work of self-exploration, you will not be alone in this. You’ll have my encouragement and guidance to help you make the journey back to a more confident sense-of-self.
Anxiety can have many negative impacts in our daily lives, but it’s actually trying to help and protect us. Its original function is survival, serving as an alarm system, warning us of danger and of possible potential threats. In today’s world, anxiety is often felt in a debilitating and confusing way, where it is far more intense than what was once needed by its original function. We ruminate, we worry, we catastrophize, we obsess. Our lives become more difficult, narrowly-focused, and shrink before our eyes.
Anxiety can manifest in many forms:
- Butterflies in the stomach
- Ruminations in the mind
- Panic attacks
- Fear of leaving home
When anxiety is out of control, it can become problematic in multiple ways:
- Fear of rejection can keep you isolated and lonely
- Fear of judgment leads to your being silenced
- Fear of losing your relationships can cause you to hold on to abusive ones
- Fear of death and loss of control can deprive you of a full life, by avoiding things such as flying or leaving the house
While anxiety can take many forms, we cannot rid ourselves of it. Just like we will never rid ourselves of happiness or sadness. The goal is to learn when anxiety has a purpose, and when it’s simply preventing you from facing your present situation. Through our work together you will learn how to more adaptively speak to your fears, so that you can have power over them, instead of the other way around.