that impact Therapy
I disagree with the notion that therapists are an unbiased "blank slate." I am a human guided by my values, and some of those dramatically impact therapy. A therapeutic relationship is based on deep trust, and I want that trust to begin with my own transparency.
I structure my business so my clients thrive
I want every client to experience expansive growth and lasting change. I design my therapeutic practices, physical environment, and business structure to ensure my clients thrive
I see an intentionally small caseload of clients so that I can
Prepare for each client session through grounding, prepping art materials, and reviewing notes
Reflect deeply after each session and make detailed plans for future sessions
Process my observations, thoughts and emotions of each session through my own personal art
Write detailed, accurate case notes
Research and study topics related to each client
Seek weekly consultation and supervision for every client
I meet with clients weekly at a minimum (sometimes twice a week if needed)
I meet with clients for 75 min sessions
I maintain a no-cancellation policy that ensures the necessary consistency for therapy to be successful
I provide a physically nurturing and engaging environment that is safe and appropriate for neurotypical individuals and those with high sensitivity
I only see individuals within my areas of expertise
I structure my business so I thrive
I want to show up for every client powerfully - which means ensuring I am well-rested, prepared, focused, and present. I design my schedule, fees, and business practices so that I can thrive as a therapist AND human
I have an intentionally small caseload of clients
I see clients Monday-Thursday
I spread out appointments so I have time to prepare for each client, ground myself, and reflect after each meeting
I am aware of my own emotional and mental needs and provide time for me to meet those
I encourage feelings
I believe that feelings are based on human needs within us. For example, you may feel angry after a fight with your partner because you were needing to be heard and understood, but weren't. In therapy, I encourage the expression and exploration of all the emotions. Once we show our body we listen and respond to it's messages (our emotions), the frequency of negative emotions decreases
I value and use art
Obvious, right? I chose to be an art therapist for a reason. Art connects us to our intuition and subconscious. It also helps us to access our emotions quickly ... I could go on forever. If you want to know more, check out my "What is art therapy page."
I am body neutral
I believe that the size of a person's body (including fat and weight) do not correlate to "health." I advocate for intuitive eating, anti-diet, body neutrality, and fat neutrality. I encourage movement for the sake of enjoyment (not to shape the body into a societal standard of beauty). If you want me to encourage you to stick to that diet (ahem, restrictive eating that borders on orthorexia) and grueling gym regimen so you can achieve that "beach body"(when EVERY body is a beach body), I am not for you. I help clients learn to accept and appreciate their body as it is ... which feels so much better.
I see the world through a neurodiverse lens
I am a neurodivergent individual with high sensitivity (my five senses are extra heightened) and high functioning autism. I believe neurodivergence is a strength. I help individuals accept their varying levels of functioning and learn how to work with their natural state. For example, one trait of autism is a hyper-focus on particular topics. For me, that's psychology. I obsessively love to study psychology topics and read non-fiction psychology books, which is one of the reasons I feel I excel as a therapist.
I am a safe space for queer folx
I accept folx however they choose to define (or not!) and express their sexuality and gender. I also identify as queer, and I embrace people showing up as they are. When I say I work with women, that automatically includes trans women, folx who were raised as women, and cis women.
I provide anti-oppressive, feminist, social justice therapy
Our world has dramatic impacts on our mental well-being. Racism, sexism, systemic oppression, and all the other bullshit of the world shapes our experiences, thoughts, safety, emotions, beliefs, and more. How could it not impact our mental health? I do not pathologize people and see them as at fault for their mental states.
I help folx recognize and identify what impacts them and learn how to liberate themselves
I am informed by my education AND life experience
While my formal education provided me with appropriate knowledge and skills to be an art therapist, my life experience informs me on an emotional, mental, and physical level. For example, I grew up at a Christian camp and, with time, separated myself from religion. This process gave me incredibly empathy and understanding for what it means to deconstruct an identity and rebuild it. My life experiences and who I am greatly shape how I relate and connect with my clients. While therapy stays focused on my clients and the growth they're seeking, I'm not a blank slate in the process. I am a complex, loving human connecting with another complex, loving human.