What do you want from this life?
Love? Success? Security? Connection? Wisdom? Power? You can have these things because they already exist within you. You would not be able to perceive them otherwise. The problem is not that they aren’t there; the problem is that anxiety, depression, trauma, and the false sense that you are not ok obscure your experience of them.
The therapy I do is deeply intuitive, action-oriented, and experiential. We will not only talk about the problems; we will do something about them. I will lead you through practices to face the difficulties and dismantle them.
When fully engaged, you will experience inner peace and calm beyond your problems, providing a guide for the rest of your life. This calm area is where insight and new growth will take place, where you can build the life and experiences you truly desire.
Self-acceptance is the first step.
We will do this together. Your pain (sadness, anxiety, fear, anger) is the doorway we will walk through to get to your recovery, growth, and healing. Most of us receive teaching throughout life that we should try to get away from the bad feelings and ‘focus only on the positive.’ Because who wants to feel bad?
We learn to sweep our bad feelings under the rug, thinking they will disappear if we pretend they aren’t there. But what ends up happening is the bad feelings get stronger. Like a hungry or lonely little kid told to go away because “Mommy is busy now,” those feelings will keep coming back, louder, or will cause physical or emotional destruction until they get the attention they need.
“Resistance equals persistence.”
– Master Therapist Zivorad Slavinsky
So, we start by accepting any emotion or symptom. Self-acceptance often feels fake or foreign at first, but with a surprisingly simple protocol, it becomes a natural habit that gets stronger and automatic with regular use.
You will even learn to appreciate the bad feelings when they arise, not because they are enjoyable, but because you will discover that they are part of your thinking and feeling powers. Even the bad feelings are informative and intelligent and will contribute to the wholeness that is your life.
Now, a question arises.
You ask, “Ok, Anne, so that’s all nice and good, but what am I supposed to do with those crappy, shitty feelings if not push them under the rug?”
Integration is the next step. Again, you do not have to know how to do this because I will lead you through the integrative processes.
Integration does not mean the feelings disappear. Integration is more like digestion. I will instruct you to allow your feelings to be completely present. Your body, mind, and psyche will process those feelings, extracting all their nutrients like your body takes nutrients from food.
You will expel what you don’t need to integrate, sometimes experienced as tears, words that need saying, sighing, muscle tension and release, or simply a feeling of energy leaving the body. Sometimes people feel tired afterward, almost like you would after a good workout or a hike. There is often an internal feeling of quiet peacefulness after an integration.
There are many ways to integrate problems and issues. We will collaborate to find the best methods for you because your therapy is unique and tailored to you. Once you stop running from what is chasing you, it will change you. You won’t be the same; there is no going back to how things used to be. This path is not an easy one, but it is a genuine one. And, if you become completely engaged, it will transform your life.
By understanding yourself, you can understand others.
I was very anxious and depressed in my youth. I studied psychology to understand myself and the people around me.
I often wondered, “Why is everyone so weird, mean, and messed up?” I sought the answers through psychology textbooks, self-help books, and writings by famous psychologists and analysts.
Throughout my 20s and 30s, I was in psychoanalytic therapy. This therapy helped me heal and created a solid and lasting foundation for my work as a therapist. I still engage in therapy today when I need a tune-up, as I believe that all therapists should do.
Our lives are like art.
My other big question as a teenager and young adult was, “Why did everyone else get the instruction manual for life handed out at birth, and I didn’t get one?” I had not learned yet that we are all winging it, that life is a constantly evolving creative work of art.
All of us are artists, sculpting our relationships as we live them, writing our stories as we go, creating dance as we move through the day, and memoir and song as we interact with others, leaving behind our impressions.
The arts as life metaphors could continue. There’s drama, performance, painting, drawing, cooking – even a conversation is an art form – what arts are you living out in your life?
Answers to the big questions require much searching.
The third big question in my life and one that is still very present is, “Why are we all here? What is this all for in the first place?”
I have always searched for the answers to these questions through studies in different religious traditions and texts and, more recently, through my meditation and spiritual practices.
My professional training is diverse.
I have a B.A. in Fine Art, an M.A. in Clinical Art Therapy and Marriage and Family Therapy, a nine-month training certificate from the Los Angeles Jung Institute, a Ph.D. in Depth Psychology and Depth Psychotherapy, and a Fellowship training certificate in Acceptance and Integration Training™ (AAIT).
Practicing professionally since 1998, I am a licensed LMFT in Washington, Oregon, and California. Before starting my private practice, I worked as a therapist, supervisor, director, and administrator in outpatient and inpatient mental health programs in urban, suburban, and rural settings.
As a lifelong learner and bibliophile, I keep up with my annual CEU licensure requirements and my innate desire to know and understand. As long as I am alive, I plan to be learning! One of the things I love about being a therapist is that I learn something from every session I engage in and every client. I hope I get to work with you.
When I’m not working…
You can usually find me with my husband and son exploring the mountains, lakes, and coasts of the gorgeous PNW. We also spend a great deal of time tending to our elderly house and the various flora and fauna in and around it.
I also love to cook, eat, read novels, and collect autobiographical comic books written and drawn by women.