My Distinct Approach
- My education is strong in both theology and therapy. There are many counselors who are Christians but tend to work exclusively from the secular theories in which they were trained
- My B.S. degree is in pastoral ministries which majored in Bible, and tripled minored in Theology, Greek, and Pastoral Counseling.
- From this platform I transitioned into obtaining a Masters in Counseling where I became acquainted with the various psychological theories and approaches to helping people heal and change.
- By filtering the psychological
theories and techniques through that biblical world-life view, I’ve developed a proficiency to explain and provide solutions to life’s problems that make sense to the follower of Christ.
- And, since “all truth is God’s truth” those who do not come to me from a Christian viewpoint can still benefit from the time-honored truths that apply to all aspects of our lives.
Cognitive – Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
What is cognitive therapy?
Cognitive therapy is one of the few forms of counseling that has been scientifically tested and found to be effective in over four hundred clinical trials for many different disorde
rs. In contrast to other forms of psychotherapy, cognitive therapy is usually:
- Focused on the present
- Time-limited – in contrast to the open-ended types of psychotherapy.
- Problem-solving oriented
- It is truly ‘self-help’ because you learn specific skills that you can use for the rest of your life.
- CBT is the most effective non-medication treatment for
- Anxiety disorders: general anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, phobias, and social anxiety
- CBT is also effective in helping Trauma and PTSD symptom management
- It is very compatible with the Biblical world-life view.
- You might be surprised to learn that the Bible is filled with CBT principles and pastors have been indirectly teaching them to their congregations for centuries.
- In addition, prayer is an effective way to apply these principles and healthy praying has a powerful effect on the brain.
- In fact, check out what the great ‘psychologist’, the Apostle Paul, taught as a way to finding peace – Philippians 4:8-9. CBT can help you ‘practice’ these things.
For each couple who comes to marriage counseling I will focus on certain things:
- Your reasons for coming and expectations for our meetings.
- What is working for you in the marriage;
- What has not been working for you.
- If you are feeling hopeless and powerless to change your situation;
- What I have to provide in order to help you regain hope and help you turn your crisis into an opportunity to heal and grow.
You will hear me say something to this effect in the first session:
“I like to think of this office as a place of grace. This is not a courtroom; (you can have that but you will need to do it through a lawyer. And it will be much more expensive. (In so many ways). I am not going to be a ‘Judge Judy’. I really do not care who is to blame, or who is guilty or innocent. I will not be rewarding points, little gold stars, or giving penalties accordingly. I may agree with you, or I may disagree with you, but I will not take sides. I do care that you take responsibility for your part in solving what problems you are facing.
Now, please understand that I am being neither sarcastic (although that is one of my favorite pastimes), nor condescending (which is not one of my favorite pastimes).
My energy, my focus, will be on empathizing – trying to see and understand your point of view. Then, the other’s point of view. In order for me to understand your points of view it will require two things: you talk, and I listen.”
My initial goal is to hear, to understand. My greater goal is that you will begin again to hear and understand each other.
- Marital Crises –
- Infidelity – recovery from an affair – decision making – restoration of the marriage – and addressing the causal symptoms
- Coping with the Death of a family member
- Divorce – avoiding – decision making – navigation through the process – recovery from
- Getting Unstuck – Building on the Strengths of your marriage.
- Communication Skills
- Repairing Hurt
- Restoring appreciation and fondness