Types of Therapy
Below you will find descriptions of the different theoretical approaches and techniques I use in therapy. I don't think therapy should be confusing or seen as a mystery. I feel it is important to be clear and open with the people I am working with regarding what I am doing and provide them tools to educate themselves. I hope the explanations below will provide some helpful insight into the work I do. If you have further questions, feel free to ask. You can also check out Seattle Youth Counseling Pinterest for more information and examples of the therapeutic interventions I use.
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) &
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
DBT and CBT are centered around the connection between our thoughts, feelings and behaviors and works to develop skills to create change and balance on each of these levels. Some skills you might learn in DBT are mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness. DBT is effective in treating a wide range of problems youth deal with such as substance abuse, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), eating disorders, and self harm. It has been shown to be one of the most effective forms of therapy for young people and is highly recommended by the majority of the youth that I have worked with.
Creative therapy is a form of expressive therapy where you rely on your own form of creative expression to gain a better understanding of yourself and improve your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Our creativity can serve as an outlet for our thoughts and feelings. Words do not always convey our emotions; sometimes we need color, sound, and movement to help us access parts of ourselves that need attention and love. Art can also help us find power and strength in ourselves that we didn't know we possessed. You don't have to be a talented artist, poet, or musician. In my eyes, all art is beautiful because it is a representation of you.
This type of therapy tends to be very effective with youth of any age, as it does not require them to talk about their feelings directly, but allows them space to express them indirectly.
Narrative therapy is about rewriting your story in a new way. It is a nonpathologizing, empowering, and collaborative form of therapy. This type of therapy operates under the assumption that people possess natural abilities, skills, and expertise that can be called upon to guide change in their lives. People are seen to be separate from their problems. Counseling can help the person externalize their perceived problems. For example: "I'm depressed" might turn to "'Depression' is causing me not to like myself. I think it is time to stop listening to depression." Taking the problem outside of oneself often helps people to feel more comfortable talking about the problem. This can give them a sense of control over the problem and allow them to address it in a more productive manner.
I received training in each of these types of counseling. I have not yet sought out licensure in any particular type, as I prefer to use parts of each, rather than strictly adhering to the principles of one. I feel this gives me the ability to be flexible to the needs of my clients.