Research shows definitively that psychotherapy works, but specific psychological theories and modalities make very little difference in therapeutic outcomes. What matters is your openness to the therapeutic process, your relationship to the therapist, the quality of the therapist, and the therapeutic environment.
That said, my primary modalities and the issues they are best suited to address are described below. These can be categorized broadly as height psychology and depth psychology.
Height psychology is about living your best life or getting to the "next level." This might mean overcoming a period of depression, anxiety, grief, or loss of a relationship; resolving an addictive or compulsive patterns (drugs, alcohol, sex, porn); an improvement in your romantic relationships, your career, or your personal growth; issues around self-esteem or body image. Often height psychology also involves mindfulness or spirituality in some way—for example, better attuning to your intuition, or achieving new states or stages in your meditation, yoga, or plant medicine practice.
Height psychology tends to be relatively brief because clients seeking this type of therapy are typically trying to overcome a particular challenge in their lives, and thus their therapeutic goals are targeted and specific. The therapeutic process is typically about helping guide clients to this emerging, improved stage in their lives, and addressing whatever internal or external factors might be blocking their paths.
My work in height psychology is mainly influenced by the work of Ken Wilber, Sri Aurobindo, Roberto Assagioli, and Peter Fenner.
Depth psychology is about exploring deeply within yourself to uncover and address the influences that may have built up over the course of your lifespan to create invisible boundaries that have shaped your sense of self. Where one might say that height psychology is about being the best we can in the world, depth psychology is about being truly happy with yourself for yourself.
Depth psychology is particularly effective for addressing traumas that may have occurred throughout your life, especially early childhood trauma, sexual trauma, and trauma from abuse or physical injury. Depth psychology also excels at addressing longer-term patterns related to depression, anxiety, compulsive thoughts and behaviors, spirituality, and sexuality. Many of my clients find depth psychology effective in helping them to work through life changes that are common in midlife, such as relationship changes, divorce, career changes, empty nest, care for an elderly parent, loneliness, body changes, menopause, erectile dysfunction, physical illness, and substance use.
People over 35 tend to have the greatest affinity for depth psychology, and there are a couple of main reasons for this. From a practical standpoint, the depth process tends to take a bit longer than height-oriented therapy, and people over 35 tend to be more likely to have the time and resources to invest in a longer therapeutic process. But more to the point, the influence, barriers, and limitations to our sense of identity that stand in the way of our growth later in life can actually help to motivate and propel us early in life to achieve success in relationships, career, sports, arts, or spirituality. It is not until we get older and have fewer outside pressures that the developmental influences that once helped us can begin to become unbearable. This is a natural part of development in midlife, and it is the process of working through these challenges that depth psychology is best at addressing.
My work in depth psychology is mainly influenced by the work of Carl Jung, Sigmund Freud, and Wilhelm Reich.
I have several special areas of interest, which are described briefly in the video, and will be described in more detail elsewhere on my web site:
The ways mental health issues show up as physical symptoms.
Working with physical conditions, such as chronic pain, fibromyalgia, and irritable bowel syndrome through psychotherapeutic tools and techniques.
Psycho-energetics, or subtle energy.
I will be further expanding on these areas of interest in forthcoming articles on my blog.
My psychotherapy clients range from 22 to 80, but the majority are 35-65. Generally speaking, most of my clients over 35 are seeking depth psychology, while most of my clients under 35 are seeking height psychology.
Regardless of age, my clients are about 50% male and 50% female. I don't specialize in working with men, but 50% is a much higher percentage than the proportion of men who tend to seek therapy overall, and I am gratified that a lot of men resonate with my work. I offer tools and perspectives for men that are validating in a way that break out of the stereotypical, "tell me about your feelings" style of therapy.