Counseling for Professionals and Entrepreneurs
Take care of yourself so you can take care of business
Being a self-starter comes with its own unique set of challenges. I specialize in working with professionals and entrepreneurs to reduce anxiety, foster emotional wellness, nurture relationships and increase self-care. It IS possible to have a thriving business and a healthy life, at the same time.
My clients are people who “have it all together” (or so it might look to those on the outside) and who have worked hard to get where they are. But underneath what sometimes feels like a facade of success, they are aware that there is a deeper story. Thoughts and feelings keep showing up that are unwelcome, distracting and downright self-critical. They have tried to ignore them, drown them out or just work harder to make them go away, but those little buggers just keep coming back.
Maybe you feel like your anxiety is keeping you from being present and attending to what you really want out of life or work. Maybe anxiety is keeping you from having a well-deserved, healthy sense of satisfaction with what you bring to the world. Maybe you have taken a huge risk in starting a business or a new venture, and you’re proud of yourself for that, but your fears of failing threaten to keep you from enjoying the process. Or maybe even keep you from wanting to continue.
No amount of professional success has managed to silence the worries, self-criticism and the fear that you might never be, or accomplish, “enough”.
If this is you, I want you to know that there is hope. I have helped many entrepreneurs and professionals find their way out of self-criticism, worry and self-doubt and into confidence and self-compassion and I’d love to talk about how I can support you.
I am less interested in diagnosing people and more into targeting therapy and/or coaching to each individual. But if you’re wondering whether what you’ve been experiencing qualifies as anxiety, the “official” list of anxiety symptoms includes the following:
Sleep problems (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep)
Whether or not you identify with the experience of “anxiety”, if you struggle with any of the symptoms listed about, counseling can help. Finding a professional who understands the specific experience of being a self-starter, a boss, a leader and/or a visionary can help you conquer what’s holding you back and move forward from a place of emotional clarity.
Why Work With Me?
I am passionate about helping professionals and entrepreneurs overcome anxiety, confusion and self-doubt. There are many therapists out there who work with anxiety, and a broad array of approaches that people find helpful. What makes me stand apart is that I’m action-oriented and direct. We will focus on not just how you’d like to feel better when you are finished with therapy, but on how you’d like your life to be better.
I frequently give clients “homework” to do in between sessions and I believe this is where the real change happens. I work with clients who are motivated for things to change and ready to put some real effort into themselves and their futures.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) are the two major treatment approaches with a strong evidence base for treating anxiety. I am specifically trained in both of these. I have expertise in tailoring these approaches for treating anxiety to each individual client.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anxiety
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) focuses on identifying the thoughts, feelings and behaviors that are triggered when you encounter specific situations. The goal of CBT is to help you see the ways that all three of these elements are interconnected in your own responses to life.
We will work together to help you slow down long enough to notice which thoughts, feelings and behaviors tend to recur for you and which ones might be getting in your way. These might have arisen from a difficult (even traumatic or abusive) experience in childhood, in a close relationship or in other past experiences. Regardless of where they came from, you always have the ability to change how you look at situations and how you choose to show up for yourself.
We will focus on choosing thoughts and behaviors that work for you instead of against you. Thoughts and behaviors correlate directly with feelings. Over time you will notice your reactive feelings calming down as you learn how to look at situations in a more helpful way.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Anxiety
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) focuses on cultivating acceptance of difficult feelings like anxiety, worry and sadness; enabling you to take action on the things that are most important to you in life. This is not about LIKING these feelings. It is about mindfully noticing them when they show up, bringing curiosity about what they are trying to tell you and thus reducing the amount of control they have over your life.
There is a difference between pain and suffering. Pain is the collection of inevitable feelings that arise in response to life’s challenges (and we all have them). Suffering comes from our struggle with these feelings and from the many ways we try to numb our hard emotions. We do not have to completely eliminate difficult emotions like anxiety, fear and sadness in order to take committed action in life. We just need to learn how to live with them without letting them take over what is important to us in life.
How Might Anxiety Be Trying to Get Your Attention?
Another way to look at anxiety is this: there are parts of being human that are longing for attention and not getting it. There are visions of a life that is bigger than showing up for work, giving it all you have (and more), collapsing into bed and doing it all over again tomorrow. When we focus less on making hard feelings go away and more on what is actually important to us in life, we find that anxiety decreases as a byproduct and in the meantime life becomes infinitely more meaningful.
Let’s Talk About Where You Are
Worry, fear and panic can be daunting when faced by yourself. But they don't have to stop you from creating a vibrant, fulfilling reality out of your circumstances. Sometimes it just takes the opportunity to slow down, have the chance to really dream about how you'd like your life to be and get an outside perspective to cheer you on. I would be honored to talk more about how I might be of assistance to you on your journey toward peace and confidence.