HOW THERAPY WORKS
Therapy creates a safe, accepting atmosphere to explore our life. The quality of the therapeutic relationship is crucial: just as our wounding occurred in relationship, so healing occurs in relationship as well. No one can do this alone. We can’t see our own defenses because they are unconscious. Everyone needs another person skilled in understanding unconscious defenses in order to work through them.
I view psychological healing within the larger context of spiritual unfolding. It is a journey into the painful shadows of the psyche in which we discover our hidden light. Psychotherapy generally begins in some kind of pain or baffling lack of fulfillment. Although the person may be outwardly successful, inwardly there are struggles in things such as relationship, intimacy, health, stress, meaningful work, compulsions, anxiety, depression. In the context of a healing therapeutic relationship, the “night sea journey” of therapy leads from pain, frustration, and fragmentation to increasing enjoyment, vitality, and wholeness. It is a movement from alienation or isolation to authenticity and greater connection, from a shaky sense of self and self-esteem to feeling centered and valued, from darkness to light.
Therapy stands on three legs, each of which provides an important window into the psyche:Our current life situation
Our past relationships and family wounding
The client/therapist relationship
Current psychotherapy research emphasizes the importance of the body’s actual, felt sense as key to getting out of our heads and into our lived experience. Following our heart’s deeper guidance leads us within.
Wrapped in the dark camouflage of our wounds lie jewels, waiting to be discovered. Drawing on the psycho-spiritual wisdom of east and west, a relational, embodied approach to psychotherapy allows us to touch our tender, wounded sides for healing and growth, leading to a life of deep relationships with others, creativity, meaningful work that engages our skills and talents, and connection to our deepest spiritual center.