Life presents a constantly changing set of challenges that we must respond to. In the process of living, we constantly have to make choices and act (or not act). Sometimes, our being in the world is deliberate and conscious, and we blaze our own paths. Other times, our feelings and behaviors come from deep habitual patterns that are reactive and outside of our awareness – we follow paths that are laid out for us. Regardless, at some point, each of us gets stuck along the way.
Science has developed lots of advice on how to get unstuck: tools you can use to move forward. Sometimes these tools work wonders, and we are back on our way toward the life we want. Other times, we face such immense internal and external challenges that no tool seems to work. We wonder why this job or this relationship or this lifestyle isn’t making us happy. In those cases, we need to dig deep into our own unique resources and blaze our own path to get unstuck. We must rediscover the lost art of working inward. Whether you are looking for the scientific methods that can get you unstuck or you are craving a deeper connection to living an authentically fulfilling life, I am excited to help you get there.
Before I became a therapist, I worked as a strategy consultant in the technology industry. I was good at it, but I didn’t seem to have the same magic click that some of my colleagues did. Then, I took a night class in psychology, and everything fell into place. I am inspired to help people rediscover and live authentic lives in the fullest expressions of themselves. And, I am in awe of the vast range of human experiences. Through therapy, so much is possible, and the human potential for growth and development never ceases to amaze me.
As you enter new stages in your life – from parenthood to the loss of a loved one – you begin another process of change and growth. Therapy is a way to facilitate that process and to help you move from intense suffering to healing and relief. For a while, I worked in the ICU of a children’s hospital. I frequently asked myself what the point of all the suffering I saw could be. After some time, I realized that suffering unites us as human beings. Without enduring suffering and pain, we could also not enjoy love and community. This new understanding led me to specialize in grief counseling. Grief is an important part of the process to develop a higher level of awareness, wisdom and understanding. It is my privilege to help people grapple with the essence of life and come out on the other side with renewed spirits.
I also specialize in anxiety treatment and family therapy. Anxiety brings our basic fears into the forefront of our minds. Therapy can help you clarify and accept the things you struggle with and emerge with strength and a greater sense of peace. I love working with families because of my deep belief that families hold the potential to change the future. I work with a family systems approach and provide my clients with specific parenting skills. Each family has the power to interrupt negative cycles of behavior that may have been happening across generations. This transformation is good for everyone, from individuals in the family unit to those they interact with out in the wider world.
I am a firm believer in practicing what you preach. I have been in couples therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and general supportive therapy. Currently, I am seeing a wonderful existential humanistic therapist who is helping me to work though my midlife challenges. Life is full of struggles, both practical and existential, so I firmly believe that the stigma surrounding therapy is harmful and misguided. A good therapist is someone who you trust, someone without an agenda who is there to be with you, support you, accept you and offer you a set of tools that you can use in times of intense suffering and daily unease. There is immense power in having an interpersonal relationship focused on healing. With a therapist, you can reach out, feel understood and begin to move forward.
In my practice, I will work to meet you where you are, no matter what you are feeling or experiencing. I believe in warm, compassionate and real therapeutic relationships and authentic interactions with my clients. I know that you have a huge capacity for healing and growth, and it is my job to help you access that. In sessions, we will take risks to help you achieve your goals – calculated risks that you and I design to move us forward. I am an active therapist who will help you access ideas and solutions that we can explore together. In order to take these risks, I will rely on our ability to be honest with each other. All relationships and partnerships experience missteps, but if we handle any stumbling block with mutual empathy, we can continue to move forward. While I can’t be your all-knowing guru, I can be your partner, guiding and supporting you as you begin to make positive life changes and feel better. The ultimate responsibility lies with you and your willingness to do the work of creating your own healing. My responsibility is to create an environment where you can achieve this. Every client is different, and there is a richness and aliveness in your unique experience. I have the context and training to respond productively to your words and worries so that you can find the answer or answers that really help you connect with your authentic self.
I love my job and value the time I spend with my clients. Outside of therapy, the highlight of my life right now is being a dad and a husband. I like to ski, but I love to ski with my children. I also enjoy coaching, comedy shows with my wife and creating video stories. I strongly believe in the importance of families,
I have a Masters and a Doctoral Degree (PsyD) from the Wright Institute. In addition to my practice, I am also on the board of the Armed Forces Support Foundation, a service organization focused on helping veterans re-integrate; the Therapeutic Alliance for Change, an organization focused on supporting therapists who work with extreme trauma and underserved populations; and coach football and rugby. I am heavily involved in teaching and training at Department of Psychiatry and the Medical School at UCSF, the Wright Institute, Stanford University and the University of San Francisco. I also offer training and consultation to new and experienced therapists.
I believe in your ability to access undiscovered parts of yourself to free yourself from your unique experience of suffering. Because the therapeutic relationship is key to our on-going progress, I emphasize the importance of choosing the right therapist. If I am not that person for you, I am happy to refer you to another experienced therapist. I invite you to give me a call me at (415)-935-4605 for a complementary 15-minute phone consultation. You can ask any questions and take your time to decide if I am the therapist for you.