I have a been drawn to seek purpose and meaning in life by being of service to others. A sense of adventure and a desire to be of service to my country led me to enlist in the U.S. Air Force shortly after graduating high school. I became a German Linguist and enjoyed serving my country and traveling the US and the world.
Currently, I am a LIcensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. I graduated Summa Cum Laude from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science with a minor in Psychology. I attended Walla Walla University where I earned a Master of Social Work degree.
I completed my practicum with the Veterans Administration in a Substance Abuse Treatment Unit where I specialized in dual-diagnosis treatment and Recreation Therapy. This began my drive toward incorporating Experiential Therapy and eventually combining yoga and mental health in Trauma Informed Yoga Therapy.
I have a deep appreciation for the work I do. I have always felt a sense of compassion for suffering. I relate to suffering, but I always felt "there is a better way" and set out to know it. It wasn't until I learned the therapeutic modality of Internal Family Systems Therapy that I was able to apply this compassion to myself and gain clarity about the world of emotions and relationships . My hope is to share this process with others in order to help them cultivate their highest potential for healing, growth, and contentment.
As mentioned above, I am trained in Trauma Informed Yoga Therapy and have completed 200 hours of Yoga Teacher Training. I believe yoga and meditation can be extremely valuable in managing stress and cultivating positive mood and energy states.
I learned to meditate in the Air Force while undergoing treatment for claustrophobia and it was life-changing. I could never imagine going from the level of fear I had felt to riding an elevator to the top of the Washington Monument in a matter of weeks. It made me feel that anything is possible.
Learning to regulate my thoughts and my physiological response to stress really opened up a world of possibilities. We cannot eliminate fear (we do need our threat detection system) but we can lessen its sensitivity and intensity and decrease its negative impact in life.
Emotions, beliefs, mindsets, and mental states can all have somatic components meaning they are also felt in the body. We can process these physical sensations to release tension and pent up emotions that contribute to chronic distress and manifest as physical ailments... without medication. Medication is a decision made by you and your medical team. However, my approach is an East meets West approach to well-being.
True self-care begins with looking inside and finding the untapped resource for healing and well-being inside you.