We know ourselves best, and sometimes we need the kind mirror of another to see it.
In getting to know, like, and trust ourselves, there is nothing harshness does, that kind and clear limits cannot do better...especially the limits we have with ourselves.
I have earned a Master of Social Work degree from St. Louis University in 1999. I am licensed to practice as a LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker), providing therapy to clients who reside in Illinois and Missouri at this time.
I also provide consultation, coaching and education services beyond this demographic. (If you're interested in services outside of therapy and counseling, please see my website, www.Solutions4Wellness.com for more information. )
You can learn to adapt to life’s challenges more effectively using stress management tools and techniques to regulate emotions in real life.with ways to reduce stress on your body, control reactions in daily life and experience more calm and ease.
I continue to train in a variety of cutting edge techniques and I am certified/trained in the following specializations that I find most effective, efficient and useful. The training that I find most effective and use with therapy clients includes therapies and models that treat mental chatter as well as physical symptoms and they include:
Much of my practice these days focuses on relationships even though couples therapy is not my specialty. I have garnered a lot of applicable knowledge in relationship basics, including difficult relationships. I have engaged in several relationship trainings and apply this knowledge in useful ways to help with strained or problematic situations and people, helping you restore clarity and confidence while finding the truth of the matter for you.
All my best, Chris
Did you know there could be more than one way of working through the challenges that life presents? To be honest, I didn’t truly understand this for the longest time. I just did what I thought and was taught from from culture, family, education, healthcare and I was just feeling more and more misery, if I’m being totally honest. I needed to be more open, aware, and not just know the information I was learning in all of my professional training, but apply it… This was the game changer for me and I continue to do the work and reap the rewards!
If anyone could have told me a decade or two ago, that I’d be doing what I’m doing today, I wouldn’t and couldn’t have believed them. I was doing all the things we’re taught to do in society, go to school, get an education, a job that pays the bills, get married, have kids, have some fun as you can AND I was behind the scenes feeling at a minimum not great and at other times down right miserable…even if it didn’t look like it on the outside. I, like most people, could hide it well…until I couldn’t!
I’ve come to realize that the work of being healthy is never done. It’s about the journey ,not the hesitation and there’s nothing that harshness does that kindness can’t do better…especially with how we talk to ourselves! I’m passionate about learning about myself and others on relational authentic level. I believe we get hurt in relationships and we heal in relationships.
“When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change” is a quote I return to time and again as it rings true to me and to those I have the honor of sitting next to as they do their work of healing the hidden wounds that have come as a result of many struggles, some recognizable and some not near as clear. I believe, as Dr. Bessel van der Kolk refers to in his infamous book titled “The Body Keeps the Score,” that the symptoms of our hidden psychological and emotional wounds often manifest in bodily symptoms. I’ve come to discover that many of the unresolvable symptoms, not only psychologically, but physically, manifest from our history. I have gone on a search to discover the most effective and long lasting techniques that work. I personally benefit from them and I see others do it every day as well.
In our mainstream culture, we are taught that when we seek out help, that the person is an expert. We trust them and give our power away to their professional opinion all too often. I believe this is part of the problem. We have lost ourselves and our ability to listen and trust ourselves. A huge part of the therapy process is helping you fully find yourself back. Because sometimes we can really get in our own way and often do not realize it.
I see our work together as a partnership, in that as humans we are equal. I am no better than or less than you. Choosing a professional due to their expertise is important in therapy. When you are working on what at times may feel like emotional open heart surgery, it is also important that the clinician has a non judgmental, nurturing, and supportive presence.
This background speaks a lot about how I practice. I believe I cannot know someone better than they know themselves, but I can be in the passenger seat with the tools to help them achieve results and live a life at their fullest potential, moving from simply surviving to thriving. There was a time when I would not have felt this to be possible. From my own experiences healing from burnout, as well being witness to others doing the same, I now know that when we are open to change and willing to do the work, that it is often simple and requires some effort, but it is possible.
I believe we have to walk the walk and do the work ourselves. I don't think we can truly be Trauma-Infomed without this critical aspect. We can know things, yet if we haven't been on the receiving end, we can't truly be present in our mind and body for another the way effective therapy requires.
With that being said, when I was in a place of searching not only to improve my clinical skills but also to find myself, I completed many professional trainings. With these trainings, I have taken the best of what seems to work for others and continue to study in depth. I believe in lifelong learning and when you love what you do, it is a pretty effortless process to continue to grow professionally.
Some people show up to therapy and they are clear about the situation regarding the issues they are experiencing. We have efficient and effective techniques to help people move through the therapy as efficiently as they choose. Others show up to therapy for reasons that are often described as anxiety, overwhelm, confusion, unhappiness, discontentment, or frustration without a clear memorable event or circumstance that has lead to their feelings. Either way, as long as you are open and willing to learn and try new ways of thinking and experiencing life, you can be successful and get the outcomes you are looking for. It is also important to realize that problems are not typically created overnight, so they likely won't be resolved immediately either. Most people do report a sense of relief after the first few sessions.
I am honored to hold space for others as they heal and find themselves back. I see my professional training as tools and techniques that are useful to help me guide others AND that no matter what, we are one human to another, we are equal.