My Approach to Helping
Because I have been trained as a Clinical Psychologist, my approach obviously involves providing each individual with a comprehensive assessment of their primary diagnoses related to anxiety, mood disturbances, ADHD, etc., as well as the more problematic underlying ways of thinking, relating, and behaving that exacerbate their condition. This assessment also takes into account that same individual’s talents, skills, and resources. After all, it is these strengths that will provide the very foundation on which a successful treatment is based. To do this, my first step is to conduct an initial 2-hour comprehensive interview, combined with a brief psychological test. Much of what I feedback to patients is a way to understand their world of raw emotions andor troublesome behaviour patterns in very simple, basic terms. While I make a point of providing each patient with a valid and reliable professional diagnosis, with explanations of how they might be affecting them in everyday life, these labels are rarely used again in treatment. Instead, the emphasis in treatment is on helping the individual understand what needs to change in order to successfully navigate the most painful of emotions as well as confusing life situations. When medications are indicated patients are referred to colleagues with whom I work on a regular basis, including a Board Certified Psychiatrist with expertise in Psychopharmacology or, in the case of substance abuse, a Board Certified Addiction Medicine specialist.
My treatment philosophy has evolved over four decades of clinical practice and is quite different from that of most therapists. While most practice the pressured, insurance-driven 45-minute session, I have never found these to be particularly useful or effective, especially on a once-a-week basis. Instead, patient sessions last a full two hours, with patients reporting feeling much more relaxed, comfortable and at ease, confident that they will be able to raise importantpainful personal matters and knowing that there will be plenty of time to see them through to a comfortable resolution. Since multitasking is well known to reduce one’s effectiveness, there is no therapist note-taking during sessions. Instead, I have found that the best therapy outcomes occur by giving my full time and undivided attention to what an individual is saying, as well as to the emotions being experienced.
Therapy sessions here are designed to be active and productive. At times an individual may ask for advice or direction. Instead of throwing the question back on them to answer, I believe in modelling exactly how I might think the problem through sequentially; in effect, teaching them how to make ‘good judgment’ decisions in the future. In fact, much of my approach is educative in nature, rather than pathology-focused. Because some patients also have learning disabilities, including ‘auditory processing’ difficulties, many, quite understandably, have difficulty remembering certain things that have been discussed during the session. In these cases, I routinely use a large Whiteboard above the fireplace to illustrate what is being discussed. These diagrams are then photographed and emailed to the individual to include in their own notes. When needed, patients in my practice are able to reach me by phone or email. Rather than conform to the idea of a packed schedule of patients, I prefer to see fewer individuals, conduct a very successful therapy experience with them, and allow them to move on when things are fully resolved. I do not believe in ‘holding on’ to patients for an undetermined time, or engaging in increasing levels of psychological ‘archaeology’ because I know that this is not what they sought in the first place. In those cases where an individual specifically wants to take time to fully understand the relationship between their childhood and adult behaviour, that opportunity is available here, as well. For example, this often occurs with psychiatric residents, doctoral-level students, or therapists.
More Info About My Practice
While seemingly more ‘academic’ it is critical that your therapist be operating within some formal Theory of Personality Development that can account for how individuals should develop in a healthy manner, and what happens when something or someone interferes with this natural process. Without this, your therapist may end up simply practicing ‘techniques’. The theoretical foundations behind my work are based on an eclectic mixture of Psychodynamic and Relational Therapy, with a strong emphasis on Developmental Psychology’s focus on Attachment Theory, Adaptation, and Growth. When appropriate, I also feel very comfortable using our current understandings of Object Relations, as well as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). However, in the end I also know that good, old fashioned common sense and straight talk can add a lot to treatment success. While my expertise in helping patients is based on strong academic training adhering to current ethical guidelines, my approach to working with patients is very relaxed and open, with absolutely no judgment. Because I have seen so many theories of personality, therapy models, and therapy ‘techniques’ come and go over the past four decades, I have chosen a more ‘eclectic’ model that includes the very best of what we have learned that actually works (i.e., ‘evidence-based’ therapy).
Important Factors for Choosing a Therapist
As with choosing any doctor, your therapist’s level of training, experience, and expertise are one of the most important things you need to know prior to seeking help with your emotional life. If this evaluation is done haphazardly, it can lead to lost time and money, with a feeling of frustration and hopelessness. If done well, it can, quite literally, change your life in a positive way.
As a practicing Licensed Clinical Psychologist for more than 40 years, I specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of extreme anxiety, depression, stress, couple’s concerns, and alcohol & drug abuse. In addition, I specialize in treating the emotional developmental delays commonly associated with learning disabilities.
I also specialize in senior executive consultation. My clinical experience has ranged from Community Mental Health Outpatient Services, to Inpatient Psychiatric work as Director of Group Therapy at The Philadelphia Psychiatric Center. Here I also served as Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychology for Temple University and Senior Psychologist for an APA-approved doctoral-level internship program at The Philadelphia Psychiatric Center. Finally, over the past 35 years, I have served as a Senior Executive Consultant to the manufacturing, financial, and pharmaceutical sectors of business, and am a Certified Forensic Consultant. During the entirety of my career I have maintained my own home-based outpatient private practice, dealing with a very wide range of patient concerns.
Client Focus (Age)
Billing and Insurance:
I don’t currently accept insurance, but I can provide documentation if clients wish to submit to an insurance company for “out of network” benefit coverage