The purpose of this web page is to introduce you to my particular, solutions-oriented approach to psychotherapy and cognitive-behavioral counseling for results. I also provide psychological information and clinical perspective on the causes and treatment of common types of psychological symptoms and conditions and some self-help tips for dealing with psychological issues and for coping with behavioral and relationship problems. Here, I would also like to tell you about my treatment philosophy and how I work with psychological issues and conditions.
In over 20 years of practicing counseling and psychotherapy, marriage counseling, family therapy and coaching in New York City and Westchester, I have gained a lot of experience and insight. As a licensed clinical psychologist, I have come to understand:
- How psychological problems develop, create symptoms and block our emotional growth (The psychology of getting stuck).
- How psychotherapy and counseling can be helpful in dealing with psychological and relationship problems.
- How psychologists, psychotherapists or counselors, employing a flexible, solutions-oriented therapy approach, can be especially helpful in getting people unstuck and moving forward.
As a NY licensed psychologist, an analyst and an executive coach, I serve not only greater NYC and White Plains, but I also help many clients from Rockland county, Fairfield and Greenwich, CT, New Jersey and Long Island seeking counseling, therapy and treatment for a broad range of psychological issues.
I've found from experience that when psychotherapy focuses on creating solutions, in a collaborative, down to earth manner, therapy is especially helpful in overcoming troubling symptoms, enabling personal growth and achieving meaningful goals in life.
My approach to diagnosing, understanding and treating psychological conditions, as well as common problems in living, draws upon a variety of psychotherapeutic and coaching perspectives. This multimodal treatment includes cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in New York and Westchester, rational emotive therapy, psychodynamic, humanistic, and existential psychotherapy, interpersonal psychoanalysis, life coaching and family systems perspectives and treatment methods.
The psychology of symptom development: getting stuck
Children can teach us a great deal about growing and living well. Young children are genuine and natural. They are curious, confident and adventurous. That's how we all start out in life. How do we become mired in psychological problems that create obstacles to our continued growth?
Our prolonged childhood immaturity and state of dependency makes us especially vulnerability to psychological harm. Parental anxiety, negativity, or disinterest, as well as peer rejection and other trauma threaten the basic human connection which makes emotional development possible. This results in emotional insecurity and anxiety.
Children who are insecure tend to respond to new challenges with undue anxiety, compulsiveness, dependency, negativity or detachment. These responses, in turn, tend to create negative social consequences. For some of us, the impact of this process may become apparent only later, when problems emerge in adulthood, and we find that we are baffled, shameful and stuck.
Problems in living can blindside us at any stage of development. Even as adults, we can become overwhelmed by severe trauma, chronic stress, or unexpected life crises. We can become stuck, through despair, passivity and resentment, through chemical or behavioral addictions, by the pursuit of narrow goals, or empty rewards, through self-absorption, or the absence of real purpose or commitment.
Ongoing anxiety, depression and anger, intimacy and relationship problems, self esteem or behavioral symptoms may indicate that we are stuck and that something important needs to be addressed. We may not really know what it is or how to effectively deal with psychological or behavioral problems on our own. At such times it's useful to find professional psychotherapy and counseling help, so that we can resolve the issues and move ahead with our lives.
Psychological issues become psychological problems by:
- Accepting ideas that impair our functioning, happiness or sense of self.
- Permitting ourselves to remain passive, dependent, or unchallenged.
- Assuming that a harmful relationship is acceptable, deserved or unchangeable.
- Believing that we are helpless or hopeless, or that our concerns are pointless.
- Hanging on to unsuccessful choices due to fear, habit or lack of support.
Therapy, coaching, and counseling help to us to get unstuck by:
- Diagnosing disturbing symptoms, unhelpful behaviors, and psychological issues with an experienced mental health professional.
- Gaining psychological insight into our key psychological issues, needs, relationships and real-world circumstances.
- Overcoming irrational fears, beliefs and perceptions through cognitive-behavioral and psychodynamic psychotherapy methods.
- Using imagination, self discipline, intuition and strategic life coaching to create change.
- Maximizing our strengths through professional counseling to pursue new opportunities and goals.
- Developing the determination, personal focus and courage to make commitments and take appropriate risks.
You can get psychotherapy and counseling help with:
- Defining core relationship and career issues and challenges.
- Mastering troubling emotions, symptoms and harmful reaction patterns.
- Developing and maintaining a secure, clear and rational sense of self.
- Enhancing interpersonal awareness, comfort level and communication skills.
My treatment approach as a counselor, psychotherapist and clinical psychologist
My particular treatment approach, solutions-focused psychotherapy and counseling for results, draws upon a variety of useful therapeutic methods and orientations including behavioral therapy, cognitive therapy, psychodynamic psychotherapy, interpersonal psychotherapy, humanistic and existential psychology, and family therapy systems theory. I also provide practical, educational counseling and strategic coaching help on how to implement key changes.
I believe it's best when clinical psychologists and other mental health counselors go beyond single-focus methodologies and perspectives. Multiple therapy options and flexible therapeutic methods permit psychotherapists to work more effectively, especially with complex, difficult, or long standing issues, or with conditions like Personality Disorders. A multimodal approach to treatment makes it easier to provide faster, tangible solutions for people with simpler issues.
I find psychotherapy and counseling is more effective when my main focus is on actively promoting my client's particular goals and treatment needs rather than sticking to a fixed treatment model, set of ideas or tools. For me, a client's stated goals and observable therapeutic needs suggest the best psychotherapy approach, methods, format, and length of treatment for that client. Over the course of an individual's treatment, my therapy method may change according to the client's condition, stage of progress and other factors.
How a solutions-focused psychotherapeutic approach works
A 35-year-old man, following a recent relationship breakup, has symptoms of anxiety and depression which results in excessive drinking and job jeopardy issues. He continues to live a highly stressful live which exacerbates his symptoms. He has a history of problematic relationships, emotional detachment and hypersensitivity. He imagines that women will reject him when they really get to know him, and so he sabotages relationships in advance. He expresses his frustration through inappropriate anger at home and at work.
My solutions-focused psychotherapeutic approach starts with getting clarity about the client's problems and his situation. We then quickly go after the presenting symptoms, using cognitive behavioral therapy for anxiety and depression.
I would also provide stress management counseling and anger management counseling as well as specific counseling and active coaching for the breakup, drinking and job situations, These counseling interventions are intended to facilitate symptom relief and to prevent these behaviors from creating more problems in his life.
As his emotional state improved, I would deal with his emotional vulnerability and relationship issues. The goal is to produce a more complete recovery, as well as head off a return of his presenting problems. I would select psychodynamic and interpersonal psychotherapy as the best psychotherapy approaches for him at this stage.
My clients choose the psychotherapy and counseling help that works best for them
A collaborative therapeutic relationship, candid dialogue, and a sense of safety permit my clients and I to discuss their particular needs and goals, as well as the best clinical methods, and the depth and duration of the psychotherapy and counseling experience.
For example, some clients make good use of brief or emergency psychotherapy to resolve a given condition (like a simple, Specific Phobia) or stressful situation (like a personal loss)-- and then they move on. After resolving an initial problem, some choose psychotherapy to address additional issues, like a relationship or personal growth issue.
Some psychotherapy clients work steadily and continuously until their issues are satisfactorily resolved; some work intermittently, in stages. Others may need or choose a psychotherapy and counseling schedule that works more intensively and resolves their issues sooner. Some people taper off appointments before ending therapy, and others set a termination date. Some people return to work on a specific issue at a later date.
People who have been in a non-directive form of psychodynamic psychotherapy or a psychoanalytically oriented psychotherapy may find cognitive behavioral therapy and counseling may work best for them now. Goal directed therapy and counseling can help put analytic insights into action to generate practical changes in our lives.
Many people have made good use of 12-step programs, recovery counseling, and they have their behavioral or symptom-control issues mainly in hand. My approach can be useful for broadening those gains, deepening their experience of self and others, and creating successes in other areas of life.
A personal note on therapeutic philosophy and approach
I have experienced a wide variety of psychotherapy and counseling services, including psychoanalysis, psychodynamic psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral counseling, and supervision, as a provider and a consumer. Most were excellent training experiences for a professional clinical psychologist and psychotherapist practicing in New York, However, I have been personally disappointed with how professional therapists and counselors tend to limit their therapeutic approach to a single theoretical orientation, a narrow methodology or a stylized manner of communication.
As a client, I had come to psychotherapy and counseling for help with my particular issues, rather than for a given psychological treatment modality. I believed that I had to communicate authentically and to take emotional risks. I felt disappointed and unsupported when these attitudes were not reflected in my therapist's behavior.
These personal experiences strongly influenced my therapeutic philosophy. I realized that for psychologists, psychotherapists, marriage and family and other counselors to be effective, we also need to grow beyond our own comfort zones and adapt methods which address each client's legitimate range of therapeutic needs.
Finding Solutions-Focused psychotherapy and Cognitive Behavioral counseling services in NYC (Midtown Manhattan) and White Plains, NY
As a practicing and licensed clinical psychologist, I offer solutions oriented psychotherapy and results oriented counseling from two convenient locations.
My New York City psychology practice is in midtown Manhattan at Park Avenue and 38th Street. The NYC location is a short walk from Grand Central Station. Many clients find it convenient to have sessions there commuting from Nassau and Suffolk County on Long Island, New Jersey, as well as the five boroughs.
I also have a clinical psychology practice where I offer psychotherapy and mental health counseling services in White Plains, NY. My Westchester practice is convenient to Fairfield County, CT and Rockland County, NY. Marriage and couples counseling are also available.
Please give yourself the time to explore this website. You are welcome to call me personally at (212) 213-6593 or (914) 997-7458 for more information about how my solutions focused approach to psychotherapy and counseling can help you to overcome obstacles and achieve your goal