Philosophy & Approach

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Approach

Karen uses an integrative and highly interactive approach to therapy where she views her therapeutic relationship as teacher-student, and student-teacher. She believes that each individual is the ultimate teacher to themselves. Karen acts as a witness to the process and offers direct guidance and techniques to help one attain the life they want to live with ease and wisdom. Different modalities and techniques Karen uses are:

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)

  • Effective treatment involving bilateral stimulation with the eyes, hands, ears: visual, tactile and auditory
  • Healing similar to what occurs naturally during dreaming or REM
  • Neurobiological approach to reintegrating memories that have become stuck in the limbic system with more prefrontal cortex processed memories that are less disturbing
  • Strongly recommended as the treatment of choice for trauma by the Veterans Association and American Psychiatric Association, and numerous other international organizations.
  • Self tapping and emotional freedom technique are also taught so clients can practice at home.

Somatic Experiencing

  • SE is a powerful psychobiological method for resolving trauma symptoms and relieving chronic stress
  • SE facilitates the completion of self-protective motor responses and the release of thwarted survival energy bound in the body, this addressing the root cause of trauma symptoms.
  • SE offers a framework to assess where a person is "stuck" in the fight, flight or freeze, or collapse responses and provides clinical tools to resolve these fixated physiological states.

Brainspotting

  • Brain based therapy to identify, process and release core neuro-physiological sources of emotional pain.
  • Subcortical powerful psychobiological method which uses identified "brain-spots" that are linked to emotional activation likely in the amygdala, the hippocampus, or the orbitofrontal cortex of the limbic system.

Existential/Buddhist/Spiritual Exploration

  • Explorative therapy that posits that internal conflict comes from having to face certain truths about existence, i.e. certainty of death, good vs evil, non duality, meaning and purpose, and nothingness.
  • Central problems are embedded in anxiety over loneliness, isolation, despair, and ultimately, death.
  • Creativity, love, authenticity, and free will are recognized as potential avenues towards transformation. 
  • Acceptance of growth, responsibility and freedom create meaningful lives, even the ability to choose meaning. 

Eclectic/Comprehensive Approach

Each person relates to their life experience in a unique way, thus all modalities are used based on whatever arises, whether the modalities noted above, or classic CBT, trauma informed CBT, attachment theory, narrative therapy, IFS (internal family systems) and/or crisis management/advocacy as needed.