If you’re unhappy, stressed, or struggling with toxic people in your life, I can help you by providing a nonjudmental, support environment, combined with evidence-based skills and feedback. I want to help you rekindle your passions and build on your strengths to get where you want to be in life.
I am a licensed therapist in Chesterfield County, Virginia. I provide counseling to young adults and adults who are looking for real skills and practical applications.
In college, I majored in psychology at George Mason University, and spent my senior year volunteering at the university’s Human Emotions Research Lab, which at the time was conducting a 10-year study on ways to help former inmates transition into the community. I split my time between interviewing inmates in the Fairfax County jail and conducting reliability testing on a self-control scale, which was published for the 2007 American Criminology Conference in Atlanta, Ga. I was also nominated for outstanding undergraduate researcher at George Mason University for the 2006-07 academic year. While I liked doing research, and enjoy keeping up with the latest advances in the field, I found my field work more fulfilling and decided to tailor my career towards direct care.
I received a Master’s of Social Work from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2010. During the 2009-10 academic year I interned at the University Counseling Services, where I provided outpatient counseling to VCU students in individual and group formats. I also began doing crisis work at this time. The training was outstanding, and I loved working with the students. I knew from this moment on that I had found my calling.
My post-grad experience has included working in community and outpatient settings, as well as providing emergency on-call services. In addition to work with clients, I have served as a supervisor for Master’s and Bachelor’s level counselors, providing trainings and guidance to counselors about difficult situations and ethical dilemmas.
My counseling approach is Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT), combined with Dialectical-Behavioral Therapy (DBT). Both of these are geared towards identifying and eliminating negative or unrealistic thoughts that create anxiety and depression.
With CBT, which has its roots in ancient Greek philosophy, the therapist helps to raise awareness about the interconnectivity between thoughts, behaviors, and emotions, and to identify and reduce negative or hurtful thoughts and behaviors that lead to anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues. CBT is generally a more quick-acting therapy that provides immediate coping skills for use throughout the day. It is more focused on the present than the past, however, exploring the past can be a helpful way to identify how certain thought and behavior patterns may have emerged.
DBT is based on CBT, though it also incorporates aspects of mindful awareness and distress tolerance that has its roots in meditative practice. The goal of mindfulness in DBT is to increase awareness of one’s self, to practice nonjudgmental acceptance of one’s self and others, and improve distress tolerance. This, combined with reducing unhelpful thoughts and behaviors, can be a powerful catalyst to change.
I also use Interpersonal Therapy in my practice, in which I tailor my communication style in ways that help support your growth. With Interpersonal Therapy, the process in which we communicate is more important than the content of the conversation, and it can be helpful for someone who is interested in exploring new ways of communication styles (being more assertive, for example).
2010 Virginia Commonwealth University
Master’s of Social Work
2007 George Mason University
Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology
Virginia: L.C.S.W – License No. – 0904008919
National Association of Social Workers
Outside the office
I was born and raised in Chesterfield and am proud to call myself a native to the area. In my adult years I have been around the country and overseas, but Chesterfield has always felt like home. I’ve seen enough to know it is a great place to be! When I am not busy with the career I love, I enjoy staying connected to the Richmond music and arts scene, reading and writing, and spending time outdoors.