My Approach to Individual and Couples Therapy
My Philosophy: A Holistic Approach to Therapy
As a therapist and counselor, I work from a holistic approach which means in therapy we will focus on your mind, body and heart. To truly heal your pain and overcome the problems you are experiencing we will need to address all aspects of yourself.
Mind: To address issues of your “mind” we will work to increase your awareness of, and help you overcome, any beliefs---both conscious and unconscious—that are not serving you in a positive way. Therapy will help you overcome negative beliefs and develop healthy ones that will accentuate your growth. Once you experience more positive beliefs, it will be easier to find your path and live your “true” life.
Body: Your state of mind has a direct effect on your “body”. Your body “remembers” and stores everything that has happened to you. During therapy, we will explore your eating, sleep and exercise habits, any stress symptoms or heath issues that you have. If necessary, I will suggest resources and people whom can help you in these areas.
Your body may be speaking to you by means of persistent headaches, digestive problems, or other chronic health conditions. As your mind heals, you may find that any health problems will begin to heal as well.
Your body may also be suffering due to a drug or alcohol abuse problem. Since substance abuse has a “numbing” effect on the body, if you have abused drugs or alcohol, therapy will help you get more in touch with what is happening in your body. You will then have a better sense of what you want and need.
Heart: One of my main goals of as a counselor and therapist is to help you make your heart feel whole. If you have experienced deep losses, trauma, or abuse you may have trouble trusting others. You may also have low self-esteem and not feel good about yourself. Pieces of your heart may be closed off. You may also experience a lot of negative feelings such as anxiety, irritability, anger, loneliness and depression. Eventually, therapy will help you to feel more positive emotions such as joy and love towards yourself and others.
Finally, in working with you holistically, we will work to improve all areas of your life including your intimate relationships, relationships with your children and friends, and your fulfillment in your career. Our goal in counseling is to help you feel whole so that you can enjoy your life and feel excited about your future.
How I Work as a Therapist and Counselor
In my therapy office, I provide a safe, welcoming, and warm environment. My style of communication is active, genuine, honest, and nurturing. I am uniquely empathic and deeply caring. I will lovingly accompany you on your healing journey and help bring hope and healing to your life. I can sense your joy, anxiety, depression or fears and help you talk about them as you heal.
As a therapist, I pride myself on being a good listener. I provide non-judgmental feedback, based on your feelings and opinions. I am highly insightful and have a strong intuitive presence that will help to facilitate your self-discovery and growth.
In our counseling work I will guide you in a self-reflection process that will help you learn from the life you have lived in order to prepare for a life of more success and happiness ahead. Through therapy, I work with you in a collaborative relationship to help you formulate and implement your own unique purpose and path. I am committed to helping empower you to make decisions that are best for your life.
Therapy Approaches Used with Individuals and Couples
Therapy techniques used in Individual Counseling with Women and Men (Yes, I work with men too)
I use a variety of therapy and counseling approaches in my work with individuals. One of the most helpful therapy approaches is a therapy technique called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). It is a well-researched counseling technique that can very helpful in overcoming a variety of problems and symptoms including childhood abuse, abandonment, sexual assault, trauma, depression, anxiety and alcohol and drug abuse.
I also use Brainspotting (BSP) in my practice. Brainspotting was discovered in 2003 by David Grand, Ph.D.. As stated by Grand, "Where we look affects how we feel". BSP makes use of this natural phenomenon through its use of relevant eye positions. This helps the BSP therapist to locate, focus, process and release a wide range of emotionally and bodily-based conditions. For more information please visit www.biolateral.com/brainspotting.htm this is David Grand's, Ph.D. website.
Structure of Individual Counseling
When you first come to see me we will discuss what has brought you to therapy and what your most significant problem is. In our first counseling session, I will ask you questions about yourself and your life to get a better understanding of you and what you want to achieve in therapy.
After our first meeting, our counseling sessions will likely be held once per week. We can discuss how frequent our sessions will be, as it will depend on your needs. In addition to our therapy sessions, I will help you find any resources that might be helpful to you in creating a better life for yourself.
Couples and Marriage Therapy
Theoretical Principles and Methods Used in Couples and Marriage Therapy
My work as a marriage and couples therapist is influenced by many of the most respected relationship experts in the field. These include Imago Therapy as developed by Harville Hendrix, the Gottman Method as created by John Gottman, the work of Helen Fisher on the chemistry of love, and the work of Sue Johnston in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT). These are leading edge methods in the couples therapy field that can bring about remarkable results in relationships experiencing turmoil and pain.
The Structure of Couples Therapy Sessions
Using the marriage and couple therapy principles and techniques from the above methods, we begin couples therapy with you and your partner coming into to see me together. I will then schedule a therapy appointment with each of you individually before resuming sessions with both of you together. I am a very directive couples therapist, helping to make sure you each get turn to speak and be heard.
We will discuss “wishes” that you have for each other to do that will make you feel more loved. We will also explore ways for meeting these needs in one another. As your relationship therapist, I will be on the lookout for any other issues that need to be addressed in order to make your relationship more harmonious and happy.
In relationship counseling we will also discuss “reactive buttons” from the past—patterns of responding to each other that may come from prior relationships and early childhood experiences. You will find ways to help each other heal from past wounds so that you will feel closer to one another and be able to love each other more freely. I will help you speak to one another more calmly and effectively. Ultimately, our goal will be to make your relationship the best it can be.
Whether you are a male or female, single or in a relationship, if you think you might benefit from individual or relationship counseling with me please contact me at: or by phone at (805) 374-1770 or Linda@lindafisherman.com
Linda Fisherman is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Westlake Village, California. Linda provides individual counseling, relationship counseling for singles, as well as marriage therapy and couples counseling to those residing in the following areas in California: Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, Newbury Park, Agoura Hills, Oak Park, Calabasas, and Moorpark, Malibu, Simi Valley.
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