Think of me as your relationship consultant, I’m your neutral third party that can help you untangle the emotions and help you figure out what’s really going on. I want everyone who walks in my door to know that I absolutely believe in what I do.
Couples and individual therapy has proven to build a strong foundation for individuals and for their relationships–not only for my clients, but within my own life as well. As a marriage and family therapist, I am compassionate, understanding, and down-to-earth. With practical and effective methods, I help my clients create life-long positive relationships by focusing on communication, conflict resolution, self awareness, and more. We will work together to build healthy relationships that last.
I know that it’s not easy to admit to problems that you may be having, to examine them, and work to fix them. Whether you need to address issues as an individual or as a couple, seeking out therapy takes a good deal of bravery. And once you are there, I understand that it’s hard to open up to a stranger. But I’ll help you through it and make you as comfortable as possible – that’s my job! I want to help ease you out of your comfort zone so you can make positive changes that will create a happier life. Therapy is a way to closely examine yourself, your behaviors, and your pattern of choices, as well as the important people in your life. As hard as it is to do, it will pay off!
I want to hear your story
My counseling sessions are relaxed, collaborative and empathetic. I’ll make sure you feel comfortable when you share your story. We’ll work together to build healthy relationships that will last. I use a variety of theoretical orientations, such as cognitive behavioral therapy and solution-focused therapy. The majority of my counseling practice is based on Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) and attachment theory. EFT focuses on creating secure attachments in relationships and building safe bonds. It helps couples change how they emotionally reach towards one another. I am certified in Emotionally Focused Therapy, as well as a supervisor-in-training for EFT. I also work with helping individuals overcome trauma using EMDR Therapy (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and have completed the EMDR Basic Training.
Do you feel like your relationship is going in circles and nothing seems to get it on track? In my couples therapy sessions, I see so many couples continue trying to fix the problems, but they keep ending up at a dead end. It can be very frustrating and exhausting. I help couples navigate through all the complicated areas of love relationships: financial, sexual, verbal, and non-verbal communication, interpersonal dynamics, and more. If you are looping over and over within the same arguments, if you feel disillusioned and frustrated… it doesn’t have to be this way! There is hope. In our therapy sessions, we will get you the tools to work together, stop fighting and start enjoying your relationship. I will have you fill out a couples therapy questionnaire to assess where you see your problem areas as a couple in order to get us started in working together to solve these. We will work on couples counseling exercises that allow us to get to the root of the issues. Between sessions I will give you the tools, such as healthy relationship worksheets or communication worksheets for adults, to work on your relationship outside of our sessions so you can continuously get the most out of attending emotionally focused therapy in San Diego.
Whether it’s working through trauma (in the relationship or personal trauma one of you has faced), rekindling the romance, overcoming an obstacle, or premarital counseling in San Diego you are looking for, we’ve got you covered. In the meantime check out our website and social media to find materials on individual and relationship growth – such as couples counseling tips – as well as information on upcoming couples retreats in San Diego.
There’s more to me than just MFT!
Yes, I’m a marriage and individual therapist, but I have lots of other hobbies that keep me involved (and enjoying) life. I love to sit quietly at coffee shops and write articles about therapy, but I also love the adrenaline of trying new things. I will go for a solo run to clear my mind, but I’m also a social butterfly who loves to talk and connect with people. What’s most important for you to know is that I like challenges and no challenge is more interesting to me than understanding the complexity of my clients’ needs and supporting my team of therapists.
I built my private practice from the ground up, which has helped me grow quickly and build an excellent reputation in my community. My clients know that I won’t give them psycho-babble, I won’t make assumptions that put them in a box, and I absolutely won’t take sides. My goal is to really understand your world and help you move away from destructive communication habits so you can create safe, secure bonds with the people you love.
Not only do I help clients, but I also enjoy helping other therapists. I currently supervise three Associate Marriage and Family Therapist (AMFT) – these are therapists with MFT master’s degrees who are working toward building clinical hours for their licensure in California – and train them with counseling techniques. I also train licensed therapists on how to building successful therapy practices. I absolutely love the variety of work and it allows me to meet amazing people along the way.
I am also a lifelong relationship and marriage therapy student. I receive one-on-one training and attend bi-monthly meetings with my peers to continually improve my skills. I am certified in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples, as well as a supervisor-in-training for EFT. I want to be able to give my clients the best, most modern therapy techniques. In my counseling sessions, I use the framework of attachment theory and process the emotional experiences with each of my clients through Marriage Counseling, Couple Therapy, Premarital Counseling and Divorce Therapy. Some of the other ares are Anxiety and Depression Counseling and EMDR.
Here’s a little bit about my history as a therapist…
It’s been nearly 20 years since I first became interested in studying therapy. I began practicing the scientific approaches to psychotherapy in 1997 and I was hooked from then on.
I earned my Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2004 and I am currently licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist MFT (LMFT#47653) with the Board of Behavioral Sciences (BBS). I focus my practice upon the empirically-based and proven research methods of Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). I’ve seen these techniques consistently get results and I truly believe they are the most effective at creating positive, long-term change.
How my Marriage and Family Therapy career began…
As a teen, I found myself reaching out to others and helping my friends navigate through difficult times in their lives. Connecting with people was very natural for me and I enjoyed understanding how people interact and behave. I knew from an early age that counseling was the direction I wanted to take my career in.
In 1997, I began my education in psychology at Point Loma Nazarene University with a major in General Psychology and a minor in Spanish. Two years into my bachelor’s degree, I decided to go on an adventure and live in Spain for a semester to solidify my Spanish. I went to school full-time at Bilbao University and also interned at a center called “Tximeleta” (meaning butterfly in the Basque language). I was completely out of my element — I was traveling alone, living in an unfamiliar culture, and trying to establish myself without family and friends. I ended up learning so much while I was in Spain, both personally and professionally. It was an incredible experience whose lessons — developing relationships in a challenging environment, keeping a strong sense of self, and growing personal confidence — I still draw on today and try to teach to my clients.
After receiving my undergraduate degree, I attended Alliant International University (also known as California School of Professional Psychology) in 2004. My graduate work was completed with a Master’s Degree in Marriage and Family Therapy, an in-depth education on all aspects of relationships. Through my undergraduate and graduate work, I spent over 3,000 hours with clients and attended weekly clinical supervision training. All of my education focused heavily on relationships and marriage to help prepare me for my career as a Marriage and Family Therapist. I believe that education should be ongoing and even though my formal schooling is complete, I regularly attend training and seminars to ensure I have the newest, most effective techniques to share with my clients in the counseling sessions. Not only am I a therapist, but I also supervise Associate Marriage and Family Therapists (AMFTs), Associate Professional Clinical Counselors, and coach other therapists.
My dream has always been to work with clients in my own private practice. After graduating in 2004, I achieved my dream and currently work full-time at my own private practice in San Diego, CA (centrally located in Mission Valley, with a second office in North County). I love what I do and would love to share my passion for counseling and commitment to results with you.
Take a look at my therapy websites and learn more about me, my team, and our services. We have also put together a relationship blog where we share tips, advice, and education pieces on issues that commonly come up in therapy.
In 2016, I expanded my company to include both licensed and unlicensed therapists to open up more options for clients. In 2020, in response to the global pandemic (COVID-19) and its effects, I opened the non-profit, San Diego Counseling Solutions, to be able to provide more affordable counseling. My goal is to create a space where clients can find the right fit for Marriage Counseling and Therapy services for San Diego area.