Typically, clients to see me in hopes of learning how to manage anxiety and/or depression. They often come in search of learning some new coping tools or strategies to help remedy whatever symptoms they may be experiencing that cause them distress. While tools can be a helpful temporary fix, they might not always be the solution to issues that are more deeply rooted and stubborn.
In my work I have found that when clients allow themselves to becomes vulnerable and really take an unfiltered look at themselves in the metaphorical mirror, that's when changes truly begin and the magic happens. While symptoms of anxiety and depression may occasionally arise as a result of increased stress and/or situational factors, often times nagging and persistent symptoms may be a result of more deeply rooted insecurities or conflicts we may not have dealt with or may not even be fully aware of.
As a result, I have found that clients who are patient and courageous enough to take the time to go on a journey of self-discovery not only work through their anxious and depressive symptoms, but they also come out of the counseling experience with a more self-aware and enlightened view of themselves and who they are personally, professionally, romantically, etc. Giving yourself permission to work on what may seem like a Pandora’s box of worries and insecurities may actually lead to a series of transformations and growth which may benefit you in a multitude of aspects in life.
I work diligently in tandem with clients to create an open and trusting environment where my clients feel comfortable enough to process and reflect on the most intimate aspects of their thoughts, emotions, and lives. During sessions, no topics are off limits and exploration is highly encouraged; this includes the good, the bad, and the downright ugly. Clients sometimes even divulge information they may have never spoken to anyone about previously. This takes a lot of trust, vulnerability, and courage, but discussing experiences, emotions, thoughts, and worries with an objective third party observer may lead to transformative growth that may surprise you.
What I love most about going on this journey of self-discovery with my clients is seeing light bulbs go off- where clients suddenly realize something about themselves that completely shifts their perspective and enlightens how they feel about themselves and their life experiences. Seeing growth firsthand and being trusted enough to go on these intimate journeys with clients speaks to what life is truly about: living, learning, and growing, and I love every minute of it!
Sometimes we just get stuck in life. We know we don't feel like our usual selves, and we may have a hard time placing what it is that we're exactly experiencing. If this is the case for you, or if you're just interested in learning about yourself and growing as an individual, feel free to reach out to me and make an appointment to start working on living a more introspective, meaningful, and balanced life.
Written by: Lana Rukavina, LPC