I was born and raised in Central Connecticut. I received my bachelors in Psychology from Endicott College in Beverly, MA. Endicott has a strong focus on internships, which gave me the opportunity to explore my passion in mental health with real life application. I spent a winter term in London, England at a school for children with learning, behavioral and emotional difficulties, another internship in the counseling department of a youth correctional facility, and a semester interning at a school for children and teens with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I wanted to continue my education in the mental health field and earned my masters at Central Connecticut State University (CCSU), in New Britain, CT. At CCSU I studied Health Psychology, which is a focus on the connection between your mental and physical health. After my masters I continued my education at CCSU to earn a Certificate in Professional Counseling and was awarded my License in Professional Counseling in the state of Connecticut. I moved to Illinois about 3 years ago and after some additional classes at Northern Illinois University I received my License in Clinical Professional Counseling (LCPC) in the state of Illinois.
Over the years I have worked in areas including; outpatient for substance abuse, public elementary schools, a charter school for children with ASD, private practice, and out-patient eating disorder and self injury programs.
I support children, adolescents and adults by addressing each area of life that may be causing stress or pain. The goal is to increase strengths and decrease negative habits. I will help recognize and change negative patterns that may be causing further conflict and explore new ways to address challenges. My goal is to make sure my clients feel comfortable and safe, but also challenged and supported during their therapeutic experience.
I work with several diagnoses such as: eating disorders, substance abuse, depression, anxiety, self injury, mood disorders, ADHD, work stress, and life transition.
Approach to Therapy
I employ the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) approach in therapy to help clients build a more positive approach to thinking. Learning to recognize and decrease automatic negative thoughts can be a step toward changing negative emotions and behaviors. I assist in breaking from unhelpful habits and patterns and help move toward goals and objectives.
I also use Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) as a method to help encourage healing and progress. I teach Mindfulness skills to help slow down anxious thoughts and connect with the present. Depending on the need, I may teach Distress Tolerance Skills to survive crisis, such as coping with triggers from substance addiction or in an eating disorder. I can teach Emotion Regulation skills to learn how to control or influence emotions and how to express them in an intentional way. I also teach Interpersonal Skills, which will help build assertiveness and how to find balance in relationships.
I use an eclectic approach to therapy based on the needs of my client. I may use Motivational Interviewing to help keep clients focused on their goal and current motivations, Solution-Focus Therapy when goals need to be accelerated, and play therapy with children to encourage a fun therapeutic environment. Occasionally, I use art therapy with both children and adults to help uncover unspoken emotions and feelings. I tailor my approach to each client in order to ensure optimal treatment for the individual and their needs.