I was standing outside with my feet planted into the ground to look up and see the beauty of the night. Instantaneously I felt a sense of calm, balance, and appreciation for life and the beauty of nature.
Looking back on this photo, I am transported back to this feeling and reminded of my group practice, Storm Haven’s, tagline “Seek refuge and support from the storms of life.”
While life can bring great joys and majestic wonders, as humans, life can also bring great challenges that we wish we could escape, avoid, or push away. Although, when we do…we find it may only makes the difficulties worse and the sorrows heightened. Shadows of despair may be cast into what joy we previously had. Like a lonely ship at sea 🌊 enveloped by the storms of life desperately wanting to get to the safety of the cove.
Storm Haven’s tagline was born from this experience…from the pain (storms) I witnessed so many of my clients within and the relief that came by two humans discussing, processing, and finding a way forward—with tools that allowed them to develop a new relationship with the challenges of life and discovering new ways of responding.
This is my mission. May everyone know what it means to live the intentional and well lived life and not miss the beauty right outside our door ❤️
Humans are wired for connection so it is no wonder that being single on Valentine’s Day can bring with it a sense of feeling left out.
Society has a way of communicating that being in a relationship is the only way you get to celebrate Valentine’s Day. THIS IS SIMPLY NOT TRUE! Whether you are single by choice or single for reasons beyond your control (e.g., because we are in a pandemic 😷), you do not have to be in a relationship to take part in this holiday.
There is no rule that says you have to celebrate Valentine’s Day but if you would like to, these tips may help:
—Shift the focus and be your own secret admirer
Practice self-care, compassion, and self-love. Instead of focusing on what you may not have, reframe your mindset onto what you do have and treat yourself well.
—Reduce or eliminate love triggers
Today may not be the day to watch a movie with a romantic love story or listen to love songs. Rather, try a new genre or better yet plan something new that you can look forward to. Focus on your holistic growth by going on a hike, trying a new virtual workout, participating in a new activity, and/or tuning into YouTube for some virtual travel sights. In fact, research shows planning, watching, or re-living a past travel experience in your mind can elevate the feel good chemicals as if you were actually on the trip.
—Plan a Singles Zoom Date with Friends
Get together with others to play online games, watch a movie, cook a meal together, or just hang out.
—Shower someone else with care
Do you know of someone else who is single or recently lost a loved one? Sending a small but thoughtful gift could mean the world to another. Bonus, it may bring increased levels of happiness and connection to you also.
Valentine’s Day can be a joyful time if you are within a relationship but quite difficult if you find yourself alone. If you’re struggling with severe feelings of loneliness and inability to cope, it may be a good idea to reach out to a caring mental health professional. The global pandemic has brought with it a whole array of difficult and residual effects. We all need someone sometimes to help and support.
As we stand on the welcome mat of 2021 and prepare to enter its door, I find myself reminiscing. Who knew when my family arrived back in Cali in October 2019 that we were headed into a worldwide global pandemic that would cause massive societal shifts that have come to change the way we live.
2020 what a year! It is said, “When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge.” —Tuli Kupferberg
As I reflect, this is where my thoughts drift this morning and where I am able to take some solace amongst the continued uncertainties of this virus. Uncertainty and change is no stranger to me. The trick is to remember the blessings amongst the chaos and not get so caught up in it all that we forget to live. The virus has already stolen so much from us but what has it given us? How has it forced us to evolve and embrace what is important in life?
Vernon Law says it well, “Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterward.”
The surreal’ness of it all. Benjamin Disraeli said, “Change is inevitable. Change is constant.”
I have lived this life of change and unpredictability before. In response to quick turnaround military orders, I recall the night before my families big move to Italy at the end of 2018 wherein we packed up 4 kids and 3 dogs and moved across the ocean. The true challenge of this change, the absolute blessings from embracing and moving within it. It changed us in ways we could never have imagined—despite the difficulties of a massive move, uprooting our kids, adapting within an unknown culture— we persevered as we soaked up the history, the culture, the food experiences. While there were many blessings, there were also true challenges within this growth-producing experience. We gathered a true multitude of memories from our time abroad as we were given the opportunity to travel all over Europe. We drove the crazy no rules roads in Italy, dived into various cultures and languages, walked the streets of Rome, ventured to Pompeii, white water rafted in Austria, ate yummy pastries in Bologna and huge (size of your face) homemade pretzels in Germany, went to Shakespeare’s Globe in London, plus so much more. We took the fear of this move and travel alongside us and did not let it hold us back. Now that we are nestled back in Southern California, these experiences are ones we continue to treasure.
I find myself thinking, what if we had not embraced the challenge and converted it to opportunities? What if I had let fear hold me back?
After all, “The art of life lies in a constant readjustment to our surroundings.” —Kakuzō Okakura, The Book of Tea
When we remember the blessings amongst the chaos we get to live fully—even in the midst of a global pandemic.
When we build a campfire, does it burn eternally? Do we build it once and never tend to it again? No, of course not, similar to our devotion of creating a rich, full, and meaningful life, we have to tend to that campfire every single day to keep the flames burning. Life is similar, we have goals we are striving for, obstacles we face, and things we must put into action to keep our flames blazing. This may include stepping back and assessing the campfire several times a day to add new logs to the campfire and generate new sparks and/ or maintain the everlasting campfire (i.e., a rich, full, and meaningful life). Of course, within balance, once we have a strong campfire built, life is also about just being and enjoying the warmth of the campfire you have built, adoring the dance of the red, orange, and yellow flames, throwing a new log on occasionally to keep the spark alive, and remembering life is not a destination, it is a journey…sometimes a journey that takes many logs being added to our campfire. Live the intentional life, a life full of campfires.
I am a Therapist who travels between California and Europe. In my time here on Earth, I have been blessed to live all across the United States; making a home in almost every corner (coast to coast) and some in between. One day, as a Marriage and Family Therapist, as I sat and counseled my clients, as I had so often did, to live their life to the fullest, to seize the day (carpe diem), and to have no regrets, I found myself intrigued by my words in a new way. That night, on my drive home, I wondered was I taking my own advice? Had I lost site of living within my guiding principles? Sure I had a great life but was I living my life fully or stuck in my comfort zone?
So, when international travel came calling, I had to answer. I transferred my private practice to fully online and set out to live the life I wished so dearly for my clients (i.e., the discovery of living life to its fullest within each person’s desire). As someone who has suffered from and then learned to live with anxiety and depression this was still a bold move…however, I hear life begins at the end of your comfort zone, a quote by Neale Donald Walsch and I was not going to let fear and the unknown hold me back—I would bring any uncomfortable thoughts, feelings, and so forth alongside me on this journey as I am determined to live my life to the fullest no matter what. While we each have to choose our own guiding principles, for me, they are Travel Far- Eat Well- Live Long- Love Optimally.
Within it, I have come to the realization and embracement of no roots as I have found that I do not necessarily have roots in one certain physical place but wings that allow me to fly. If anything, my roots are found in the people I have met along the way that store space in my heart (like so many clients I have come to know and offer support), the experiences I have met through food, history, and culture along my travels, the richness of the life I have lived, and the ability and choice to love optimally.
While your ideal life may not match mine and send you jet setting across multiple oceans…I would love to walk alongside you and help you discover (or re-discover) what it means to live life fully. If you think online therapy may be the right fit for you, I welcome you to contact me and begin your own “journey.”
2020 Update: While I still have a love for traveling far and wide and continue to offer online Telemental Health Sessions, I now have re-established an in-person therapy practice within the state of California. To learn more click HERE
2022 Update: Back to Telehealth offering online therapy as my passport now includes extended travel in Asia ❤️ 🧳
2023 Update: I am now back in California and offering both in person and telehealth (virtual sessions) while loving life and appreciating the ability to walk alongside my clients within their adventures of life. 😊
You cannot always control the waves but You can learn to surf the storms of life.
ARE YOU STRIVING FOR MENTAL HEALTH WELLNESS?
Do you feel ramped up, on edge, worried, and misunderstood? Does your mind spiral & attack so that you feel lost in a perpetual vortex that is difficult to escape?
There could even be days when you struggle and all you want to do is retreat, avoid, and push away thoughts and feelings yet you manage to the tasks at hand— all while knowing you are not fully engaged.
Within this life, we may all come to feel stuck—perhaps through our spiral of suffering within anxiety, relationship difficulties, and/or other life transitions —and not know how to get back to or on your life path and purpose. What would it mean to you to get unstuck, break free, and begin living life to its fullest?!
The catalyst of change is possible through the alchemy of a transformational relationship found within therapy.
Learn to unlock your whole self and live a full, intentional, and meaningful life—even when challenges threaten to take you down and send you into a spiral of despair. I got you! All you have to do is decide to begin 🙂
MENTAL HEALTH WELLNESS
I am not your typical therapist. I am authentic and down to earth. I do real.
Therapy is my jam and passing on the secrets to a well lived life is my passion. I weave the beauty of balance within the integration of healing arts and science infused with compassion and empowerment.
SUPPORT, HUMANS I WILL
As an integrative therapist, I provide therapist for clients who are stuck in the vortex of spiraling 🌀 anxiety, stuck in the depths of depression 🕳️ and/or anyone looking to level ⬆️ within living their best life 😊 and would love 💛 a fellow traveler 🧳 to engage this path 🗺️ .
Are you a deep thinker, rebel-minded, out side the box thinking, lover of learning, knowledge absorber, have humor with a side of healthy sarcasm, not afraid to get a little woo-woo, authentic human being who is striving to live optimally?
Clients that I join on their journey’s include Deep Thinkers, Book Authors and Book Lovers alike, Witchy Individuals who love Magick, Tarot Lovers, Entrepreneurs, Creatives, Striving for a more Optimal Life Individuals, Tech and Syfy /Sci-Fi Nerds, Knowledge Absorbers, Marvel Fans, Comic Book Geeks, RPG & TTRPG Enthusiasts, Life Lovers, Empaths, Highly Sensitive People, Individuals within Military Families, Seekers of Self-Actualization, LGBTQIA+ Community, Neurodivergents, and other Authentic or aspiring Authentic Human Beings who are doing the best they can within this life.
WORDS TO LIVE BY
We’re all Stories, in the End. Just Make it a Good One, Eh? The Doctor
I am eager to meet you and excited to share in your journey!