You Matter. Life can be challenging. Having a therapist that supports you along your journey can make a big difference.
Associate Clinical Social Worker in Tacoma, WA
Supervised by Kim Lubin, MSW, LCSW, LICSW
My experience with anxiety has been both professional and personal. Some sample approaches are breaking tasks down into smaller steps, using a fear ladder, a check-in before a session (in order to tailor the session so it's not overwhelming), setting expectations ahead of time, and mindfulness approaches.
I have supported Autistic clients with a wide range of needs; from those who use few words and AAC devices to those that speak fluently, with a variety of sensory struggles, to some that need few supports. My experience here stems from caregiving to Community Inclusion, Supported Employment, Specialized Habilitation, and assisting in classrooms.
I have extensive knowledge of trauma responses, the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous system/amygdala activation, calming triggers and returning to baseline, and distress tolerance. I use mindfulness, somatic approaches, CBT, DBT, and fear ladders when working with active trauma as well as post-trauma.
I have used CBT in a variety of ways and roles, but find it most useful for anxiety, depression, and trauma/PTSD when navigating distorted thinking. The way we think can cause more distress in our lives, so it's important to understand where our thinking patterns originate, how to identify a distortion, and how to reframe it. For some individuals, CBT can feel oppressive and dismissive, so in those cases, I lean toward DBT or other approaches.
As a social worker, this is the go-to approach I have learned and used throughout. Using person-centered approaches allows me to tailor various methodologies to best fit the individual. It also allows me to switch up my approach and use combined modalities that will be most beneficial for the individual. I have especially used person-centered approaches when supporting disAbled clients in order to assist in setting up individualized supports.
Somatic therapy is quite useful when working with trauma that stores in the body. Working with our thoughts and beliefs alone is only one aspect of healing from trauma. I have participated in several trauma first aid trainings from notable trauma experts like Peter A. Levine as well as training courses on the biology of trauma. Somatic approaches allow for the body to release stored trauma through movement like dance, tapping, trauma-sensitive yoga, and more.