page rutledgeWHY CHOOSE ME?

Because you have anxiety.

I know first hand what anxiety feels like. I have experienced chronic illness with a parent, being the child of an alcoholic, being the mother of a child on the spectrum, losing a business, creating several businesses, and changing careers in a changing economy, as well as tending to my 30+years-long marriage. And now the COVID19 pandemic!

Here’s a sample of the “What if’s?”

What if I go for this job interview and make an utter fool of myself? What if I bomb the presentation I have to make at work next week? What if my boss finds out I really don’t know what I’m doing? What if I have nothing to say to the person I’m dying to attract?What if I can’t make it out of the grocery store before another panic attack? What if I lose my lover or partner because I can’t please them?

These are the stories we tell ourselves. When we are anxious, our brains say these stories are cold, hard facts when they just masquerading as the truth. The energy panic creates will shoot you into the future, and pull you from the present moment, which leads to fight, flight or freeze.

I can help you manage that inner bully

I am a licensed therapist who spends a lot of time with the latest research on treating anxiety. Clients like my direct, compassionate (and sometimes irreverent) approach. I am not a believer in sitting around crying with clients, nor do I spend precious time digging incessantly in your past. When you work with me, we are looking for the way forward.

I see no point in going it alone when a little help will considerably shorten the time you spend struggling. Research verifies that talk therapy works. Humans need to communicate, and to feel heard and understood. We have the gift of language that helps us process our emotions and why they are present.

Here are the techniques I use to help you manage your anxiety

There are many ways to tackle anxiety, but it always has three components: physical, emotional and thoughts. These are some of the ways I help you learn to manage all three.

  • I teach you how to down-regulate your panic/anxiety
  • I skip the psychobabble, and teach you to question unhelpful thinking styles
  • I don’t dwell too much in your past, keeping you future-focused on better choices
  • I assign helpful outside-the-session experiments or homework (it’s really not a bad word!)

On to the professional credentials…

I hold two Masters Degrees, one in Public Health & Policy, and another in Clinical Social Work. I am licensed in North Carolina. I also hold Graduate Specialist Certification in Gerontology (the study of aging) and have undergone in-depth training with the Institute for Relational Intimacy. I am certified in Clinical Hypnosis, and have over 200 hours of additional training in this therapeutic mode. I am a contributor to the Star News Community Bloggers and have published a number of articles in the Star News, the NC National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Newsletter, and Cape Fear Living Magazine.