WHAT IS TALK THERAPY?
Talk therapy is exactly what it sounds like, therapy where you talk. Okay, that’s obviously the most simple explanation. Talk therapy is probably what you’ve seen time and time again on television - although you might have an idea of a woman throwing herself onto a couch in tears while a cold, distant therapist takes notes (or actually doodles) about what she’s saying. Well, I have good news - that is not what I do! My style is much more interactive, conversational, and laid back. I love to bring humor into the conversation when appropriate, and go deep when needed.
Here is what I emphasize to new clients: Therapy does not have to be an hour a week where you bawl your eyes out. Of course crying is welcome! Sometimes I may even shed a tear with you! We take it at your pace. When you’re, I’ll be there to challenge you - and when you’re not, I’m walking alongside you making sure you’re safe and comfortable.
Talk therapy can be many different things to many people - and I’m pretty flexible depending on what you’re looking for. Some people simply need support and someone to vent to. Others prefer to analyze what is going on, and explore uncomfortable emotions. Some like to create goals and find practical ways to achieve them. Like I say many times throughout my website, “one size does not fit all”! Let’s chat about what you’re looking for and see if we’re a good fit! In the mean time, check out my approach page to learn a bit more about my philosophy about therapy.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM A SESSION
During our first session, we’ll spend some time getting to know each other. I probably wont jump into asking you about your most painful memories, your biggest fears, or your most shameful thoughts. That would be terrifying. We’ll take it slow, and I’ll get a feel for the pace that feels comfortable! Throughout the process of therapy, you are in control. You have the power to say, “I am not ready to talk about that”. You are also welcome to give me feedback! “Hey, Mackenzi… that’s really not working for me.” Therapy sessions are a great place to practice social skills that are harder to use in the real world. Especially if you’re from Seattle and take the more passive aggressive route to conflict resolution ;)
Long story short, each session will be different, but the basic format is the following:
Mackenzi: “Hi, how was your week?”
You: “You know it was kind of [great, tough, terrible, amazing]”
Mackenzi: “Oh really? Do you want to talk a little bit about that today, or we can pick up where we left off last week. Your choice.”
You: “I think I’m okay with what happened this week, let’s get back into what we were focusing on.”
You: “Yeah, I think I want to process a little more about my week.”
Mackenzi: “Great, let’s jump in…”
And that’s what you can expect! Again, you are in control. As we continue having sessions together, we’ll both get into a pretty good flow. But be patient, because it can take time.
HOW LONG DOES THERAPY TAKE?
A typical session is 50 minutes once a week, every week until you’re feeling stable and equipped to take a break. Therapy is not a quick fix… You know why? Because nothing is! “There is no shortcut to being our best selves.” I know it seems like a big investment - and that is because it is. It takes time and money to work on improving your mental health. We often ignore our mental health until we feel like we’re barely surviving. Why the heck do we do this?!?! We would never do this if we had a broken leg, or a gaping wound. Bottom line, you’re worth investing in. Your mental health effects absolutely everything you do.
AVAILABLE ONLINE & IN PERSON
Good news! Talk therapy is available both online and in person. You’re welcome to come to my office in Ballard, Seattle to do in person therapy, or we can hold the session on a private video platform from the comfort of your own home or office. You may hear many people say that in person therapy is much more effective. That is probably true for some types of therapies. Online therapy has been proven to be very effective as well! Many people report feeling safer and more open when they have the ability to have a session in their own space. At the end of the day, it’s up to you and your preferences.