Jody Friedman, LCSW
The psychotherapy I offer creates deep and lasting changes in a client’s self-esteem, creativity, relationships and their ability to enjoy and embrace life. The therapies I offer complement each other. As someone is gaining confidence, increased body awareness can strengthen and support this burgeoning growth. I also use Creative Cognitive Healing that enables the client to shift into positive and optimistic thinking.
A central theme in Psychoanalysis is linking past experiences to present issues. Helping the client understand the necessary changes they had to make in order to feel safe in a home that felt unsympathetic or hostile. An example would be a parent who diminished their child's strengths and gifts because of envy or competitiveness. Understanding a parent's dynamics can help a client see past criticisms in a new light while simultaneously processing/healing their trauma.
I use compassionate interpretation, empathic listening and sensitive questioning to help the client discover their psychological binds, protections and strengths. I respect their rhythm and psychology by highlighting only what they can process in the moment. My 8 years of training at The National Psychological Institute For Psychoanalysis and my dedication to my spiritual practice gives me a unique awareness of the client's mood and receptivity.
At times clients may feel embarrassed or frightened to expose themselves and building trust takes time. You may need to test me as we learn about one another. It is possible that some fears about the therapist refect other relationships, exploring this is an important way of releasing old behavior patterns. It is also part of my responsibility to understand and find ways to ease this process for you.
Gestalt Therapy is about wholeness, it helps unite the different parts of oneself that are repressed or split off and brings it into the present. The "empty chair technique" is a Gestalt method that can bring hidden feelings to the surface. The client imagines another person or aspect of themself in an empty chair. In this experience the client can become aware of important feelings about themselves or others that have been denied or blamed on someone else. These emotions are unconsciously controlling the clients behavior and feelings. As these feelings are recognized and understood it mitigates feeling victimized and gives back greater control, empowerment, energy and awareness.
Example: A woman feels deeply rejected because men stop calling her after a few dates. Using the “empty chair technique” she tells the man how afraid she is of being abandoned. She says “if you get to know me you'll reject me." Gradually she goes deeper and says, "getting close will just show how angry I am and then you won't love me, so leave me alone.......then I'll never be hurt!" At that moment she realized that unconsciously she was the one doing the rejecting (the men have been reacting to this). This awareness sparked a period of intense work and growth where her feelings became conscious. This allowed her to release old patterns that had maintained her aloneness. After this work she was able to have a very satisfying long-term relationship and eventually married.
Trauma can cause rigidity in the body cutting off important feelings and inner strength. The Mind/Body Integration helps you soften, strengthen and ground your body connecting you to your energy and life force. It also deepens the experience of the “Self" which supports you while you make the changes that evolve from your growth. In addition, the spiritual connection links you to what is also beyond the mental, it is what makes painters paint and singers sing it is the calling from your deepest being. We all need to find these connections, without it addictions and entrenched defense systems substitute, postponing and damaging the link to one’s deepest joy, empowerment and self-acceptance.
Mentoring & Coaching
The Coaching I offer is uniquely integrated with my therapeutic skills to help people release old patterns of doubt that limit their potential. This duel approach enables you to transform your self-image while using coaching concepts and guidance to liberate you to new levels of success and satisfaction. In our work together you will discover how to open to your creativity and new directions in your life, find the perseverance to see your ideas through to fruition. You will learn the important difference between perseverance and perfectionism. Become sensitive to your personal cycle of rest and activity, restoring yourself with new energy and clarity while deepening trust in your intuition. Learn to overcome the pain of failure and the negativity that can shut you down... you will be taught how to empower yourself as you move past these obstacles, empowering your focus from plan to action