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Questions

Here are a few common questions I hear often in my meet and greets.

Please email me if you have questions or you can schedule a meet and greet session, which is about 15 minutes for you to ask any questions.  You can schedule this meet/greet or sessions at the book an appointment button.

Do you take Insurance

I accept United Health Care,  Blue Cross Blue Shields, Aetna, Health care highway, Cigna and Healthchoice.  Insurance covers individual therapy and usually also couples enrichment.  I have an insurance page for more information.  After a possible deductible, the price is usually between $20-60 co-pay. 

2

I want to work on core issues, do you offer that?

 Yes, I am well-versed in several modalities in the field of psychology. What the core issues would be, varies between each person. I have a strong working knowledge of family-of-origin therapy, attachment and making connections from the past to the present time. 

3

I have anxiety how do you treat it?

In addressing anxiety, I take a mind-body-relationship perspective. Anxiety is heavily maintained by the state of your body.  If your body is not well nourished, exhausted by lack of sleep, chronic stress,  overworked etc (sounds like new parents!)...along with other issues related to your present and past, it can really impact one's ability to regulate anxiety. Addressing anxiety, therefore, it is helpful to understand how to bring yourself out of flight/fright state which is information about how your nervous system impacts your mental state. I can teach you ways to regulate the nervous system and mindfulness techniques to help further address the body's state of overdrive.  Of course lifestyle, and your relationships with yourself and others also impact anxiety.  Varies by each person how anxiety is approached on the other levels.

4

In past therapies I felt we just talked, what do you do?

I do "teach" and coach skills related to how your mind and body react to stress and what to do about it - so I do teach and talk a lot in some sessions. I also offer a structured "class" though is not really a class with lots of people gathered as a group, its still individual sessions, but I do have a lot of knowledge to impart so I suggest taking my structured sessions if you feel you are in a place to learn and apply new information.

 

I also ask lots of insightful questions and questions that require action. Questions allow you to do your own insightful thinking. My approach is forward-moving vs. merely reflective listening.  Creating any change first requires an open mind, next conscious awareness, conscious choice, self-compassion and then consistency and loving persistence - lastly PATIENCE. :-)

Though in my traditional counseling sessions, I can if interested, teach and together we can set weekly goals - you pick what's best for you as your goal, I can suggest a special type of guided meditation to practice, maybe regulation skills to practice that we discussed in our session and my favorite is teaching you how to listen to your own intuition (self heal yourself)  so I give you practices to apply throughout your week.  

But.....

I have some clients that just want to talk about their thoughts, feelings and experiences with absolutely no teaching, questions and nothing to practice on during the week and of course, that's perfectly wonderful. Sometimes its just refreshing to talk to someone who can hold space for your thoughts, insights and feelings in a safe and empathic way.  I have very existential, spiritual and philosophically minded clients and our conversations are about the state of the world today and their own self-observations as its relates to deep concepts of what it means to be human (to them!)  - which can be part of deeper core work. 

5 What populations do you work with?
I offer psychoeducational sessions for enrichment couples counseling, couples work for new parents, early childhood support as attachment work,   anxiety management classes, support for foster care parents, I counsel other counselors, health counseling for emotional eating, health coaching for adopting a healthy lifestyle, and general counseling for a variety of mental health issues. 
I am inclusive and affirming. I am an alley for the LGBTQ community. 
6. Do you offer couples counseling?
Yes and no.  I offer more of a psychoeducational approach vs. counseling in the beginning.   The psychoeducational approach teaches you important relationship skills that if applied from the start can possibly prevent deeper-seated contempt that can slowly seep into a relationship over time and also heal current interactions. 
 
It still requires conscious effort (meaning learning the skills is not enough) to be fully authentic and present in relationships, but having practical ideas, skills and new information to practice is a powerful step. I personally found it very helpful in my own relationship.  The education approach is structured with objectives and lessons each session.
 
So, maybe you have a motivated partner that is not ready for "therapy" but is open to a less intimidating approach of educational-themed sessions.  If interested, couples can continue to address other issues or concerns after the class has ended. 
7.  How do you know if a counselor is a good fit?
That is always a good question. I know many times you just have to work with the counselor a few times to find out, if it isn't a good fit a counselor should encourage you to find someone else that is a better fit for you.  A good fit is a blend of their specialty, their methods, and does their personality fits with yours - find that vibe.
Just to give you an idea of my interactions, I have a flexible mindset, intuitive, and approachable  (maybe use the word easy going), I do have a healthy sense of humor to be honest, but I take your feelings very seriously and hold space for intense emotions, I am open-minded and work hard on being inclusive (I'm always learning). I believe coaching in the moment is very helpful, so we can practice a skill or explore a feeling in the present moment.  
-----Couples work can be intense, so I do introduce ways to respectfully lightened the energy so our nervous systems are not overflooded because when we're flooded there is little ability to have flexible thinking in the moment and defensiveness gets really high (where couples get stuck).  The ability to lighten the energy is really a habit that takes practice and it can help navigate interactions in a more healthy way.  It should be stated, we do not use humor to avoid feelings or use it to humiliate each other! 
 
The ability to even lighten the energy towards yourself in a compassionate manner is very healing.  Relating to yourself in this way invites a more flexible mindset and being open to exploring all aspects of yourself.  But, taking ourselves less seriously is actually not that easy! Its not easy because its heavily influenced by our society, personality, and family of origin and over time it has become very engrained in our habits, beliefs, neurology and behaviors that is automatic or unconscious.    So....The idea of a "sense of humor" has a therapeutic intention. 
 
I have a teaching aspect to my method and believe life is about the questions we ask...    but it's very important to not be pushy -  meaning, I meet you where you are at - I do not make you talk about issues (past or present) that you do not want to talk about! Its important for your mental health that you address the issues you want to address.  I am not going to tell you what to do, how to make decisions or what you need to think about.  I do ask questions for you to think about a concept related to your issue but I respect your boundary regarding what you want to talk about.  I want you to tell me if we start on a path that you are not ready to talk about....you just say I'm not ready to talk about that yet and we will redirect immediately. Please always be honest with me, I want to listen. I want my clients to feel safe while also challenging themselves only in a way that fosters their positive growth.  My overall goal is to help you listen to your intuition.
8. How many sessions will I need?
This will vary depending on the client. On average I usually see clients weekly or every other week for  6-8 months. It is important to be consistent in attending sessions for the best outcome. Then it is common to see clients monthly and then as needed.   Many times, I will see a client again maybe 2 years later due to life challenges.  Especially with couples, its common to see them for about 6-9 months and then again during transitions. Again, let's talk about this in our sessions, we can check in to make sure we are addressing your goals and needs. 

Get in Touch

To schedule a meet and greet you can do that online by going to my book an appointment button.  You can also schedule a full session by going to the same button. BUT all couples- please first schedule a meet and greet. You can also email me at info@christinaspinler.com 

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