As we begin our work together, my goal is to help you feel at ease. I offer you a safe, nonjudgmental space. We’re all human and we get stuck at times, but there is nothing actually flawed or “wrong” with you. We all face challenges that we didn’t choose or create, but we must deal with them anyway. We encounter hardships, make mistakes, and have regrets, and we’re almost always doing the very best we can. It’s normal to need help from time to time as we seek to be our best selves and have satisfying relationships.
It’s not a weakness to need connection and support; our brains are actually wired with the need for love and belonging. I am here to come alongside you, whether you come alone or with your partner, to provide the understanding, support, fresh perspective, and skills you may need in whatever you’re going through. You may feel alone right now, but I’m here for you as your therapist to help you heal, and to build or repair the connection(s) you need in your life.
When going through a tough time, we get thrown off and may question our judgment or even our own sanity. I believe that all feelings make sense in context—that is, given your perspective in your situation, inside your body, having lived your life. When you’re ready, I want to hear the story of your unique path in your life journey. If necessary, we may revisit a past chapter or page of your story with the purpose of helping you heal and freeing you to grow and move on.
I can help you get unstuck, discover how to be your best self, and form and maintain healthy relationships. Yes, I can teach you new skills so you can find relief, get through your day, and improve your relationships. But sometimes it’s not new skills that you need, but a new way of seeing that changes everything.
I take a holistic approach. Instead of focusing only on reducing symptoms or analyzing thoughts and feelings—which many of us do quite well—I will guide you to an increased awareness of your whole self—body, mind, and spirit. How we listen to and take care of our bodies is connected to how we think and the emotions we feel. We are all spiritual beings—our lives have meaning and purpose when we feel connected with one another, our inner selves, and our external world. When we’re more aware of our whole selves, we can notice and then give each aspect of ourselves the attention it needs, which is what holistic therapy is all about.
If a particular faith or religious tradition is important to you, I will support you in drawing from the strength it provides to promote emotional healing and change in your life. Each of us deserves to experience peace, joy, love, and a sense of meaning and purpose.
What do sessions look like?
I will ask you to complete an intake form before we meet, and we will go over it together. We will talk about your therapy goals, and if you are not sure of what those are, that is completely okay. I will guide you through the conversation, and what is most important to you will become clear. There is no rush in the process, although if you have a goal you want to meet in a particular time frame, I will do my best to keep our time focused accordingly. We go at the pace comfortable to you.
At the end of the first or second session, I will share with you my understanding of what has brought you to therapy, what I hear are your goals, and how I believe I can help. If for some reason I don’t think I am the best person to help you reach your goals, I will tell you, and I will help you find a counselor who is better suited for your needs.
I tailor your therapy to fit your individual needs, personality, goals, and situation. I do not believe in assigning “homework” between sessions when it will only increase your stress. I might ask you to pay attention to certain things between sessions, or to notice what you did or didn’t do and how that impacted you. Or, we might agree that looking at a particular book, workbook, or handout outside of sessions would increase the effectiveness of your therapy and help you reach your goals.
With some clients, I offer a mindfulness exercise at the beginning, middle, or end of a session. This is always optional—when I ask you a question, you are never obligated to do an activity, or share anything you aren’t comfortable with. I welcome your honest feedback.
The most important thing for you to bring to therapy is yourself. If you’re curious whether I’m the right therapist for you, I invite you to schedule a free 15-minute phone consultation. Feel free to send me a message or call me at 571-306-2334.
Connie Edens is a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) in the state of Virginia. She has more than 20 years of experience providing therapy to individuals, groups, and couples, both in community mental health and private practice settings. Her numerous professional trainings have included treatment of anxiety, depression, trauma, and relationships, among other areas. She has extensive training in emotionally focused therapy (EFT) for couples. Her work with individuals often draws from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), spirituality, and mindfulness practices. She offers therapy for individuals and couples using various evidence-based clinical practices and therapy models.