Strengths & Values
In so far as therapy is a vulnerable and personal endeavor, and not all therapists are right for all clients, we seek to be authentic in our work with others. Building an effective therapeutic alliance involves developing a sense of trust and rapport between clinician and client. A therapist’s ability to be honest and consistently authentic contributes greatly to this process of rapport building. Carl Rogers called this trait “congruence”, and he identified it as one of the most important attributes a therapist can possess.
The ability to enter into and understand another’s experience is the foundation of all effective therapeutic process. Empathy is a therapist’s primary instrument. We clarify and nuance complex emotional experience with this tool. We also use it to inform and tune even the most basic of behavioral interventions. As clinicians, it is imperative that we understand and are accurately attuned to our client’s experience. This is always the first goal of every therapeutic hour.
Understanding and Integrating Affect:
From the fourth grader struggling to manage his impulsivity and boredom, to the forty year old who can’t understand why she feels so anxious and depleted, most of our “problems in living” have their roots in our inability to regulate and/or integrate affective experience. Our emotions are like a compass designed to help us navigate the world. One of our strengths here at Alcorn & Allison is helping people attend to, make sense out of, and utilize their emotions.
Most couples enter a therapist’s office when they feel their relationship is approaching or has reached a point of crisis. Communication tends to get stuck in a painful cycle and people who once felt close struggle to connect. Our goal as therapists is to help people evaluate their relational barriers clearly, build uppon their strengths, and enhance their ability to communicate effectively. The process of helping people break disruptive patterns and find ways of reconnecting is incredibly gratifying work.
Children, Adolescents, and Their Families:
We feel fortunate to have had so many opportunities to join with families as they help their children cope with adversity. Nothing we do feels more important. The pace and pitfalls of daily life create tremendous obstacles for kids and their parents. Their ability to stay connected to one another is frequently tested. We have tried to create a place where every member of a family feels safe to look at the obstacles confronting them and empowered to hold on to the connections they value most.
Psychotherapy and Spirituality:
Having delved deeply into the integration of psychotherapy and religion, we are uniquely suited to help clients who wish to explore their faith in the process of therapy. Our spiritual narratives are Christian. As therapists, we draw on our own narratives in an effort to empathically understand how our client’s spirituality impacts and informs their struggles. However, here at Alcorn & Allison, matters of faith are explored at the client’s initiation and without the imposition of our values or beliefs. While mindful of our own experience, we seek at all times to keep our client’s narrative front and center.