Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor
& Certified Meditation Teacher
I provide counseling for adults who are experiencing the following: grief and loss; feelings of guilt, shame and regret; depression; fear and anxiety; existential concerns; spiritual seeking; challenging life transitions; addictive behaviors; codependency; and self-doubt.
"For fast-acting relief, try slowing down." --Lily Tomlin
Challenging life circumstances are opportunities to slow down. Slowing down may feel impossible and frightening, and at the same time many of us sense that we are in desperate need of rest. What would we have to feel if we slowed down? What have we been running from? In the midst of life's ever-changing circumstances, we are capable of waking up out of the trance of distraction. We can learn to pause. Victor Frankl said, "Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom."
What has become clear to me is how much we suffer because we want life to be different in some way. We think that this moment, right here is not enough. We think it shouldn't be like this. Something must be missing. This doesn't feel right. Then we get lost searching for happiness in an imagined past or future. There is nothing wrong with planning or taking skillful action to improve our lives and the lives of others, but when we are reacting out of our habit energy and fears, there's a good chance we will continue to suffer.
From Danna Faulds, in her poem Allow: "The only safety lies in letting it all in –the wild and the weak; fear, fantasies, failures and success." Learning to be at peace begins as a practice of accepting life on life's terms, and I am here to be a supportive counselor for you along the way.
My counseling orientation is rooted in person-centered theory, but is tailored to meet the needs of each individual I work with. Ultimately, my purpose is to reflect your inherent goodness and wisdom. We often can't see our true nature because it is obscured by cloudy thinking. You have the answers within you, but you have to stop running from yourself. In my work I also draw upon existential and spiritual themes, my experience as a mindfulness meditation teacher, and a healthy dose of humor. I have shared below some of my favorite pointers to further describe my approach to counseling.
Pointers to Joe's Counseling Style
"The curious paradox is that when I accept myself just as I am, then I can change." --Carl Rogers
"Being human is not about being any one particular way; it is about being as life creates you—with your own particular strengths and weaknesses, gifts and challenges, quirks and oddities." --Kristin Neff
"There is nothing ultimately to cling to in this world. However, life is not to be rejected. It is here. And as long as it is here and we are here, we can make the best use of it." --Dipa Ma
"It's dangerous to be peace, because you have to stop fixing yourself, and maybe you're not perfected yet. The danger is that you will be as you are, not as you think you should be." --Gangaji
"If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own backyard; because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with." --Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz
"Meditation is a social and political act. Listening and not-doing are actions far more powerful than most of us have yet begun to realize." --Joan Tollifson
"Your vision will become clear when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks within, awakens." --Carl Jung
"There is a Presence that is unnameable which thought cannot touch. It is not your possession; it is what you are." --Adyashanti
"Happiness is simply the knowing of our own Being – the natural, effortless and innate condition of our Self, when it is no longer pulled into an imaginary past or projected into an imaginary future by resistance and seeking." --Rupert Spira