Here at Ascent Counseling and Psychotherapy (ACP), the foundation of our treatment is based on attachment theory and neurobiology. We find it essential to understand how your upbringing and how the upbringing of those who are close to you play into your current level of emotional distress. We are often programmed to repeat rather than to repair the problems that we have experienced in earlier relationships; we become neurologically wired to react to the signals that we pick up in our environments, whether they are logical or not.
At ACP, we are firm believers that change happens in relationship. In individual therapy, this means that regardless of the direction that we decide on for treatment, special attention will be placed on how we engage with each other and how our relationship reflects what happens for you in other social contexts, whether that be with your partner, your children, colleagues, or friends. The dynamics that occur outside the consulting room often have a way of finding their way into the therapeutic relationship, providing a wealth of information into one's patterns of interaction and ways of being. Sometimes these patterns are reflections of what our environments have expected of us or of how people have seen us. Sometimes they are a reflection of what the people closest to us have not recognized or seen in us or how the world has or has not received us.
At ACP we believe that healing begins when we become aware of our deeply engrained reactive patterns and develop an ability to simply observe those emotions as they arise in each moment. When we become aware of our reactivity and start to understand the historical reasons for the surges of emotion, we can begin to develop compassion for ourselves. It starts to be possible to accept whatever emotion is happening in the moment, without getting lost in it. In developing compassion for ourselves in these moments, a neurological shift occurs in our brains' wiring, opening up the possibility of responding, rather than reacting to the situation at hand.
A journey of a thousand miles starts with one step.