MY CREATIVE COUNSELING APPROACH
Creative Counseling & Consulting
Lisa Conn Akoni, MA, MFT
Santa Barbara Area
Marriage & Family Therapist
WHAT I BELIEVE
I believe true happiness, change & growth require taking risks...having the courage to be our genuine self in front of others...even when we are afraid or uncomfortable.
WHY IS IT SO HARD?
Genuineness requires us to be vulnerable which can be quite uncomfortable. We are taught early on to hide our true selves from others so we won't get hurt, judged, ridiculed, rejected, experience failure etc.
Over time and after years of covering up, suppressing, pleasing others, being paralyzed by the fear of rejection & failure, or denying who we are and what we want, we forget who we really are and get lost...believe me, I've been there! This is why I developed my innovative creative counseling approach; which is uniquely tailored to each persons needs & strengths.
Vulnerability is not weakness...it is the vital component in human strength. It is actually what makes us resilient and allows us to truly be seen, connect with others, feel loved, and know our worth!
MY CREATIVE COUNSELING STYLE
I am open-minded, straightforward & genuine...so no jargon or surprises in our counseling sessions. Building a candid non-judgmental relationship with your therapist is vital & therapy should be as transparent as possible. My creative counseling style is a compassionate, collaborative temporary partnership vs a long term "patient/therapist" process. You are the pilot flying your plane...I am simply the control tower helping you reach your desired destination with the least amount of obstacles as possible.
YOU CAN'T CHANGE YOUR PAST...BUT YOU CAN CHANGE THE WAY YOU THINK ABOUT IT!
My creative counseling approach utilizes a non-traditional research based counseling model, where we will focus mostly on the "HERE & NOW", exploring how your perception of the past influences your present & future. Your past does not have to define you or doom your future. In short, the idea is to reduce dwelling on or trying to change your past or worrying about your future so you can work on the things in therapy that you actually have control over in the moment.
We will look at thoughts, experiences, and beliefs which may be holding you back and create a new more accurate narrative...a narrative that is true to you NOW, not your past. It is not your fault how others may have harmed you...and I believe you can heal from whatever adversity you have experienced. Through my creative counseling approach we can work together to create that fulfilled and purposeful life you have always wanted!
WHO I AM
"I cannot inspire in others what I am not willing to do myself!"
As a self-proclaimed optimistic-realist and forever nonconformist, I take a somewhat nontraditional approach to life and my therapy approach. Transparency, direct communication, vulnerability, and genuineness are at the core of what I aspire to live by, both personally and in my creative counseling style.
Easy enough concepts to understand...not always so easy to follow. Some days I walk effortlessly in these and other days I do not. Yes...even therapists stumble through life just like everyone else and I am no exception. I do however "practice what I preach", and practicing these concepts have made my life easier, more fulfilled, balanced, more connected, resilient, happier etc...all that good stuff.
CREATIVE COUNSELING CAN HELP
Therapy can be a very effective tool...especially when you find a good fit with your counselor and you are motivated to change!
Whether you are struggling with:
GRIEF or LOSS
It is important that you feel comfortable enough to be your "genuine self" with me. Although I am non-judgmental, empathetic, open-minded, and provide a "safe space" in our counseling sessions...my candid, transparent, and down-to-earth creative counseling style may not be for everyone. For this reason I focus on making sure we are a good fit before moving forward with any in depth counseling and offer a free 15 minute consultation.