Natasha is an experienced, interactive therapist who values collaboration in her work. Natasha does not think she knows people better than they know themselves, and works to help others identify and accomplish their goals. Natasha seeks to create a safe environment to help individuals feel comfortable and understood without judgment. She recognizes that change can be difficult and makes adaptations based on each individual's needs.
Natasha's approach is influenced by several types of therapeutic orientations. Essentially, she believes that people are separate from their problems and that everyone has the wisdom and strength needed to improve their well-being. She strives to help people access their internal resiliency and uses a variety of avenues to guide people in the direction of their choosing. Depending on the needs and preferences of the individual/s she is working with, Natasha uses a combination of insight-oriented talk therapy, mindfulness-based techniques, somatic experiences and ecotherapy in her work. For more information about specific approaches, please see below.
Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy techniques are used to support people in becoming more aware and accepting of their thoughts and feelings, and to help increase the ability to self-soothe. Mindfulness is the act of being present in the moment, and can help people to increase life satisfaction.
Natasha uses Hakomi therapy which is based on discovering unconscious beliefs through the study of current experiences involving the mind and body. This approach helps people to focus on feelings and sensations as opposed to cognitions, and often helps shift unwanted patterns in a way that isn't possible with only talk therapy. For more information about Hakomi therapy, please see the Hakomi Institute.
Natasha practices ecotherapy which is based on the belief that our connection to the natural world is extremely important to our mental health, and that our increasing disconnect from nature is contributing to mental health struggles including depression and anxiety. With interested clients, Natasha will meet outside in local parks/forests for periodic sessions to help people restore their relationships with other-than-human entities and to engage in mindfulness and other experiential practices in nature as part of the healing process. Natasha also uses nature practices and reflection while working with clients indoors.
Natasha draws from narrative therapy which involves the belief that people are strongly influenced by their environments and that shifting ones narrative can reduce blame and increase self-acceptance/compassion. Narrative therapy helps people create the space needed to focus on their strengths and successes and to see their problems in a less all-consuming way. For more information on narrative therapy, please see Alice Morgan's text, "What Is Narrative Therapy?" at the Dulwich Centre's website.
Areas of Focus
Areas of focus include parenting, relationships, anxiety, depression and life transitions. Natasha specializes in working with teenagers, young adults, families and women.
Natasha's interview about teen dating violence- http://www.kalw.org/post/initiative-educate-kids-healthy-relationships-arrives-oakland-middle-schools#.Uc9h-m63lwk.email
Please visit Natasha's blog at http://natashashapirolcsw.wordpress.com/