Brenda Elgin, M.A., MFT
Creating A Life Of Meaning
My approach to marriage counseling, individual therapy, and family therapy stays focused on finding solutions. While integrative in approach, using Solution-focused, Cognitive Behavioral, and Experiential therapies, the focus of therapy consists largely of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Mindfulness based therapies. So, “What does all that MEAN?” you ask. Well, these therapies center on creating a life of meaning. Through various methods of exploration we determine what brings meaning, a sense of purpose, and passion to your life, along with pin-pointing barriers to creating such a life. We then use mindfulness techniques to “soften” those barriers. Mindfulness is the ability to contact the present moment without resistance to uncomfortable or painful thoughts or feelings that “bully” you around about the situation. Often in these situations we react impulsively, trying to control the situation or struggling to get rid of or avoid the thoughts and feelings. Sound familiar? This behavior often actually amplifies the problem or can even create other problems.
So, instead of trying to eliminate or reduce the problems directly, Mindfulness invites us to actually turn toward the very thing we fear with an attitude of curiosity and openness (acceptance). That doesn’t mean we like the pain or agree with it, but we make space for it until it transitions all on its own. Like the acronym (ACT) Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is a very experiential, ACTion oriented form of therapy. Using a variety of interventions and exercises, including creation of visual symbols & metaphors using art materials or through writing, you learn how to actually obtain this attitude of curiosity and openness. Then, you make an assertive effort and willingness to commit to action in obtaining that life of meaning, despite some discomfort or pain, because IT MATTERS. Suppose you had a huge passion for climbing mountains and you have the opportunity to climb the most coveted climb of all the climbing community, your lifelong dream. But when you got to the base of the mountain, you discovered that there was a swamp surrounding it and you were going to have to wade through the swamp in order to make that goal a reality.
6200 E Canyon Rim Rd Anaheim, CA 92807