PASTORAL COUNSELING CARE WORK
Pastoral Counselors, as clinical mental health professionals, serve clients with or without religious affiliation by integrating spiritual beliefs and practices with the counseling process.
Whether someone is in crisis or looking for personal development, a pastoral counselor can provide the guidance, skill, relationship, and information needed to promote psychological and spiritual growth and wholeness.
Pastoral counseling serves individuals, couples, families, and community systems in an effort to foster healing, renewal, reconciliation, and transformation.
MINDFULNESS AND SELF COMPASSION WORK
"Self-compassion is extending compassion to one's self in instances of perceived inadequacy, failure, or general suffering. Kristin Neff has defined self-compassion as being composed of three main components – self-kindness, common humanity, and mindfulness.
Self-kindness: Self-compassion entails being warm towards oneself when encountering pain and personal shortcomings, rather than ignoring them or hurting oneself with self-criticism.
Common humanity: Self-compassion also involves recognizing that suffering and personal failure is part of the shared human experience.
Mindfulness: Self-compassion requires taking a balanced approach to one's negative emotions so that feelings are neither suppressed nor exaggerated. Negative thoughts and emotions are observed with openness so that they are in mindful awareness. Mindfulness is a non-judgmental, receptive mind state in which individuals observe their thoughts and feelings as they are, without trying to suppress or deny them. Conversely, mindfulness requires that one not be "over-identified" with mental or emotional phenomena, so that one suffers aversive reactions. This latter type of response involves narrowly focusing."
TRAUMA AND GRIEF WORK
Everyone experiences and expresses grief in their way, often shaped by how their culture honors the process or not. It is not uncommon for a person to withdraw from their friends and family and feel helpless; some might be angry and want to take action.
One can expect a wide range of emotion and behavior associated with grief. In all places and cultures, the grieving person benefits from the support of others. Where such support is lacking, counseling may provide an avenue for healthy resolution. Similarly, where the process of grieving is interrupted for example, by simultaneously having to deal with practical issues of survival or by being the strong one and holding a family together, it can remain unresolved and later resurface as an issue for counseling.
Grief help becomes necessary when a person is disabled by their grief, overwhelmed by a loss to the extent that their standard coping processes are disabled or shut down. Grief work facilitates the expression of emotion and thought about the loss, including sadness, anxiety, anger, loneliness, guilt, relief, isolation, confusion, or numbness.
Trauma work to help people overcome navigate trauma. A traumatic event is defined as one in which you perceive a threat to your life, bodily integrity, or sanity. The other component of the definition is your reaction to the event or situation. Trauma happens when your ability to cope is completely overwhelmed.
The most crucial goals of trauma work are:
To face the reality of the past event without getting stuck in it
To reduce or eliminate trauma symptoms
To work towards shifting focus from the past to the present
To improve daily functioning
To reclaim your personal power
To overcome addiction behaviors associated with traumatic stress
To gain skills that prevent relapse
INNER HEALING AND DELIVERANCE WORK
Inner healing and deliverance pick up where basic Christian counseling leaves off. In a sense, we go below ground to get at the root issues causing spiritual problems (sins) or emotional pain (wounds). Where basic discipleship is about pruning away the bad fruit that shows up on your spiritual tree in present moments, Inner healing goes after the past issues where deeply buried roots feed the rotten fruit on the surface. There are many inner healing and deliverance models that I use in my practice including Theophostic and Sozo. I have also spent significant amounts of time working overseas working on inner healing and deliverance.
HEALING OF CHURCH WOUNDS WORK
Manipulation, betrayal, abuse of power, other kinds of emotional and spiritual manipulation, control, character assassination, detraction, you name it. These are the kinds of wounds we may experience in a church community, unfortunately. I help you walk through these wounds by helping you separate between our wounds and our relationship with God and others.