Frequently Asked Questions
Where is your office located?
I am centrally located in the Near West End of Richmond at 5101 Monument Avenue, Richmond, VA 23230. You may park in the outdoor or covered area. Upon entering the building, take the stairs or elevator the the 2nd Floor. Suite 200 is to your right as soon as you exit the elevator. Please come in the waiting area and I will come get you at the time or your appointment.
What should I expect during the consultation phone call?
What should I expect during the first session?
Initial sessions will focus on understanding you, your values, your strengths, your areas of concern. Please be aware that if you are intending to file for reimbursement through your insurance company, I must also establish a diagnosis. It’s completely normal to feel a little uneasy in the first few sessions of psychotherapy. We will review a few logistical items such as fees (payment is due in full at the beginning of each session), how to make or cancel an appointment, and confidentiality. We will then collaboratively develop a plan to help you get unstuck and to move forward in life.
How do fees and payments work?
I am an out-of-network provider. This means you must make payment at the time of session. *Check or cash is preferred but all major credit cards are accepted. You may choose to file for out-of-network reimbursement from your insurance company. The insurance company may pay for services or a percentage of services. We will cooperate with the insurance company in this process by writing any clinical reports they require but you will be responsible for finding out what is required. You may choose to investigate a company called Better that proposes to handle the administrative hassle of filing for out-of-network benefits on your behalf; I am not endorsing them, only providing information about the service.
You may choose not to use insurance and instead pay for services “out of pocket”. Clients who do this have an additional level of confidentiality and control over their own treatment because treatment decisions are made between the provider and the client without input from an insurance company.
What can I do if therapy isn't something I can do right now?
Entering into psychotherapy is a commitment of resources. While therapy has been clinically proven to facilitate positive changes in mood and relationships, there are things you can try without a mental health profession that can boost emotions.
Meditate. Take 5 minutes to watch your breath go in and out; download a meditation app that can guide you through a brief exercise each day, watch a youtube video of meditation and see if there are any that facilitate your being able to increase calm and help you feel present in your life.
Find Something to Look Forward to. Anticipating future rewards can increase mood in meaningful ways. Schedule a meaningful event on your calendar with friends or family and think about it to give your mood a boost.
Engage in a Conscious Act of Kindness. Intentional acts of service can improve mood and well-being. These acts do not need to be grand gestures, and can be small thoughtful ways to improve another person’s well being. Planning one act of kindness each day can also increase your own happiness.
Infuse Positivity Into Your Surroundings. Our environment can have a big impact on how we feel. Pay attention to your environment and evaluate ways that you can change it to positively affect how your feel. Post pictures or art that make you happy, go outside on a nice day, decrease or eliminate the negative or violent media you are consuming, exercise. Each of these changes has been proven to create positive mood shifts for some people.
Practice Gratitude. Gratitude is more than positive thinking, it is the practice of seeing the whole truth. When we feel bad, our brains tend to focus on the negative truths in our life. Practicing gratitude enable our brain to see what you have and what is working in your life. Intentionally practice thoughts that recognize both sides of the coin: “This isn’t going well. AND This is pretty great.” The good and bad can both be true at the same time.
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