Emily Preston, MA, LMHC

Psychotherapy and Expressive Arts Therapy

Therapy Process

Every individual is unique and has a different life story and series of experiences. Because of this, I will work with you taking into consideration your own personal history. Our work together is a collaborative and creative process. I view our sessions through the lens of my training in psychodynamic, relational and humanistic theories, internal family systems therapy and expressive arts therapy. I have found an integration of these theories/therapies to be quite effective for people.

Psychodynamic theory takes into consideration the importance of your unconscious mind and the influence of your earliest developmental relationships on your current experience. One of the goals is to help you identify current feelings, and trace these feelings to historical experiences, which can greatly inform how and why you feel and act in the present. By growing insight about the formerly unknown, you may find a new sense of choice in your life, as well as relief on both personal and relational levels.

The lens of humanistic theory means that I see you as a unique individual with constant potential. The potential for self-growth can be witnessed at any given point in life, even the most difficult and challenging times in our lives.

From a relational perspective, I help you to see interpersonal patterns in your life. Relational-informed psychotherapy is also an opportunity to identify how some of these same patterns may be played out within the client-therapist relationship. Self-disclosure and processing of these feelings within the therapeutic alliance can be exponentially healing in your interpersonal relationships.

Expressive Arts Therapies are the use of art, movement, role play or prose/poetry to help express your feelings with the healing quality of creativity. This method is process-oriented rather than product-oriented. It is very useful to generate new insights about yourself, and to get a more holistic view of your experience, as sometimes it cannot be captured by words alone.

Finally, Internal Family Systems Therapy (IFS) is the belief that we are all whole and contain self energy (when we feel clear, curious, confident, creative, calm, courageous, compassionate in our lives). It is a systems-oriented therapy, which means that different "parts" of yourself interact and can sometimes be at odds with other parts, creating internal tension, and separating you from your own self energy. IFS helps you to learn about and interact with these different internal parts, identify and relate to the stories and needs of the parts, and to release and heal emotional burdens that certain parts of you may have been holding.


What to Expect

Upon our first meeting, we will work together to understand some of the initial reasons that you are seeking therapy. Over time, we can note the evolution of your progress, and how patterns and coping may be shifting.

Your role is to commit to the therapy (weekly is advised) and invest in your own process. My role is to provide a safe and trusting environment in order to support you, to offer interventions that I feel would help you get to the roots of what arises, and to reflect back to you what I am hearing and seeing.

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