Greetings and a warm welcome to you. I’m so glad you stopped by! You’ve found a community of like-minded people who are open to discovering that, in any moment, it’s possible to be happy and free.
Have the traditional methods of self-help not actually helped you—like me? Then there’s a spark in you that just knows the happiness you seek is already here. You don’t need to wait for it. You won’t find it in people and situations in the world. And it won’t appear by improving your life story. It’s the end of self-help when we know there’s no incomplete, damaged self that needs help.
How do you make that discovery? By making a U-turn with your attention and inquiring into your in-the-moment direct experience. And this is what you discover. When we believe our thoughts, we’re resigned to feeling deficient, dissatisfied, and desirous of more. And when we avoid our feelings, we distract ourselves with unsatisfying, compulsive behaviors. This is the source of our unhappiness: resisting the truth of things as they actually are.
Expanding our attention beyond the mind and emotions to the whole of reality, we discover that there’s an aware, peaceful, and loving presence right here, at the heart of every experience we’ve ever had. Where has this presence been? Glued to the content of our unhappy thoughts and feelings. Placing our attention on presence itself reveals the most amazing discovery: a discovery that completely changes our relationship to these thoughts and feelings. They lose their power to impact us. We are finally free of their torment, available to fully live this ordinary, extraordinary, precious experience of life.
This fresh way of being shakes up everything—every conditioned habit, every way we define ourselves, everything we take for granted. Such a revolutionary upheaval of our familiar way of being requires guidance, reminders, and practice, which is what this site is about. With blinders cast away, we study stories, judgments, emotions, fears, needs, and desires. And we discover that the loving, peaceful, all-encompassing presence is right here, the fundamental reality of all these experiences.
Eventually, we realize that we’re not the limited and broken self who we’ve learned to be. We know that this fundamental reality is who we are and that it resists nothing. We don’t need to remember tedious prescriptions to be grateful, think positively, or love ourselves. These take so much effort!
Here are some signature posts to get you started:
Please note that the posts on this blog are for informational purposes only and are not intended to offer psychotherapy or be a substitute for professional services.
For many years, I searched for an end to suffering. I put together a functional life, but it was continually plagued by anxiety, confusion, and relationship troubles. I tried the conventional route of psychotherapy—fifteen years of it—but trying to find a new perspective on stories from the past failed to bring me the peace I was looking for. Same with my training as a clinical psychologist.
I didn’t want to just feel better. When I read in Buddhist teachings that enduring peace was possible, somehow I believed it at the core of my being. I didn’t know how to find this peace, but something in me said, “Yes!” I wanted to consciously know what I somehow already knew to be true.
The search took me to meditation retreats, many spiritual books, and the most lovely and helpful teachers. I began to understand that I was in resistance to life. I realized I was living a mind-created, mind-directed construction of reality, consumed in beliefs about how things should be. There was a constant level of discontent because everything—people, situations, myself—was judged to be not good enough. And I took my feelings to be real and important. No wonder I wasn’t happy.
As the confusion subsided, I made the most wonderful discovery: I am not defined by these limiting thoughts and unsatisfying feelings. The happiness I had been searching for was here all along. I had simply overlooked it! It’s the aware presence at the heart of every thought and feeling. Pure being that just is—everywhere, endlessly. It’s always at peace, no matter what happens. And resting here, I am home.
I absolutely know that suffering is optional, and I’m delighted to pass this possibility along to you.
By training, I’m a licensed Ph.D. psychologist with over 20 years of experience offering psychotherapy. My work as a therapist invites people to return to their essential wholeness, to shed false identities and realize the truth of who they are. Problems are seen as opportunities; the illusion of the separate self as a doorway to enduring happiness. Stories are seen through and emotions met with the deepest acceptance. I work with people individually and hold monthly group meetings.
I received my B.A. from Carnegie-Mellon University and my Ph.D. from Temple University. I completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Florida and a clinical internship at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Palo Alto, CA. I have special expertise working with older adults and their families, bringing clear seeing and compassion to the transitions of aging, death, and dying. As a member of the clinical faculty at University of California, San Francisco, I helped physicians develop communication skills and learn to address psychosocial issues with their patients. I’ve authored numerous published articles on coping with stress and chronic medical illness. And I have consulted with staff of assisted living and skilled nursing facilities about aging, dementia, and caregiving and given presentations to the community at large on these topics.