August 20, 2023

Therapy Intensives/High Impact Sessions – Questions & Answers

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Call it what you’d like – therapy intensives, extended sessions, marathon sessions, high impact sessions ~ they are all the same thing; a longer stretch of time to work out what’s needing to be worked out.

If you’re like me, there are some projects or tasks that you just want to take on and get off your list in one swoop, while there are others that are more manageable with the slow and steady approach. Depending on what’s going on for you, that same thinking can be applied to tackling issues that have been niggling for a while. The Big Decision that’s been hanging over your head, the Regrettable Incident that hasn’t been fully processed, the subject area you’re ready to make a plan for and really address; these are some of the issues that are well suited for extended therapy sessions. 

I know this might sound like a new idea but it has been around for a while now. The difference now? First off, it’s not limited to just couples nor does it require, if you live in one of the states I’m licensed in, for you to travel away for a few days to do this. (I’m licensed in NY, ME, FL, VT and SC) You may want to take a break, travel to NY and just focus in on our work for a few days at a time but that would be completely up to you. I work with individuals, sibling sets, parent/child sets and other configurations of those wonderful people who make up the circle of people in your life. 

Let’s dive into the questions that are most frequently asked.

Can you be more specific about what can be covered in longer sessions?

Yes, and no. Sessions are completely dependent on what you want to work on; they aren’t packaged for general consumption. If you’re struggling with the sense that something has shifted in your intimate relationship, we can spend the time to uncover that as well as work out how to move forward. Or, if you’re having a hard time with wanting to stop drinking, and you’ve stopped but then start again, we can work on that. Perhaps you’re facing retirement and the realization that you and your partner don’t know how to spend more than 6 hours together without getting agitated and this is something that concerns you. Or, for more and more people, you’re looking at retirement and recognizing that you aren’t sure who you are outside of your professional persona and that scares you. The roles, expectations and hopes for how to care for an aging parent or parents is a very complex issue that some families want help with as the adult children seek to re-define their own roles within this maze of new realities. In our consult call we’ll discuss what you see as being your goals and we’ll take it from there. 

This really and truly is what you want it to be. 

I know what the problem is, I just have no idea how to even go about tackling it. How would these types of sessions help me?

We often know what’s going on – we know that when a house has red flames flashing out of the windows, that it’s on fire – but we frequently don’t know how to address the issue. It’s helpful to remember that firefighters, “put the wet stuff on the red stuff…” but if you aren’t a firefighter, that’s not going to get you too far. Saying, “I know I have some troubles with clear communication…” is a great start! Intensive sessions will give us time to really tease out where the hiccups are and then learn the skills to improve the areas you’re less confident in. 

It’s rare that we don’t know what the problem is and incredibly common to not be sure how to learn the skills necessary for making a change. Skills can be acquired, just as mindsets can be shifted and insights gained, as we allow ourselves to be more vulnerable about what’s going on for us. 

I’m not sure I could manage a full 3 – 4 hours, let alone an entire day or two of doing this. How do people do this?! 

Some of the magic of High Impact sessions is the extended amount of time; which I realize sounds really difficult. Here’s the inside scoop on that; it’s easier than it may sound. I am not saying the process is easy, but the time allows us to find a rhythm which works for you. We will take breaks, and flow into subject areas that allow you to see how the ‘dots’ all connect in a way that makes sense more quickly than many months of going over something again and again in weekly 45 minute sessions. 

There is a time and place for weekly sessions; I’m not knocking them. What I am saying is that in making the investment of time, you’ve set yourself up to look at old patterns, sticking points and obstacles in a new light, with new focus.

This is a tremendous financial and time investment; how will I know if it’s worth it? 

Yes, it is an investment. Weekly sessions spread out that reality over time but in the end, it’s basically the same thing. You can do a lot of work right up front or you can take it on in a larger chunk. And, like any personal investment, what you get out of it in both the long and short term, is completely determined by you. Put the work in and you’ll get not only the immediate results but also sustainable ones. Choose to walk away, not use the tools and skills we’ve started, and you’ll likely lose ground quickly. 

Will this be covered by my insurance?

Not likely. Insurance has no ‘code’ for such a session (and yes, that’s how reimbursements are decided.) 

How would I move forward if I wanted to get on the schedule for an Intensive?

It’s easy. You will book an initial consult call directly on my website or, of course, there is email or sending a text message. Here’s what we know about making a big jump that either starts us or moves along the change process; the forces which have kept us stick will continue to hold us back until we ‘short circuit’ the old patterns that previously held us back. The Nike slogan of, “Just Do It” applies here; a consult will get your questions answered and if we’re not a good fit, I promise to tell you that quickly. There is no point in wasting your time nor mine.

You didn’t mention the issue currently troubling me; can you tell me more about what areas you cover?

Here’s the short answer to that question; feelings are feelings. The subject area isn’t really all that different. You might think of it this way – adding a column of numbers up for a math test is really no different than doing so to balance a checkbook.

To give you the longer answer, my work in the field of addictions and recovery has given me a strong foundation in many, many other day to day hurtles we all face. Combined with my own experiences, I’ve got a long list of subject matter I feel comfortable talking about and helping you navigate. Here’s a quick overview for you of the areas I work in on a near daily basis: anxiety, grief & loss (related to the humans in our lives, the expectations that haven’t been met, struggles around fertility, the loss of a pregnancy/pregnancies, our changing roles within a family, the death of a loved one including a beloved pet, how chronic illness throws us into a state of mourning and grief), downsizing and making the decision to do so, significant legal crises, the ‘do I go or do I stay’ in a job/marriage/relationship, chronic physical limitations or health related challenges, separation from active duty military to the next phase of life, estrangement from family,  and the list goes on. I’ve worked with just about every career choice you can imagine to add to the backstory. Still waiting for an airline pilot to show up on my virtual doorstep however!

Want to know more? I’ve written about a variety of subjects and this will give you a good sense of who I am:
On trauma: https://thetattooedbuddha.com/2022/03/16/4-steps-to-acknowledging-and-moving-through-unresolved-trauma/

Communication skills: https://lisacurtislcsw.com/communication-skills-the-basics/

Ready to get started? Here’s how to connect with me:

My office cell where you can leave a VM at 2am or a text message: 914-329-5964

My secure email: lisacurtis445@gmail.com

To book a consult: https://calendly.com/lisacurtis445/consult

I hope to see you soon ~ until then I wish you the best. 

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