How can therapy help?

Most of us experience challenging and stressful periods in our lives.  You may have experienced many instances in the past where you have successfully engaged internal and external resources to address a problem.  However, there are occasions when life circumstances become overwhelming, either because there is an unexpected major life stressor,  limited support and coping ability, or because daily demands have increased.  In addition, there may be past traumas that are impacting you in the present, causing issues like depression or anxiety.   Therapy can provide you with additional support as well as coping skills so that you can regain control of your symptoms and regain a satisfactory level of functioning.


Do i need therapy or coaching?

Whereas therapy is about restoring a person to an adequate level of functioning, coaching is about growth and development beyond a person's current capacity.  Think of therapy as repairing an injury so that you can perform typical activities of daily living, and think of coaching as developing your abilities and skills beyond your normal level of functioning so as to achieve peak performance.   

I support moms both with therapy and coaching.  As a therapist I help my clients work through a variety of issues which may or may not be related to motherhood.  As a coach I support working moms via my 3-month coaching program by offering skills and strategies that are specifically targeted toward growth as a mom and partner.    Here are some guidelines that may help you determine whether therapy or coaching is more appropriate for you.

You may benefit from therapy if you are: 

  • Experiencing symptoms of a mental health issues like depression or anxiety
  • Searching for healing related to painful experiences in your past or present
  • Looking for in-depth exploration of your thoughts, feelings, motivations, or personality
  • Currently going through a major life stressor such as the death of a loved one, divorce, job loss, a recent traumatic event, or moderate to severe marital discord
  • Looking for support but not sure if you're ready to change

You may consider coaching if you are:

  • Generally functioning well but looking to improve and grow in a particular area of your life (my coaching is focused on motherhood)
  • Not currently experiencing a major life stressor and not having significant symptoms of a diagnosable mental health disorder like depression and anxiety
  • Interested in learning skills and strategies for growth and personal development
  • Ready to invest in yourself to create powerful and long-lasting changes
  • Willing to complete self-help assignments designed to move toward specific goals

DO you take insurance?

Yes, I accept insurance for therapy clients (insurance companies do not reimburse for coaching services).  I am currently an in-network provider with Regence Blue Cross Blue Shield, Optum, and United Healthcare.  For all other insurers I could submit billing as an out-of-network provider.   With your permission, I would be happy to reach out to your insurance carrier regarding your out-of-network benefits so as to reduce your out-of-pocket costs.   In addition, keep in mind you may be able to use your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or funds from a Health Savings Account (HSA) to cover therapy. Below is a list of questions that I would be asking your insurance carrier.  

  • Does the insurance plan offer out-of-network mental health benefits?
  • How many mental health sessions per year does the insurance plan cover?
  • What is the yearly deductible? (amount you would have to pay before insurance provides coverage) How much of this yearly deductible has been met? 
  • How much is the co-pay? (a flat fee you pay for every visit and which does not apply toward your deductible)
  • How much is the co-insurance? (percentage you pay after your deductible is met)
  • How does a member obtain reimbursement for therapy with an out-of-network provider?
  • Is a mental health diagnosis required to provide coverage? 
  • Are there any diagnoses that are not covered under the member's plan? 

While using insurance benefits helps reduce the out-of-pocket costs associated with psychotherapy, many clients choose not to use their insurance for various reasons. Insurance companies require that a diagnosis be made, and this diagnosis becomes a part of a person's permanent health record, which for some people may become problematic when seeking health or life insurance in the future (i.e., they may be denied coverage or be charged higher premiums). Further, if you are seeking services on a preventative basis you may not actually meet criteria for a mental health diagnosis, which means that the insurance company would not cover sessions.  In addition, health insurance companies often require access to clients' progress notes, treatment plans, and other personal information in order to determine whether a particular treatment is "medically necessary" and should be covered.  They may also have restrictions on the types of diagnoses they will cover as well as the number and type of sessions they will pay for.  

Thus, using health insurance to help cover psychotherapy services has the advantage of making treatment less costly, but with some loss of control and privacy, while paying out-of-pocket increases the cost but affords you more privacy and freedom to work with your provider as you see fit.  Ultimately the choice is yours. 


WHEN IS PAYMENT DUE? WHAT FORMS OF PAYMENT DO YOU ACCEPT?

You can choose to pay at the time of scheduling using your credit card on my online booking software, or you may pay in person at the beginning of each session.  Once you are an established client you will have the option of enrolling in autopay using a credit card so that you are billed automatically for each session and you don't have to worry about carrying your checkbook or credit cards to each session. I accept cash, check, debit and credit cards, as well as Flexible Spending Accounts and Health Savings Accounts. 


WHAT IS YOUR CANCELLATION POLICY?

If you are unable to attend your session, I ask that you cancel as soon as possible, but no less than 48-hours in advance.  If your appointment is on a Monday I will need cancellation by noon on the previous Friday.  Canceling with less than 48-hour notice or not showing up for your appointment will result in your being billed for the missed session. Please note that insurance companies do not pay for missed sessions, so if you're using insurance you would be responsible for the no-show fee.   I will not charge you for the missed appointment if I am able to fill the appointment time with another client or if we are able to arrange for a phone session at the originally scheduled time.


HOW DO I GET STARTED?

You may schedule a 30-minute free phone consultation by clicking here, or you may choose to contact me by phone at (503) 847-9215, or emailing me at info@joyfulimperfectioncounseling.com to request a consult. If we decide to move forward, we can schedule the first appointment at that time.  If you are planning to use insurance I would be happy to contact your insurance company ahead of time to obtain information about your mental health coverage and will then discuss this with you. 

After the initial consultation, appointments may be scheduled, re-scheduled, and cancelled here.


WHAT IS IT LIKE TO WORK WITH YOU?

Following the 30-minute complimentary phone consultation, if we decide to proceed to scheduling the first appointment, I  will give you an access code to enter my the secure client portal through my website.  Through the portal you may complete the intake forms prior to your first appointment.  These forms will guide the intake process by providing me with information about you and your therapeutic needs, and by giving you a better idea about my therapeutic style.   Please bring your co-pay or co-insurance payment at the time of the appointment.typically start my work with a two-hour intake evaluation.  

During our first two sessions we will discuss your initial paperwork, history, therapy expectations, and treatment goals.  At the end of this evaluation period I will share with you my conclusions and treatment recommendations, and I will answer any questions you might have.  This will help us to decide whether I am the right therapist for you.  If so I would be happy to accept you as a client.  If we determine that we are not a good fit I would be happy to discuss with you other treatment options.

For therapy to be most successful and produce the desired results in the shortest possible time, it is often necessary to do work in-between sessions.  For example, before and after each session I will ask you to complete a mood inventory that asks you to rate both your negative emotions such as depression, worry, hopelessness, etc., as well as positive emotions such as optimism, satisfaction, and self-worth. This is a great way to quickly and easily assess changes in your emotional state from one session to the next, and it will give us a starting point of discussion for each session. Additionally it will allow us to see any changes in your mood that happened as a result of the interventions that we used in session.  

I will also ask that you evaluate me as your therapist after each session so that we can know whether we are connecting well and whether I am actually being helpful to you. This is valuable information to me, as I want to make sure I provide you with the highest quality therapeutic experience. 

I am also a big proponent of giving clients assignments in-between sessions.  These are intended to help you make progress in treatment, and to bring about your desired changes as quickly as possible, so that you can get back to living your life. Remember, success in therapy takes more than just talking!