I’ve been enjoying Brene Brown’s new book Dare to Lead. 2019 is my year of intentional leadership; I was attracted to the title. The resource is complete with an online workbook to self-assess my skills. Honestly, I have often resisted and dismissed the idea of being a leader because I have seen too many poor examples. I associated the concept of “leadership” with inept systems and/or bad faith actors. I previously held this worldview so close I failed to fully see and appreciate many positive examples of leadership in my life. To be clear, I still see leadership crises in SOME situations. But now, I’m willing to make leadership contributions and I’m more prepared with the tools in Dare to Lead.
This Spring, I am supervising 4 graduate counseling students in their Practicum field experience. Basically, I’ll be helping new counselors evaluate their work and design treatment plans. To prepare, I am taking two courses:
“Clinical Supervision: Mastering the 4 Stages of Development” with Robert Taibbi, LCSW
“Using Deliberate Practice to Enhance Clinical Skill Development” with Tony Rousmaniere, PsyD
I’m looking forward to this collaboration with other clinicians. It’s always good to continuously re-evaluate my own skills and assumptions. I also decided that 2019 is my year of intentional leadership.
In January and February, I am getting EMDR training. EMDR is a tool for increased resolution of trauma, including sexual trauma, and sleep disturbance. Here is a 2-minute video that briefly outlines SOME of the mechanics involved in EMDR treatment.
This year I am one of Kansas City’s LGBT Affirmative Therapist Guild leaders. I am helping coordinate continuing education events for local therapists to develop their competencies with sexual and gender minority populations.
I’ve been reading Woman on Fire: 9 Elements to Wake up your Erotic Energy, Personal Power, and Sexual Intelligence. The 9 elements are: Voice, Release, Emotion, Body, Desire, Permission, Play, Home, and Fire. Amy Jo Goddard offers worksheets and exercises in each chapter to help individual women explore their sexual stories while identifying any stuck-ness, growth edges, preferred experiences, and experiments. I may refer to some of Goddard’s activities and resources as tools to bolster therapy.
I participated in a two-day couple’s workshop in Tantric Sexuality lead by Dr. Sally Valentine. Tantra is a special practice due to it’s concurrent engagement of the mind, body, emotions, and spirit. Tantra emphasizes a person’s internal body consciousness and self-love as a foundation for connection with a loved one. This foundation & specific practices facilitate a neural synchronicity between lovers with heightened non-verbal communication. I learned at least 12 non-verbal practices and 6 verbal practices for increased relational intimacy. I’d be happy to share these techniques with you!
Sex Under the Influence: Substance Abuse and Sexuality
Ethical Code for certified sexuality therapists
I appreciated the substance abuse & sexuality training because oftentimes these issues are artificially segregated. For example, many substance abuse treatment programs avoid inquiry and topics related to sexual shame, sexual abuse, body image, and sexual orientation dilemmas that contribute to people’s addictive patterns.
The ethics training was mostly review–but important stuff. Anyone can view the Ethical Code. I also adhere to the American Counseling Association ethical code. If you have any questions about either of these topics, feel free to contact me.
Positive sexual experience can be a great way to feel gratitude for one’s own body. Unfortunately, many people’s negative body image interferes with their ability to be truly present with themselves and inhibits their pleasure. Dr. Emily Nagoski identifies some concrete practices to build self-love at the end of her TED Talk: Confidence and Joy are the Keys to a Great Sex Life. Over the last couple weeks, I have been reading her book Come as You Are.