Dr. Lawrence Allison

Dr. Lawrence AllisonMy approach is to focus on your personal strengths and enhance greater stability, purpose, and joy in your life. I work collaboratively and compassionately in helping you change self-defeating thinking and behavior patterns.

This approach is best described as Integrative. Although there are hundreds of psychotherapeutic approaches, it is my experience that many of these different perspectives offer techniques that are complementary and helpful. So I incorporate various interventions to tailor therapy to your specific needs. I select primarily from these orientations: Cognitive/Behavioral, Psychodynamic, and Humanistic/Existential.

Cognitive/Behavioral Therapy is based on the premise that how one thinks determines how one feels and behaves. For example, if you are experiencing significant anxiety, without any real external threat, you may be entertaining negative, irrational thought patterns. My job in therapy would be to help you identify, challenge, and change these thought patterns and beliefs and thereby relieve your anxiety. I might also teach you relaxation techniques and other coping strategies to further bolster your inner stability and calmness.

Psychodynamic Therapy involves exploring and revealing deeply embedded interpersonal patterns that lead to problems in relationships. Often these patterns develop in childhood and hinder healthy relationships later in life. Such internal struggles can lead to maladaptive relational patterns that hinder healthy relationships. If, for example, you were raised by highly critical parents, then you might experience an internal struggle between desiring love from and feeling anger towards your parents. This emotional conflict might continue into adulthood and interfere with the development of meaningful relationships. Psychodynamic therapy would help you to express and process the hurt and anger you experienced as a child, and bring to light more adaptive and fulfilling relational patterns.

Humanistic/Existential Therapy extends beyond solving emotional problems and conflicts. This approach addresses the vast untapped potential within each of us. Therapy, from this perspective, becomes a journey of self-discovery and a process of creating meaning and purpose in one's life. In the example above, if you were no longer significantly anxious, then you might want to explore life purpose and goals, and the steps for achieving these. Meditation, visualization, role-playing, goal setting and time management techniques would help facilitate your objectives. Thus, the Integrative approach empowers one not only to solve personal problems but also to achieve psychological growth and well-being.

If you have any questions about my Integrative approach, please feel free to contact me at 949-715-1351 or send email to dr.allison@cox.net.