Introducing Featured Therapist Alexander Coleman
Every month, Council for Relationships features one of our staff therapists on the blog. This month’s Featured Therapist Alexander Coleman is a graduate of our Post-Graduate Certificate Program. Get to know more about Alexander in the interview below!
What makes you unique as a therapist and person?
I grew up in Liverpool, England, and while my accent may be unique, what I would identify as a more significant uniqueness for therapy is the “inheritance” of my late father. He was a custom tailor, well-known as both someone who was very personable who could relate to anyone, as well as a bespoke tailor who could attune himself to the exact wishes of his clients to fashion a custom-made garment, unique to their size and personality. I try to emulate these qualities in my therapy practice: to be personable, relatable and to attune myself to the unique needs of my clients, collaboratively helping them to fashion the custom-made program that best fits their needs for self-development and resolution.
What do you consider to be the goal of therapy/ what do you help your clients work towards?
Over the years of counseling, I have developed a simple acronym that I find encapsulates what I believe is the goal of therapy and what clients will receive from the experience: “Every Session a Hit.” Don’t be alarmed, I don’t mean it in a combative sense! Rather, in thinking about what we are all looking for as we navigate life’s challenges, the acronym “Hit” stands for:
H = to be Heard and to Receive Hope
When a person is genuinely heard by another and understood in whatever experience they may be going through, the feeling of not being alone can foster hope for the future. As the expression goes, “a problem shared is a problem halved.”
I = Insight and Inspiration
Even when there is a glimmer of hope, it doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s a solution to the problem. Therefore, my goal is to also provide insight to help clients sort out the roots of their struggles and to identify perspectives that will help them move on. In addition to insight, my goal is to inspire confidence in their ability to implement…
T = Tools and Techniques
Practical, behavioral approaches to reaching their desired goals.
What is one piece of advice you would like to give people who may be struggling emotionally and would like to seek to counsel but may not be ready?
I would say that while it may feel a little uncomfortable sharing your personal life with someone who you just met, you will find that this discomfort will quickly melt away, to create in its place an island of calm and clarity. Therapy is an opportunity to climb out of the “rat-race” and chaos of life once a week or so, and to step into a space of respect and calm where issues and challenges can be explored, and clarity and tools developed. Another piece of advice I give is: try it out once or twice, and take every session as it comes. There are no commitments or contracts.
What does a first session with you usually consist of?
A first session consists of comfortable conversation that allows us to get to know each other, for me to learn what’s troubling you and to help you feel that this room is a “safe” place where you can talk, be heard and acquire insights and tools for your challenges.