I have more than 20 years of experience offering psychotherapy. Successful therapy can support you in reclaiming your birthright – a life free of stress, depression, worry, and anxiety. In our work together, I help you discover the root of the problem so you can get unstuck and realize that lasting happiness is possible.
With great compassion and care, we investigate what you take to be real – the expectations you hold and the emotions you carry – that keep you locked in and limited. As we unwind these tendencies, you experience the freedom that allows you to feel naturally confident and at ease in your life.
We know that therapy is working when stress, depression, and confusion diminish, revealing an enhanced sense of well being and enjoyment. Once old habits begin to dissolve, you find that responding skillfully to people and situations in your life naturally emerges from you. You experience effortless joy and peace of mind.
Realizing you can let go makes all the difference between just hanging on and living with clarity, satisfaction, and contentment.
I listen carefully with a full and open heart and engage actively with you. The sessions take shape according to what is needed in the moment. Together, we bring to light habitual ways of thinking and how they don’t serve you and see through emotions so you no longer feel controlled by them.
Our process may be deeply healing as you finish your attachment to old stories from the past that limit you. We may practice quiet or guided meditation, role-play ways to communicate, or celebrate the behavior changes that come from feeling less stuck. We focus on strengths, tapping into your natural wisdom and open-heartedness. All fresh as it emerges in the moment, all unfolding in the service of knowing yourself as free, unbounded, and fully alive.
I have received special training in behavioral medicine, hypnosis, and integrating psychotherapy and spirituality. My work centers around stress, depression, and anxiety with adults, elders, couples, families, and teenagers over age 16 as well as people with pain and chronic and terminal medical problems. I create a warm, safe space for clients and hold the possibility for realizing the deepest happiness and fulfillment.
When not in the office, I enjoy yoga, writing, traveling, and family life with my husband and dog.
Education and experience:
- B.A. with Honors, psychology major, Carnegie-Mellon University, 1977
- M.A., psychology, Temple University, 1982
- Ph.D., psychology, Temple University, 1985
- Postdoctoral fellowship, University of Florida, 1986-1990
- Psychology internship, Palo Alto Veterans Hospital, 1990-1991
- Licensed psychologist in California, PSY12577, 1992
- Assistant Clinical Professor, University of California San Francisco, 1993-1999
- Training program in spirituality and psychotherapy, 2003-2007
- Member, American Psychological Association, Santa Barbara County Psychological Association
- Numerous published articles on coping with stress and chronic medical illness
please call (805) 570-9765 or email Gail@GailBrenner.com.