- Are you plagued by re-occurring feelings of self-doubt, self-blame, guilt, anger, shame, sadness, or panic/anxiety?
- Do you have difficulty setting boundaries, saying "no," or asking for what you want?
- Do you feel alone and isolated often or as though no one cares about you?
- Do you frequently worry and stress about what others may think of you?
- Are you terrified of your thoughts and feelings, and can't find a way to control or soothe them?
- Are you struggling with fertility or family planning concerns and feeling overwhelmed, depressed, and hopeless?
- Are you struggling to feel heard or seen by your partner?
- Are traumatic or past memories and experiences holding you back?
- Are you finding it excessively difficult to let go of disappointing experiences?
- Are you frequently feeling as though you need to be on guard and have difficulty trusting others' intentions, but deeply long to feel cared for or loved by them?
- Does the fear of rejection, failure, or abandonment keep you from expressing yourself and your wants/needs, or asking for help?
- Are you finding yourself in the same type of relationships over and over again and unable to get resolution?
- Are you spending too much money, abusing substances or engaging in risky behaviors?
You are not alone in feeling this way. These ailments and patterns of behavior have underlying causes and are more than what appear on the outside. Getting professional help for them from an informed therapist (particularly a trauma-informed therapist) can be effective, long-lasting, and highly beneficial.
In treatment, the therapist can help the individual bring to surface the underlying material or parts that affect his or her current relationships and patterns of behavior. In turn, the individual can gain self-awareness and agency and begin to add to, reject, refine or correct further thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Improvement in the person’s personality structure and patterns of behavior takes place in the form of catharsis (an emotional release and soothing of underlying material or parts,) insight (working through process,) and the relationship with the therapist, which can allow for the assimilation of newly gained insights and experiences into the personality structure. Eventually the individual's life, his or her behaviors, relationships, and sense of self can change in deep and abiding ways. Untreated, maladaptive patterns of behavior can be passed down from generation to generation.
Dr. Afshar was trained in the psychodynamic approach, but most recently has relied heavily on trauma-informed interventions utilizing attachment based models of therapy, internal family systems, sensorimotor, mindfulness, cognitive behavioral, and neurobiologically informed interventions. Dr. Afshar has extensive experience with these approaches, and enjoys utilizing them in her practice. She believes that early childhood experiences, temperament, and intrinsic fears can affect one's ability to form relationships, grow, and be present in life. Hence, she joins efforts with the individual to not only modify crippling life patterns and remove incapacitating symptoms, but also to expand the freedom to work and to love.
Dr. Afshar particularly enjoys addressing and/or finding ways to work through/heal the underlying layers/parts of psychological pain and trauma. She believes the ability to heal is not something that is outside of us, it is within us. We all have a wise part that knows the truth (neurobiologically referred to as the medial prefrontal cortex)- tapping into this part to assist during stressful or triggering times is what can feel impossible when implicit memories of trauma take hold, but this wise part is never completely lost- with practice, patience and compassion, we can learn to tap into this part and live more harmoniously with ourselves.
Above all, Dr. Afshar strives to listen and to understand. She views her relationship with her patients as both a partnership and privilege. In turn, she believes the individual gains an ability to learn to listen to and understand themselves in increasingly complex and useful ways.