Hi, my name is Shannon Lahey. I’m a registered Associate Marriage Family Therapist. I completed the graduate program at California Lutheran University in 2019, earning a Master’s of Science degree in Counseling Psychology, emphasizing in Marriage and Family Therapy. I also have a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from California Lutheran University.
During my time as a trainee therapist, I counseled individual adults, children, couples and families. I have experience counseling those with various socioeconomic statuses, cultural backgrounds, religious beliefs, and LGBTQ+ identification. Much of my work as a trainee revolved around themes such as anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, co-dependency, and grief.
During the beginning of the therapeutic process, I like to bring in Cognitive Behavioral measures so that the client can achieve a deeper understanding of their current symptoms and how these symptoms may be affecting their daily life; in order to start forming a guide map of where the client wants to go, and what goals they may want to work towards during their time in therapy. I believe the therapeutic process is as much about the client exploring and understanding themself, as it is about the therapist understanding the client. I believe the process of therapy is like a road-trip, with the client as the driver and the therapist as a guide to help navigate through any obstacles or detours that may come up along the way. When appropriate, I like to bring in mindfulness elements such as deep breathing techniques, progressive relaxations, guided meditations, and guided imagery to help the client further connect to their thoughts, feelings, and emotions, and how these may manifest in their physical body via tense muscles, increased heart rate, shallow breathing, restlessness, trouble sleeping etc. After creating the foundation for treatment with the client, I look at all the pieces of the client’s case through a relational lens. I do this by looking at how all the pieces fit together in the context of the client’s various social systems such as their family, friends, work, clubs and/or school, and how the patterns within these systems may contribute to the client’s experience and current symptoms.
I believe the therapeutic process is vulnerable and because of that, it should be handled with genuineness, gentleness, and respect. I strive to create a safe, comfortable environment for clients, without fear of judgment. I believe learning new coping skills, acknowledging or facing a problem, or openly discussing feelings and emotions can be extremely daunting. This is why my approach as a therapist is to meet the client where they’re at, come alongside them, and travel the journey of therapy together. My goal is always to instill hope in my clients and give them enough “tools in their toolbox” to feel a sense of peace, relief from their symptoms, and confidence in themselves to approach and overcome any obstacles or challenges they may face in the future.