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coaching Counseling eTherapy Seattle Therapy Washington

Three More Years

Pioneer Square, Office Location in Seattle

Six hundred baskets of flowers were hung all over Pioneer Square on May 20, 2014.
600 of flowers were hung all over Pioneer Square on May 20, 2014. Photo by B. Imei Hsu #throughglass

In 2010, Seattle Direct Counseling moved from a basement in beautiful West Seattle to a small office in Pioneer Square in the Grand Central Building. In 2012, SDC moved across the hall to its present location in Suite 364, a large office space with generous natural light, tall ceilings, and a large waiting room.

We’re announcing the renewal of a three-year lease in the same space that begins June 2014. Just outside our building, I hear the shout of a homeless man on the corner. He is there almost every day.  On the other corner waits ten or more others, taking shelter under the trees of Occidental Square, resting on the brick.  Someone once asked me, “Why do you want to stay? Couldn’t you find a more attractive neighborhood to put your office?” He made a reference to the homeless people lingering outside. I couldn’t disagree more. This is the perfect place for our office.

I’ve thought long and hard about why Seattle Direct Counseling should stay in Pioneer Square. Here are a few of my reasons:

1. Our location keeps us in touch with people. Pioneer Square’s diversity helps keep it real. Where else do you see all walks of life, ethnicity, socio-economic diversity, social services, and corporate lifestyle, all in the same blocks?

2. Fun and Fitness — it is possible to run and bicycle in the area around the building, which supports our total wellness agenda. I just took a short run along Alaskan Way and the waterfront. Perfect!

3. Affordable rent – rents are increasing in the area. Grand Central Building has offered us a reasonable lease.

4. Our current clientele — our clients tell us over and over how much they love our office! The view is nice, the location is close to the bus lines, and parking is reasonable. The office itself is one of the most spacious and aesthetically comfortable spaces I have ever worked in, and every time I see it, I am so proud to say this is the home of the meaningful work that I do with each and every client.

The space allows us to maximize our strengths in movement therapy, in yoga and meditation, and in other adjunctive therapies that require more space than your standard psychotherapy session, and gives us the ability to host related groups and small workshops without renting additional space.

5. Occidental Square is a city park — during the summer, there is the First Thursday artwalk; Pike Place Express market trialed a smaller version of the fresh market last year and intends to return; the space is a known gathering place for families, for artists, and for workers enjoying the sunshine. It’s a “happening” place.

6. My colleague, Atta Dawahare of Union Therapy, is next door. Over the years, we have referred clients to each other, covered each other’s vacation schedules, even caught each other’s deliveries when away from the office. No solo therapist can see every type of client, and while we overlap some of the scope of practice, we both have unique assets that help specific clients. [Edit: I failed to add this point in the original post in my haste to share the good news of our renewed lease. In fact, this point is second in importance only to location].

Our current space allows us to maximize our strengths in movement therapy, in yoga and meditation, and in other adjunctive therapies that require more space than your standard psychotherapy session, and gives us the ability to host related groups and small workshops without renting additional space. For example, I have hosted sessions that involve walking outside and learning to identify healthy foods and eating environments.

For those of you who are new to Seattle Direct Counseling, we hope you will love this office space as much as we do.  For our returning clients, welcome home.

 

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Client-centered Therapy eTherapy Health care How to Online Therapy Relationships Social Media Therapy

What Therapists Worry About

After presenting my thoughts on Social Media, technology, and the helping professions at the Creativity and Madness conference (sponsored by AIMED), I took in the mood of the room. There was a palpable fear in the room, and perhaps in one of very few moments in my life, I wasn’t trying do anything about it.

What might a room filled with medical professionals be concerned about when it comes to Social Media and technology? You might guess it was about not being able to keep pace with the rate of change. They might be deeply frightened by legal and ethical issues involved in breaches of confidentiality. Or they could be disgusted by all the misconceptions about disease and pathology perpetuated in popular media and encouraged by under-educated bloggers. All of these are fears represented in this population. But the fear which was repeated through the stories and questions I heard is the one in which I believe you will find comfort.