Therapeutic Approach

Personal Philosophy of Change

Personal Philosophy of Change

We need each other. If we are really going to change what we believe about ourselves, then someone else has to show us a different way to see ourselves in the world and in relationship. This other person needs to non-judgmentally invite us to see how the lies we believe about ourselves are false and consistently reflect our goodness back to us in an authentic way. If we can believe and trust each other in this, and keep engaging all the hard and painful places that we don’t often shed light on, then we can truly change.


For a deeper dive on my thoughts about this click here.

Methodologies and Theories Employed




Utilizing skills of self-awareness and the developing interpersonal relationship between myself and you, the client, I will offer insight into how I continue to experience you and how I am impacted by you in our sessions. I am aware that we each bring a history of how we have been formed in relationship into the expectations and perceptions we have of each other. Part of our work will be exploring these historical narratives that continue to shape interpersonal relationships in the present as they emerge in our developing relationship.


The goal is to begin to have a new experience of yourself in relationship with an Other that can positively impact how you perceive yourself and others in relationship. Additionally, as you explore how your story has shaped you in relationship, you will develop a growing awareness of when these historical narratives may be shaping how you currently perceive yourself and others in present situations.






Our earliest relationships shape our expectations and behavior in current relationships. Attachment theory describes patterns of behavior and posits how those patterns developed early in life. By building awareness of these patterns and coming to a place of self-compassion for how they developed, new ways of relating that are more congruent with what people want out of relationships can be built.






At some point in life we all wrestle with the issues that arise from our common humanity. Existential psychotherapy helps us find ways to embrace life in response to the eventuality of death, take responsibility for our freedom of choice, connect and belong despite how isolated we ultimately are from others, and live with purpose in all of the seeming meaninglessness of life.






The Enneagram is a system to describe common groupings of how people’s personalities seem to organize. Unlike many other systems, the Enneagram isn’t just a grouping of traits, however, it is a system that describes what motivates each of us, how we respond to stress, how we move toward health and integration, and much more. Like any personality theory it has the danger of being reductionist if applied poorly to people’s individuality. I have found that in general it is a helpful starting point and tool for developing self-awareness and compassion, and grace for how others behave in relationship.






This methodology seeks to integrate past traumatic events into the narrative of our life. Trauma is a disruption that our brain never properly integrates because of how overwhelming the experience is. Using a timeline of key events in our life and the power of the imagination to enable us to find safety as we revisit our past trauma, this method helps us experience our pain, release it, see it in context, and move on.






This methodology for treating trauma utilizes eye movements similar to what happens during sleeping to help the brain integrate a past experience of trauma. In this form of therapy, the therapist is in a supporting role helping the client return to their trauma and discharge the intensity of it by engaging the body’s memory integration mechanism. There is not much talking about the details of the traumatic memory, instead most of the transformation and change happens within the client’s own experiencing as the body shifts how it is affected by the traumatic memory. I am currently in the process of completing certification for EMDR.

Theoretical and Philosophical Models

One of my passions is thinking deeply about personhood. I am in the process of developing a model that attempts to integrate many different perspectives on how human beings are constituted. If philosophy and playing with ideas interests you, take a look at what I love thinking about here.

Ben Adams Counseling, PLLC

1037 NE 65th St #80661
Seattle, WA 98115

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