Monday, May 27, 2019

Fort Collins Counseling and Therapy Services for Athletes, Coaching Staff, Teams, and Families


Introducing a Mental Health Counselor/Therapist who understands sports, athletes, coaches, and athletic families-teams-communities 

At age five, your counselor became an athlete.  As a top multi-sport high school and Division I scholarship student-athlete, he is uniquely qualified to work with:

✳ High School, College, and Professional Athletes

✳ Coaching Staff, Administrators, and Teams 

 M/F Spouse, and  Families

✳ All Sports, Ages, Gender, and Cultural/Ethnic Populations


I realize you have access to high school and college counselors.  However, as public figures/families in your community, you may desire or need a higher level of service.

Our private office and mobile counseling services offer the following:

1. Non-shared, no public waiting room, private office
2. At your home, office, or other non-public/private locations
3. Highest level of anonymity, privacy, and confidentiality

With our services, you avoid:

- Seen walking in/out of a high school, college, or a private counseling center
- Seen sitting with strangers in a client public or private waiting room
- Legal diagnosis and health insurance billing/documentation

Reality:

If people see you or your family entering/exiting a traditional mental health counseling office, they may take photos, videos, and start talking (i.e., rumors, etc).  

We highly recommend protecting your identity, including your family, and career/profession.


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Friday, May 24, 2019

Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Is Your Child a Screen Time Addict?

Today's Blog Post: This is Part One of Two.

Screen-Time Addiction.

Screen-Time (ST) includes TV, "educational" software, cell phone, computer/tablet, video-gaming, and any other forms of digital brain stimulation.

We now have a decade of ST evidence-based brain related research --  if your child has high ST  there is a strong chance their brain is addicted (it takes very little time for the addiction to occur).  In both biological and social development context, the effects of ST are devastating.  So devastating, in the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM-V), it will be listed as a mental health disorder. Is it?  

In my opinion, YES!  To best understand, it's helpful to look at ST like a drug, such as cocaine or heroin, and frame the discussion in a drug addiction model.  For example: 

⇾ MRI scans of drug addict brains' vs. ST brains' are nearly identical.  Translation -- both target the region of the brain; both act similarly, producing joy, happiness, and euphoria.  They both produce the same brain 'happy' chemicals -- Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin and Endorphins.  BTW...
✽ Nearly all kids I work with are ST addicts!  
The solution? Easy, take away the drug and/or ST, right?  Maybe, but not necessarily true.  If you take the drug(s) away from an addict, without proper medications, they may experience horrific withdrawal symptoms (it's called white knuckling). In some cases, especially with alcoholics, a quick shut off may cause death.  Also, odd-deviant-psychotic behavior may appear -- they will do anything to get their drug(s) back!  

Want to know what could happen if you take ST away from your child, read more at this link Screen Time Addiction Behavior


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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Screen Time Addiction Behavior

Today's Blog Post: This is Part Two of Two. 

Before reading, it's best to read part one at Is Your Child a Screen Time Addict?


Answering the question from part one -- If you take Screen Time (ST) away from your children, expect behavioral withdrawal symptoms, ranging from mild to severe.

Globally, we now have a generation of Screen Time (ST) children.  They are now entering a bio-social stage development period, commonly known as the Teenage years. Under normal circumstances, they begin exploring their identity and social relationships. It is natural for them to: Pull away from mom, dad, and family; seek privacy, personal freedoms and spend more time with friends; explore sexuality and drugs/alcohol.  Now add in ST Addiction -- get ready, the captain has turned on the fastened seat belt sign -- expect a rough ride and difficult landing.  

Based on my experience working with families, here are some tell-tale signs your kids are ST Addicts:

  • Digital devices were given to children at an early age; however, ST addiction can occur at any age.
  • Cell phones are with them night and day.
  • They go to bed with their cell phones, frequently texting throughout the night. 
  • Constantly lying, irrational excuses, impulsive behaviors, low mood affect or depression like symptoms.
  • Narcissistic-Self-Centric: Low empathy, give me my resources and don't bother me attitude.
  • Social Isolation: Friends are only online, or carefully selected, who have families that offer easy access to ST and other 'happy' resources.  Avoiding or resisting large group activities (they avoid having to talk face-to-face with people, especially family). 
  • Avoid responsibility and accountability.  Will not participate in family activities, including home chores.  Will not seek, or will resist employment. 
  • Frequent video-gaming -- excessive hours -- gaming for + 15 hours is not uncommon! 
  • Poor sleep and diet.
  • Trouble waking, late to school or skip school frequently. 

WARNING:  Do not allow your children to do nothing over school breaks -- keep them busy -- if not, and if they have access to ST, you are asking for major problems -- especially over the long summer break, when ST may increase exponentially and behaviors will worsen!  

Based on my experience with families who attempt to cut-off or reduce ST, here's what you can expect (especially from boys):  

  • Anger, violent outburst, physical and verbal abuse, vindictiveness, and destruction of property (be ready to call 911 and/or crisis hotline).
  • Impulsive odd behaviors, suicide ideation/attempts, self-harming, stealing, etc.
  • Frequent visit to friend's -- to get their ST fix. 
  • School performance (grades) might drop.
  • Alcohol and drugs use, well above normal experimental limits. Here in Colorado, teen drug use/addiction is at an all time high (no pun intended).  
  • Sexual activity may begin earlier than expected. 
  
What to do -- A sudden cut-off or well managed ST Addiction withdrawal plan?  Every family and child are different.  There is no 'silver bullet," but please feel free to contact us -- we have worked with many families with ST Addiction issues, and we believe we can help.


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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Child Behavior, Crazy?

Today's Blog Post

An unforgettable event just happened in your home, or other.  You called 911 and the police showed up.  No one was seriously injured, so no Emergency Department visit.  You are now sitting in a crisis center, filling out standard intake forms.  When the chaos calms, you wonder what just happened and ask yourself: Is my kid on drugs; does he/she have a mental disorder; am I a bad parent.  You meet with a crisis counselor and with relief, discover your child is not on drugs and does not have a mental disorder.  The crisis counselor reports that your child is not suicidal, homicidal or experiencing audio-visual hallucinations. You and your child are officially discharged, i.e. sent home.  Now what, you think to yourself -- how do I get help for my child and please god, I never want this to happen again! 

As a crisis counselor, I have witnessed the above scenario countless times -- IMHO, it's a national epidemic, occurring daily.  Typically, there is no single reason why this happens -- it's a multi-headed, complicated, tangled mess.  Based on research and my own clinical experience, here's a short list of reasons why:

⇾ Parenting: Adults are having children, but no longer parenting, or doing so improperly. 
⇾ Screen Time: TV, cell phone, gaming, etc (it's out of control, and damaging as drug use).

There are at least two or more evidence based disciplines that directly relate to this issue -- attachment theory is one of them.  Feel free to watch.  

In the Denver Metro area, we have helped hundreds of children and families -- if we can help, please contact us. 


A Call Could Save Lives
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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: First Responders, Stress and Fatigue

Today's Blog Post

Crisis and drug/alcohol counseling is recognized as the front lines of mental healthcare.  The work is challenging and rewarding.  You face crisis, such as the crushing weight of suicide-death.  You also experience the grace and joy of recovery-sobriety.  Any type of front line work can cause personal and professional stress-fatigue.  If symptoms go unmanaged, it can be highly destructive to your wellbeing, family, and community (e.g., approximately 22 veterans commit suicide every day in the USA).  

To all front line workers, contact us if you need help.

Active Military, Veterans, First Responders, and Crisis Counselors
✳ Negotiable fees for qualified clients.
✳ Pro Bono and sliding scale.
✳ All family members welcome.
✳ Thank you for serving.


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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Mobile Counseling, is it Safe?

Today's Blog Post

Nearly every time we mention our Mobile Counseling services, we immediately engage in the following Q and A. 

Q: Mobile counseling sounds great, but I am concerned about safety?

A: This question is frequently asked by single females, and parents/families.  Regardless of your relationship status, age, or gender, we understand your concerns (e.g., America leads the world in violent crimes and sex assaults).  

Here's what you should know about us, and all counselors/therapists:

  • By law, all professional licensed or registered counselors/therapists must pass state and national criminal background checks. 
  • Prior to registration or license, if a person has a felony on their record, in all 50 states, they can never be a licensed or registered counselor/therapist.
  • If an existing licensed or registered counselor/therapist is convicted of a felony, in all 50 states, they are perpetually prohibited from obtaining a license and/or practicing.  
  • Prior to admission at an accredited master degree or doctoral program, all potential students must pass state and national criminal background checks.
  • If your counselor or therapist works at a public or private mental health business/agency, they must pass state and national criminal background checks. 
  • Outside of their profession, if your counselor or therapist is a volunteer for any state agency (e.g., volunteer instructor for fish and game), they must pass state and national criminal background checks.

✳Read more why mobile counseling is right for you or your family: Advantages of Mobile Counseling

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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: How Many Client's Does Your Counselor See Per Day?

Today's Blog Post

This is an info-educational post for potential client-consumers -- those looking to work with any counselor, therapist, or other.

 Q: I get the impression that many counselors see up to 10 clients per day -- why do you only see up to five clients per day?

A: The number of clients seen per day may depend on the type and size of the business (e.g., agency vs. private practice).  We also know many counselors work in agencies, then at night or weekends, they see clients in their private practice.  


For us, it's a quantity vs. quality proposition.  Specifically, seeing more than five clients per day may cause poor clinical performance, questionable business practice, and could be unhealthy for the mind-body-spirit.  

A question back to you; how is it possible to see up to 10 clients per day and then:

  • Write/chart clinical notes for each client, as required by law.
  • Manage communications, appointments and billing.
  • Expect to be professional prepared for each client.
  • And, have a life. 

Common sense tells us it is not possible to do this daily routine, year after year; yet t
here are thousands of excellent counselors and therapists who do it.  Why do they do it?  We know from experience they do it to financially survive in the mental healthcare insurance system.  It's a system borrowed from managed care that produces high daily client volume, but also results in high counselor burn-out rates.

For many good reasons, we made the decision to not participate in the insurance system.  As a result, we are 100% focused on limited, highly exceptional clinical care services.  It's a decision that aligns with our professional values, mission statement, and best serves our client-consumers. 

We believe this topic one of the most important client-consumer issues.  To fully understand, it could prove helpful to read why counselors do or do not take healthcare insurance.  See information at FAQ

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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Who do I Work With?

Today's Blog Post

A 'question' and 'answer' post designed to help you understand the differences between a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), a Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate (LPCC) and a Colorado Registered Psychotherapist. 

Q: What is the difference between an LPC, LPCC, and Registered Psychotherapist?

A: Briefly: A Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) holds a masters or doctorate degree, and has fulfilled all state and national requirements to hold a license.  A Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate (LPCC) holds a masters or doctorate degree, and is in the final stages of obtaining full licensure (i.e., all that remains is client-clinical supervision hours).  At a minimum, a Colorado Registered Psychotherapist only needs to pass the state jurisprudence exam, and is not required to have any academic or clinical training.  For a full list of credential requirements for LPC, LPCC, Registered Psychotherapist, including MFT, LCSW and more, please visit: Colorado Mental Health Credentials Requirements

Q: What are the benefits of becoming a LPC, LPCC vs. Registered Psychotherapist?

A: A LPC holds the highest state required credentials, which allows them to work in all public and private mental health care facilities, schools, or other.  They also have the legal authority to place clients on a 27-65 or M-1 hold (i.e., a mandated visit to the hospital).  A LPCC is afforded the similar privileges, so long as their status remains active (i.e., they are working under supervised clinical hours).  If working in a private practice, an LPC can accept all forms of payment, including insurance reimbursements.

For legal/liability reasons, 1) a Colorado Registered Psychotherapist is not employable at public and private mental health care facilities, and 2) cannot place clients on a 27-65 or M-1 hold, and 3) in a private practice setting, they cannot accept insurance reimbursement payments.

Q: Why would I work with a Registered Psychotherapist who has little or no academic experience or clinical training?

A: We believe the Colorado Department of Regulatory Affairs (a.k.a DORA) offers a license as a Registered Psychotherapist because: Many people may have been trained in 'eastern' spirituality and philosophy, or other qualified disciplines.  Even without 'western' academic/clinical training, their expertise as a therapist could be as good, if not better (i.e., there is more than one method to heal and grow).  A perfect example of the law: If the Dali Lama moved to Colorado, he would qualify as a Registered Psychotherapist, but not as a LPC, LPCC, MFT, LCSW or other.  Since you may not have access to the Dali Lama or others like him, we believe it is wise to work with professionals who posses the following:

  • Qualified, accredited and documented eastern and/or western based psychotherapy training.
  • Bachelors, masters, or doctorate degrees from accredited institutions.
  • Colorado jurisprudence and national board exams.
  • Advance training, such as EMDR, CAC, LAC, or other.

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Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Mobile Counseling?

Today's Blog Post


We offer clients maximum flexibility; we'll come to your home, office, or other.  Other locations could be a rented room in a church or existing counseling office.


Decades ago, it was common practice and culturally acceptable for doctor's to provide in-home services.  You and/or your family did not have to change your daily routine -- you did not have to travel across town or city, fight traffic, find and pay for parking, and wait in an office filled with strangers.  In the 21st century, the solution to these issues appear to be the use of digital counseling services.  Call your counselor via cell phone or digital web based device and voila; instant access and problems solved, right?  Allow us to be direct:

  • Physically sitting across from each other, engaged in face-to-face counseling, has been time tested, heavily researched, and is still the gold standard. 
  • Good counseling is rarely quick, fast, or easy work, and is best done in a safe, private-confidential, uninterrupted environment (e.g., like your home or our private office).  

Before you say no, or if you have doubts, please read why mobile counseling could be the right fit for you and your family: Advantages of Mobile Counseling

    A Call Could Save Lives
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    Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Payment Options

    Today's Blog Post

    The purpose of this post -- we want you to be well informed client-consumers.

    Do you ever wonder why in some industries you receive volume discounts and others you don't?  Why do professionals and tradesmen, such as lawyers, doctors and electricians charge by the hour and offer no discounts -- especially for repeat customers?

    Like many other professionals, we have a single session hourly rate; however, we also offer a 10 and 20 session prepaid payment option.  It's a discount and we feel it's the right thing to do, and it is our attempt to recognize the following reality:

    • Therapy is rarely a short-term, quick fix endeavor -- growth takes time and hard work. 
    • Universal values -- significant relationships, repeat customers, and volume purchases generally receive discounts, rewards, or other forms of appreciation and gratitude.  
    • We want you to be a better you -- we provide a mind-body-spirt-money investment strategy that works for short and long term client-consumers.

    We are a cash/check only payment service. For more information, please refer to our Fees

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      Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Social Media WARNINGS

      Today's Blog Post

      The purpose of this post -- we want you to be well informed client-consumers.  

      Did you know, in the past 10 years, with tween, teens, and young adults -- suicide, depression, anxiety and drug use rates have nearly tripled?  The primary source?  Social Media screen time, including TV, computers, video gaming, and most definitely cell phones.  Because of the social media phenomenon, we are regularly asked the following:    

      Q: Can I connect with my counselor/therapist via social media, e.g. Facebook, Instagram or other?

      A: The answer is no.  We are your professional counselor or therapist only.  Ethically and legally, via national standards and Colorado law, dual relationships are strictly prohibited.  If this becomes an issue, we will 1.) politely warn you, or 2.) when appropriate, terminate services.

      To All: We HIGHLY recommend limited (highly regulated) or no screen time.  Research backs this statement.  Also, be AWARE: Manufacturers/Developers are known to manipulate age appropriate ratings for e-devices and/or educational software.

       Please write down and place crisis/emergency information in easy to find locations. Also, enter the below phone #'s into your cell phones, including 911.

      A call could save lives!

      Emergency Services
      Call 911 or 24 Hour Crisis Center

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      Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: What to do in Crisis or Emergency?

      Today's Blog Post

      In the USA, approximately 22 veterans commit suicide everyday.  Colorado continues to climb in suicide rates, especially among tween-teens-young adult populations.  

      The purpose of this post -- we want you to be well informed client-consumers.

      To provide proper/legal crisis and emergency services, a team of qualified professionals is a must.  Qualified professionals include: Police, Fire, Hospital/Emergency Department, dedicated crisis centers-counselors-hotlines, etc.  

      Due to our work/experience in crisis and drug/alcohol counseling, clients regularly ask the following:

      Q: What if I have a crisis or emergency and I need to talk to you or I need your help ASAP, either during or after your posted office hours?

      A: We need to draw the line and/or establish professional boundaries.  We can not offer crisis emergency services, nor do we not take calls after hours.  Why?  1) We cannot respond as quickly as dedicate crisis services, and 2) We do not have the resources available to legally provide proper care.

      We always recommend calling 911, or seek emergency care at a medical facility, or call the crisis #800 listed below.

      Please write down and place crisis/emergency information in an easy to find locations, and enter the below phone #'s into your cell phones, including local police and 911 -- especially for all family members, including your children.

      You never know when or where you may need to call

      Emergency Services
      Call 911 or 24 Hour Crisis Center

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      Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: 60 Minute Sessions vs. 50, Why?

      Today's Blog Post

      This in an info-educational post -- it's our desire to help you be well informed, good client-consumers. 

      Have you ever paid for product/service A and received product/service B?  If so, I am willing to bet you were not happy.  Unfortunately, this happens every day in the Mental Healthcare industry, and recently a potential client asked why? For example: 
        
      Q: I have been researching local Denver Mental Health Counselors and Therapists. I noticed you offer 60, 75, and 90 minute sessions, but why do other counseling services advertise one hour, yet sessions only last 50 minutes?

      A: We are in the same boat -- we do not fully understand the reasoning behind this clinical or business practice, but we believe: 

      1. Many insurance providers only reimburse clinicians for 50 minute services.

      2. Clinicians can book clients on the hour, which allows for more billable hours per day.


      Bottom line, you lose 10 minutes per session -- over time, that adds up to serious $. 

      At YLC we offer:

      ⇾ Full 60, 75, and 90 minute services. You pay for what is advertised -- we follow Colorado law and best business practice standards, i.e. it is illegal to mislead clients, and/or engage in deceptive business practice. 

      We invite you to read more about our client-consumer clinical and business practice.  For instance, read why we only see five clients per day.

      Read more here  FAQ 


      Please write down and place crisis/emergency information in easy to find locations. Also, enter the below phone #'s into your cell phones, including local 911.


      A call could save lives!

      Emergency Services
      Call 911 or 24 Hour Crisis Center

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      Fort Collins Counseling, Therapy, Coaching: Male or Female?

      Today's Blog Post

      As I male therapist, I have worked with women of all ages. I provide a strong, yet therapeutic energy that comforts and encourages women.  However, on rare occasions, despite my desire to help, my gender prohibits me from working with specific female populations.  I'll explain why in the following Q and A.     

      Q: I am a potential female client (e.g., tween, teen, adult).  I have been told it is best to see a female therapist -- is this true?

      A: Yes and no. It might depend on the circumstances, including the client's culture, ethnicity, religion, etc.  In the US, female client-counselor relationships are commonly recommended, especially for victims of trauma, such as domestic abuse, sexual assault, and other violent crimes.  There is good reasoning for this, e.g. if the perpetrator was a male, the mere physical presence of a qualified male counselor may cause a triggering negative effect.  However, to answer the question fairly, all professional counselors or therapist are trained to be gender neutral, serving all populations.  In many situations, the presence of a trained supportive male counselor could be extremely beneficial.  For example, there are plenty of male counselors who offer excellent therapeutic support, and also have experience advocating-navigating systems, such as healthcare, legal, and state/federal social services.

      Bottom line, when choosing your counselor/therapist, consider gender, but also be a good client-consumer -- recognize professional credentials, experience and business practice.  

      Last, sometimes finding the right counselor, regardless of gender, is a lot like finding the right fitting shoes.  In other words, meet with as many counselors as possible, until you find the best fit! 




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