Lindsey Kingsley is a mental health therapist specializing in relationships, conflict resolution, postpartum anxiety and depression, and life transitions.
Who do you help?
What is your general approach to helping?
Are you more directive or more guiding?
What are your strengths as a therapist?
What are your client's results after coming to see you?
Laurie: Hi! My name is Laurie Groh, and I'm co-owner at Shoreside Therapies. Today we are talking with Lindsey Kingsley and she is new to Shoreside, not a new therapist, but I'm so excited to get to know you today a little bit more and have our viewers get to know you as well, Lindsey, thanks for being here.
Lindsey: Hi! Yes, thank you.
Laurie: So, I'll start with that first general question, and that's.. who do you help? Who's your ideal client? Sort of like your specialties, but who's that person that you want to work with?
Lindsey: Yeah, so I really enjoy working with individuals and relationships, couples counseling, marriage, and family dynamics. I've got a lot of experiences so I'll go through a couple. I like conflict resolution, I like working on communication skills with other people, anxiety, depression, OCD, and relationship issues. I work with post-partum anxiety and depression. So like new moms and parenting and just working generally with people that might be struggling in their life with feeling unfulfilled, unworthy, unsatisfied, and just generally in their life. Kind of like, I think of like that fork in the road that brings people into therapy. I'm at a fork in the road and, you know, need help and encouragement with what we've got going on. Additionally, I really like social anxiety too. So social anxiety, social skills again, my background is in communication. So I like to do that, a lot of uncovering emotions. How do we communicate emotions and just like normalizing the parts in our lives that feel scary or painful because it can be a really uncomfortable part, I think, about joining therapy for the first time?
Laurie: Right right, and I think too, the fork in the road. I think a lot of people are experiencing that right now, of what is next. I feel like that's a big theme with my clients and people, that I just... my friends and family and talking with them. It's just right now, there was this giant sort of pause for two years, and now it's like: what do I do now? What do I want? And it's so useful to talk with somebody, I think, to get that clarity of what should be those next steps. Or what do I want those next steps to be?
Lindsey: Yeah, absolutely, for sure.
Laurie: Yeah, that's great. So couples work, and communicate, it sounds like conflict resolution, anxiety, depression and transitions. Did I miss any?
Lindsey: Nope. Young adults, I really like young adults: college-age, new marriages, anything that's like new for someone in their lives can be actually a really hard time. So I really like working with people as they work through those transitions.
Laurie: Yeah, and you mentioned, like postpartum anxiety, depression, and I know I've probably have mentioned this a few times that that was one of the most challenging times for me. Because everything shifted and I was, you know, I'd read millions of books, okay, maybe just one or two, but I thought, you know, okay, I'll be okay with this. And then, once it happened, you're like everything's about you now. Now, what do I do? So I think that's so important and I think a lot of times, new moms, new dads, don't really feel like they should be talking to someone.
Lindsey: Yeah, it's so isolating at that time. Yeah, I know, it's hard, it's really hard.
Laurie: Yes. Because it's pretty rare that somebody is going through that same exact time of their life at that same time, you know. So you might have friends that have older siblings, older kids, I mean, and are not at that stage so it can be very lonely. All right, we'll move on to the next question, and this is always a common question that we get, of what's your general helping? What types of techniques do you use? Are you more directive or guiding? What's your approach?
Lindsey: Yeah, I would say I do a little bit of both. In my personal life I tend to just be more directive, so kind of straight to the point. I really appreciate transparency and honesty. So I kind of hold my clients with the same kind of idea that it can be both- it can be guiding or directive and so people that are new to therapy might not know what that is. The directive approach is more like hands-on I think, and the guided approach is more hands-off and exploratory. So with directive, I kind of think of it like I'm a personal trainer for your brain, so I help to hold people accountable to their goals, and like I said, if I see like a pattern of thoughts or behaviors, I might bring it up when I feel like the time is right, just because that stuff can be really helpful to bring and grasp into therapy that, like we all have blind spots that we might not be aware about and so bringing that up in therapy, I think can be helpful just to kind of add to those things, learn more about ourselves and like learn about ourselves on a deeper level. But like I said, if we're like new to therapy and we might be confused or uncertain in our lives, I'm probably going take more of an exploratory guiding approach to that and just like recognizing and understanding about ourselves, educating about symptoms and just kind of normalizing and recognizing. But at a bottom line, I just want to like meet people where they're at, wherever they are, and kind of go from there.
Laurie: Yeah, I like that flexibility in the back and forth to it. And I'm the opposite, so I actually lean towards the more, you know, slow-moving type in my real life and then in therapy, that has to come out sometimes if I have to be more directive and people want to know, what should I do here? And you know typically we don't give advice but we will say like this is what seems like you want to do and what might work out. And if you do, this is what's going to happen. If you do this, then that's going to happen and I think that can take a couple of sessions off too, just to be getting right to the point of, this is what we should be working on versus like, taking maybe a little bit more time. But I like that you're able to say like it depends on what the client wants, what they need.
Lindsey: Yeah, and like I said, usually I get pretty attuned with my clients and kind of understand what they like, what approaches they like, and so it's really easy for me to shift and be like, you know, I'm going to be less challenging and going to be more supportive, depending on the day, what's going on. So I definitely have that flexibility where I can, you know, bring about what we need to at that time.
Laurie: And just like a side note too, just one thing that I think is really useful and you probably agree would be having that communication right there in the room.
Laurie: Like hey, I want a little bit more direction, or I want to sit with this for a while like I don't want to be pushed yet, and that is so important and it's good practice for the outside world.
Lindsey: It's powerful, so I'm very direct that I know myself very well in that sense that, like, if it doesn't work, just say it and I will in the first session usually ask that and just let them know, because then they can get a feel of, like you know, knowing that it's the right intentions around like challenging because I want you to meet your goals, I want you to feel like you're getting the most out of our time together.
Laurie: Right right! That in that combination of caring and really wanting to help absolutely is a good combination. Right. So, next question, Lindsey, what are your strengths, as a therapist? I mean I kind of was hearing a little bit of it already.
Lindsey: Yeah, I think number one is authenticity for me. So being as real as I can with you, I'm never going to say anything to you that doesn't feel authentic to me. I'm never going to pretend to be something that I'm not or even to know things that I don't because I think the client is the expert, and so it's more about me getting to know you and how I can help you. So I'm very flexible. I call myself like shapeshifting. I can really just stick myself into any situation and kind of work about that way, and so I think that benefits my clients. Is that everyone has their own different styles and that. By far I definitely try to be sensitive to everyone's emotional needs. I always say like validation over challenging. So I'm going to validate before I challenge you and get to that space, because then you know that like it's okay to feel however you feel and just like throughout my own life I've gained a lot of experiences and insights into, you know, just emotions and difficult life transitions. So I'd say having my own life experience has helped to just bring about different, just different shapes to therapy. And then one of the things is humor. I use humor, definitely, when appropriate as a coping mechanism, because I think sometimes life gets really hard and we do need to laugh about things sometimes and you know it's hard and I think therapy can be such a serious, deep situation sometimes and that makes people really uncomfortable. So when it's right, when I get to know my clients, I do sometimes joke around and they do appreciate that. And then mindfulness. I use a lot of mindfulness approaches and just being non judgmental of what's going on, accepting. I know sometimes people will bring things in and they'll be, you know, scared or terrified to like open up about something. And I always want people to know that, like, they can open up about whatever it is that they're struggling with at that time.
Laurie: Right and too, I think, just with that point. I think once somebody says that thing that they were maybe shameful of or didn't want to share with anyone, once they share it, and we have that, that knowledge of, we've talked to so many people telling us those things. We've heard these things. It turns out people aren't really alone in that shame or that thing that they don't really want to talk about, and allowing for that nonjudgmental space is so important, and then the reality is once that's out in the open, that shame dissipates.
Lindsey: Yeah, it can be really freeing for people, you know, like seeing the weight lifted off their shoulders because we do live in a judgmental world. Sometimes I know, like people, you know just saying their opinions or whatever, and we can feel judged and then it's harder to open up. And so you know, it always hurts my heart whenever I hear someone say that, and so I definitely want to make that as a priority, knowing that they can be comfortable with whatever.
Laurie: Yeah, yeah, I think that's so important, so the other thing that I really like is that shapeshifting. It makes me think of true blood back in the day, that show. But I think that part is so important too of like being able to get on someone's frequency, on their level and where they're at, and it becomes its own dance. You know, I think of therapy as science and art kind of mixed together, you can't just go hardcore with, well, the statistics say this, and it can't be all fluff either. So I think having that combination is beautiful. It's wonderful, Lindsey. Alright, next one. So what are your clients going to expect after coming in to see you? So what results could they expect?
Lindsey: Yeah! So the results that... let's see here. Generally for me the feedback I get is that I'm warm, gentle, easy to talk to and open up to. They find it easy to connect once we get going and once I get to know my clients. Like I said, they feel particularly like attuned to their needs. So whatever they're feeling that day, like it's easy to shift skills or things that we work on depending on what's going on. And, like I said, I find value, like my clients find value with working with me and because I may be the only person in their lives really that they can really talk to, which I've heard before and again, it's like we live in a judgmental world. I think that space to have that emotional safety is priceless when we might be plagued with fear, criticism from people around us. So as far as results that people get from seeing me, they feel more confident, they tend to take action more in their lives, they gain clarity and they report that it's helpful to have someone they can trust and confide in just so they can get to know themselves better and, like I said, just, like easy to talk to, like I said.
Laurie: Yes, things move quicker because I think a lot of times when somebody's coming to seek our services, especially when we're talking about like the fork in the road and potential transitions or something big has changed or happened to me, that can be a very stuck type of feeling and you don't know what to do. And having some sort of direction that seems like it fits and makes sense for somebody, allows them then to take those steps, whether they're big or small, and they may be small ones at first. But I mean that's a huge thing. Some people come in and say this has been going on for a long time... years and years and years, and then they start seeing you and then things are moving within a few months sometimes. Sometimes sooner. Sometimes you have somebody that's like I'm going to do this today.
Lindsey: Yeah, you never know.
Laurie: Never know, yeah, yeah, so Lindsey anything else that you would want a potential client to know about you? That might be helpful.
Lindsey: Yeah! I want clients to know that they can feel comfortable coming to me. That I'm really open to feedback and not all approaches work for everyone and we always say like you can't take a cookie-cutter approach to therapy. One thing does not work for everybody, and so I have a lot of tools in my pocket that I can use and I always tell people that, like we can pull out different tools, like if different things aren't working, and so I usually praise any client that speaks up and I can tell that something really difficult or hard for them to share, and I really appreciate that. So I always say like, no need to be afraid to share anything within that setting and I'm here for you like I want to be someone's biggest cheerleader when they're going through really hard times or I see that they're really struggling with something and then they're able to do it. It's one of the most rewarding parts of our job, I think.
Laurie: Yeah, yeah, I think what you're what you're talking about is pretty unique too of like not just an open space to hear about their life and what's going on with them, but an open space to hear again what's going on in the room. How often do we have opportunities for someone saying to you and means it, that you can say something to me if it's not working. I'm not going to freak out or leave the room or anything. You can talk and we'll get to it and we'll figure it out. And you know it's all about that relationship and trust and feeling like they can say what they need to say to make that time really work for them.
Lindsey: Absolutely, yeah!
Lindsey: Thank you!
Laurie: All right, we'll talk soon, bye!