PHILOSOPHY

Therapy is a deeply personal endeavor.  Making the decision to work on yourself can be daunting.  Dr. Tera provides a space to meet you where you are at with the ability to utilize a wealth of expertise in mental health treatment to provide compassionate care tailored to your specific needs. Dr. Tera seeks to create an accepting and inclusive environment for all clients, including those in the LGBTQ+ community.

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There are literally hundreds of therapy approaches and many clinicians telling people that theirs is the “right one.”  Dr. Tera has a foundation in multiple empirically-supported treatment modalities and relies most heavily on a combination of  Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP), Somatic Approaches, Applied Neuroscience, and Modern Psychodynamic Therapy depending on your individualized needs.

Yet, there is robust research on therapy outcomes indicating that understanding that process-based thinking about therapeutic progress and skill in “common factors” likely relate to relatively equal outcomes across therapeutic approaches. Common factors that have an important impact on the success of therapy include an alliance between therapist and client, empathy, whether expectation for growth exists, cultural adaptations of the work to fit the client’s unique background and needs, genuineness, and mentalization.

Another primary factor relating to therapy outcome refers back to “client factors” related to engagement in therapy and willingness to self examine and make changes that result from the insights and work in therapy.  Facing uncomfortable thoughts, emotions, sensations, and patterns is an important part of the therapeutic process to help you move toward a values-driven life. 

Goodness of fit between therapist and client is critical. That’s why Dr. Tera offers 15 minute discovery calls so you can get a feel for whether she is the right therapist for you and she can assess whether your needs are within the scope of her practice and appropriate for telehealth intervention. 

Mother and Daughter Portrait

SPECIALTIES

Dr. Tera's current areas of practice

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Feel ike you aren't getting it right as a parent? Parenting in a global pandemic is an epic challenge no one could have prepared for. There are so many pressures as a parent to provide emotionally, financially, and logistically for your children. Coming from an Interpersonal Neurobiology lens, I utilize an attachment approach to help you understand, gain insight, and move forward from your particular parenting challenges. I work with new parents struggling with perinatal mental health as well.  Dovetailing with my health psychology background, I also love providing individual therapy to parents of children with mental health concerns (anxiety, depression, perfectionism, neurodivergence) and acute or chronic physical health conditions (such as; epilepsy, type I diabetes, cystic fibrosis, medical trauma, and cancer). You are the rock for your children and deserve an outlet and the support to aid in your own growth to become the most effective and compassionate person for yourself and your family.

Parenting

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Women’s issues include acknowledgement and client-driven action related to socio-political climate issues related to gender.  Much of my work in this area draws from a Feminist Therapy lens.  Additionally, women’s issues include women’s health with a focus on all phases of life from puberty, sexual development & health across the lifespan-contraception, pregnancy, miscarriage, childbirth, perinatal adjustment/coping, parenting, menopause and aging. 
 

Plus, women’s issues include the host of presenting concerns to work through and process in navigating either a career, motherhood, inability or choice not to become a mother, or all of the above in a world where a vast inequality remains across the spectrum of gender identities.  If you can tell this is one of my soapboxes and you relate, I might just be the therapist to work with you!

Women's Issues

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Anxiety can zap the pleasure out of life, let me help you reconnect with the life you want to live, not the one you feel you have to. 

Since the start of my graduate training in 2000, I have been working on helping people understand the roots of their anxiety and the underlying biological processes.  I have a wealth of experience providing education about anxiety so you can understand what is going on in both your brain and your body to make a productive change. 

 

I will work with you to determine the best approaches to learn to regulate your anxiety including body-based strategies, understanding the themes that persist in sustaining the anxiety, and challenging the things you may have avoided because of anxiety.

 

 

Anxiety

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Do you find yourself obsessing repetitively over a particular topic or idea and then feel compelled to perform a behavioral or mental ritual to try to get the anxiety to dissipate? 

 

In working with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), I do a deep assessment related to the onset and background of your obsessive rumination and compulsive behaviors or mental rituals to break the cycle of feeling like you are on a constant hamster wheel you can't exit.  I utilize a blend of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Exposure Response Prevention collaborating with you to treat your OCD.  You will likely be working on constructing a hierarchy of feared events so we can develop exposure activities to help you overcome your anxiety.

OCD

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Understanding and treating connections between  the mind and body technically falls in the domain of health psychology, which has been a practice area for me since 2000.  Common elements of work in the area of mind/body connection and coping include accepting and managing a terminal or chronic illness diagnosis, health behavior change, and allergies. 

 

Dr. Tera works with patients to regulate their emotional states, which has implications for improved physical health outcomes.  Dr. Tera can also work with you on athletic performance, harnessing the mind/body connection to meet your athletic goals.

Health Psychology

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A painful part of living is saying goodbye-the loss of losing someone we love is immense. Grief work also includes letting go of pets, things, people (hello-bad ex partner!), ideas (“I am not worthy unless I am productive”), jobs, or parts of ourselves that don’t serve us. 

 

I have coped with loss due to suicide and sudden death due to medical complications/accidents and bring this compassion and awareness in helping my clients feel supported and held in their grieving process.  Many times people come to therapy to process grief because they feel that in their life outside of the therapy space, they are serving as stabilizing forces for others who are also coping with the loss.

Grief/Loss