Therapy Approach


                 Real generosity towards the future lies in giving all to the present.

      -Albert Camus-                                       


Why Therapy?  Today, more and more people realize that psychotherapy holds benefits for them.  Therapy has become part of our cultural mainstream and there are many types of therapy to fit clients different needs and personality styles.  Yet, still, too many people hold to a belief they have to “go it alone,” and they wind up underachieving and suffering needlessly for long periods before seeking therapy.  


Many clients enter therapy because of the anxiety, depression, or grief from significant losses.  Some come because of an awareness that they are not satisfied with life, despite working very hard at it.  And still others come out of the realization that they keep repeating the same self-defeating behaviors with loved ones or at work.  Clients often experience success as they embark on this process of self discovery and for the first time get professional feedback on their emotional functioning and decision making. 


And with this success, many clients start to “get it” that therapy is not just about dealing with problems or crises.  Therapy is also about emotional growth, healing old wounds and strengthening one's character through the painstaking work of vulnerably accepting who we are -our flaws and our necessary suffering- while letting go of shame and unneccessary suffering.   


The quality of life for you and your family hinges on you making good decisions, often during highly nuanced, stressful or competitive situations.  Optimal decision making requires real-time self-awareness of your emotions and of your default reactions.  In therapy you learn how your unintended behaviors and communications impact others and cause you problems.  You work through emotions from past wounds so they don’t affect current judgement.  Clients come to therapy as well intentioned individuals unaware of why they keep repeating dysfunctional dynamics.  Through psychotherapy, clients see they aren't just victims but that they are contributing to their unhappiness.  Therapy will help you break out of these patterns. 


I often tell clients the greatest gift they can give their children and spouses is their own personal psychotherapy.  Therapy helps you optimize the joy of life while minimizing the suffering, makes you a better spouse or parent, and in this way create a better legacy for future generations.




My Approach to Therapy:  Whether we work in individual, couples or group psychotherapy, this process should include some of the frankest most in depth dialogue you ever have.  It should open your eyes to entirely new aspects of yourself, your relationships and how to live life fully.  Psychotherapy should be a very intense and impactful experience, you will feel both the pain of outgrowing and letting go of familiar personality parts and the contentment of a newer healthier personality. 


Therapy is hard work.  You should feel safe and protected by me, while also challenged to go deep into your psyche to find strength and courage to shed old habits and hurts and try new, more functional ways to connect and relate in the world.  Successful therapy involves struggling through painful emotions (shame, sadness, anxiety, loss), setting better boundaries, and overcoming passivity to actively pursue your goals.  Anger will be channeled into passion and productivity, and sadness transformed to compassion.  You will be better able to protect yourself emotionally, and therefore better able to open your heart to love, affection and closeness.

Most of my clients find me "down to earth", a good listener, and pretty easy to relate to  I try to model emotionally transparency and use my experience of our relationship as a guide for how to best help you set goals and change.  This process should engender self-awareness of your feelings, needs and desires, and  of the effects that you have on other people. 




or Teletherapy:





Dupont Circle

1619 21st St NW

Washington, DC 20009



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© Nicholas Kirsch, Ph.D. 9.23.22