Lindsey Peters is an EMDR-trained therapist whose philosophy is based on the importance of rewriting and integrating our experiences into our preferred life narratives. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology from CSU Fullerton, and her master’s degree in clinical psychology from Pepperdine University.
What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
I believe in the power of community. We aren’t meant to live this life alone, and it’s vital to feel like part of something bigger than ourselves. After graduating with a degree in psychology, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I knew I wanted to help others become their best selves, but I wasn’t sure of the best path. I spoke with a family friend – an experienced therapist – and what she said resonated with me: therapy is all about human connection. We talked about the heart of therapy – one person helping another transform and become the healthiest version of themselves. What a privilege, what an honor, to join someone on that road to healing. This conversation had a huge impact on me and my decision to start the path towards becoming a therapist.
If you could pick one or two books that influenced your approach to therapy, what would they be and why?
I think Letters to a Young Therapist is profoundly insightful. It describes how “one of the luxuries of our work is that it sustains idealism… therapists tend to grow fonder of humans the longer they are in the field.” I have found this to be true during my time as a therapist, the more clients I see, the more I’m intrigued by their stories and personalities and journeys. I’ve been able to see someone heal right in front of my eyes and be a part of that process. What other job allows you to witness and guide that powerful transformation? I have always loved memoirs and been fascinated with how differently we all respond to life’s craziness. I love learning how each of us thinks, acts and responds to different situations. Therapy is an amazing opportunity for me to see memoirs being “written” first hand.
What is your therapeutic style?
No two clients are the same, and I choose parts of different therapy styles to customize sessions for each individual’s needs. The basis of my practice is rooted in Narrative Therapy: we are all the main character in the story of our lives. It’s important that we take control of this story, re-writing our personal narrative, shifting the perspectives and storyline to one that is based on our values and internal resources. There’s a phrase: “therapy includes science, intuition and kindness,” and I base my sessions around these values. I also believe in the importance of humor; it allows us to let off steam, and talk about heavy items that would otherwise be uncomfortable. I bring my sense of humor into each session.
Short Term (Solution-focused, etc.)
Ideal for those who are coming in with a specific problem they’d like to address and gain clarity on. Typically, short term therapies are present focused and do not dive deep into your past.
Structured therapies are goal and progress oriented. Therapists may incorporate psychoeducation and a specific “curriculum.” In order to stay on track, therapists may provide worksheets and homework.
Insight-oriented (Psychodynamic, Existential, etc.)
Exploring the past and making connections to present issues can help clients gain insight. Getting to the root of the issue and finding deeper self-awareness can help with long-term change.
Non-directive (Humanistic, Person-centered, etc.)
Going with the flow and seeing where it leads.
Behavioral (CBT, DBT, etc.)
Focuses on changing potentially unhealthy or self-destructive behaviors by addressing problematic thought patterns and specific providing coping skills.
Trauma Focused (EMDR, TF-CBT, etc.)
Recognizing the connection between trauma experiences and your emotional and behavioral responses, trauma focused therapy seeks to help you heal from traumas.