News & Articles
As one of 45 therapists and as Executive Director of Cathedral Counseling Center, I spend my days with clients who are in pain and struggling. But perhaps more often than you might imagine, we laugh in sessions. A shared joke or appreciation of something ridiculous, however dark, can be a moment of true connection. We know laughing is good for us: it decreases stress, eases anxiety, improves mood, enhances resilience, the list goes on! So when our event committee proposed an improv comedy night for this year's benefit - I said "Yes, And" (improv principle #1). Chicago is home to some of the best improv, training generations of funny people like George Wendt, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert - but did you know it is also home to a growing network of therapists who use improv in their practices? In the latest issue of The Atlantic, improv is highlighted as an effective complement to therapy as it "mirrors the patient/therapist dynamic" fostering relationships of "openness, trust and acceptance." It describes how improv skills are being incorporated into a number of cutting-edge groups, right here in Chicago. Say "Yes, And" - join me on October 1st and reap the mind-body benefits of laughter in a one-of-a-kind improv performance. Here & Now: An Evening of Improv Thurs, October 1st, 5:30 - 8:30 pm iO Theater Chicago - 1501 N. Kingsbury St.
I’ve lived with depression throughout my remembered life. For a long time I thought everyone had the kind of racking pain, anxiety and sickly fear that haunted me from the moment I awoke. I just presumed everyone else was stronger and had better coping skills.
The good news is that I’m now ready for group therapy. The bad news is that, in fact, it took a year and a half of group therapy to get ready for one. A year and a half of being apprehensive of confrontation, of being obsequious and self-effacing.
My youngest daughter, Jill, was a delightful child. She was beautiful and bright—a gentle spirit who enjoyed singing in a band and was a talented runner. Everything looked so promising when she left for college.
Early in 2012, Dave called Cathedral Counseling Center and asked to make an appointment, saying only his family had told him to call. “I don’t know what they’re so worried about,” he said the first time we met. It wasn’t immediately apparent. Dave was in his early 50s, neatly dressed, pleasant and careful about what he said—maybe fearful, as many new clients are, that I would wonder if he were crazy.