Welcome to A New Hope Counseling Center
Our goal at A New Hope Counseling Center is to help you to discover and utilize the healing powers within you. As professionals, we take exceptional care in facilitating you to achieve the balance in your life, thus allowing you the opportunity to reach your optimum level of success.
Our qualified professionals are available to meet the needs of adolescents and the adult population, as well as being responsive to the various needs of our community.
We specialize in:
- Rational Emotive and Cognitive Behavior Therapy (RECBT)
- Traumatic experiences
- Pain causing events
- Several adjustment and other personal issues
Addictive behaviors can be traced to certain key risk factors in a person's life. Risk factors include
- biological pre-disposition such as genetics and biochemical factors
- the persons psychological development and family support, nurturance and care provided throughout the developmental stages
- the social factors in a person's life. That is, what kind of social support structures exist in a persons life? How is their family, extended family? What kind of social clubs, teams, organizations (schools, community, church) do they participate in?
The development of addictive behavior then can be linked to the absence of healthy biological, psychological, or social development, or what mental health professionals refer to as the biopsychosocial theory of psychological problems. Treatment therefore, incorporates the risk factors in treatment. When appropriate, biological/psychopharmological treatment is used in overcoming certain addictive behaviors. Psychological developmental issues are overcome through psychotheraputic intervention and the person is finely encouraged to develop and expand his or her social support network as he or she engages in skill acquisition training.
Rational Emotive and Cognitive/Behavioral Therapy interventions as well as Mindfulness has proven successful in treating these conditions.
Frustration is a normal reaction to unwanted events and circumstances, and will result when a person fails to get something they want or ends up with something they don't want. Extreme anger, on the other hand, is what people experience when they fail to get what they think they need or must have. It is an emotional response to a frustrated demand. Treatment of anger and rage typically progresses along the following lines.
Assessments and cognitive preparation:
- Cognitive change
- Reduction of psychological symptoms
- Skill acquisition (relaxation techniques, behavioral skill development, etc.)
- Application practice
The New Hope Mental Health Center provides a wide range of assessment measures to evaluate and treat a wide variety of psychological problems.
Neuropsychological screening is available for individuals who experience head injury or trauma and wish to assess their level of functioning. Objective and Projective psychological testing instruments are available when a personality assessment is indicated.
Conflict is a normal process that occurs in all relationships. However, when people develop maladaptive or abusive methods to cope, conflicting psychologically emotional and behavioral problems occur. The New Hope Mental Health Center helps clients to help themselves to learn not only to cope with stress or conflict, but also to develop effective techniques for preventing future stress and conflict.
Occasionally people experience event in their life where they may have experienced, witnessed, or were confronted with an event or events that involved actual or threatened serious injury or threat to the physical health of self or others. People responding to such crises often experience intense fear, helplessness, or horror. Children may express disorganized or agitated behavior. Some people are able to talk to others and resolve the crisis without developing symptoms. Others, however may not be able to resolve the effects of the crisis and go on to develop a cluster of signs and symptoms known as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The New Hope Mental Health Center has an active affliction with the American Red Cross's Disaster Mental Health team as well as the Capital Area Critical Incident Stress Debriefing team. We are familiar with and use the Mitchel Model of defusing and debriefing of critical incidents.
The clinic offers techniques and strategies to overcome the traumatic incident and to further manage existing as well as future stress.
Dependency, for the most part, is a learned behavior. People who are dependent on others to fulfill their needs do so at the expense of their own mental health. Behavior that at one time in your life was adaptive, now robs you of your independence and places you in a precarious situation. Furthermore, people who are dependent need to be taken care of and can be submissive, and have difficulty making everyday decisions without reassurance and advice from others. They often feel uncomfortable or helpless when alone and have great difficulty expressing disagreement with others because they fear loss of support or approval.
Co-dependency often involves subjugating or subjecting ones' own needs in order to maintain the equilibrium in a dysfunctional relationship. In reality, co-dependency is another manifestation of severe dependency. The Rational Emotive and Cognitive Behavioral approach to treating people with dependency and co-dependency issues involves active directive cognitive behavioral approaches to establish unconditional self-acceptance. In addition, R.E.C.B.T. provides people with strategies to help themselves become more assertive, to engage in constructive risk-taking, and develop social skills which decreases significantly their dependence as they develop healthy intra and interpersonal relationships.
A New Hope Counseling Center offers psychological assessment and treatment of a wide range of psychological problems. Depression can be characterized by: a depressed mood, loss of interest or pleasure as well as cognitive, behavioral and physical signs and symptoms. Anxiety often involves the sense of impending danger, the what if dread accompanied by restlessness, tension, or fear which is excessive and unreasonable. In addition to the above, the clinic treats a wide range of disorders. AXIS I referred to conditions, usually involving disruptions of the neurochemistry in the brain that contain the focus of clinical attention. Conditions such as depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, bipolar, sleep disorders, panic, PTSD sexual dysfunctions, etc. Other disorders can be seen in terms of a long and pervasive pattern of development such as the various personality disorders and learning disabilities.
Whatever that disorder or condition, the one thing they all have in comment is that they cause intense feelings of discomfort or pain and markedly impact the person's ability to function across several setting. But clinic intervention offers an integrative approach in working with client's problems. Although the primary approach is RECBT, we also use interpersonal, humanistic, behavioral therapy, mindfulness and positive psychology, as well as psychopharmacological intervention.
One of the major, though not only, problems that people with disabilities experience is the inability to accept reality. People have two choices. They can rail against fate and stay angry and distressed or they can accept reality and move on. To accept the disability means to 1) acknowledge that it exists, 2) believes there is no reason that I can fanatically insist or that it should not exist, 3) see it as bearable. Many people have trouble with the idea of accepting a disability. They think that to accept it means they have to like it, agree with it, justify it, be in different to it, or resign themselves to the disability.
This is not what accepting disability is. You can do something, see it as unjustified and continue to prefer that it not exist. You can be concerned about your disability. You can take action to change or adapt it, if change is possible. But you can still accept a disability by rejecting the idea that it should not exist and that it absolutely must be changed. This demand will only reinforce the emotional pain and can often serve to exacerbate a condition. RECBT and Mindfulness can help ameliorate the stress and help you to get your life back on track.
Is it possible for couples to divorce amicably and avoid the intense, destructive negative emotions that dramatically, and in some researchers opinions, permanently effect the lives of their children?
Not only is it possible but, as the latest research in the American Psychological Association Journal suggests (2-98), “under the right conditions, children can avoid the destructive emotional and behavioral consequences that follow most divorces. Divorce counseling using Cognitive/Behavioral interventions help the individuals overcome their self-defeating emotions and behaviors. When hate and revenge are removed, the family members are able to interact in a manner that is self enhancing. The alternative is a highly charged, stress evoking way of living that is destined to result in severe physical and emotional consequences.”
One of the more complex psychological problems involved a natural behavior that progresses into a mass destructive problem for the individual and his or her family. To understand the eating disorders, we need to consider the profound influences of the American culture and the conditions of the home and society. Untreated, people often develop life threatening problems.
Treatment of the eating disorders involves psychological educational, medical, and family intervention. In our treatment of clients with eating problems, we find the holistic approach of our clinic to be highly efficacious. Using a multi-modal approach to treatment, we are able to help our clients to help themselves develop effective coping and life management skills.
The New Hope Mental Health Center provides a variety of psychoeducational services training, in-service for teachers, staff and administration. The clinic staff in addition, is available to community groups as well as Board of Education centered around a wide range of problems and challenges confronting our schools. Topics could include stress management, anger reduction, controlling impulsive behaviors, understanding-predicting and managing violence, improving academic performance, working in a diverse environment, understanding and appreciating differences and similarities, risk management, and strategic planning.
A New Hope Counseling Center provides unique services for executives and professionals who experience stress, and more often, distressed over the decisions they make routinely. The goal of consultation is to differentiate self-defeating emotions such as worry and anxiety, anger, rage, depression, and fear, from the appropriate negative emotions such as concern, annoyance, frustration, sadness, and regret. The former emotions cloud judgment and decision-making while the latter helps maintain a rational reality based perspective which allows executives and professionals to operate at the optimum level of efficiency.
Dr. Fandrick has advanced (Level II) training in Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (E.M.D.R.) which is a powerful therapeutic process used for relieving human suffering from traumatic events in a person's life. The most impressive aspect of E.M.D.R. is that it taps into the learning principles in each of us so that changes arise from within. Prolonged Exposure Therapy and Cognitive Processing Therapy help individuals who suffer from problems such as panic attacks, phobias and generalized anxiety to overcome their fears and restore balance in their lives.
A New Hope Counseling Center's philosophy in both individual and family therapy attempts to use the most efficient and direct approach in treating emotional and behavioral problems using such methods as: skill training, stress reduction, active-directive changing of unrealistic, demanding unrealistic and unnatural beliefs. We also utilize biblio and audio therapy, in vivo-desensitization and reinforcement procedures. The cornerstone of effective family therapy is to have family members adapt an unconditional acceptance of themselves and other family members. We are particularly interested in effecting family change as quickly and as efficiently as feasible.
The manner in which a person grieves the loss of the loved one or relationship is largely influenced by ones culture, religious, family, and personal experiences. There is no definitive, universal way of grieving. In short, the intense feelings of overwhelming sadness and pain are a natural part of the grieving process. It is when people feel stuck in the process and develop an inability to get beyond the loss that clinical intervention may be appropriate. Therapy helps the individual understand the meaning attached to the loss and develop healthy adaptive coping mechanisms. We help the individual to help themselves facilitate the grieving process, not to shortcut it.
Group counseling offers people experiencing a wide range of problems an opportunity to practice and use the principles of rational emotive behavioral therapy in an environment that approaches a microcosm of their life. In a "safe" environment people are able to reenact various aspects of their psychological and social problems that may not emerge in individual psychology. Therefore, group members can offer and model various key aspects of RECBT such as unconditional self-acceptance, increasing frustration tolerance and risk taking while eliminating self-defeating behaviors and adopting long term therapeutic goals and beliefs.
Individual psychotherapy involves understanding and developing one's self-knowledge, because most of the psychotherapeutic goals and objectives build on this important concept. As such, it involves knowing your capabilities and your limits, your personal temperament and typical coping styles, and your values, beliefs, and goals in life. Knowing yourself and eliminating self-defeating behaviors, while developing and responding with adaptive and self-enhancing beliefs and behaviors are an integral component of individual psychotherapy.
The New Hope Mental Health Center offers a wide range of services to organizations who wish to increase the productivity of their workforce. Some of the services include psychological assessment of future employees, in-house consulting, job skill and knowledge assessment, employee assistance program consulting, seminars for managers and staff on such topics as anger and stress management, smoking cessation, eliminating addictive/self abusive behaviors, increasing motivation, etc. Crisis intervention/stress debriefing services are also available.
There are several reasons why people experience difficulties in their sleep. In some instances, the cause may be of the physical nature, while in many instances, the reason may be linked to high-level stress in the persons life. The use of cognitive-behavioral interventions have proved very effective in overcoming many of problems people face in falling and remaining asleep. For other people, hypnotherapy may prove defective overcoming the stress that blocks the onset of sleep.
In order to help couples understand the nature of their relationship the A New Hope Counseling Center administers a comprehensive, multi-modal assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the couple’s relationship. In Rational-Emotive Cognitive Behavioral couples therapy we use the material from the assessment to not only identify the couples unrealistic views of and illogical conceptions about their reality, but also attempt to reveal their underlying, often unconscious, basic disturbance-creating philosophy, especially their rigid, dogmatic, grandiose demands and commands which they placed on themselves, each other, and conditions in their lives.
We use active-directive therapeutic interventions to help the couple help themselves to make profound philosophical and personality change in themselves in relationship to the significant people in their life.
An athletic and educational or any other performance problem can be minimized or eliminated by developing a sense of commitment and self-determination and self-direction.
The self-determination means taking responsibility for the direction of your life. In order to increase your performance, you need to consider the following: choose your goals, make sure they are your own, actively pursuing your goals, rather than dreaming or waiting, make your own decisions even though you may seek opinions from others, choose to work at managing your stress, developing your potential, and changing behaviors rather than just drifting along or expecting a miracle to occur (winning the lottery) and most importantly, not condemning yourself or any person when things go wrong in your life, even though you or someone else may be responsible. Rather, try to identify any causes and look for solutions. The two main ingredients of commitment are perseverance and involvement. Perseverance is the ability to bind yourself emotionally and intellectually to the course of action that will help to improve your performance.
Deep involvement is the ability to become absorbed, but not addicted, in other people, activities and interests as ends in themselves such as the performance which you wish to improve.
Many people experience crisis and trauma, in life, to the point that it affects their ability to function at school, work, or in their interpersonal relations. Such traumatic incidents may include rape, assault, surviving natural or man-made disasters, or any event that is so far out of the ordinary that it effects our psychological, emotional, behavioral, or spiritual functioning. Some people, without treatment intervention, may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (P.T.S.D.) which is characterized by re-occurring recollections of the experience, re-occurring dreams, Intense negative thoughts about themselves, others or life conditions, acting as if the event were re-occurring (flash backs), intense psychological distress from exposure to "triggers" of the event, and physiological reactions when exposed to reminders of the event.
Treatment: the clinic offers successful treatment interventions specifically designed to treat trauma. Such interventions may include, cognitive/behavioral methods, systematic desensitization, EMDR, Prolonged Exposure Therapy, Cognitive Processing Therapy, Traumatic Incident Reduction (T.I.R.), hypnotherapy and other thought stopping, stress reduction techniques.
How do you know that your child is doing well? The evaluations of how well our children are doing in life generally reflects expectations from developmental research and culturally transmitted information. The expectations and concerns of parents, teachers, and others important to the lives of children will influence expectations, as will popular culture and criteria set in numerous baby books.
Unfortunately, many parents, if not most, are left to fend for themselves when it comes to raising their children. The only models we have are from our own childhood. Even if they were healthy, nurturing, and loving, chances are that may not be transmitted to our children. However, many families are not healthy. Maltreatment, neglect, abuse, and violence occur in greater frequency.
The goal of therapy is to help families to end the inter-generational transmission of family discord. Our program helps families to identify those stress causing events, learn the characteristics of healthy families, manage the stress triggers in their life, identify and managed the personally held beliefs that contributes to stress, how to assert oneself without fear, learn the methods of communication that fosters healthy relationships, develop workable family rules, rewards, and penalties, learn how to confront others, including their children, and get results without using threats or fear, and ways to resolve conflict in the family that promotes healthy family relationships.
A New Hope Counseling Center offers a wide range of psychological assessment and evaluation services. We provide a multi-modal assessment of the individual's thoughts, behavior, affect, sensations, interpersonal relations and family life history, cognitive development and capacity, images and history of drug use and abuse. We provide objective assessment using the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI), a computerized assessment measure.
The style of psychotherapy engaged in at the New Hope Counseling Center is Rational Emotional and Cognitive Behavior Therapy (RECBT), which was founded by Albert Ellis, Ph.D. and Aaron T. Beck, MD, RECBT is a practical, action-oriented approach to coping with problems and enhancing personal growth. RECBT places a good deal of its focus on the present: on currently-held attitudes, painful emotions and maladaptive behaviors that can sabotage a fuller experience of life. RECBT also provides people with an individualized, evidenced based, set of techniques for helping them to solve problems. RECBT practitioners work closely with people, seeking to help uncover their individual set of beliefs (attitudes, expectations and personal rules) that frequently lead to emotional distress. RECBT then provides a variety of methods to help people reformulate their dysfunctional beliefs into more sensible, realistic and helpful ones by employing the powerful RECBT technique called "disputing." Ultimately, RECBT helps people to develop a philosophy and approach to living that can increase their effectiveness and happiness at work, in living successfully with others, in parenting and educational settings, in making our community and environment healthier, and in enhancing their own health and personal welfare.
Self-acceptance and confidence are closely related concepts. One follows the other. Being able to accept yourself as you are without demanding that you be different establishes the foundation for confidence in your own abilities. With the confidence, you will then be able to try new behaviors, take risks and be in charge of your own life. This in turn, makes you far less susceptible to negative peer group influence. This is a drastically different concept for many who foolishly try to establish "self-esteem." Self-esteem is based on the idea that you are a "good" or "worthwhile" person. Goodness requires some criteria, like how well you perform or that you are "good" or " worthwhile" simply because you exist. If you, being as fallible as humans are, fail or do poorly, your "goodness" quickly subsides.
Unconditional-self-acceptance, on the other hand, is based on the idea that you don't have to be "good" or "worthwhile". In fact, there is no need to evaluate you or your personhood ever. Instead of evaluating your "self" or "personhood" we strongly suggest that you use your energy and time to, if you need to, evaluate or rate your behavior, mannerisms, and traits but to never rate or evaluate you the person. If people follow this basic tenant of RECBT, which is not unlike the "accept the sinner, but not the sin (biblical principle)," they will experience more happiness and far less misery in their lives.
The ability to tolerate frustration and discomfort is stress management. High frustration tolerance will keep you from over reacting to things you dislike. It will help you tackle problems and issues rather than avoid them. As you manage your stress, you will be able to take risks and try new experiences. Low frustration tolerance and discomfort are behind the unnecessary stress in your life. As one experiences increasing unnecessary stress they may experience secondary emotional problems about having a problem as when you react to your own symptoms and end up with additional symptoms. You might feel angry and then guilty about the anger or become depressed because you feel anxiety and distress.
We are able to offer the clients that we see at the New Hope Mental Health Center a number of strategies to help them manage their stress. Strategies like changing diet, mindfulness, exercising, managing time, or acting assertively. The most effective method of managing stress is to help the client increase their frustration tolerance. Possessing high frustration tolerance allows one to accept the reality of frustration and discomfort in keeping events in perspective. To accept frustration and discomfort is to acknowledge that, while you may dislike them, they are realities. As such, you can be expected to experience appropriate negative emotions like frustration, annoyance, disappointment, sadness, regret, remorse, and concern. Such emotions are deemed appropriate because they allow you to do something about the frustrating event. The inappropriate negative emotions like anger, rage, guilt, anxiety, and depression are ultimately self-defeating. They block you from getting your needs met. We help our clients to help themselves develop successful strategies to manage the stress in their lives and improve the quality of their life.
A person who engages in suicide ideation or planning has lost all hope in his or her ability to overcome the problems in their life and feels helpless to control the events. Some aspects of self destructive behavior include:
- The remembrance of painful experiences and ending the struggle
- Some individuals experience a "death wish" ie. The world would be better off without me.
- Extensive suicide thoughts.
- Affect and Behavioral changes.
- Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness and worthlessness, seem to be some of the main factors in suicide.
- Drop in performance or grades and others sell destructive risk behaviors, changes in grooming, heating or sleeping.
- Motivation: what seems to motivate the person? Under what conditions? Did they know someone? How close were they? What is motivating the person?
- What could be a factor on the motivation? What are the reasons to live? What would prevent the person from killing themselves?
- Gestures/Attempts: previous attempt history. Previous gestures. What was said? To whom?
- Preparations: Has the person given away (prized) possessions, written/changed a will, checked on their insurance, made funeral arrangements, told anyone, written a suicide note?
- Plans/Means/Method: What is the degree of practicality in the plan to kill themselves? What is the plan? How would they do it? Do they have the means? (Availability, opportunity, lethality)
- Be aware of a sudden decrease in symptoms as the person appears calm and happier. This may occur as a result of the person's final acceptance of his or her fate.
- Treatment: It is important to acknowledge that the person has an option, but have they explored other alternative choices? The goal is to help the person to experience a cognitive shift in thinking. In many, but not all, cases the person may not be able to experience this shift. At that time hospitalization is indicated in order to protect the person and stabilize them through a comprehensive medical and psychological assessment and follow-up treatment planning.
Suicide Hotlines, Online Resources:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255
"Normal children are sexual beings: They'll often masturbate, and Pre-schoolers try to look at or even touch older adults" according to the largest youth and parent survey done to date (Mayo Clinic study) on pre-teen sexual behaviors which was prompted by the intense fear about childhood sexual abuse. (U.S.A. Today, 4-7-98) "So what is considered "normal" or age-appropriate behavior for children and adolescents? Are parents and teens left to sort out the latest headliners in U.S.A. Today or Prime Time Live or other journalistic sources to determine what is in their own and their children's best interests. At the New Hope Mental Health Center our clinical interventions and strategies are based on emperically supported research and proven clinical applications.