A Little About Me and How I Work …
Hi! My name is Lindsay Durgan, and I’m a licensed marriage and family therapist with a private practice in the San Francisco Bay Area, in which I provide a wide range of treatments for individual adults, parents, teens and adolescents, and families.
People often want to know a little about me, and why I do this work …
While I’ve provided cross-cultural counseling to international students and faculty in Tokyo for five years, have been treating kids in California since 2011, and opened my private practice in 2015, I actually didn’t start out studying psychology, although it’s always been a subject that’s interested me.
My first career was in international education, and I’ve always enjoyed reading, hiking, cycling, yoga, baking, sewing designer clothing, traveling, and spending time with friends and family. I also love Japanese folk art … and dogs! I even grew up with a kennel of Shetland Sheepdogs.
Prior to starting my private practice, I had the opportunity to live, work, and raise my two children in a variety of diverse cultures, language groups, and locations (including in Canada, England, China, Japan, and Pakistan), as part of the Canadian Foreign Service.
While living in Japan for six years, among other things, I became the Executive Coordinator for International Education for a Japanese foundation and set up international partner school exchanges with 12 schools in four different countries. I also ended up counseling both children and their parents, which came naturally to me and I absolutely loved doing!
In fact, while it may sound a bit “corny,” I’ve always had the ability to connect with kids and love doing so … I even had my own babysitting “company” at the age of 11. 😉
So, I decided to make a change …
I studied attachment theory at Berkeley with Drs. Mary Main and Erik Hesse. At one point during this training, I asked Dr. Main how someone can heal from an insecure attachment, to which she replied “through a loving relationship or psychotherapy.” That’s when I decided, “I’m in. I want to do this work!”
I earned my Master’s in Counseling Psychology from the University of San Francisco, where I also completed a school-based family counseling internship at a private high school.
Additionally, I’ve found Control Mastery theory to be an incredibly helpful theoretical orientation/model for healing, which led me to undergo additional training in this modality over a two-year period at the San Francisco Psychotherapy Research Group.
How I Approach My Work
We’re all relational beings. As Judith Jordan has said, “We grow, learn, expand, and gain a sense of meaning in relationship.”
This is why the healing relationship you and I create is the single most important element in the success of our work together.
It’s also why the focus of my work is on relationships, and why I approach my work from an integrative, attachment-focused, and psychodynamic perspective.
What does that mean?
It means we’re not going to spend a lot of time talking about “what” you’re doing “wrong.” Instead, we’ll look at “why” you’re doing what you’re doing, in order to make sure your “why” is in alignment with reality and whatever it is you’re trying to achieve.
It means that, through the working relationship we’ll build together, you’ll learn to acknowledge and evaluate the beliefs you have about yourself, your relationships, and the world in general, so you can then work towards disconfirming and transforming any erroneous thoughts and beliefs you may have that are holding you back from achieving your goals.
It means that I don’t provide cookie-cutter therapy. I believe strongly in closely tailoring a therapeutic approach that fully honors your unique personality, circumstances, and needs. It also means that I draw on a wide variety of techniques from individual psychodynamic psychotherapy, evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), family therapy, and parent counseling … Basically, I’m flexible, and we’ll use whatever techniques in our work together that will be the most effective at helping you create the change you seek and achieve your goals.
It also means that I’m not one of those therapists who is just going to sit and listen to your problems …
Yes, I’ll listen non-judgmentally, attentively, and intentionally to everything you have to say. But I’m also interactive and I’ll provide guidance and direction.
I’m here to sit with you, be here for you, see you for who you are, and help you become who you want to be. I’m also here to “hold your hand” when you need it, as well as lead you by the hand in the direction you want to go.
When all is said and done, our relationships and connections with others and with ourselves are what give life meaning and make us happiest.
It’s through our connections that we move towards understanding, healing and growth.
This is why I’ve spent the better part of the past decade helping teens, adolescents, and adults figure out who they really are, reconnect with those they love, and discover their sense of purpose, meaning, fulfillment, and joy.
I feel privileged and blessed to do this work … to have developed open, trusting, meaningful relationships with those who matters most … and to have created a life I truly love. And I look forward to helping you do the same!
Please don’t hesitate to contact me today at 415-990-9976 to learn more about the services I offer, ask any questions you have, and find out whether or not we’d be a good fit for working together. I look forward to connecting with you and helping in any way I can.