Ilona Varo, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist # 95053
Prior to psychotherapy, I was a publicist for high profile celebrities and brands. Working with people in the entertainment industry and in high-stress environments, gives me an in-depth understanding of the struggles and challenges that many busy professionals and creative people face. I also have a passion for working with teens and young adults, as these formative years can be filled with an overwhelming amount of change, uncertainty and confusion. I specialize in working with people who grapple with eating disorders, anxiety, questioning self-worth, self-sabotaging behaviors, feeling stuck in their lives, unable to move forward from past trauma, and struggle with self-actualization. My background and training is in narrative therapy as well as somatic modalities.
Narrative therapy is a collaborative and non-pathologizing approach to therapy, which centers people as the experts of their lives. A narrative approach views problems as separate from people and assumes that individuals have many skills, abilities, values, beliefs and competencies that can assist them in changing their relationship to the problems they face.
Somatic therapy is a holistically oriented therapy, which integrates the mental, emotional, spiritual and physical aspects in each of us. Somatic therapy helps us become more aware of our bodies and the sensations we experience through them. By checking in with ourselves, we can get in touch with what we are feeling and experiencing, rather than just being lost in our thoughts and activities. It’s natural, especially if any of these sensations are uncomfortable, to want to change our focus, and move away from them (by numbing out, substances, food, TV, etc.). A better approach is to stay with these feelings! If we allow ourselves to be curious about what is happening, we can explore and honor what comes up for us, and be actively involved in our healing.