Help with adjustment to stressful events or life circumstances

Just when you thought you had everything nailed down, or things were going to be smooth sailing, or you could see the light at the end of the tunnel. Or whatever other cliché we might choose to say that you felt relatively in control and there was some reasonable level of predictability in everyday life and you felt more or less equipped to manage the stresses as they came at you.

Then BOOM! Here comes the unexpected! Or perhaps you could see it coming and even had a chance to brace for it, but the source of strain, stress, or change has stretched you to your limits. This is a time when many people turn to a therapist – when they feel overwhelmed, aren’t sure how to get their life back on course, or maybe know they have good strengths and coping skills but are having trouble rallying those to overcome what life has thrown at them. No one likes to feel out of control or unequipped to handle what life has brought us.

Get help managing challenging life changes

Therapy can help when you’re having difficulty reacting to and absorbing important events or changes in your life. The role of a psychotherapist is often one of helping ordinary people manage extraordinary circumstances.

These circumstances or stressors can take many forms. For instance:

  • losses such as a death, a relationship ending, or divorce
  • struggles involving employment or a job role, or changes in job status including retirement
  • illness, health scares, and aging
  • transition of parenting roles, such as adjusting to an “empty nest”, marriages of adult children, or losing a sense of being needed by family
  • the COVID-19 pandemic, with all the changes it’s brought about and the disruptions it’s created in our lives

This is just a short list. It’s no secret the list of hard stuff life can throw at us is just about endless, or at least it seems that way.

Even changes we feel are positive and look forward to may bring with them a sense of stress and some difficulty with adjustment.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, unable to cope, or at wit’s end, you’re not alone. These are common feelings that, with time and some focused effort, can be managed successfully.

If your goal is to feel like you’ve regained control and know you have the skills and strength to handle extraordinary stress, I encourage you to schedule your initial phone consultation so we can discuss what your situation and needs are and whether I may be the right person to help you navigate this difficult time in your life. Call me at 505-431-5058 or email to

Elements of your therapy

In working with you to better manage your life stressors, I’ll help you take inventory of what you’ve done to manage similar levels of stress in the past, look at what you’re finding to be at least somewhat helpful currently, and talk about who or what in your life feels supportive and positive. This starting point is what’s known as a strengths-based approach, from the idea that we all have some coping skills, knowledge of ourselves, and positive aspects of our lives that form the basis for developing further strategies that will be helpful. I find this also helps people build a bit of confidence as they do the work of taking back control of their lives.

Together we’ll take a look at how lifestyle factors may be impacting your well-being and ability to cope. How’s your sleep, are you eating well, do you get some physical activity on a regular basis, do you have time or make time to do things that feel refreshing? We may look for ways you can improve your self-care. Sometimes in the thick of things it gets hard to prioritize ourselves and make sure we’re getting what we need to thrive. 

We may also spend time going over ways it might be helpful for you to modify how you’re thinking about your situation and your role in it. When we’re under stress we can develop blind spots have difficulty stepping back to see the larger picture.

Equally if nor more important than all the above is making sure you have safe, healthy, positive, and effective coping skills to manage stressful situations or times in your life and an understanding of what your resources are – both personal resources that lie within yourself and other people or groups in your life that you can count on for help and support. We will figure out positive coping skills that work for you and can fit into your life and have you start putting them to use right away.

To request your free 15-minute phone consultation, call me at 505-431-5058 or email to