My Philosophy & Approach

You may have a sense of apprehension about coming to see a psychologist. Many people, especially those who have not seen a psychologist before, are anxious about the process. My goal is to make you feel as comfortable as possible. After all, I want to help reduce your anxieties, not increase them! So, we’ll share a cup of coffee, a soda, or some bottled water in a relaxed atmosphere as we talk over your concerns.

Unlike the popular image of psychologists, I think you will find that I offer both a listening ear as well as practical, common-sense guidance for dealing with the problems of life. I am not big on labeling people, blaming things on your past, or making excuses for behavior. I will help you rethink your choices, encourage your strengths, apply research findings to your situation, and provide psychological tools to assist you in attaining your goals. My style of working with people might be characterized as forthright, down-to-earth, and matter-of-fact, laced with a little humor.

We will jointly determine the goals of consultation or evaluation for you. I will initially take some history and later make recommendations as I deem appropriate. I will want to know about your present family as well as about your family-of-origin. Often, I like to invite other family members to appointments in order to understand their viewpoints as well.

Virtually all my clients are highly successful people, but they are encountering difficulties with some aspects of their lives. They may be experiencing marital conflict and possibly facing divorce. They may feel depressed or anxious despite having many positives in their lives. Others are struggling with problems of their children or adolescents. Some have substance abuse issues that are compromising their lives. Whatever issues you may be experiencing, I will seek to provide sensible solution-focused ideas in a caring way. Your problems are unique, but because I have been in the field for a long time, I have a wide range of experiences and knowledge that I can use to help.

My Background and Experience

I have been a licensed psychologist practicing in Houston since 1987, and I began work in the mental health field in 1972. I earned my doctorate at The University of Texas at Austin. I also earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Texas A&M University and a master’s degree in counseling from the University of Maryland. I have been in independent practice since 1995. I formerly was the Director of the Family Therapy Program at the Houston Veterans Administration Medical Center. Prior to that, I was a faculty member at the University of Houston. I have had affiliations with several universities and the Baylor College of Medicine, and I taught graduate courses in marital and family therapy for 20 years. I have served as a consultant to numerous organizations including the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, the National Fire Academy, and Emory University. I am a past-president of both the Houston and Texas Psychological Associations.  Presently, I am the Staff Psychologist for the Houston Fire Department, but I maintain a small private practice specializing in relationship problems, dealing with crisis and trauma, the psychological challenges of being a man, and using the outdoors to further psychological learning (i.e. adventure therapy).

If you’re interested in having me present or give a workshop you can find more info here.