I am a licensed psychologist in the state of Washington (#PY00000970; first licensed in 1984) through September, 2016. At that point I will close my private practice and retire as a psychologist.
I received an M.Ed. in Rehabilitation Counseling (1973) and a Ph.D. in Educational Psychology/Counseling (1981) from the University of Washington. My early training was in client-centered psychotherapy (Carl Rogers), existential approaches (Rollo May), and feminist therapy. These therapeutic approaches hold in common an attitude of respectful listening and close attention to the client’s values, search for meaning, and life purposes. I have enriched this foundation through extensive study in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy/EFT (Susan Johnson and Les Greenberg), Accelerated Experiential-Dynamic Psychotherapy/AEDP (Diana Fosha), Encounter-Centered Couples Therapy (Hedy Schleifer), family systems theory and therapy (especially Carl Whitaker’s symbolic-experiential approach), gestalt therapy, attachment theory and theories of adult development. I have had a special interest in working with couples since 1974. I have extensive experience teaching clinical and theoretical courses in psychology at the graduate level (core and adjunct faculty at Antioch University Seattle). I have also taught and Leadership and Personal Development at Bainbridge Graduate Institute at Pinchot and doctoral-level courses in the School for Transformational Learning at the California Institute of Integral Studies . In 2002, I founded a professional services corporation, Creative Commitment Northwest, PS. My husband, Paul Finley, and I co-lead weekend couples retreats in Seattle,. Our website is creativecommitment.com. In addition to my regular private practice, I offer occasional three to four-day couples intensives in Seattle.
I am a published writer and lead creative writing groups and retreats based on a Taoist-inspired form I’ve created called Writing Round and Free. We enter into roundness by softening (in Taoism, “soft is a technical term which means “releasing impediment to movement”). Rather than pushing through restriction, we soften and move into the space that opens, so that writing flows in a connected and natural way. In addition to Taoism, this form has been inspired and influenced by Barbara Turner-Vessalago’s approach to creative writing, Freefall.
I live in Seattle, Washington and Paul and I have been married for 32 years. We have two grown children and four grandchildren.