Counseling Services For Creative Thinkers, Artists & Performers in Portland, OR

Paint brush.
dancers

Artists

Many clients who find their way to me seem to be artists or performers in some capacity. I feel an affinity for these folks thanks to my own long-yet-amateur history of performing arts endeavors ranging from rock bands to dance to standup. Right now, learning the drums is my artistic outlet of choice. Thankfully I am more skilled at psychology than I am at the drums, and I love helping artists and performers find more empowerment and ease in their work and their lives.

Creative Thinkers Experience The World Differently Than Others…

The brain can’t do everything at once. Artists and creators sometimes have an abundance of skill in areas like seeing the big picture or the missing piece, thinking on their feet, feeling things deeply, connecting with others and more.
If you have a mind and heart wired to prioritize and develop those talents, there may not always be quite the same bandwidth for other things that may seem as if they should be easier, or that “other people” may seem to be able to do effortlessly. Challenges can often come up around “executive functioning” skills like planning, organizing, managing time, and staying on top of the important, but boring, and seemingly endless administrative tasks of daily living.

Understanding How You Respond To Your Emotions Can Bring Greater Emotional Freedom To Your Life

In my work I find that artists and performers often come in with strong access to their emotions, meaning that they are able to feel things readily and deeply. This is an excellent quality that can often inspire unique and powerful creative works. Unfortunately, it can also cause you to feel overwhelmed by the very emotion you are trying to express. Ironically this is what often blocks creativity.

Emotional freedom tends to be found in a balance between emotional access and emotional intelligence. I seek to help artists and performers build skillful partnerships with their strong emotions and drives. When this happens, you can use the power of your human experience without losing yourself in it.

It’s Not Uncommon For Challenges Like Depression And Anxiety To Show Up Related To A Performance, Role Or Artistic Project

Artists and performers tend to invite more exposure into their lives in certain ways. The very nature of the work can involve sharing your story, skills and talents with a world that feels judgmental and evaluative. As such, there is often a push-pull between wanting to be known and seen and needing refuge and sanctuary to hide and recharge. I can help you address patterns of vulnerability, shame or just plain exhaustion that can come up when you take those risks. I can also help you access the kind of refuge necessary to sustainably create for years to come.

What If My Stress Is Related To A Job, Can You Help Me Get Ready For A Performance So I’m Less Anxious/stressed?

Yes! There are many tools I draw from to help you respond with calm in situations that have in the past engaged your fear or anxiety response. Mindfulness and relaxation techniques, visualization approaches, and self-compassion are all powerful ways to keep fear or nerves from standing in your way. There are also times when a performance may require so much vulnerability that you may lose yourself in it a bit. In those situations, therapy can also help you come back to yourself effectively.

How Counseling Helps Creative Thinkers With Life In General

Doing this work can help you outside of the creative realm. Therapy can make it easier to ask for and access support that may help you with the mundane tasks of life. Often shame and anxiety is standing in the way of this. Learning more about your strengths and challenges in a supportive and life-affirming context can help. Therapy can also improve your relationships by helping you to learn to speak for emotions rather than getting swept away by strong feelings or conflicts.

Do You Offer In-person And Virtual Counseling?

I offer primarily virtual counseling, with limited availability for in-person sessions for clients based on Portland, Oregon. My license extends to Oregon, New York and Vermont. If you are in any of those states and interested in working together, please reach out.

What Does Counseling Cost?

My rate is $225 per session, and I can help you submit for out-of-network benefits if your plan provides those. Under certain circumstances I am also able to offer sliding-scale with some flexibility on cost.

How Can I Get Started?

If you would like to have a chat to explore working together, please reach out by email at gillianboudreau@gillianboudreauphd.com, or by phone at 802-671-4037. You can also find answers to common questions about my practice can be found here.

Please Reach Out

I’d love to learn how I can support you! I’m available for in-person and virtual events.