My Experience, Values and Approach

I draw on my training, values and approach to help clients learn, grow and succeed in their individual and relationship challenges.  Some of the most important things I bring to my work with you are:

Experience and Education 

In order to do all I can to help clients get positive results in their lives, I made it a point to have a strong research and results-based orientation in my academic training where a focus of the program was a study on the evidence on the effectiveness of many different approaches to therapy. Also, I conducted additional academic research on various therapies. Some of the results that I was particularly impressed with was produced by one of the newer approaches to marriage and relationship therapy: Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy. This is why it's an approach I use in my practice. 

Values and Approach

Empathy:
An effective therapist needs to be understanding and compassionate, both in dealing with individuals looking for help as well as when working with couples and families. We all accumulate some emotional scars and trauma during the course of our lives. Those closest to us sometimes inflict significant trauma and pain on us, often as a response to their own fears and pain. Our human frailties can also lead us to unintentionally inflict trauma and pain on ourselves. I help you heal those wounds and overcome these challenges by working hard to understand how you experience your life and relationships from your own individual standpoint so I can support you in making your life better. 

Accepting and Non-Judgmental:
In order to work well with you as an individual, two people as a couple, or several members of a family, it's critical for me to accept who you are - where you are - as you are - right now. This means I am not going to look at you as deficient or defective - the same as we don't look at ourselves as deficient or defective. We all have our share of strengths, human flaws and frailties. We are all capable of enormous change and growth when we start off and accept the need to be whole -- in other words to understand and accept the total package of all of our strengths and flaws and give up the illusion and pursuit of perfection for the more helpful and realistic pursuit of growth. 

Relevant and Helpful:
An effective therapist needs to be able to provide you with relevant advice and tasks that you can test for yourself in your life and relationships and see whether it works for you. Behavior matters in life. For example, in marriages that are experiencing problems, there are behaviors that can help heal, strengthen and rekindle the love you once had in your relationship and others that can significantly harm your relationship. 

Hopeful:
Having hope for the future is critical to our sense of well being. But ongoing frustration in dealing with tough problems often dims our sense of hope. I offer hope to my clients because I continue to be amazed at the resilience of people and their ability to achieve more satisfying and healthier lives with the right encouragement, guidance and persistence. I am also hopeful because we have much more effective, research-based approaches for helping individuals and couples having problems than we used to have, and new breakthroughs in research continue to be made.  

Open and Responsive:
An effective therapist constantly strives for the right balance of listening and advising over the course of their work with you. This balancing act is particularly challenging in working with couples as I work to make sure each partner feels they are being heard and understood. Whether working with you as an individual or two of you as a couple, one way I maintain that balance is by getting ongoing feedback from you. I will periodically ask for it, but you should also feel free to volunteer it during the course of our sessions. 

Supportive:
When you have to face tough situations and tough issues in your own life, your own behavior or your primary relationship or marriage, it helps to have someone in your corner to face those issues and situations with you. It's my job and privilege to support and guide you on that journey.


Additional Information About Brian Powers, MA LLP

I have been providing psychotherapy since 2005, having completed a B.A. in Psychology from University of Detroit Mercy and a Master's Degree in Marriage and Family Psychology from Wayne State University. Additional healthcare experience from earlier in my career has helped me counsel individuals and couples who have faced or are currently facing difficult health issues, including infertility. I have worked at the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) Perinatology Research Branch at Georgetown University and Wayne State University. This NIH research organization is a world leader in pregnancy health research and other developmental health issues. This experience taught me much about the short-term and long-term impact that physical and emotional stress and trauma can have on us and the importance of taking steps to protect ourselves and our relationships from its negative effects.


Want More Information?

If you live in Southeastern Michigan and want additional information about my practice, just click on any of the following links of interest: How I Help Couples, What is Psychotherapy and How It Helps and, Hours, Appointments & Directions.

If you would like to speak with me directly to discuss your needs and whether I might be the right fit for assisting you, you can reach me at (313) 675-9886 or click on the following link to reach me by email.