Barbara Kopystecki, Counseling / Psychotherapy


Cutting Edge Therapies for Trauma and Post Traumatic Stress:

Working as a mental health professional for the last 20 years has allowed me to see the devastating effects of overwhelming experiences on mind, body, and spirit. This has made my professional focus learning how best to help individuals who have experiences:

  • Chronic childhood experiences of abuse and neglect
  • Experiences of physical, sexual, emotional trauma
  • Veteran combat experiences and war trauma
  • Experiences of any kind that overwhelmed a person’s capacity to cope, including: grief and loss –medical trauma, natural disasters, relational trauma, domestic violence …

Echoes of traumatic experiences continue to live in the body and mind and affect the person long after the experience is over.  The legacy of trauma can affect a person’s life in many ways:

  • pervasive feelings of lack of  safety
  • disconnection from bodily sensations
  • sense of self as worthless, powerless and helpless
  • not being able to form healthy relationships
  • chronic emotional instability-either feeling too much or feeling too little
  • states of panic and anxiety
  • difficulty focusing and being present
  • exploding, shutting down, or both in response to triggers
  • eating problems—anorexia, bulimia
  • trouble sleeping
  • self harming behaviors
  • drug and alcohol abuse and other unhelpful coping attempts.

Treatment approach is holistic in the sense that it works with all dimensions of life – the body and brain, mind and emotions, relationships and spirit.  The goal is getting back to living fully and productively.  Treatments designed to create these outcomes are:

  • mindfulness
  • restoring connection to body through sensory-motor practices like yoga and Feldenkrais®
  • developing emotion regulation strategies
  • neurofeedback to restore feelings of safety
  • EMDR for the resolution of traumatic memories
  • working with the whole person in all aspects (Internal Family Systems)
  • relational process to foster interpersonal safety and trust
  • practices to promote sense of competency and self worth

The outcome is transformation, not simply coping and survival.  It is possible to heal from trauma in a heroic way that shows what life is truly about!

Relationship Therapy:
Working with families and couples gave me the opportunity to witness first-hand the tremendous capacity of our relationships to support, sustain, and heal us. We are profoundly social beings, yet our interpersonal relationships can be complex, triggering and frustrating our need to connect on a deep level.

Family therapy to build family relationships that promote healthy functioning:

  • Parents as executives and leaders of family life
  • Children’s growth and development to meet their potential
  • Adolescent’s separation and individuation into young adulthood
  • Mutual respect of all family members
  • Open, honest communication
  • Becoming as source of support for each other

Couple Therapy to promote trusting connection and authentic intimacy:

  • Awareness of communication patterns
  • Develop mutual respect and understanding
  • Ability to express full range of emotions
  • Working together as a team
  • Acknowledgement and working through emotions such as: betrayal and disappointment

Divorce Rehab to restore trust in relationships and openness to love again: 

  • Evaluate need for emotional self protection
  • Process emotions such as: resentment, betrayal, grief and loss
  • Understand satisfying and unsatisfying patterns of relating
  • Create a plan for re-engaging with others

Coaching: Personal Development & Peak Professional Performance:

Coaching differs from therapy in that coaching doesn’t look into the past to understand present situations and challenges.  Coaching is focused on the here and now with a view to designing in a concrete way a more satisfying and compelling future.

Coaching is effective for any concern or challenge a person may have.  This is just a small sampling:

  • Physical health challenges: coping with illness, restoring health through life style changes
  • Professional challenges: interpersonal relationships, communication difficulties, anxiety, leadership
  • Changing jobs and/or professions
  • Establishing satisfying interpersonal relationships
  • Peak performance strategies
  • Spiritual growth and development

Many resources can be drawn from, including: Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), the integral framework of Ken  Wilber, the Enneagram structure of personality.

Read about em-Wave2 (HeartMath, Balancing Emotions)

Barbara Kopystecki, MA, MHP

Call 610.888.8600 for an appointment or information