Positive counseling for today's problems

Looking for positive solutions to your personal challenges? Help is here!  Psychotherapy is no longer the hocus-pocus, life-long ‘shrinking’ it used to be. Research in brain science, relationships, and the mind-body connection has led to remarkable advances in understanding people and their problems.

 

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can resolve serious problems like depression, anxiety, and attention deficit disorder – very often without medication and certainly without years on the couch. Family Therapy and Relationship Coaching will help you reduce the conflict and increase the love.

My clients say I'm positive, down-to-earth and warm - but not too 'touchy feely'. Couples and parents like my specific direction and coaching style. Teens say they feel respected and that I “get it”. Clients of all ages like that we laugh (a lot) and learn about the brain, our bodies, our relationships, and how to be happy.

If that is the type of counseling experience you think will be a fit with yourself or your family – don’t hesitate; contact me today and start feeling better!

About Kari Hunter

Kari holds a master’s degree in Child & Family Studies with specialization in Marriage and Family Therapy. She holds two licenses with the state of Illinois: Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor. She is currently in private practice in Geneva, Illinois and has provided counseling for over twenty years. Her primary areas of focus include relationship therapy for couples and families as well as psychotherapy for individuals experiencing anxiety, depression, and ADD/ADHD.

To augment her clinical knowledge and personal experience, Ms. Hunter has pursued additional training and certification. She received a certificate in family mediation from DePaul University’s Center for Dispute Resolution, completed study in personal coaching from the Institute for Life Coach Training, and devoted a year to learning improvisational acting at Chicago’s famed Second City.

"Kari, you have been a constant uplifting influence in your unwavering patience, insightful suggestions and comments, and delightful humor.  It has meant more to me than I can say.”  Anita P.

"I have worked with so many counselors over the years but never have I experienced such growth as when I worked with you last year.  I just had to let you know that you’ve made a tremendous difference in my life - thanks again." Sheila M.

"Kari, you have given us our son back! Thank you." Joseph W.

Anxiety
  • panic
  • social fear
  • phobias / ocd
  • exposure techniques
  • general anxiety disorder
  • cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

We all worry from time to time. It's a normal reaction to everyday stress and traumatic life events. Most people have ways of coping and ultimately reducing the discomfort. However, you may be one of the millions who experience anxiety to such a degree that it impairs your functioning at home, work or school. Left unchecked, anxiety will affect your self-esteem, your relationships, your choices - big or small - your overall quality of life.

I use CBT, Mindfulness Techniques and Exposure Therapy - proven methods for dealing with children and adults who are experiencing an anxiety disorder, social anxiety, performance anxiety, nightmares and sleep fears, intrusive negative thoughts, or school refusal. You will leave your first session with strategies to immediately combat your anxiety.

Depression
  • grief & loss
  • situational depression
  • post-partum depression
  • mindfulness techniques
  • cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

Depression is bigger than just "the blues". It can affect mind, body, and behavior in children and adults. While most people picture depression as someone who talks about their sadness and doesn't want to get out of bed in the morning - it actually can look very different. Imagine someone who's always irritated and angry, lazy, negative or has mood swings.

Someone with depression can have trouble concentrating, following through, and making decisions. They can act impulsively, take risks, injure themselves, or abuse alcohol or drugs. CBT and Mindfulness Techniques, even without medication, can effectively treat depression in adults, teens and children.

Relationships
  • affairs
  • conflict resolution
  • communication problems
  • separation / divorce / re-marriage
  • couples therapy & enrichment coaching

Sometimes couples allow their relationship problems to become like a runaway train on a collision course with break-up. You might be trying desperately to divert the disaster but every attempt just seems to bring you closer to someone leaving.

While it is difficult to end the cycle of blame, anger, and threats - it can be done. You can replace old patterns with new healthy habits using positive tools; learn to overcome hurts and resolve resentment.

With my counseling, couples can re-connect with each other and focus on common goals for a mutually satisfying and loving relationship.

More on relationships . . .

Child & Adolescent
  • mood swings / anger
  • CBT / Family Therapy
  • school / social problems
  • fears / stress / self-injury
  • coping with divorce / family problems

What's "normal"? Emotional changes are a natural part of each stage of normal development, so when do "normal" problems require professional help? Adults can cope with problems for weeks, months, or even longer - children and teens live in the moment. If you have been trying and it hasn't worked to relieve the problem within a couple of weeks - don't procrastinate! Problems can escalate quickly. Even if it is a "normal" difficulty - don't you want your child or teen to have the best skills and techniques for coping?

Today's therapy focuses heavily on teaching - educating you and your child about how to cope with normal difficulties in a way that avoids bigger problems later. Like a sports coach or music teacher, I can teach them about themselves and how to handle their worry, relationships difficulties, performance pressure, anger and stress. Many of my family clients consider me their personal Mental and Emotional Health Coach preparing them for success at the game of life!

More on child and adolescent therapy . . .

ADD ADHD
  • adults / youth
  • assessment / diagnosis
  • counseling / coaching
  • e - coaching

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) is generally described as problems of inattention, forgetfulness, and distractibility. Ironically, another characteristic is the ability to focus like a laser on something you find interesting or fun. When there are also problems of behavior control, being impulsive or hyperactivity present, we call it ADHD.

These symptoms occur in children and adults. A holistic coaching approach is key: education, exercise, diet, cognitive and behavioral strategies. Since ADD can cause a great deal of discord in relationships, I incorporate family and relationship therapy whenever possible to offer tools that decrease frustration and increase the desired results.

More about therapy for ADD . . .