Linda Joy Myers, Ph.D.
My Berkeley office is located on Solano Avenue, convenient to many East Bay locations, five minutes from the I-80 freeway and on major bus lines. I serve clients from local areas—Berkeley, Albany, San Pablo, El Cerrito, and Oakland, as well as those coming from Walnut Creek and Concord. Commuters to San Francisco are able to see me before or after work on their way to the East Bay or Marin.
My second office is in San Ramon.
Licensed since 1982, I have many years of experience working with people who need a skilled and trained listener and problem solver. Please feel free to call me and tell me what problem is bothering you and what you would like to change. I will be glad to meet with you for an initial session to see if we are a fit. If not, I will try to suggest appropriate referrals.
I accept insurance from various insurance companies and may be able to offer a sliding scale.
If you would like a confidential conversation about your issues and questions please call 510-524-3898. Provide your phone number and I will call you back as soon as possible.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | 510-524-3898
As an experienced therapist practicing in Berkeley, California for the past 25 years, I know how stressful it can be to decide to enter therapy and to find a therapist. For most people, telling a perfect stranger all about their problems is not easy. It takes courage to begin the healing process. Congratulations on recognizing that you are in need of professional advice and help.
Creating a Better Future
People who seek therapy are looking for ways feel happier more satisfied in relationships and work. They want to enjoy life more, but thoughts, feelings, or behaviors seem to get in the way. Perhaps other people seem to be interfering with living the way you would like.
The problems that keep most of us from a high quality of life can be solved through what I call “emotional re-education.” We grow up in families that do the best they can, but unhealthy family patterns can replay through the generations. Without knowing it, we get caught up in those patterns, and find ourselves wondering why we aren’t living the way we hope to, want to, yearn to. We can work together to unravel all that and set your course to a better future.
I welcome people of any ethnicity and sexual orientation, including children, step-families, blended and mixed families, and same-sex couples.
My areas of expertise include:
- Communication—you can learn how to listen as well as speak your truths
- Anxiety—how to manage anxiety and resolve the root causes
- Depression—working with the now as well as the past
- Freeing your creativity—helping you recover your innate creative spark
- Adults abused as children—giving hope that the past can be put to rest and a better present and future can be created
- Recovery from addictions and abuse—learning how to find the Real Self inside
- Work issues—helping to resolve conflicts at work or about your career
- Couple stresses and conflicts—couple’s work often involves translating your communication. You can learn how to negotiate and resolve differences. Couple’s work can help you find your connection again.
- Children and parents—at any age, these relationships can be resolved for a better relationship
- Family conflicts and questions—single parents, families who are stressed with money and work, housing, aging parents—all these issues can cause stress, and may cause rifts. Listening and negotiating skills can help resolve these stresses.
- Elder issues—no matter what age a person is, she or he needs to be listened to with care and compassion, and encouraged to find a high level of living in good health, with humor, activities, and relationships that provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.
- Trauma recovery—the past can haunt us, but there are ways to get into the present now and create a better future. Techniques such as EMDR–used to reprocess traumatic images and feelings–can help in the process of hearling the past and creating a positive set of images for the present.
- Co-dependence—we learn how to lose ourselves so that others can feel more powerful or have less pain. We learn to hide or to act out our own pain, but after a while these techniques that once helps us cope no longer work. Learn how to recover your Self, and how to make boundaries in ways that are kind to both yourself and others.
When couples first start going out together, their eyes meet and they are rich with the desire to explore who this new person is, what makes them tick, and how wonderful it is to be connected. This is the “falling in love” stage, and most people fly high with hopes and dreams of the future—creating a family together, having adventures, and sharing life’s joys.
Couple’s work is a specialty that requires extra training. I have taught couple’s therapy at various local universities—John F. Kennedy University and Argosy University, training therapists to learn how to work with two people who are in conflict but who have a passionate and intense relationship. It is important that the therapist be a mediator for the couple, and not to take sides. The couple’s therapist is a catalyst in the relationship involved in helping both people to feel heard and respected.
A good couple’s therapist has a variety of skills to help resolve conflict, and to teach the couple how to change their patterns. New behaviors and feelings surface when people feel heard and understood. Sometimes old problems that were swept under the rug need to be aired and resolved in order for the couple to grow together as they once dreamed of doing. My style is to bring out the issues carefully gauging how each person is reacting to the subject matter. If something is “too hot” we can put it aside to discuss after we have worked on ways to deal with deeply conflictual issues.
Sexuality, children, and extended families often become part of the discussion in couple’s therapy. As we work together, I will teach you communication skills, essential listening skills, and problem negotiation techniques. I am active with the couples I work with, giving examples, and teaching them new ways to be together.
Our Work Together
The most important key to a successful therapy experience is for me to be a good listener and offer you my full attention.
With a background and specialty in communication and self-expression through words, both spoken and written, I know how to tune into your story on a deep level. I want to get to know who you are—not just what problems you may have, but who you are as a person and how I might help you find resolution to what is bothering you.
As I listen, I consider the various approaches that might be useful in addressing your problems. As a therapist with many years of experience, I draw upon Cognitive-Behavioral, Family systems, and a Psychodynamic understanding of how the human mind and behavior work to help you create change and achieve greater happiness.
In addition to classical therapy techniques, I have been trained in a variety of relaxation techniques and visualization. I am certified to use EMDR—a technique that helps to heal trauma (see above topic on trauma.)
Working together, I will help you identify the patterns, behaviors, and feelings that are causing you stress, and teach you how to change what is not working and help you sort out what parts of your life you feel good about. We celebrate the positive while creating more options for you with the things that aren’t working.
Through therapy you have an opportunity to free yourself of unhealthy patterns and live an authentic life, experiencing balance and a positive sense of yourself. This heightened self-image then helps you in all areas of your life—work, relationships, health, family, and creativity.
Creating the vision
After listening to what is working and not working in your life and what changes you would like to see, together we will discuss your specific goals. If you are not sure how to express and name these goals, I can help you find the words to express your heart’s desire and the ways in which you would like your life to transform.
Your issues might include relationship conflicts, work stresses and conflicts, concerns about money, children, aging parents, death and dying, illness.
Balancing children, money, and work are challenges to many these days, and personal creativity, inner peace, and contentment can be diminished by stresses in these areas. Many people feel that they don’t have enough time to give to their families, or that if they do, their work lives will suffer.
Whatever difficulties you are dealing with, we will look for ways to change your options and look for how to have more choices that work for you.
Resolving issues and differences is difficult for many people, whether it occurs in a couple, family, or work situation. Human conflict is natural, but if there is too much of it or it is handled in unproductive ways, we need to develop a new point of view and new emotional skills. Learning to listen to others, create proper boundaries, and communicate clearly and honestly can create new ease in your relationships.
Issues resulting from abuse and abandonment
Many people suffer silently from the results of childhood abuse and/or abandonment. Family patterns of addiction, families torn apart by divorce, loyalty issues, disaster, war, and other stressful events affect all members of a family. If you were a child whose parents were addicted to drugs or alcohol, or if you were a foster child, an orphan, or suffered physical and emotional abandonment, it can be difficult to feel a part of life, or to say no when you feel like it. You might also be subject to turning off your emotions, so you don’t know exactly what you feel.
Our work together can heal these patterns and give you more skills to move on with your life and be free of the suffering that has limited you in your life.
Trauma and Childhood Abuse Recovery
People experience many kinds of trauma, including natural disasters, war, neglect, and molestation, as well as physical and emotional abuse.
Many people do no realize that they are suffering from the aftereffects of such experiences, perhaps believing that being beaten or frequently spanked is just a part of growing up.
Emotional abuse is also very difficult to identify and understand if you have been raised in a household where disrespect, put downs, blame, judgment, and boundary violations are everyday occurrences.
Many people who have been abused find that they repeat these patterns from childhood, despite a very strong desire not to.
In our work, I will help you pinpoint any post-traumatic issues that may be present, and offer ways to heal them so they no longer play out in your current life.
Some of the problems discussed above can make you feel tired, listless, and hopeless. Perhaps you go to work and handle your life, but sometimes life can seem gray, dispiriting, and discouraging. You may not easily recognize chronic depression because this gray world has begun to seem normal, but if you have been feeling this way, therapy can help to show you hope, and encourage new ways to approach life. There are usually psychological reasons for your feelings healing can occur by investigating your emotions, experiences, triggers, and your background. It is important to learn new patterns of thought and behavior to create a future that you can look forward to.
If you feel you have a problem with alcohol, drugs, food, or self-destructive behavior, I can help you create a plan to help free you of the things that get in the way of living your life to the fullest. We will talk about your patterns of behavior, and make a plan for your healing and recovering the person you really are inside. Addiction blocks us from our Real Self, and recovery is about finding that inner self again.
Children and Families
I love working with families and children. Children need support in expressing their feelings in a healthy way, but often they are not able to tell us directly what is causing a problem at school, with friends, or at home. Art and play therapy in the presence of the family or parent can help to break the communication barriers and allow the child to move forward appropriately. Therapy with children is usually brief, with the idea of the family working together to create a more harmonious home life after therapy is finished.
I welcome you to come in for an initial consultation, either with the whole family or just the parents. We can discuss what is concerning you and come up with clear objectives for our work. Together we then decide who comes to therapy and how to find the happiness at home that you are looking for with your whole family.
I look forward to speaking with you! Please call me to talk about your needs and questions. 510-524-3898.