When people come to counseling, it’s because they want to change something in their lives. They may feel overwhelmed by their circumstances, want to solve a particular problem, or they may want to gain a greater understanding of themselves. I know that asking for help is often difficult, and I feel honored to be part of my clients’ process. Working from the belief that change is always possible, I help my clients identify their strengths, what’s getting in the way of making changes in their life, and the most effective ways to achieve their goals. My style of counseling is supportive and collaborative, with an emphasis on respect, resilience, and hope.
The methods I use are eclectic, primarily based on psychodynamic, interpersonal, and cognitive approaches. This means that I pay close attention to thinking styles, belief systems, and relationship patterns. I try to understand the ways in which these are associated with past events in my client’s life and how they are reflected in his or her current choices, behaviors, and life circumstances. I place importance on social, family, and work relationships, as well as our personal responsibility in making needed changes.
As a counselor, nurse, and mother, I have been a “helper” for most of my life, and have worked with people in counseling and crisis situations for more than 30 years. I hold a BA in Applied Behavioral Sciences and an MS in Human Services/Counseling from National Louis University. I am a member of the Illinois Counseling Association, American Counseling Association and Illinois Mental Health Counselors Association.
Susan Thorne-Devin, LCSW, ACSW