Therapy that lasts.
You have been doing your best, and you are looking for help, direction. While you cannot change what has happened in the past, we can work together to learn from the past, discover your inner strengths, and create a better future. Our conversations will help you realize peace while going through life challenges, and learn skills that will serve you for years to come.
Your therapist choice is an important decision. A good therapeutic relationship is essential for personal growth and change. Being heard and understood are vital in a relationship and you owe it to yourself to heal and to move forward.
I use an integrative approach using a variety of theoretical models. I match the appropriate technique that best fits each client. I am certified in hypnotherapy and when desired I am able to incorporate meditation and/or mindfulness practices into the therapeutic process.
Due to my own experiences with losing loved ones to terminal illnesses, I have researched and written extensively on grief and loss. I integrate techniques from those approaches to support the development of skills that will enable you to cope more effectively with stress, painful emotions, and posttraumatic symptoms; and to improve relationships and overall functioning.
Symptoms are like the tip of an iceberg. These can include negative feelings and/or behaviors. When you are motivated and given the resources, you can heal old wounds and move forward with a sense of well being and confidence. One of your most valuable resources is your therapist. Having a good therapist saves time and allows you to grow more quickly that you ever have before.
Whatever individualized treatment plan we agree upon, my primary guiding principle is to support you in achieving a quality of life in which you feel stronger, more resilient to outside influences, more capable of handling stress, and more confident and self-assured. More like your true, authentic self, more aware of your purpose in life.
Contact me and for a free phone consultation about whether we might be a good fit.
Background and experience
I received my PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy at Nova University. While working as a staff member in the Nova University Psychology clinic and continuing my coursework, I discovered the systems approach to therapy in the Marriage and Family Therapy program there. Due to losses experienced in my own life, I focused on grief and loss throughout the program.
I have worked in the mental health field for 13 years. As a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MT 3302), I view relationships in a systems perspective.
Being a military veteran myself, it is an honor to work with veterans and their families.
I am very creative with color, enjoy therapeutic painting, and visits to the beach. I love deep conversations involving expression of past experiences, current challenges, and desired results. Therapeutic experiences are my art, looking at the deeper meaning of life’s happenings. Learning from the past will tool the future.
WHY WORK WITH ME?
You owe it to yourself to heal, learn, and grow so that you live your life to your fullest potential. Your work with me will include support for your efforts, empathy for your emotions and feelings, and guidance as you realize your patterns, your innate gifts, and learn how to take care for yourself.
As any worthwhile relationship takes time to build, bringing your honesty and willingness to be open to new horizons will ensure a healing connection between us.
My training and perspective is in systemic therapy. Looking at the dynamics of relationships with others and your relationship with yourself will benefit you now and in your future.
You can call me at 954-391-5305, ext. 512 for a free phone consultation to talk about whether we are a good fit.
Thank you for inviting me to join you on your journey.
About Fort Lauderdale Therapist Dr. Melissa Valentina, PhD, LMFT, CHT
I grew up in Florida, lived in Greece while in the U.S. Air Force, and have also lived in North Carolina. I spent some time in Brazil studying the healing practices there. It was during this time in Brazil that I realized the systemic perspective of how each one of us affect and are affected by others in our circle of family, friends, and colleagues. I earned my doctoral degree in Marriage and Family Therapy at Nova Southeastern University, Davie, Florida.
As a licensed Marriage and Family therapist, I am dedicated to the focus of a systemic perspective, which looks at the entire system and how different people and their pets in the system affect each other, and the dynamics of that system. Because we are always in relationship with others and with ourselves, this systemic perspective allows for a viewpoint of the whole picture of what’s going on.
As a U.S. military veteran myself, I am dedicated and honored to work with our veterans on their life issues. I truly love what I do, and I feel honored and privileged to engage in therapeutic conversations to facilitate whole health, healing, and empowerment. I am genuinely proud of my work because I see lives change in amazing ways.
Essentially, I empower individuals and couples to reach their optimal potential both personally and professionally by using brief and effective strategies. My approach is integrative, meaning that the therapeutic technique used will fit with the presenting problem and the people involved.
Solution-focused therapy is utilized, and hypnosis is used when it is a viable option. Hypnosis is used to help with a number of conditions such as smoking, anxiety, low self-esteem, and grief and loss.
The therapeutic relationship between client and therapist has a direct influence on therapeutic outcome. My role as a therapist is to become an agent of change for my clients through utilizing a strength based and solution oriented therapeutic approach. I am passionate about my work and am fully committed to providing the highest level of customized services to exceed your expectations.
My therapeutic stance is one of genuine curiosity, respect, empathy, compassion, and acceptance. Within therapeutic conversations, we explore your issues by asking questions about your experiences, perceptions, meanings, and expectations.
My intention is to work collaboratively with clients to review and co-construct meaning of life experiences, which are a priority in our therapeutic direction. Although I do help people to change their relationship with a variety of past experiences, I tend to focus more on creating healthy shifts in their present reality and generating hopes for the future.
Through collaborative conversations we are able to use each person’s unique set of beliefs, values, hopes, and commitments to decrease the influence of the problems on their life. In essence, I help people to creatively reclaim their personal power and authority by changing how they relate to the difficulties in their lives.
“Helping individuals and couples create their desired outcome and realize their goals”