Clinician Spotlight: Anna Clark, MFT

We’re all humans on this journey together. This perspective is at the core of Anna Clark’s therapeutic approach with her clients. She connects with them by exploring their fears and vulnerabilities—something we can all relate to.

In her career as a therapist, Anna has noticed that many—but not all—who go to therapy may be considered a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP). In case that term is new to you: HSP refers to a trait that an estimated 15–20% of the population has. It is characterized by:

  • An increased sensitivity of the nervous system
  • Deeper cognitive processing of stimuli
  • A tendency to notice subtle details
  • Heightened sensitivity to pain, caffeine, and loud noises

… and more. Check out Dr. Elaine Aron’s site on Highly Sensitive People to learn more about the research on this relatively new and fascinating area of psychological research.

Anna considers herself a Highly Sensitive Person as well and sees her increased sensitivity as a key contributor to her ability to be attuned and emotionally present with her clients.

She has found herself organically speaking in “we” language in her sessions—for example, “we feel these feelings.” This helps normalize experiences that clients may be going through, as a verbal reminder that they are not alone in their journey.therapy, eating disorders, sensitive, HSP, shame

In that same spirit, she feels it is important not to pathologize clients: Rather than focusing on the problem alone, she seeks to highlight their unique strengths while constructively addressing struggles.

One of Anna’s favorite teachers is Brené Brown. “She’s done an amazing job of educating about and normalizing shame. She’s bringing it to the mainstream.”

Shame often plays a role in eating disorders, and Anna finds that the more someone has internalized shame, the longer the healing process can be. To combat shame, Anna will use “inner child work” as a way to create self-compassion and heal past hurts. Above all, she wants you to know that healing is possible and you are absolutely deserving of it!

If you’re interested in taking the next step to healing your eating disorder with Anna, get in touch for a free 15-minute intake.