Two out of ten teens and adults in the U.S. struggle with excessive worry or anxiety on a regular basis. Many seek help through therapy, medication and various forms of relaxation, but often without complete success. We hope to change that for some, through coaching. It's our mission.*
Our journey here took a lot of turns, but one was very serendipitous. This one led us down a path of coaching that would eventually intersect with a very troubled and tortured lot: the anxious. This group responded to coaching like rain in the midst of a scorching hot day. It was an invigorating experience. We felt we were on to something.
We would go on to encounter the work of Dr. Joseph Luciani,† a psychologist who practices psychotherapy on the east coast. Dr. Luciani had struggled with anxiety himself all his life but was able to overcome it and then go on to help many more overcome it. What he discovered through trial and error was that coaching was the key. He had been incorporating coaching into his sessions and the results were amazing. So certain was he that coaching was the deciding factor, he eventually wrote books on how one might coach oneself in conquering persistent anxiety. His work became well known, and before long he was lecturing on the topic at Harvard, among other places.
Since discovering Dr. Luciani's work, we have encountered many others in the field of anxiety finding success with anxious sufferers. In each case, coaching was involved. When coupled with therapy, coaching can be a powerful assist, helping with the practical steps needed for one to walk outside the anxious vortex and end the madness.
What we do here is coaching, not therapy. However, we do work with licensed mental heath professionals to ensure those who come here are fully supported in every way, mentally, emotionally and psychologically. Coaching is never a substitute for licensed mental health care, but with the approval of a licensed therapist or mental health professional, it can be a powerful supplement to it.
Al Gardner, ThM
Anxiety Coach, Certified Life Coach,
Founder & President of Direction Connection
Al is the author of the forthcoming book, Getting Past Anxiety: An Altogether Different Approach (Winter 2020). In addition to his coaching certification, Al has degrees in communications, psychology, and theology. He studied pastoral counseling in grad school and has coached for over a decade. He developed a heart for the anxious while working as a crisis counselor for a non-profit.
Denisa Larreau, MS, LMHP, CPC
Counselor & Therapist,
Licensed Mental Health Practitioner
Denisa is a licensed therapist in Omaha, Nebraska, where she owns her own counseling practice. Her focus is on those struggling with anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorders, body-image, eating disorders, and self-esteem. Denisa loves what she does and is very passionate. She is the current President of the Nebraska Eating Disorder Network Executive Committee, and a vital partner with us here.
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* All of the experiences represented on this website can be counted on as being true expressions coming from those having experienced, first-hand, the coaching offered here. Identities have been changed in respect to the individuals involved. None of the experiences should be taken as guarantees, nor should they be understood as being typical. Coaching is not therapy and is never a substitute for therapy. Coaching helps with the practical implementation of what is learned in therapy, as well as in developing habits in cognition, usually coupled with therapy, that can help one escape the patterns that can accelerate and spiral downward were they not interrupted. The coaching offered here should, therefore, be understood as a supplement to therapy, and not a replacement for it. We work with therapists here to identify symptoms that require therapy and we refuse to coach anyone so identified unless they are also seeing a licensed therapist or mental health professional, and that professional has given their approval for them to be coached by us.
† SerenityFind.org and Direction Connection are not affiliated with Dr. Luciani, nor his work. We mention Dr. Luciani because we feel his work has given much credibility to the powerful role coaching can play in the life of an anxiety sufferer, and for his influence in our coaching methodology. Dr. Luciani's work validates the positive experiences we've had with coaching and anxiety.