Chuck Powers, MA, LMFT-A
Yep, the guy in that picture is me. My name is Chuck, and I’ll be telling you more about me and some of my beliefs (approaches to therapy) in the paragraphs below.
First, I want to say my heart breaks every time I see relationships end that don’t have to end. It’s hard to watch couples who are stuck, confused, and running out of resources and hope. Ending relationships can hurt so much, but most people just don’t know what to do in this situation and many end a relationship that can be saved.
Let’s be honest, a few relationships should end—need to end, but most relationships teetering on extinction can recover and with some work grow into that dream you shared when you felt so in love. So, how does that work?
Well, first, I want to tell you I’ve been through a divorce (worst thing ever), and I’m currently in a 23 year marriage that we’ve made dramatically better after almost failing after 17 years. I’ve been down this road. A lot of my ideas around relationships come from what I learned from these experiences, as well as returning to school at Texas State to earn a degree in Professional Counseling.
During school, my focus was—you guessed it—relationships! I studied and read a lot. I integrated school with my own experiences, and I’ve learned so much. I’m still learning, to be honest. My wife and I are learning. I learn so much from my clients and their unique experiences. And, I learn from continuing education and training. I’ll give you a teaser about what I’ve learned. The world pushing hyper-individuality on us is just flat out wrong—always has been. As it turns out, we are designed to have primary relationships, and there’s a lot of new research showing it! Some of the artists and song-writers we dismissed as hopeless romantics were actually right—go figure.
I practice Emotionally-Focused Therapy, and all I can say about this theory is it’s the number-one, scientifically-validated couples therapy in use today. Based on the work of Dr. Sue Johnson and Dr. John Bowlby’s attachment model, EFT counselors are able to help a lot of couples break free from where they’re stuck and find each other again (connection!). I’ve seen it, and I’ve experienced it in my own life.
In addition to training in EFT, I also have received Gottman level I & II , as well as Affairs and Trauma training. I’ve completed the Prepare/Enrich assessment curriculum and am associated with Twogether In Texas.
True, as you’ve surmised, I specialize in working with couples. I just told you a little bit about that. But, that doesn’t mean I don’t value working with individuals. I do! I work from the same relational framework I use to work with couples.
In my experience, so many ‘individual’ problems end up having a relational element to them, and I find it very useful to approach individuals knowing they’re a part of various systems—family systems, friend systems, institutional systems, etc. Plus, you and I will form a professional relationship together as we unpack your story and seek to meet your therapy goals! I pretty much just do everything and think about everything through that relational lens, so I bring my curiosity, compassion, empathy, and commitment to creating a safe, intentional, explorative space into every session. I want you to feel heard and understood! So, I don’t sit across the room behind a desk raising my eyebrows while taking notes. I’m not that therapist. I roll up my sleeves, pull up a chair (6 ft for covid), and join you where you are.
Families, Men’s Issues, and The Lifespan
In addition to working with couples and individuals, I enjoy working with families with older children (mature enough to manage talk therapy), men on male-specific issues, and people who are facing life stage transitions, including older adults looking to put it all together and poke around at meaning, purpose and how all of the meaningful experiences over a lifetime fit together.
A Little More of My Background
So, yeah, I went to college. I earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a misguided Master’s degree in Educational Psychology (Research/Statistics/Psychometrics) from Arizona State University. I did some geeky stuff based on that Master’s for awhile, and then went and did something else geeky—technology! I even stayed at home for a little while raising my two children, where I learned to demolish a house and even put most of it back together! It took me awhile to return to school and correct my course by getting my Master’s degree in Professional Counseling and complete my original dream by entering the profession. But, here I am, and I’m absolutely loving it!
M.A. in Professional Counseling, Texas State University, San Marcos
M.A. in Educational Psychology, Arizona State University, Tempe
B.A. in Psychology, Arizona State University, Tempe