Hi. I’m Deborah Spiegel MT-BC, CCHt. When you make an appointment with me, we will discuss your individual needs and how my methods apply to you,. We will discuss your goals and objectives, set priorities, and together make a plan of action. Helping you (or your child) meet your goals is my priority.
I am a Clinical Hypnotherapist and a Board-Certified Music Therapist, with degrees in child development, special education,and music therapy. I also have been a DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) Skills group leader since 2001. I worked as a clinical therapist at the Colorado Mental Health Institute with adolescents in crisis for 11 years, utilizing all of the methods listed here. I now use my training and experience to help people in our North Fork community.
I have always been fascinated with guided imagery to music. To enhance my skills in this area as a therapist I became certified in clinical hypnotherapy where I learned many therapy tools. I integrate into my imagery sessions techniques that draw from Jung, Erickson, Gestalt, Psychosynthesis, and hypnotherapy along with music therapy. I am qualified, experienced, and trained in the use of techniques for addictions, sexual abuse, trauma (including PTSD), and inner conflict. These methods are also useful in changing behavior patterns, overcoming stress, childhood wounds, building self-esteem and empowerment, relationship issues, and more. This process introduces people to their own inner resources and to a nurturing inner world which can continue providing comfort and guidance and can be available for the client’s own use even after the session is complete. I have been doing this since 1989.
DBT is a therapeutic model which teaches coping skills in the areas of mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. I teach and reinforce these skills through music therapy. I have published a book on this topic (Music Activities & More for Teaching DBT Skills and Enhancing any Therapy, Authorhouse 2010) and also teach continuing education classes for therapists.
Music Therapy is the use of music and music related activities by a qualified music therapist to reach a therapeutic goal that is not musical in nature. Goals are set after assessing the client’s strengths and needs. Music therapy interventions can include listening to music, moving to music, discussing lyrics, song writing, singing, drumming, playing instruments, and more. Sometimes I create original songs for a client, to reinforce their experience in guided imagery or to reinforce a skill they practiced in therapy. Music therapy is an evidence based practice, as is DBT and hypnotherapy.
I can draw from many tools to support you in your sessions.
I have helped hundreds of people like you to develop inner resources to heal yourself, to break habits, to reach your goals, to gain tools for coping through difficult times, and to get free of past baggage that may sabotage the above.
This is the toolkit of therapeutic processes i draw from to assist you in discovering and working with your Inner Wisdom to change your life.
Hypnotherapy & Guided Imagery
to assist you in discovering and working with your Inner Wisdom to change your life.
Get Ready to Move from Frustrated to Successful.
Solutions come from the wisdom within you.
This experience of hypnotherapy and guided imagery is self-empowering.
All suggestions for change come directly from your own subconscious mind.
Build nurturing inner resources that you can continue to use on your own after the sessions are completed, not reliant of the therapist.
By filling the underlying basic need in the subconscious mind
we can find resolution.
We learn habits of behavior and patterns of emotional response based upon past events. A current event triggers an old response pattern. Often the current presenting issue is being influenced by past experiences and wounds that haven’t been healed. Like updating the software on your personal computer, we can reprogram the subconscious mind to provide the nurturing, support and wisdom necessary for self- empowerment and the creation of a joyful, fulfilling life.
This can include:
- Rescuing your inner child from the trauma, neglect and emotional pain of the past; providing your inner child with new loving parents and the experiences of a nurturing childhood,
- Meeting your inner mate, inner healer, or inner guide
- Conferencing with all the different parts of yourself that have a different and maybe even opposing opinion or view on a particular goal you have set (such as losing weight, smoking cessation, being in a relationship…)
Recognition of Hypnotherapy by the AMA
The American Medical Association (AMA) has officially recognized hypnosis as a valuable and beneficial treatment as applied and used since 1958. In “Psychotherapy” magazine (Volume 7, Number 1), various types of techniques were listed and profiled in a review of relevant literature by Alfred A. Barrios, PhD. In the above quoted text, the techniques that proved to generate the greatest success in providing lasting change were the following (listed in order of success rate):
Treatment Success Rates
Hypnosis — 93% recovery after 6 sessions (approx. 1 1/2 months @ 1 session per week).
Behavior Therapy — 72% after 22 sessions (approx. 6 months @ 1 session per week).
Psychotherapy — 38% recovery after 600 sessions (approx. 11 1/2 yrs @ 1 session per week).
Source: Psychotherapy Magazine, Volume 7, Number 1, as stated by Alfred A. Barrios, PhD
Examples of Sessions
Following are some examples for you to get an idea of how this works.
For privacy, these examples have been modified.
You can benefit from hypnotherapy sessions on any number of topics,
depending on what is going on in your life at any given time
Carol had tried every diet there is and was feeling pretty hopeless due to the fact that she always seemed to gain back most of whatever she lost.
She felt frustrated because even though she was doing everything right for some reason she was not getting any smaller. In Carol’s hypnotherapy session she discovered that due to some issues in her past, part of her didn’t feel safe and was using her size for safety.
Her subconscious mind provided her with an alternative experience of safety, so now that scared part of her felt loved and safe and no longer needed her to keep her body weight up to protect her. She was finally free to lose weight without being sabotaged.
Sessions begin with the building of inner resources for nurturing and support. Running and changing traumatic incidents begins with developing inner resources for nurturing and protection and then changing the charge in the memory bank, creating new experiences and a new outcome in the subconscious mind. This is followed up with anchoring the new physical responses to triggers and then future pacing: i.e. asking the client to imagine being in a situation which in the past would have caused them stress and to practice the newly anchored new behavior and or physical response. They learn to use visualization for managing stress and creating new responses to triggers. They also develop new resource states. The use of post hypnotic suggestions for relaxation and stress management is another use of hypnotherapy for helping people with PTSD or other trauma.
Following are two examples of sessions done with youth that are related to trauma.
Samantha, a 16 year old, was expressing her distress by engaging in destructive behaviors since her mother died. “I wish my Mom was back. I love her.” . In the first step of building inner resources when invited to find herself in a place that feels safe and good to her she imagines being in the mountains with deer, a stream, running water, and sees Mom. Mom tells her how much she loves and cares about her and that she’s always here for her when she needs her. Mom says: “I didn’t mean to leave you. I can help you with your fears of people leaving.” Client says: “It feels so relaxing. I feel less stress. I don’t have to worry because I know she still loves me and is OK. I feel safe and loved. I don’t have any more urge to hurt myself.”
This new resource state is anchored: “Any time you are in a situation where you have the urge to engage in destructive behavior, you can now easily remember this feeling you have right now and know that your Mom loves you, and you can feel that urge melt away like butter as you feel so warm inside full of Mom’s love.” And to future pace it: “ Imagine being in a situation where in the past you would have felt like hurting yourself and describe now what is happening.” She describes a situation (the thought of going to live at her aunt’s house) and says that now she feels Mom’s love and has no urge to engage in the problem behavior. “I feel safe and loved. I know that Mom is in my heart. She didn’t leave me. She’s hugging me and it feels relaxing. I know I’m not alone.”
She continued to connect with her Mom every night before bed to build that inner resource connection, and to take time outs as needed to further build that connection and stay free of self harm urges.
Alisha has flashbacks “about sexual abuse and physical abuse from the past. It comes when I’m not doing anything.” “I feel sad and angry most of the time and I take it out on myself. I feel worthless.”
When invited to find herself in a safe place that feels good to her she went to the rain forest with wolves. She felt calm. The white wolf told her “violence is not the key. I can help by standing with you and guiding you on the right path. I can hang out with you and be there for you.” Client feels good, loved, and safe.
Then accompanied by the protective wolf we visit the flashback memory. The wolf rescues her from the perpetrator. Client sees the perpetrator handcuffed by the police. She expresses her anger towards the perpetrator and then sees him being hauled off to jail where he suffers the same bad experiences she had received from him “so he knows what its like.” She imagines front-page headlines reporting what a bad person the perpetrator is. She feels a sense of power return to her. The wolf is a good substitute resource for the nurturing and protecting parental role the perpetrator didn’t fill in a healthy way.
Anchor: “Whenever you have any urges to hurt yourself or to act out in anger you can feel the love and support of your wolf and feel that same happy and loved feeling you feel right now, knowing that he’s standing with you and guiding you on the right path and is here for you in your heart always.” Future pace: “Imagine now being in school and tell me if you are having any flashbacks or what’s different now.” She says, “I am free of flashbacks. I don’t feel any urges now and I feel happy.”
She was given the homework assignment to connect with her wolf every night before bed and build that inner resource connection. She was given a small stuffed animal wolf to reinforce the experience. Later in the weeks following she continued to report that she was free of flashbacks and that the wolf was very helpful.
Marlena is a 16 year old who feels shy and doesn’t try in school. She wants to change her ways but finds it difficult. She is brilliant, and beautiful, but is struggling with feelings of worthlessness and failure.
We listened to some songs and she shared how the lyrics relate to her: ” So many times I’ve messed up. I feel like I’m slowly dying away inside.”
Then we did a guided imagery journey. She imagined being in a safe place in nature and was met by a “wise one” who had a message for her that can help her in her life. She found that ” When I feel depressed, I can go there and be undepressed. I learned how to keep out of trouble and accomplish what I want. It made me feel like someone’s got my back and cares.”
Next we did a song writing activity. She wrote “I can get through this because I know that I can do anything I put my mind to.”
She started practicing the DBT skill of opposite action to emotion which led her to creating some new friendships and participating more in school.
We continued to work in layers using similar strategies both individually and in groups.
She has succeeded in accomplishing positive results in her life. She believes in herself.
Learn and practice practical life skills and personal growth strategies. Skills are taught in the areas of mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness. We also learn about walking the middle path. DBT utilizes a balance of acceptance and change.
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT®) is a cutting edge therapy model created by Dr. Marsha Linehan. DBT is well known in mental health settings, and has expanded to be used in schools, prisons, addiction centers, and more because it is so effective. DBT skills are useful to anyone.
Being a DBT informed music therapist, Deborah Spiegel MT-BC, CCHt can add a new dimension to the way people learn, practice, and remember DBT skills.
Integrating DBT skills into your life can provide effective tools for mindful living and self-awareness, coping with stress, interpersonal interactions, and emotion regulation strategies.
Integrates with other modalities for powerful results.
- Stress reduction
- Improve self-esteem
- Emotion Regulation
- Distress Tolerance
- Interpersonal Effectiveness
- Anchor skills into memory
- Impulse control
- Health benefits
- and its fun!
Music Therapy is an established health profession which is clinical and evidence-based. Music is used within a therapeutic relationship to address physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of individuals.
After assessing the strengths and needs of each client, the qualified music therapist provides the indicated treatment including creating, singing, moving to, and/or listening to music. Through musical involvement in the therapeutic context, clients’ abilities are strengthened and transferred to other areas of their lives.
What People are Saying
” I find myself making healthier choices without really thinking about it. And my energy is not taking a dive in the afternoon;Amazing! I can hardly wait for my next session!” Retta C. Health Professional
“Learning to “tap into” the subconscious mind for support and guidance. I feel much “freer” and less overwhelmed, and I therefore feel as though I have more energy to give to my clients at work.” Amy H., Therapist
“I’ve already experienced an increased amount of mental clarity with this type of subconscious work which has been beneficial in all aspects of my life.” Diane W., Housekeeper
“My partner and I are still together after 20 years. We met right after the session I did with you on imagining my perfect mate! That meeting changed my life. I am forever grateful. Anthony Bogart, Health and Yoga Specialist
“I can’t believe this! I had a session on my addiction to sugar last week, a week before Halloween. I made it all the way through Halloween without even wanting a piece of candy!” Joanne V. Educator
“Deborah Spiegel has provided invaluable treatment for adolescents as a Music Therapist. She has often been able to assist teens with healing from traumas and finding/developing inner strength to address their treatment. Further, she is a skilled DBT group leader. ” Deborah Pool LCSW, Social Worker
“My children both had hypnotherapy sessions with Deborah. My daughter was having behavior problems in her classroom that stopped right away. Her teacher commented on the change. My son had a fear that was addressed and the sessions helped him overcome that fear and take action in a way we never expected. I recommend this work.” Parent of 2 children