433 N Camden Dr, #400, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
310-751-0616
Alik.Segal@LoveNeedsHelp.com

Take action now to make your life better

The goal of psychotherapy is to make you stronger and more focused, so you can solve the problems that baffle and frustrate you today.

You don't have to face alone the issues and situations that you are not sure how to master.  Victory may find you at last if you keep hammering away with the same old hammer.  Or success may come to stay in your life if you change your strategy entirely.  Which path should you take?  That is the mystery of your life today, and I would like to help you find the answer.

Seeking help is the path to finding and using the strength and goodness that is already within you.  Depression or anxiety distract you from your goals, make you forget your values, tell you that you are weak and vulnerable.  But I know you have not given up yet because you are reading my website.  This is the kernel of strength and goodness inside you that we can work with and bring out to make a difference in your life.  We can leverage it to lift you up above your current challenges to see the future that you want to build.

About the Therapist

ALIK SEGAL, MA, JD, AMFT, 
Associate Marriage and Family Therapist, Reg. 93965

HOW I WORK:

Crisis is always an uninvited and loathsome guest, but it is also a teacher with valuable lessons. Crisis exploits and exposes our weaknesses and blind spots, sending us careening towards further trouble and maybe disaster lying in wait. Yet, if we stop for a moment to think and take a deep breath, we see that crisis also sheds the light on our path towards greater strength, fuller maturity, and deeper wisdom.

When my patients and I take a step back from the crisis that occupies their immediate concerns, we often see that this is only a tip of the iceberg called change. Whether the change is positive or negative, if ignored and unmanaged, change will show up as its alter‐ego—crisis—and will sink our best constructed plans.

As my patients and I work to see both the immediate and the panoramic, my style is creative, supportive, practical, and insightful. My job is to help the person who sees him or herself as a victim, to take stock of the past, accept the past’s lessons, decide what values will light the path forward, and having committed to these values, to do what is necessary move ahead as the hero in the story of one’s life.

HOW MY EDUCATION AND EXPERIERNCE ENABLES ME TO HELP MY CLIENTS IN WAYS MANY OF MY COLLEAGUES CANNOT:

Psychotherapy can include psychologically-, relationally-, and organizationally-informed problem solving and coaching.  

My legal education and two decades of working as a California attorney in several legal fields plus years of experience as a mediator (including divorce mediator) make me uniquely qualified to be a sounding board for clients facing complex life decisions, such as emotionally-charged business, workplace, estate planning, and family decisions with financial and legal consequences.  A lawyer who is not a therapist would not understand what you are going through.  A therapist who is not a lawyer would not understand what you are facing.  As a mediator, I am adept at guiding my clients through the toxic thicket of conflict with the least amount of casualties and collateral damage in a way that neither a lawyer nor a therapist are trained to do.  Because I seeing the big picture of human affairs that only a rare professional can see, I bridge the gap of the three professions to provide the complete service that needed by the people facing real-life problems.

A quick clarification is in order:  I won’t be replacing your lawyer who is highly qualified to give legal advice in his specialty.  My job is to help you, in light of the legal information and advice provided by your attorney, to help you to accept the difficult realities of risk, cost, and collatera damage and to make decisions that fit well with who you are–your values and your life goals.

MY TEAM:

I am part of an organization that serves as a great platform for my work.  I am employed by Steven Unruh, LMFT, Lic. 25201, a licensed psychotherapist and an experienced divorce mediator, who is my clinical supervisor.  Steven has a Masters Degree in Divinity and often complements my own secular view of the world with his more spiritual perspective.

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A Taste of Therapy

Read the exercises below when you can stop and reflect on them.

IF A MIRACLE HAPPENED …

If a miracle happened while you slept that solved the biggest problem in your life . . .

How is your life going to be different?

What’s the first thing you will notice after you wake up that tells you that things are different now?

WHEN YOU ACHIEVE YOUR MOST IMPORTANT GOAL …

Who would you call first to tell them about it?

What would you say?

To whom would you say, “Thanks for your help”?

To whom would you say, “I did it without you”?

TO BREAK A HABIT … 

1) identify the moment you tend to act automatically,

2) don’t do it,

3) see what thoughts and feelings come up,

4) write them down,

5) discuss these with your therapist.

WRITE A LETTER TO A YOUNGER VERSION OF YOURSELF …

– What would you warn yourself about?

– What would you reassure yourself about?

– What would you praise yourself for?

The following is a partial list of issues that are close to my heart.  

Emotionally-charged business, workplace, estate planning, and family decisions with financial and legal consequences

– individual and couples therapy, divorce coaching and divorce therapy for people facing serious marital difficulties, considering divorce or going through divorce

– emotionally-charged estate planning dilemmas, including decisions to set up special needs and generation-skipping trusts, sibling rivalry, child/stepparent rivalry, and trustee issues.

– emotionally-charged business, workplace, estate planning, and family decisions with financial and legal consequences

– work issues including career choice for young people, executive strategy in the workplace, leaving work at the office, putting work out of mind when working from home, deciding about major elective expenses, and opting out of maximum income career paths

Health psychotherapy, including mindfulness

– Many physical illnesses are caused or made worse by stress, for example, hypertension and other forms of heart disease and chronic pain.

– For many patients, medical science does not offer today a full, or even a partial cure.  In addition to physical limitations, shortened lifespan, and pain, these patients suffer from a sense of betrayal by the medical profession.  This sense of betrayal is the flip side of the 20th and 21st century entitlement the rest of us feel, when we go to a doctor and expect have our medical problems fixed.

– Yet other patients puzzle doctor with what doctors call lack of “compliance”.  People don’t take the meds they need or take them using the wrong regimen that renders the medication useless.  Helping patients embrace healthy lifestyle choices also frustrates traditional medicine.  In the last thirty years, doctors lost the extra weight.  Walk through a hospital and you will be hard pressed to find a single overweight doctor or nurse.  But the medical profession despite its dogged commitment has not been able to win the hearts and minds of two-thirds of Americans who are overweight or obese.  This is where psychotherapy can help.

Raising, in the environment of privilege, strong children who can delay gratification and make hard choices to advance their goals

Both poverty and privilege present challeges to parenting but these challenges are different.  The fruits of hard work of the parent who earned them do not mean the same thing to the child as to the parent.

DIVORCE

Divorce is usually preventable. 

Couples therapy is a way for a couple to improve the relationship and prevent a divorce.  At this point, preventing divorce is more of a science than an art, and scientists who study marriage can predict a divorce with 90% accuracy. 

The Four Horsemen of Divorce Apocalypse are 
1. Criticism
2. Defensiveness
3. Contempt
4. Stonewalling

If any these guests are living in your home with the two of you, they are making travel plans for Divorce to come to stay with you.  But kick these four troublemakers out of your house, and there is no one to open the door and welcome Divorce into your home.

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But if you are going through divorce, make sure it doesn’t scar you and your kids.  

For spouses, divorce is a trauma that will expose old wounds.  This gives you an opportunity to heal them and come out with post-traumatic growth, seeing the world with a wiser and a more open heart.  Or you could further traumatize yourself and come out with more relationship trauma.

Divorce breaks the marriage but should not break the child’s family which includes both parents. Children don’t need their parents to stay married.  Kids only need to talk to their friends to see that half of the marriages end in divorce.  But kids need their divorced parents to remain friends, to sit not too far apart at the child’s birthday party and graduation, and to be able to walk the child together down the aisle when the time comes.  Children don’t want to worry that parents will look tense because they are in the same room at these occasions or that the parents will make a scene. 

For some parents, repairing the co-parenting relationship is a big effort.  But it is worth it.

Health Psychology and Health Coaching

It’s not enough to say you love yourself.  Where is the proof of love?

Big health improvements start with small positive changes in your lifestyle and habits.  If you have tried to make these changes on your own, but they did not stick, don’t give up. 

You have tried to do it alone.  Now try it with some coaching.  There is a reason why no Olympic champion ever trained withtout a coach.  Doing it without help is the amature way.

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MEDITATION WILL REDUCE BLOOD PRESSURE AND PROTECT THE HEART

Meditation provides many benefits for your heart which beats tirelessly and faithfully in your chest.  Meditation will reduce harmful hormones, ease stress and anxiety and reduce heart rate and blood pressure.

BLOWING SMOKE CAN BLOW UP IN YOUR FACE

Quitting smoking is hard for everyone but especially for people who have been hooked since they were kids.  Therapy can help break this and other habits.

PEOPLE LIVING CHRONIC PAIN CAN GET A LIFE-CHANGING BENEFIT FROM PSYCHOTHERAPY AND MEDITATION

– The experience of chronic pain can be very isolating because people around you don’t know how deal with someone who is to stand up to a problem of such magnitude.  Without therapy,  when deprived of external support, you might feel isolated, or worse yet, start to treat yourself with the same callousness you feel from others.  
– A therapist can teach tried-and-true coping skills, including mindfulness approach to taking the sting out of chronic pain.

PSYCHOTHERAPY SHOULD BE THE FIRST CHOICE TO TREAT CHRONIC INSOMNIA

Insomnia is devastating to one’s wellbeing and is usually a response to stressful or traumatic life event.  This is why the American College of Physicians (ACP) and he American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) say cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) works as well as medications for chronic insomnia and is less risky than drugs.

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Contact

Call me or fill out the form below with your question.  During business hours, I usually respond to voice and email messages within one hour.   If you have to leave a message, please mention the best times to call you.

ADDRESS: 420 S. Beverly Dr. #100, Beverly Hills, CA 90212

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