About Me

Counseling for Relationships and Individuals

I believe that the quality of our relationships affects every aspect of our lives and that being in healthy, supportive relationships can help us find greater personal fulfillment and move into the kind of life we want to lead. I also believe that relationships are living, breathing entities and that we can nurture them and help them grow. That is what I love to do: help couples and individuals nurture their relationships so they can enjoy more connected and fulfilling lives.

Relational Therapist

​I am a relational therapist. That means I work with people in the context of their relationships, using the relationships to help me understand who they are and to help me determine the best way to help.

My approach to helping both individuals and couples is to first learn about the relationships to see where improvements can be made. In my experience, stronger relationships lead to better solutions, more satisfying connections, an increased sense of well-being.

Are you in a relationship that feels stuck?

Let’s face it… Sometimes being in a partnership is hard! For many of us, there comes a time when we need a little outside help. We may find ourselves having the same old fight, feeling the same bad feelings, or having thoughts of ending the relationship.

If you find yourself in a relationship that needs a shift, I can help! Working together, we will identify the patterns of behavior that cause disconnection, and I will teach you skills to help you relate to each other with more love, compassion, understanding, and empathy. Using these skills leads to a greater sense of intimacy which in turn allows for deeper connections – spiritually, emotionally, psychologically, physically, and sexually.

Together we can improve your life

​If you are ready to take steps to move into the kind of relationships – and the kind of life – you really want, call or email me to set up an appointment. I look forward to talking with you!

email:  sarah@barrettcounseling.com     Office: 651-252-4011

My Approach

Relationships are the key to moving forward. My approach to therapy looks at the past, present and future aspects of your life that are impacting the important relationships in your life: partner, spouse, boyfriend/girlfriend, work, physical health, sexuality, and spirituality. The goal of our work together is a greater awareness of self-in-relationship and sense of well-being so you can move forward in your life.

My therapeutic style is compassionately confrontative and directive. I primarily practice using Terry Real’s Relational Life Therapy and am affiliated with the Relational Life Institute. I also use the EMDR therapeutic model for processing and relieving stress caused by anxiety and trauma.

Terry Real’s Relational Life Therapy

​I am now certified in Relational Life Therapy. I use Terry Real’s Relational Life Therapy model to help couples figure out the dance they do that keeps them from feeling connected and happy in their relationship. I help couples develop a greater understanding of themselves and their partner, and learn to relate to one another with skills of compassion, self-awareness, restraint, and communication. Changing up the dance is only possible when people understand the patterns of behavior they get into and are willing to do something different.

Psychotherapy

I use insight-oriented psychotherapy, CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy), and mindfulness models to help my clients relieve anxiety and depression. Together we address their issues by looking at the relationship between thinking and emotions.

Self-care

I focus on self-care in all types of situations. I help depressed individuals find a way to reconnect with their sense of self and with their lives. I work with people suffering from anxiety to identify the cumulative stresses that led to the anxiety and provide tools to alleviate those symptoms. I support people in caregiving roles by encouraging self-care and suggesting ways to make it a priority.

My Career

I’ve been working as a therapist for more than 10 years now, but the story of how I became a social worker starts with my role in my family as a child. I was the “therapist” — the one who would listen and talk to my brothers about their problems and feelings. I have always been focused on relationships and why people do what they do — including myself!

This work started as early as the second grade with my first journal. Since then, I have often been told that I have wisdom; that I am a truth teller who has the courage to tell it. I do that in therapy, too, helping people understand their truths and make changes that help them become the person they want to be.

I started my professional career working with the elderly. What I enjoyed most was hearing about their lives, coming to understand their choices and who they are/were and working toward healing and resolution within themselves and with others.

That is still the most rewarding aspect of my profession – getting to know each person and your unique stories so I can help you learn the techniques that will work best for you and help you have a more fulfilling and satisfying life.

Education, Professional Training, and Associations

Education

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology
College of Saint Benedict, St. Joseph, MN

Master of Social Work

Loyola University Chicago, School of Social Work, Chicago, IL


Professional Training & Associations

Certified RLT (Relational Life Therapy) Therapist: Relational Life Institute
Completed Relational Life Institute Certification Program
80+ hours of training including:

  • Completion of all 3 training levels
  • 2 Couples Experientials
  • 2 Relationship Bootcamps

Monthly consultation group with certified RLT therapist in MN

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing)
40 hours of basic EMDR training through EMDRIA (EMDR International Association)
On-going professional consultation

Healing Relational Trauma: Post Induction Therapy
42 hours of training

Board of Social Work approved supervisor