Counselor in Bradenton, FL

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Pat Shanklin, MA, LMHC, NCC

Pat Shanklin, MA, LMHC, NCC | Counselor photo
Turn crises in opportunties for growth
25 years experience as an adult and couples therapist

Do you want to heal the pain from the past and experience the life that you want in the present? Do you want to learn how to cherish your partner and live in peaceful harmony? Do you want to work through past traumas, change dysfunctional family patterns and shed outdated defenses? Problems in life are unavoidable, but suffering is a choice. Trying to elude the pain of life's challenges can leave you stuck in stress, anxiety, and depression.

As we navigate troubled waters, the last thing we may be thinking about is the opportunity to grow. My approach to therapy offers clients more than just short-term band-aids to cure symptoms. I utilize experiential techniques to bridge the gap between the verbal, problem-solving part of our brains and the nonverbal, intuitive, emotional part. Both parts help us to identify the sources of problems, and develop new patterns and skills for handling them. While I focus on the whole client, not just the presenting problem, some of the areas I specialize in include:

* Anxiety
* Bereavement
* Chronic medical conditions
* Depression
* Family-of-origin concerns
* Self-esteem issues
* Trauma resolution / PTSD
* Workplace concerns


Do you want to forgive past injuries and rediscover that couple holding hands? Most couples struggle finding the balance between the “we” and the “me”. Too much “we” and the sense of self becomes blurred; too much “me” and there's not enough glue (intimacy) in the relationship to keep it together over time. Emotionally-focused couples treatment emphasizes valuing and validating each other. I honor the wisdom in each of my clients; you will not be judged. Our work together will take you from blaming and alienation, to engagement, connectedness and security.

Research shows couples with a 5:1 ratio of positive / negative interactions build up a resilient "emotional bank". Learn communication skills, conflict resolution techniques, and how to cultivate the loving behaviors to get to the magic ratio.

Some of the issues I've been able to assist couples in tackling are:

* Blended families
* Communication problems
* Divorce prevention
* Internet & sexual addictions
* Parenting concerns
* Relationship issues


Figuring out who you are, and who you want to be is a major undertaking at any age. For teens, the task of self-definition is fraught with possibilities and perils. Together, we will work to help you develop a healthy sense of self, and establish goals and patterns to set you on a course for a happy and productive life. Areas of focus may include:

* Depression
* Giftedness
* Parental separation and divorce
* Peer relationships
* School failure
Practice Areas/Issues Treated
 Therapy  Hypnotherapy
 Adolescents  Life Transitions
 Anger Management  Loneliness
 Anxiety and Panic  Marriage & Family Therapy
 Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)  Marriage Counseling
 Caregiver Issues  Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
 Chronic Illness  Pet Therapy
 Coronavirus/COVID-19 Issues  Premarital Counseling
 Couples  Relationship Issues
 Depression  Self-Esteem Issues
 Divorce  Seniors and Elder Care Issues
 EMDR Therapy  Stress Management
 Family Conflict  Trauma and PTSD
 Gay or Lesbian Issues  Women's Issues
 Gifted / Talented Issues  Work and Career Issues
 Grief and Loss
 Certified EMDR Therapist (EMDRIA)  EMDR Part 1 and 2 (EMDRIA)
 Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC)  National Certified Counselor (NCC)
 Psychotherapy (MA)
Years in Practice: 20+ Years
School: University of South Florida
Year Graduated: 1986
License No. and State: MH2276 Florida
Licensed Mental Health Counselor in Bradenton / Lakewood Ranch / Sarasota, Florida.

In my 25 years of practice in individual, couples and adolescent psychotherapy, it has been my privilege to walk beside my many clients on their journeys to happier, healthier lives.

I am trained in experiential therapies (EMDR, hypnosis, gestalt) which can get to the root of suffering and heal it for good.
American Counseling Association
Nationally Certified Counselors Association
Helpful Links
9231 66th Ave. Dr. E.
Lakewood Ranch / Braden Woods