Updated: Nov 13, 2019
When I was 14 or 15, I wanted to become a scientist and cure cancer. My desire to help others morphed into the idea of becoming a neurosurgeon. I had an unstoppable passion for wanting to know why people do what they do AND, help them do things differently instead of repeating unwanted patterns. I soon realized that becoming a psychologist would be a better fit so I stuck with psychology.
Off I went to the California School of Professional Psychology in San Diego and obtained a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology, then finished my Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at International College in Los Angeles.
I knew that the mind-body interaction was key so I also studied with Alexander Lowen at the Bioenergetics Institute for four years and opened a bodywork practice in San Diego.
An opportunity then surfaced to work with the San Diego Police Department and I jumped on that, consulting with the Department's Shift Command Supervisors for three years, identifying PTSD in street officers and making treatment recommendations.
In 1985, a friend of mine told me about a job opening in Colorado, a place I had always wanted to live. After several interviews, I became the Director of Mental Health at the Buena Vista Correctional Facility in the mountains south of Denver. Staff there began calling me "Dr. Annie". Working in corrections gave me a first-hand opportunity to see what the institutional "revolving door" really looked like. It was not impressive.
In 1986, a well-respected woman in the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division of the Colorado Department of Health in Denver asked me to open a very much needed addictions treatment center near Aspen.
In 1987, Roaring Fork Mental Health and Training Institute was born in Basalt, Colorado, with offices in Aspen, Carbondale and Glenwood.
I provided addiction treatment services and domestic violence perpetrator treatment. I also inherited a group of abuse survivors from a therapist leaving town and began a whole new chapter in learning about complex trauma. We grew together over the next 6 years.
In 1993, I left Colorado to help family members in Arizona. While there, I was hired by the Arizona Supreme Court to create a judicial training program focusing on domestic violence education for Municipal and Superior Court judges.
After the two-year project wrapped up, I returned to Colorado with new eyes and a briefcase full of knowledge. I opened a business consulting firm and mental health practice with locations in Boulder and Breckenridge. I wanted to make a difference for people using my new skills. I also took up flying in Boulder and became a rotorcraft flight instructor, training students to become commercial helicopter pilots.
While all of these experiences were very, very rich and exciting, something was missing. Nothing seemed to fulfill me, but I couldn't quite put my finger on the missing pieces.
In 2006, I launched an astrology service to help business owners gain insight into the timing and life cycle of company expansion and transitions. When I discovered how useful this was for businesses, I began working with individuals, helping them identify their life path and purpose. This really struck a chord with me and the people I interacted with. I felt like I was getting closer to something.
It also re-connected me with my roots of wanting to understand why people do what they do and to help them do what was wanted instead of repeating what was unwanted. Even more importantly, this was a step toward facilitating a more holistic and spiritually-oriented transformation for people.
Back in 1985, I was faced with a choice of moving to Colorado or moving to Seattle. I chose Colorado and now that 30 years had elapsed, it was time to explore that other road.
In 2015, I moved to Seattle and worked for Catholic Housing Services as a Director of Services, supervising housing, mental health and addictions treatment for dual-diagnosed women. I quickly realized that I needed to be more integrated with nature and in particular, find a different paradigm for helping people become whole again. Traditional mechanisms did not appear to be working well.
I moved north to Bellingham, seeking a more meaningful, effective and spiritually-oriented way of connecting with people. This ultimately led me to hypnosis, which I had practiced back in graduate school for sports performance enhancement.
I realized that hypnosis had been calling to me for many years and finally, I answered the call. I undertook my own hypnosis journey and within one month, left behind decades-old, nagging demons that I thought would haunt me forever. I was so blown away by my transformation in such an incredibly short period of time, that I dedicated my career to helping others using this amazing technology. This was the missing piece!
Hypnosis offers it all: realistic outcomes, 5 sessions, self-management, re-connection with self, compassion, insight, answers, self-confidence, reality-based perceptions and a road map of where I wanted to go.
In 2018, I became nationally certified as a hypnotherapist and opened Northwest Hypnosis Center. In 2019, I was honored to be rated as one of a handful of hypnotists in the country providing certified, online hypnotherapy.
Northwest Hypnosis Center is a place for you to transform your life quickly, effectively and permanently. At Northwest Hypnosis Center, you will experience competent, compassionate and customized care in order to help you eliminate unwanted behaviors. It offers you such a unique blend of traditional experience combined with holistic care and spiritual integration.
It is the total package!