PHILOSOPHY OF WWI
Who are you? Are you "wild"? YES!
You are wild like me, mountains, forests, rivers, birds, stars, and gravity!
There is nothing that is not wild; there is only separation of our awareness from that wild essence, and that is what hurts. In attempt to adapt and overcome, we have devised many ways that serve us in the short term but diminish us in the long run. We are not born into pained and disillusioned forms. Rather, we are taught that it is not OK to simply be our Wild Selves.
My goal is to help you reconnect with your Wild Self, full of beauty and strength.
All things have their Way. Their Way of optimum health and happiness.
Oak trees grow tall, bend with wind, sink deep roots, drop their leaves in Fall, and sprout new ones in Spring.
Worms dig through their food, rise to the surface when it rains, and squirm when touched.
So, too, do you have your Way. But it can be weirdly hard to find! As a facilitator on your trail towards your goals, my mission is to help you discover your Wild Way, which is unlike any other that ever has or ever will exist. When we live true to our Way, the body and mind heal themselves and our next best step becomes clear.
"Integration" means putting together pieces. You may feel anxious, depressed, or "fallen apart." Together, we will do more than just connect the dots with our minds- we reassemble your life, relationships, meaning at work, communion with Nature, and connection with your unique sense of the life itself. The end product: peace and zest for life!
We are an ecosystem; my Way intersects with your way, our Ways intersect with Nature's Ways, etc. This challenges us to integrate our Ways with all the other Ways out there. The jaguar may hunger for the boar, but it doesn't leap from a 100' cliff to catch it. Living our Wild Way means living in balance with the realities and circumstances of our lives, not jumping to our deaths because of an impulse. Patience, too, is wild. Just look at the Grand Canyon.
Touching our wildness, discovering our Way, and integrating the pieces into action with the wider world present challenges unique to each individual. For some of us, deep trauma healing is required. For some of us, it means reexamining our career choices. For others, it puts us face to face with our own conception of "God."
Wild Ways Integration is dedicated to helping you identify what you need in this moment, at this juncture in your life, and to help you realize the changes that may or may not need to be made to fully embody your Way.
WHO IS GARY?
I was born with an unrestrained zest for life. Along my journey, a variety of painful events knocked me out of my boat, and many times I did not think I would be able to stay afloat. Nearly drowning motivates a person to learn how to swim, discover life preservers within, and branch out to others for support. While growing to embody my Way, I have been gifted with knowledge, compassion, and passion for facilitating others' journeys.
Again and again I come back to this simple fact: I AM ALIVE!!! HOW WILD IS THAT ?!?!?!
As an outdoorsman and adventurer, I've done multiple multi-day solo hiking and camping trips into the backcountry, co-facilitated groups in the wilderness, commercial fished in Alaska, and rode a motorcycle for 1 year on a motorcycle vision quest from California to Ushuaia, Argentina (which inspired my Motorcycle Vision Quest program). My favorite hobbies include fishing, motorcycling, martial arts, dancing, reading, writing, watching nature documentaries and spending quality time with my friends and family.
I am a Licensed Professional Counselor with over a decade of experience working in the mental health field.
I have served the severely mentally ill and chronically homeless of downtown San Diego, paraplegics living with traumatic brain injuries, troubled youth in group homes, people in crisis at a crisis call center, addicts and alcoholics in multiple settings, and numerous adults and couples in both office and nature-based private psychotherapy environments.
I have specializations in men's issues, trauma, addiction, anxiety, depression, grief, relationships, life transitions, self esteem, and organization and work issues.
The modalities I utilize depend on the needs of the client and may include: trauma healing, experiencing and relating to Nature, coaching, couples counseling, career counseling, cognitive behavioral therapy, psychoeducation, body awareness, role play, movement, group therapy, and adventure therapy.
I operate in both office and nature-based settings. I find both to be valuable depending on individual needs.
As a counselor and coach, I enjoy working with every variety of person and do not discriminate based on sex, gender, age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, or spiritual/religious beliefs. I take every measure to protect your confidentiality. It is important to me that you find the best help available, and if I am not that person, I will refer you to someone who is a better fit.
To view a copy of my disclosure statement, .
Master of Arts in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology- Wilderness Therapy, Naropa University, 2016
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (minors in Religious Studies and Creative Writing), Purdue University, 2002
Trauma Healing, Bridging Soma and Soul (115 hours), 2016
Crisis Intervention, Lafayette Crisis Center (200+ hours), 1999-2002
Wilderness First Responder, NOLS, (3x certified), 2019
Intensive Self-Inquiry, 1986 (year of my father's death) - present