Annalise is an Expressive Arts Therapist, Licensed professional Counselor and founder of Expressive Explorations.
About Expressive Explorations
Expressive Explorations is an independent private therapy practice offering services such as individual therapy, support groups, workshops and professional consultation.
Read below to see more details about the type of work I do at Expressive Explorations. I am trauma-informed, LGBTQ+ Allied and Affirming, and practice guided by the principles of Health at Every Size. My theoretical orientation is a blend of person-centered, mindfulness, cognitive behavioral, and narrative approaches; all of which are informed and enhanced by expressive and creative processes.
Come into a space where you can be and feel and exist without judgment. Individual therapy is a place to explore your feelings, and a place to express them genuinely and without fear or shame.
Individual therapy sessions are available via telehealth or at my office on 44th St SW, in Wyoming, MI, which is accessible by bus, and has a wheelchair accessible entrance. I accept BlueCross Blue Shield; Blue Care Network and the following Medicaid plans: Meridian, Mclaren, and Blue Cross Complete. I cannot accept Priority Health or Medicare plans. Cash pay is available and sliding scale is offered through Open Path Therapy Collective. Cost should never be a barrier to receiving the help you need.
Expressive Arts Therapy can be used by individuals or groups. It offers the opportunity to explore our thoughts, feelings and experiences through creative processes. There are things in life that go beyond what words can express, and sometimes it just helps to get out of our own heads for a while and into a more playful space. Growing bodies of evidence show the value of things like music, art, dance, movement, and yoga on our mental, physical and emotional health. Archeological and other historical evidence show us that creative expression has been a part of the human experience since the beginning. We in the modern world shut down this part of ourselves, usually out of feeling that we are not good enough. If we cannot create professionally, we might as well not create at all. Not so! Creative expression is something we crave, and sometimes it is the best way to process and heal. There are things within you waiting to be discovered, if you just give yourself the opportunity to explore.
As a therapist, I have a deep love for group therapy. There is healing that can be found in community with others who share similar challenges to our own. When no one in our immediate circles of natural supports has shared our experience, it can be especially isolating. In the group space, we are able to connect with others who share our experiences. We are able to meet people that are further along on the journey than we are, and able to offer support to those who are just taking their first steps into the space. Group offers us a chance to feel seen, understood, and less alone.
I am available to design and facilitate support groups around any topic, life experience, disease or disorder. I am also available to visit existing groups and offer an introduction to the Expressive Therapies.
Those who provide often neglect to care from themselves. They suffer from burnout, fatigue, and the difficulties of life outside of their caregiver role. All too often, self-care and nurturance is neglected for fear of being selfish, or burdening others with our struggles. The caregiver role is complex and difficult to navigate. It is alright for you to ask for help, it is okay for you to need help, to need validation, and support.
It is okay for you to feel angry, sad or scared, even if you feel you cannot show those feelings to the ones you are caring for. I am here to offer you that space, to give those feelings, and yourself, room to breathe.
Chronic and Acute Illness
For the past several years, I have assisted in the facilitation of support groups for people with various chronic and acute illnesses. Every illness brings with it unique pains, frustrations, fears and sadnesses. Often we're left feeling betrayed by own bodies, frustrated with lack of answers, lack of control, and lack of understanding from medical professionals and even well-meaning friends and family. Diagnosis often leads to significant changes in every part of our life, sometimes slowly, sometimes all at once. We try to pick up the pieces and navigate our new life, in our old world. In therapy, either in groups or individually, we work through those changes and feelings. Expressive Art Therapy opens us up to reconnect with our bodies, with our creativity, and our internal strengths.
Neurodivergence and Developmental Disorders
Every brain as a unique layout of neurons, and dendrites, and other internal structures. Most brains follow patterns that are predictable and consistent, but others are neurodivergent. That divergence might be called ADHD, or autism, dyslexia, or Down Syndrome. Every divergence makes it a little more difficult to navigate a world built for people who fit the typical pattern. Working with people in these populations is what drew me to Expressive Arts Therapy. Expressive Arts Therapy loves to work outside the typical patterns, to approach creatively, to process feelings outside of the constraints of verbal language.