Bruce Hall, MA, LMHC
I am a licensed Mental Health Counselor with a Masters of Arts Degree in Psychology from Antioch University. I am a career Arts educator; and for the past several years have been a counselor/case manager serving older adults in community, psychiatric and medical facilities in Seattle. My focus is on the growing adult and the deepening developmental issues across the life span.
I was a gay child in a rural Montana territory; clearly, this was to be my first and most formative existential awakening. Everything that followed after, in my journey of uniqueness and isolation in a dicey world, would need to report home to the essential “Me” for qualification. That’s a tall order for a child; even as adults we often fly by the seat of our pants in life, guided by instinct and whatever emotional intelligence we have at hand. The primitive responses of fight/flight/freeze became default survival settings for me at a young age; it is a life’s work to relieve these old guards of duty.
I found an early mentor in my piano teacher, and I excelled through her direct but empathic guidance. In college I wrote and directed my first musical, and this set the stage for a career as composer, playwright, director and actor. I received my MFA in Theater from Yale University and got to do a show on Broadway. At the same time, I was passionate to teach Music and Drama, so for twenty years I taught singing to Grades 6-12. Teaching was an invaluable lesson; I was returning to the scene of the crime, the targeted child in a hostile environment – but as an adult now, with the opportunity to create a corrective experience. It not only restored my faith in people and myself; I came to understand how we are essentially creative beings.
Creativity isn’t confined to the Arts; it is an essential wisdom that each of us possesses. Voices of deep pain, damage, injustice – these come from the core of us. Why are they creative? Because they are speaking up and want to be witnessed. No one corners the market on anguish; our sorrows and struggles are uniquely our own. Depression, anxiety, internalized oppression, traumatic stress – these are a part of us that we have not been able to adequately address.
My work is based in mindful humanism; I believe we have the capacity to be self-aware. You already possess a wisdom about yourself that will be made known in our sessions, so I encourage you to be curious about yourself and what’s troubling you. I work with most issues, often relating to regressive behaviors, life transitions around age, job or relationship; and LGBTQ-related issues.
Therapy can be brief and specifically solution-focused, or it can provide a place for in-depth attention around deeper concerns. I use a variety of counseling approaches, depending on what best suits your needs. Counseling is a creative process; it allows us to give our problems full voice. To be witnessed by another in a safe and confidential space, to be who we are, where we are, is to begin a healing hope toward positive change.
For more in-depth information about my practice, please visit my website: www.brucehalltherapy.com