Shelby Jacobs, M.A., Registered Psychotherapist
Philosophy and Therapeutic Approach
It’s easy to get stuck in life – we hit roadblocks in our relationships, our careers, and our abilities to regulate our emotions and behavior. I believe that humans are not meant to face these stuck places alone- we were created for community. In community we find connection, and we are able to utilize the resources and strengths of those around us when we feel weak. Then, in turn, we can offer our strengths and resources to others who are in need of support. I see most problems through a relational lens; the presence or absence of connection is a primary contributor to our ability to understand and regulate our emotions, make sense of our reality, manage difficulties, and overcome obstacles.
I believe one of the biggest issues in our society today is the potential to be in the presence of others and yet still feel partially or profoundly alone. Drawing from Emotionally Focused Therapy, I work with couples and individuals to help them create lasting connections with significant people in their lives. Such relationships promote healing and resilience in the variety of circumstances which may bring clients to therapy. I hope to create a safe place and be a point of authentic connection for you as we work together to help you build connection with your partner, family members, or others in your support network.
What To Expect During Therapy
In our culture, we often look for a “quick fix” to the distressing aspects of our life. When it comes to emotional and mental health, however, it sometimes takes time to heal, change, and grow. You can expect me to patiently collaborate with you in a way that will help you understand and express your more vulnerable emotions in order to move towards more authenticity and self-understanding. Accessing our vulnerable emotions can be scary, but it’s an important part of living genuinely, setting boundaries, and taking ownership of our lives and relationships. We will work together to identify what choices you are currently making, and what other choices may be available to you.
As your therapist, you can expect me to be empathic, understanding, and simultaneously committed to your growth. You can expect me to have a vision for you. It is likely that humor will be incorporated into our sessions, as I see humor as an incredible bonding agent and reminder of the joys in life. Finally, you can expect me to be committed to continuing education and professional training, as I never want my therapeutic skills to grow stale.
Professional Qualifications and Experience
I graduated from the University of Colorado in 2014 with a BA degree in Psychology and Sociology. In 2015, I began my graduate program. My clinical experience began at Shepherd’s Gate, a clinic on Denver Seminary’s campus, where I saw individual teen and adult clients. I then interned at Denver Christian School (DCS) and Southeast Christian Counseling Center (SCCC). At DCS, I taught psychoeducational curriculum in classrooms, and led social skills and conflict resolution groups for k-12 students. At SCCC, I worked with individuals, families, and couples, with a special focus on adolescent girls and young women. I graduated with my MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Denver Seminary in 2019. Then, after graduation, I attended a formal Externship in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) with Gail Palmer and Dr. Sue Johnson (the founder of EFT). EFT is a well-researched and clinically proven approach to couples counseling, which is one of my primary clinical passions.
In addition to my therapeutic experience, I also worked for several years as a women’s minister for a local nondenominational Christian church. Most of my experience in ministry has been working with teens, college students, single women, dating couples, and newly married couples.
Personal Life and Interests
My relationship with God is my priority in life and I enjoy seeing the ways He continues to refine me. I am involved in my church community, and currently assist with our middle school ministry. My faith is an integral part of my life story, and impacts the way I relate to others as well as my philosophy of counseling.
I married my best friend and life partner, Tim, in 2017. We enjoy traveling together and hosting our friends and family in our home. Recently, Tim has come around to join me in my love of hiking. I am diligently working to encourage him to share my love of camping, but unfortunately my efforts have been unsuccessful up to this point. I appreciate most outdoor activities from walking in the park to skiing, and I consistently strive to make time to get outdoors and experience the beauty of God’s creation.
I love succulents, rustic-looking wood furniture, and all things rose gold. I enjoy decorating my home with such things, and also enjoy learning to build and fix things around my house. When I am not outside or working on a DIY project, I like reading, cooking, baking, and (sometimes) running.
Most of all, I love connecting with my friends and family. I love to laugh, and I love to feel understood by those around me. I hope that we, too, can build a relationship where you feel understood and safe to be your authentic self.