The Nitty-Gritty

I am a Somatic Counseling Psychotherapist, specializing in Body Psychotherapy. I hold an M.A. from Naropa University, as well as a dual B.A. in Painting and Psychology from Washington University in St. Louis.

Additionally, I have a professional diploma in Hands on Healing from the Barbara Brennan School of Healing that was earned through four years of training in energy work and Core Energetics, a healing modality that engages the body’s energy source through physical activity, such as kicking, vocalizations or expressions and extreme posturing. In this method, your body’s expressions and your mental and emotional needs have a conversation that lead you to growth and healing.

My Approach

My unique and eclectic approach to therapy is tailored to meet each individual’s distinctive needs. I employ my experience in experiential, creative arts, gestalt and animal assisted therapies to work with a variety of populations. However, I primarily specialize in working with adults and teenagers. I also offer free workshops in the state of Colorado and in Turkey. These workshops range in topic from dealing with your teenager’s challenging behaviors to distinguishing between self-care and self-soothing to introductory family constellation and other topics.

My Assistant

Aria-OatneyAria, my Bernese mountain dog, was born on Halloween of 2011.  She is a 100-pound lap dog who enjoys being showered with love. She is a certified therapy dog, earning her credentials from the Professional Therapy Dogs of Colorado.  Instinctually, she leans into people for a pet, sitting on people’s feet for more pettings and sitting then sits on people’s laps for even more pettings! She is adept at connecting with people and helping them to connect, too.

My Journey to Becoming a Psychotherapist

Through discomfort, I found my calling. Early in my college years, I went to an introductory “Hands on Healing” energy workshop. I felt extremely uncomfortable, but nonetheless found my body screaming to join the program. The program helped me to learn how to read bodily expressions in order to release tensions and stuck emotions. In that way, I ended up attending two schools at once.

I expanded my knowledge and desire to help others while I studied at the Barbara Brennan School of Healing. I learned more about energy, how energy works, in what ways it could drain us or supports us, and how we create patterns of behavior for survival. While it all made sense to me theoretically, it wasn’t until I used it in a healing modality that I felt its power. A client would come to me and share his, her or xyr physical, emotional, mental or spiritual pain and then I’d respond with energy work. While I enjoyed the work, it wasn’t quite enough. I didn’t want to simply “fix” people, I wanted to support them in their own recovery. That’s when I found Body Psychotherapy. Somatic Counseling Psychotherapy (body psychotherapy) works with body, mind and spirit to create a more holistic experience of issues, challenges, and potential coping skills and resources. It is a strength-based approach to psychotherapy that supports the client in accessing resources in order to develop action-oriented skills for regulating emotions and behaviors.

At first, I struggled quite a bit with Body Psychotherapy, feeling uncomfortable in my own skin. But, that discomfort just made me sure that it was the right modality for me to focus on in my practice. Shortly after that, I learned about Family Constellation work. Body Psychotherapy gave me the opportunity to track other people’s bodies in relation to how they were feeling, while Family Constellation work helped me to examine and understand how familial patterns of behavior affect subsequent generations. The combined modalities helped me provide clients with the guidance needed to become more aware of their own needs and goals as they embark upon a path to healing and guide their healing. It is was through my own struggles with pain that I now feel compelled to support others as they find a better way of living.

What I Love to Do in My Free Time

I’m a Ballroom and Latin dancer, which I love and are two of my great passions in life. I also consider dance my greatest act of self-care. I also love working with animals, and I have fostered animals and have volunteered for dog shelters and wolf sanctuaries. I have also lead therapy groups at a Veterans Center in Longmont, Colorado called VHV NOW, with Aria until their closing. We got to have amazing experiences with the veterans there and are grateful for the experience.

Defne Dinler is a Somatic Counseling Psychotherapist who uses action-oriented therapeutic modalities that lead to a deeper understanding and achievement of goals for teens and adults. She specializes in behavioral challenges, depression, anxiety, and trauma. As a Body Psychotherapist her belief is that to heal the mind one needs to connect to their body first.