I earned my undergraduate degree in English literature from Harvard University and my Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from the University of Florida. I am a licensed psychologist with particular expertise in close relationships, marital counseling, stressor effects on marriage, trauma recovery, and Veteran's issues. I favor an integrative, trans-theoretical approach to therapy, using the range of my experiences and the best of the research to inform clinical decision-making. While I do not adhere to one particular theoretical model, I have been most influenced by interpersonal therapy, attachment theory, narrative therapy, and insight-oriented approaches. I am also certified in the use of EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing) therapy. From 2009-2017, I have worked in the Veterans Health Care System of Northern California as a mental health front-line provider with a diverse caseload ofpatients.
Innovation and creativity are two core values that I try to live out in all of my endeavors. When I finished graduate school, with no formal support, staffing, or budget, I organized and coordinated The Lifestyle Poll Project, a study of over 1,200 well-educated women. In February 2012, I published my first book, Marriage, for Equals: The Successful Joint (Ad)Ventures of Well-Educated Couples, the very week the first of my two children was born. After a lengthy hiatus due to the all-consuming needs of my two very young children, I am now once again revisiting some deferred dreams.
Within VA NCHCS, I have been the lead clinician for the VA Northern California Relationship Therapy Work group. The mission of the work group has been to expand services for couples and families within the VA system. We launched a new line of services, offering group education on close relationships and parenting topics via telehealth technology.
partners) across the VA system. Two of the most popular topics have been "Why you Should Fight!" and "How to have a Good Fight." We have also seen strong turnouts for topics like, "The Psychology of Infidelity and How to Protect your Relationship from Affairs," "So High on Love, So likely to Divorce," "Jealousy in Close Relationships," and "Internet Pornography" which suggests that these services are seen as valuable to Veterans.
Before working in the VA, I was jointly doing research and maintaining a private practice in Gainesville, Florida. I have co-authored several publications in professional journals and books. My research has been presented at multiple conferences and during graduate school, I was awarded the McLaughlin Dissertation Research Award for my meta-analysis of stressor effects on marriage in an aggregated sample of over 145,000 married individuals. I also taught several subjects as a graduate student, but my favorite one by far was Personal Growth.
By using virtual health technology, we have been able to reach Veterans in remote clinics that would not otherwise have access to these services. The development of this program has been the fulfillment of a long-held vision - to provide transformative, practical insights to Veterans (and their
Now that I find myself past the "tunnel of chaos" that is raising newborns, I am also returning to blogging for Psychology Today. My newest series, "Free-range Psychology,” proposes that integrative practice is the future of the field. In this series, I will expand on my belief that reclaiming and embracing the creative process in the practice of Psychology promotes clinical innovation, benefits patients, and allows psychologists to operate at their full potential. (Read a sample here)
In 2015, I formed Hidden Ivy Psychological Consulting, which is my private consulting platform for offering seminars, community based lectures, training events, public speaking engagements, and individual and group consultation related to my areas of expertise.
Shauna Springer, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist