General Therapy

It can be tough to imagine exactly what therapy will be like unless you’ve engaged in such healing and self-growth work before. In this type of mind-body integrative therapy (over secure Zoom), we will engage in many different types of therapeutic actions and interactions together. Talking will be our primary (but not only) mode of therapeutic fuel. We need to be able to discuss your challenges, what you’re experiencing, how to proceed, and so forth. And yet we’ll use many body-based processes to achieve your goals. For example, within the large umbrella of Energy Psychology approaches/techniques, you may be guided to tap on acupoints on your face, upper torso, and hands to induce an extremely rapid shift in how your brain, mind, and body experience the moment and/or experience a lingering issue. I may invite you to practice this kind of energy psychology technique in between sessions, as daily practice will help build your internal resources and entrain your system to experience more and more benefit.

At other times during a session we may explore together what you experience when thinking certain worry-driven thoughts. We may note how your body reacts and then purposely slow down your breathing to experiment with how intentional shifts in the body affect the mind. To gain insights into patterns of how your mind-body experiences the world, we may note what kinds of similar situations you’ve had that trigger such an anxiety-based experience.

All of these examples are part of a larger whole to the therapeutic process. While there is structure within and continuity across sessions, there is also a great amount of therapeutic “improvisation” and listening to the feedback that is coming from your between session and moment-to-moment experiences. I don’t strictly follow any manuals; but we’ll draw upon many evidence-based approaches and harness them flexibly.

People are different and come to therapy with different challenges and want to achieve different results. With that said, hopefully you will begin to feel heard and seen during the first session. As these more relational aspects are happening “under the surface”, we are laying a strong foundation for the change you want to experience.

Some therapy goals may involve more concrete and observable changes, like being able to fall asleep faster and waking up less frequently with an anxious mind and body. These are daily aspects to be experienced and tracked more easily. Of course, if there are other complicating factors in one’s life that affect sleep (e.g., nutrition, nightmares from a trauma, being in a bed with a partner who snores, etc.), therapy needs to address these factors to some degree. However, as we progress, we may uncover and be able to address issues that might otherwise would have remained under-explored and under- treated.

Ideally, you should be able to start to feel, think, or act differently within the first few sessions that will help establish incremental (and even transformative) change in sessions to come.

As noted in the above question about how to tell if therapy is working, each person is different (and is a different person to some degree at different developmental phases of their life). Unfortunately I could not tell you the exact number of sessions that any given person would need in order to address a particular issue. This is largely for two main reasons: 1) everyone comes with their own history (of vulnerabilities and of strengths), and 2) people may seek therapy for “one issue” but soon realize that there are other issues that pop up that one issue in the foreground. It is my responsibility as your therapist to observe, assess, and provide feedback about other potential challenges that may be getting in the way of your goals and what truly matters to you. However, we would collaboratively shape the course and length of your therapy, and we will adjust as needed as you progress.

In almost every situation, I encourage clients to meet with me weekly as we first begin working together. This weekly schedule helps me get to know the client better, helps clients to experience gains more efficiently, and can minimize the impact of the rest of life’s stressors and events on a given session. That is, the longer the delay between sessions, the more time the next session may be filled with “catching up” and the less time we may have for continuing to work on important themes from the previous session.

Great question. You will need to be the ultimate judge and do what you feel is best for you or your child. I can tell you up front that my interpersonal and therapeutic style is personable, flexible, playful, and compassionate. I try to take things as seriously as they need to be taken and as lightly as they can be experienced. I don’t strictly follow manuals but rather adhere to foundational principles and guidelines of evidence-based practice that allow for a great deal of collaboration and flexibly used tools.

I don’t use one approach to help with all things. I try to thoughtfully integrate a variety of therapeutic approaches (e.g., values based cognitive-behavioral therapy, Energy Psychology, hypnotherapy and guided imagery, polyvagal theory for nervous system regulation) to meet your needs and what I suspect may help in any given moment, during a session, or over time.

You are the lead in this play; I am a supporting actor. So ultimately you decide how things move forward, and I will both offer guidance as well as follow your lead. This needs to feel helpful to you, not necessarily in every single moment, but over time. If it’s not, then we will discuss how to improve things. If therapy just isn’t working for whatever reason, I will do my best to refer you to another therapist who can be of help.

Young woman having online therapy session with Dr. Matt Hersh

Therapy Session Details

Young Asian woman having an online therapy session

For the foreseeable future, all services will be provided virtually, through a secure and HIPAA-compliant video platform. Fortunately, much of the therapeutic work we will do together can be done well via live video sessions. Many clients also appreciate the lack of commute time to and from the therapy office. However, there is some degree of important therapeutic information that cannot be experienced over video. I understand that you may elect to find another therapist who is seeing clients in person.

Yes. I have secure, HIPAA-compliant email, text, and video conference (Zoom) services. I have signed a Business Associate Agreement with each business that hosts these forms of communication. This helps to establish a legally-binding relationship between me (as the HIPAA-compliant provider) and the particular companies (e.g., Zoom) to ensure protection of your Protected Health Information (PHI).

Please send me a message through the contact form or leave a confidential voicemail at 617-682-9515 to initiate contact. I will do my best to return your message within 3 business days. If I am not taking new clients at the time, I will reply as such and potentially provide other therapist names if I have enough information to do so.

If I have availability in my schedule, the next step after initial contact is to hold a 30-minute intake phone call for you to share information about what you’re seeking from therapy and for me to get to know whether I would be a good match for what you need. I will often give an initial impression of how we could work together at the end of this phone call. If schedules align and we both feel like proceeding with therapy is appropriate, we can move forward to schedule the initial session.

Please contact me for the current session fee. I do not participate with insurance, but many clients with an insurance plan with out of network benefits are successfully reimbursed for a portion of the session fee. For many insurance plans, Health Savings Accounts may also be utilized for such mental health services.  I can provide you with itemized statements for you to submit to your insurance company. Payments are made either by Venmo or credit card.

Policies & Details

I maintain a 24-hour in advance cancelation policy. If clients cancel a sessions outside of that 24 hour window or do not show (on Zoom) to a given session, a full session fee will be charged. This helps to ensure that the agreed upon time slot is honored given how difficult it is to schedule another client in that time slot in such a short period of time. I consider extenuating circumstances to waive the cancelation fee on a case by case basis.

I work Monday through Friday. Given that my schedule that is quite full most of the time, I will propose whatever available time slots I may have, and we will do our best to match our schedules. At times it may be necessary to shift times from week to week if I don’t have any consistent open time slots to reserve for a new client.

The short answer is no. But as we begin working together via Zoom, I will often ask if you would benefit from a brief text check-in from time to time or to receive an secure email or text with reminders about what you’re currently working on in therapy.

I do not have a license to prescribe medication. However, if you already have a psychiatrist or are prescribed medication by your PCP, I will ask your permission to establish communication with your prescriber. This collaborative professional relationship can be helpful for a variety of reasons. If you are not on any medication when you begin therapy and yet it is suggested that this may be helpful, we will have a series of discussions about this, and I will do my best to provide you with referrals.

I don’t work with couples or families directly. But in individual therapy, if there are challenges with a partner, children (if you’re a parent), or parents (if you’re a teen), we will discuss avenues for seeking more help. It is not uncommon for me to discuss potential couples therapy referrals with clients if this appears indicated.

Clock on a table with a plant; Integrative Therapy in Boston

Ready to Get Started?

If you are interested in psychotherapy services for yourself or your child, reach out today.