More than Just a Shrink
By Jennifer Casipit
Women's Journal Magazine

It's a stereotyped scene that has become quite familiar to many. A patient lies on a couch and babbles about his problems while a doctor sits nearby with clipboard on hand, ready to throw in questions and give observations. Thanks to the proliferation of movies about psychiatrists who delve into complicated psyches, much of the stigma associated with this breed of doctors has been erased. Now, people are aware that one need not be "crazy” to go to a shrink. And despite the derogatory connotation of the word "shrink," people have also come to acknowledge their expertise as a necessary tool for achieving inner balance.

In fact, it was this desire to help people that drove Dr. Randy Dellosa to the field of psychiatry. Unlike many of his contemporaries however, he wasn't satisfied with the things he learned in medical school. It seemed to him that his patients need more than the usual psychiatric methods to address their problems. Thus, he soon found himself chafing against the restrictions of his medical practice. "I felt that I was too limited in helping people," the good doctor reveals. "I was dissatisfied with psychiatry because it was more of simply prescribing medications and looking at things through a Freudian perspective."

Aware that there are other approaches to helping people, Dr. Randy started venturing beyond medicine in search of different healing therapies for his patients. The result was The InnerLife Wellness Center for clients seeking personal growth and holistic wellness; Life Change Counseling Center and Psychiatry Clinic for patients with life problems; and Life Change Recovery Center for psychiatric in-patients and drug dependents.

What's distinctive about Dr. Randy is his innovative yet effective methods of treatment. And when clients visit him, they find not a cold medical office but a cozily-furnished room where they can be assured of privacy while sharing what's on their mind. When they meet me, they find out that I'm not threateningly clinical," Dr. Randy remarks.

"I try to establish rapport while talking with them, just to put them at ease." Of course, his client base is not limited to people who are sick. "Many clients come to me because they want to understand themselves," he reveals. "So it's more for self-discovery and personal growth. They find themselves stuck in their present condition and they want to move on. Some of them want a more radical change in life-- a total life transformation."

Depending on the specific need of a client, a certain therapy is applied. One of the more conventional therapies that Dr. Randy offers is life coaching and counseling for people experiencing anxiety, anger, burnout, and depression. A more intense program would be the sessions for healing childhood wounds. This program helps break self-defeating patterns and initiates life changes.

A more interactive approach makes use of "expressive arts therapy " which promotes self-expression as people lose their inhibitions through artistic play. Clients can also choose to join the Encounter Groups if they are more inclined toward sharing experiences and discovering growth with other people.

Dr. Randy is also a dream analyst so people can consult him if they want to find the hidden meaning behind their dreams through Dreamwork Sessions. But Dr. Randy points out that what he does is different from dream interpretation. "I work with people who have recurrent dreams, who have nightmares, and who want to be guided by their dreams. I just facilitate the understanding of their dreams but I don't interpret. It's unfair to interpret somebody else's dreams because the symbols are very personal. It is only the dreamer who will really know the symbols' meanings."

For more active clients, Dr. Randy offers " movement and breathwork exercises" for the integration of body, mind, and emotions, for enhancing body and sensory awareness, and for feeling more grounded and alive.

Touch Therapy for Emotional Wholeness is a wonderful therapy in itself, so Dr. Randy has developed an approach for using it in order to heal emotions. Touch Therapy for Emotional Wholeness is a form of body-centered psychotherapy that involves scientific hand placements of the body. Its therapeutic effect allows the release of trapped emotions and trauma, resulting in a more balanced psyche.

Indeed, Dr. Randy's therapies are the result of painstaking research and a genuine desire to do more for his patients. He first learned of these modalities in the course of dealing with his own life issues. "I did a lot of therapy on myself, too, because I thought that I had no right helping people if I didn't get help myself."

After more than 20 years of experience in counseling in psychotherapy, Dr. Randy has already helped thousands of people to achieve wholeness, wellness, growth, and healing in their lives. But being the indefatigable learner that he is, he continues to update his psychotherapeutic skills by attending numerous workshops here and abroad.

It was through these trainings that Dr. Randy managed to create his own distinct approach in giving therapy, which is a combination of conventional and alternative approaches. He shares this knowledge with students through his regular teaching stint at the University of the Philippines, Diliman.

This inclination for helping people started early in Dr. Randy’s life. He grew up knowing that he would become a doctor, but his interest lay more in the emotional issues of humans. Thus he took up psychology at the University of the Philippines even while he gamely worked as a 700 Club telephone counselor.

"I was already coaching people at age 17," Dr. Randy says. "That's very early! I remember my first case: I got a telephone call from a guy who wanted to marry his first cousin. He claimed to have found a priest who was willing to marry them. But at 17, what was I going to say? "So I prayed for a while. God answered my prayer because somebody came into the room where my caller was, and he had to hang up the phone without waiting for my advice. God probably said, "Don't give advice yet. First have a taste of the life and the problems that would come your way."

Since then, Dr. Randy has had to face bigger problems. It is such that he has no need to watch television just to get a dose of high drama. "Every case that I get is like a telenovela,” he claims. "The drama happens in my very clinic! I hear so many stories and I know about people's secrets. I feel honored because these are very private stories, and people take risks in sharing them.”

"It's a fulfilling job,” Dr. Randy says. The satisfaction is incomparable when he manages to heal people of their pain and give them hope for a better life. But since it's also very intense work, he seeks relaxation by staying away from people and immersing in the quiet of nature.

Nonetheless, he has already grown adept at relinquishing any excess baggage that might result from listening to other people's woes. "The work is not really emotionally tiring because people-helpers are taught to practice professional distance” he says. "That's one way for us to take care of ourselves. Kasi, if we absorb the emotions of all our clients, it would be draining. So we learn to establish rapport and empathy without giving too much of ourselves.”

Dr. Randy 's "whole-person” and "life transformation" paradigm is also applied to his work with drug dependents. "I try to facilitate personal change from the core. I don't just let them quit addiction," he explains. "I help them leave behind their addicted identities, to reinvent themselves and redesign their lives."

So whether you're hooked on addictive substances or just plain bothered with life, there's now an expert you can go to who will help unravel your personal issues. Dr. Randy Dellosa's therapies don't just bring temporary relief. Rather, they promise more lasting effects on your personality, relationships, and general view of life. That's definitely more than any remedy one can expect from Freud.

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