Therapeutic Orientation & Techniques
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Acceptance & Commitment Therapy
Areas of Specialty
Spirituality & Religious Identity
Sexuality & Identity
Racial & Cultural Identity Development
Grief & Loss
Dating & Relationships
Depression & Anxiety
M.A. in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Trinity International University, Deerfield, IL, conferred May 2022
B.A. in Secondary Education & Social Science, Tabor College, Hillsboro, KS
B.A. in Biblical Studies, Christian Leadership, and a Minor in Psychology, Tabor College, Hillsboro, KS
Locations: Virtual Illinois, In-Office Chicago
Pronouns: He / Him / His
Clinical Residency: June 2021 – May 2022
Have you ever found yourself waking up to start a new day, but it looks like the one before?
This can seem like running in place on the treadmill of life, not really getting anywhere but certainly working up a sweat! Essentially, you’re stuck. Your past lingers in your mind, reminding you another mistake is coming in the future, so why even try? The frustration and confusion of being stuck but not being able to move forward can in a moment bring up an overcoming surge of emotions you can’t control. All of this can compound into fear of stepping into the unknown, especially if childhood traumatic experiences are an impact.
Positive change takes time and might look like setting goals you’re working toward accomplishing, taking a risk to start a new relationship with the special someone in the same friend group, or going after that job promotion posted on your company’s website. Fear poses as your friend to keep you safe, minimizing risks. However, fear is not friendly and forces you to entertain anxiety, depression, and trauma-induced stress. In order to move towards positive risks and change, we will explore fear’s role in your life so you can be free from its burden.
In a therapeutic relationship, we are a team. I learned a great deal about the power of teamwork through organized sport, and we’ll bring that mentality into our sessions. Since sports often come with roadblocks, setbacks, and adversities, tough situations are anticipated by the team with a well-thought-out strategic plan, ensuring success against present challenges.
An African proverb says that if you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together.
No athlete at an award ceremony goes out and thanks themself. Although they put in hard work, they instead thank teammates, coaches, and the many people that celebrated them on the sidelines to get there. As a student-athlete throughout high school and college, I learned the importance of discipline, communication, resilience, perseverance, and accountability. We will commit to a collaborative therapeutic relationship (i.e. team) that focuses on seeing you win.
I’ve loved supporting people since a young age. I was often curious about my classmates and their lives, and I found myself gravitating to the students who often sat alone. I am a social guy who talks to everybody, asking a million questions so I could get to something I think is so important: listening. Being both the youngest of four and also spending time in foster care early in my life, I saw the importance of care, connection, and compassion. I saw the impact of both a positive and negative family structure, along with a person’s environment, on development.
Within my diverse upbringing, I was allowed to benefit from a mosaic of different ethnicities and cultures. As an African-American male, I believe culture and life experiences should be affirmed and celebrated. As a counselor, I am motivated to see you win in every area of life. I believe God is the author and finisher of our stories, and I am committed to fostering a safe place where you can unpack your story to see where it goes. I am committed to you being seen, heard, and understood. As a poet and storyteller, I believe everyone has a story and a voice, and they matter.
If you’re on the journey to discovering your strength in adversity, reach out! I’m available to help you process your experiences, challenge you in constructive ways, and encourage you to experience freedom. While getting in touch is against cultural norms, especially as a man, it may be an important piece of letting you be strong and human at the same time. Submit a contact form today and I’ll see you soon.
"I've been to therapy before, but didn't get any breakthrough. Cotorey really asks probing questions to get to the heart of the issue. Big discernment abilities!"
"I appreciate Cotorey's emotional intelligence. He knew what was up with me and it helped me feel super seen and heard."
"I loved having a fellow artist as a therapist. Therapy is great generally, but we were able to put a creative spin on our work."
"Being a black man meant only being strong, but I've learned to be strong as well as vulnerable, warm, and inviting. Cotorey really modeled that for me. "
Articles by Cotorey
Written by therapist Cotorey SealsMost recently I came up with an emotions song to help a young client of mine regulate his emotions when he is frustrated: ...
Written by therapist Cotorey SealsWhat if the God of heaven asked you, "where are you?" Okay, maybe I am going too deep too fast. Maybe you're in a place...