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Hands Holding Plant
Change is inevitable...make it a positive change.

Robert Bannister, MA, LMFT

Recently, I've added "online" scheduling for those who are tech-friendly. See the tab above, "Schedule Appointments Online".


 A bit about me and what I do...
I've been a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist practicing in the Santa Barbara area for nearly 30 years.

After leaving Concordia Theological Seminary in
Illinois, I came back to Santa Barbara to complete my graduate training at what is now
Pacifica Graduate Institute. With a strong background in depth psychologies, I spent over ten years developing a specialization in "family-systems therapy".

For over twenty-four year years I practiced primarily at Santa Barbara's largest multi-specialty medical clinic; there, I worked in the department of psychiatry. I treated a wide range of people referred by other physicians, psychiatrists and former patients. In addition to my regular clinical practice, I trained interns in Family Therapy methods. I also helped to develop and implement more effective delivery of health-care services using cutting a edge modality known as DIGMA. After 24 years of working in large corporate medicine, I decided to pursue my interest a more personal and unrushed private practice -so I began part-time private practice in 2001 and left corporate medicine/therapy in March of 2014.

Typically, my clients are working toward better resolution of the challenges that Life brings to most of us. I see many individuals, couples and families dealing with conditions including panic, anxiety disorders, bi-polar disorder, major depression and obsessive-compulsive disorders as well as resolving couple and family conflict and many other conditions that don't neatly fit into the DSM cookie-cutter diagnoses. During my years at the clinic in
Santa Barbara, I developed and served as clinical director of an IOP (intensive out-patient program) for the treatment of substance use disorders. Even now, roughly 1/3 of my patients are working toward achieving abstinence or further pursuing their recovery from substance use.

I have made it no secret that I have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and dyslexia. Over the years, treating ADHD has become a second sub-specialty. I work with many who deal with this vexing condition and have presented many educational programs for parents whose kids have ADHD, physicians that treat ADHD as well as for adults with ADHD.

My approach and style...
It is my style to be direct and involved. Any of my patients would agree that I try to avoid pretenses. My goal is to identify the changes you want to make in your life and to assist you in achieving those goals as quickly as possible. My patients would likely agree that I bring an element of humor to our collaborative effort. While the problems are not funny, maintaining a sense of humor is enourmously helpful. I will always say what I think - but I have no agenda to make my patients think like me. My task is to assist you in developing a life that is satisfying, fulfilling and authentic to you. As mentioned above, my work is informed by the psycho-dynamic work of C.G. Jung, Family-Systems Theory and more recently Contextual-Behavioral work, more commonly known as
Acceptance and Committment Therapy (ACT).

In addition to traditional psychotherapy, I provide pre-surgical evaluations for those planning a bariatric surgical proceedure.

I can also provide assessments for ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) using the most current Conners-3 Scales complete with carefully computer-scored reports.

Please see the section on Rates and Services. For more information.