What would your clients and colleagues say is your therapist superpower?
I think my clients would say my superpower is making them feel seen, heard, and valued. I am empathetic, a good listener, and possess an innate ability to connect and relate on a human level to just about anyone I meet.
What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
During my undergraduate studies at UC Berkeley, I was fortunate to take a social psychology class taught by professor Dacher Keltner. His course and book, “Born to Be Good,” sparked my interest in understanding human behavior and getting to know people on a deeper level. This class led me to take more psychology courses and eventually to pursue my master’s in psychology.
How have your personal experiences helped your work with your clients?
My personal experiences have equipped me with tools to handle and confront any issue that my clients bring to session. To name a few: I have worked in schools and have led trips across the world for teens and adults; I am the oldest child of four and the oldest daughter of immigrant parents; I have traveled to thirty countries… the list can go on. I incorporate my life into my sessions and know that they inform the lens through which I practice daily.
How do you approach the stigma surrounding mental health and therapy?
My approach to erasing the stigma surrounding mental health and therapy is to start the conversation, provide resources, and offer my expertise. The more we discuss mental health and normalize it, the less uncomfortable people will feel talking about it in everyday settings. I also use @dailytherapydose, a social media platform on Instagram and TikTok, to normalize the topic as well as create a conversation and community for members to feel safe connecting about mental health.
Short Term (Solution-focused, etc.)
Ideal for those who are coming in with a specific problem they’d like to address and gain clarity on. Typically, short term therapies are present focused and do not dive deep into your past.
Structured therapies are goal and progress oriented. Therapists may incorporate psychoeducation and a specific “curriculum.” In order to stay on track, therapists may provide worksheets and homework.
Insight-oriented (Psychodynamic, Existential, etc.)
Exploring the past and making connections to present issues can help clients gain insight. Getting to the root of the issue and finding deeper self-awareness can help with long-term change.
Non-directive (Humanistic, Person-centered, etc.)
Going with the flow and seeing where it leads.
Behavioral (CBT, DBT, etc.)
Focuses on changing potentially unhealthy or self-destructive behaviors by addressing problematic thought patterns and specific providing coping skills.
Trauma Focused (EMDR, TF-CBT, etc.)
Recognizing the connection between trauma experiences and your emotional and behavioral responses, trauma focused therapy seeks to help you heal from traumas.