“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” ~Carl Jung
I knew early in life that I wanted to help others live better lives. My formative years were colored with obstacles and hardships that required me to draw from the power of resilience at a very young age. The experiences of my life left me with a profound capacity for empathy and understanding as well as a passion for helping others advocate for their own lives. This, coupled with an innate inclination towards being a seeker, naturally led me to the field of Psychology. My education and training has provided me with valuable knowledge about different theories, interventions and mental health disorders, however it is my life experiences that make me truly good at what I do and capable of helping others on their own paths. My quest to find meaning and purpose within my own life has led me to believe whole-heartedly in the healing power of compassion, tolerance, and human connection. In addition to being a Clinical Psychologist I am also a mother, which has significantly shaped my perception of self, others, and the world. As I am on a lifelong journey of self-discovery, I was profoundly impacted by the transition into motherhood. I have come to believe that we all come into this world with a great capacity for being loved and loving in return; there is no greater reminder of the pureness of the human spirit than looking into the eyes of a child.
While I treat a variety of common mental health issues, such as depression and anxiety, my expertise and passion are rooted in the human relationship; specifically, how we connect with ourselves and others. My therapeutic work is founded on evidence based research of what helps people make significant, meaningful changes. I believe that within each of us is a basic human drive to feel connected and that our perceptions shape how we relate to ourselves, others, and the world.
It is my assertion that most human suffering can be alleviated by deeply evaluating and creating shifts in our ineffective belief systems and our faulty perceptions. A cornerstone of the way I work is in finding acceptance of the aspects of life that we cannot change and recognition of what we do have control over, which include our own beliefs, attitudes, and motivations. I find that most people I see are struggling with some form of fighting what IS. When we stop fighting and find acceptance of ourselves, others, and life on life’s terms we are free to live the lives we were meant to live.
The approach I take to my therapeutic work is based on building a collaborative relationship with each of my clients; accepting your need for comfort, understanding, and guidance, while equally challenging you and encouraging independence. I bring a Mindfulness and thought-provoking approach to my psychotherapy practice, emphasizing an open, accepting, and non-judgmental awareness of oneself in the moment. By bringing awareness and compassion to your thoughts and feelings, you are able to deepen your understanding of yourself which can allow you to think differently, make different choices, and thereby create more meaningful relationships in the world.
I graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology. I then went on to receive a Master’s and Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology at Alliant International University. While at school, I focused my education on establishing a thorough understanding and integration of the usefulness of the many different theoretical orientations within the field of Psychology, emphasizing a focus on working primarily with adult individuals and couples. My dissertation was a comprehensive exploration of the impact of Traumatic Grief in children, from Infancy through Adolescence, specifically resulting from the suicide of a parent.
My clinical training began at the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center where I developed skills in treating a variety of mental health issues associated with sexual identity and chronic illness, including depression, anxiety, and relationship struggles. I went on to train at the Southern California Counseling Center where I worked with a diverse population including adults, adolescents, families, and couples. It was during this time that I began to develop my private practice and hone in on my specialty of women’s issues; seeking out work with adolescent girls struggling with eating disorders, body image, and self-esteem. My compassion and ability to relate to these girls and young women makes for a good fit and I am proud to be a role model and someone girls can look up to. I completed my pre-doctoral training and my post-doctoral hours at the Saturday Center for Psychotherapy in Santa Monica, where I provided long-term, insight-oriented psychotherapy to individual adults, adolescents, and couples.