Therapy with Patricia Valencia, LMHC

Patricia Valencia is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in New York. Patricia’s clients are adults struggling with boundary setting, anxiety, and depression. Patricia collaborates with clients to reduce their negative emotions and move toward more self-love and acceptance. She does this by utilizing a resilience focused, holistic and client-centered approach.

We asked Patricia more about her work with clients and her guiding philosophies on therapy.

Patricia’s background and personal life

How did you decide to become a therapist?

My inspiration to become a therapist began with a job I had as an employment counselor in a family homeless shelter. The parents I worked with were under tremendous pressure to become housed, employed, and parent. The clients I worked with shared their complex histories with me.

I witnessed how the lack of mental health support often overwhelmed them and impacted how they felt about their present and future. I saw how parents' mental health directly impacts their children. That experience motivated me to attend graduate school and learn how to create a supportive and safe space for adults to heal and grow.

What was your previous work before going into private practice?

I worked in addiction recovery and with people diagnosed with severe and persistent mental illness. I’ve also done couples and family counseling.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

I love listening to audiobooks; I have an extensive library. I play board games and watch comedy specials. I fan girl over movie franchises and listen to therapy and entrepreneur podcasts. I am always searching for a good trivia night, so if you know of one in the tri-state area, inbox me!

Patricia’s specialties and therapy philosophies

What guiding principles inform your work?

Do no harm; I strongly believe the energy you place in the universe comes back to you! With that being said, I work with people to help them recognize their strengths, resilience and individuality. I am fueled by a desire to help people reframe how they view themselves and their abilities. There is light inside all of us.

Can you tell us more about what clientele you often work with?

I work with adults of all ages and in different stages of their lives, students, parents, entrepreneurs, creatives and retirees. We collaborate and find solutions that work for their unique journey with anxiety, depression, and trauma. They struggle with fatigue, irritability, worry, panic, feelings of doom and they feel powerless to negative past experiences; I aide people in their desire to understand and lessen these symptoms.  I believe that actively showing yourself kindness and grace is difficult, yet, attainable and key to the therapeutic process.

My specialty is working with caregivers, age 40+ burning out and hitting a wall in their lives. I work with them to find healthier ways to achieve goals and create boundaries within their professional and personal lives. They often experience anxiety and stress because they are perpetually in motion.

Can you tell us about your specialty in caregiver stress and support?

Living a life of continuous service and responsibility is all encompassing. People struggle with conflicted feelings such as love, loyalty and resentment. It is hard to feel steady when your equilibrium is continuously jostling. I work with people to help them find safety in their thoughts and feelings. We work together to release judgment and shame around thoughts and feelings about the people and things that depend on them.

What do you find most rewarding about your work?

I am inspired when people recognize their resilience and courage. I love it when clients start treating themselves with the kindness, grace, and forgiveness they extend to others.

Therapy sessions with Patricia

What will our first session together be like? What happens in ongoing sessions?

My goal during our first session is to get to know you and answer any logistical questions you have. My goal during the first session is to help you become comfortable with me by building on the rapport we established during your initial consultation. We will review your answers to the intake package. During that time, I will encourage you to let me know if you need a few moments to breathe if something is hard for you to talk about.

Creating a judgment free and comfortable space for you is paramount; our following sessions will build upon each other at a pace you are comfortable with. It takes time to build trust; I will work with you to find a rhythm and style that fits your needs.

How long do clients typically see you for?

Your journey with me can be 12 or 24 months long. Some people may want to end therapy at the 9 month mark, the length is subjective.

Do you assign “homework” between sessions?

I will discuss the idea of homework with you during our initial consultation and first session. I will only give you homework if you feel it will be useful between sessions. Often, the homework I give encourages you to notice themes and patterns that arose during our session in your daily activities. I may ask you to make note of how you felt emotionally and physically during the week.

My homework will always build upon a positive response you currently employ during tough times or something you want to start doing, such as journaling, visualization exercises, music therapy and more.

How do you help ensure I'm making progress in therapy?

I will ask you what improvement looks and feels like to you during our initial session. I will also ask you to select a goal that can act as a Northern Star for our work. I will encourage you to recognize small wins create the mosaic of a goal.

I will encourage you to tell me when you find something that resonates or if something does not. I will remind you to be patient with yourself and the process. I will encourage you to come to therapy on the good days and especially on the bad days.

Visit Patricia’s profile to read more about her and book an initial call!