Treatment Approach

Individual Counseling for Adults and Aging Adults

 

My treatment approach is usually soft but can be firm when it is necessary.  You will be consistently told what I find about your strengths (People of Color/POC and/or immigrants with rich cultural background, LGBTQ+ people expressing thoughtfulness to others, caregivers/healthcare or social service workers with their compassion and commitment to help vulnerable people, or aging adults/people with medical conditions who share empathy toward other's pain), which is my favorite part.  This does not mean your issues are ignored.  We will explore how to use your strengths to manage your issues.  Sometimes strengths are so-called double-edged swords such as being a great helper but creating a poor boundary.  We can discuss how to balance.  Exploring your life themes and values are also integral parts of my approach.   In addition, I will provide coping skills, questions to make you think from different angles, and my insight.  Decisions you have made are always considered to be the best for you at that time.  However, I challenge you to think what you can change about yourself, not others, to be who you want to be.  This enhances your sense of responsibility and freedom to choose your path.


Education can be part of counseling/therapy too.  Such as various minority status, intersectionality (dealing with multiple minority status), compassion fatigue, anticipatory grief, stages of grief, coming out process, and becoming an ally.  


Do I use a social justice lense?  You bet.


You and I will not only share struggles but also laughters - as a matter of fact making you laugh will be one of my goals!  When appropriate, of course.  I am not a formal person but consider myself polite.


The first few sessions are usually for intake, establishing treatment goals, information gathering, trust building, and education about your diagnosis.  In the meanwhile, you can assess if we are a good fit.  I will be honest with you if I do not think we are, typically due to lack of my expertise in your concerns (e.g. Dissociative Identity Disorder, Eating Disorder).  If this happens, I will try to find a referral for a better fit.


Here are my treatment modalities - Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Motivational Interviewing, Solution-Focused Therapy…I use multiple counseling techniques to customize your treatment.


I also utilize Family Systems Theory to analize your family dynamics, since many issues are stemming from family of origin.


I usually do not work with couples, families, people who are 17 and younger, those who are court-ordered, active Eating Disorders, Dissociative Identity Disorders, Intermittent Explosive Disorder/severe anger issues, solely Personality Disorders, and active Substance Abuse Disorders without on-going substance use treatment.

Referral to Psychiatric Medication Management As Needed

My office is in Puget Mental Care with a specialty in psychiatric medication management.  Although you can certainly receive only counseling/therapy from me, if needed, I can refer you to their services as well. That way, both counseling/therapy and psychiatric medication management are taken care of in one place, and your medication provider and I can both monitor your progress and communicate to effectively treat you.  Not a lot of privately owned clinics offer both services, hence I feel very fortunate to be part of this approach.  Again, this is an OPTION - you do NOT have to receive this service to see me!  Here is the link to our clinic:


http://www.pugetmentalcare.com/

Contact

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Ayako Aizawa, MS, LMHC, GMHS

5702 N 26th St Suite A (In Puget Mental Care) Tacoma, WA98407

(253) 503-6761

Hours

Mon

9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Tue

9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Wed

9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Thu

9:30 am – 3:00 pm

Fri

Closed

Sat

Closed

Sun

Closed