Rajani Venkatraman Levis, MS, PPS, MFT
|Professions: Marriage & Family Therapy, Psychotherapy, Counseling|
|License Status: I'm a licensed professional.|
|Primary Credential: Marriage and Family Therapist - 51494|
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It is my honor to help you discover what brings you alive and encourage you on your journey to wholeness.
Using Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) as a healing modality, I have successfully helped clients heal from deep trauma such as sexual abuse, as well as childhood wounding, addiction, relationship issues, and grief. Through artfully weaving in the personal, inter-personal, trans-personal and cultural, I bring into focus the vivid tapestry of each client's rich and varied life-experience. This allows for a strength-based, solution-focused approach, unique to you.
I find great joy in helping each client discover what brings them alive and encouraging them on their journey to wholeness.
Born and raised in India on a steady diet of eye-opening paradoxes, faith, Chai and conversations that seamlessly switch languages, I bring a richly multicultural perspective to my work. I am a child of India whose professional identity has been shaped by a Western education. Almost two decades of cross-cultural experiences in living, studying and working on two continents have nurtured my flexibility, curiosity and creativity as a therapist. I also believe that a dedicated mindfulness practice as well as a thoughtful self-inquiry practice allow me to be a compassionate, authentic and nurturing presence in the lives of others.
International Counseling Experience
In 2006, I led a team of 14 American teenagers on a community service project to a small village in the South of India. In 2009, I was part of a team that helped to set up a mental health clinic at the Amrita Institute of Medical Science and Research Center in Kochi, India. A brief case-study based on my international experience is part of Praeger Handbook of Community Mental Health, which was published in 2013. I am currently writing two chapters for an upcoming Springer Publishing Book on EMDR as a culturally attuned and effective psychotherapy.
Email or Call Rajani Venkatraman Levis, MS, PPS, MFT at 1-800-651-8085 ext. 14319
More Info About My Practice
I understand that finances are an important consideration when choosing a therapist. Based on reports of past and current clients in my private practice, EMDR Therapy often allows clients to accomplish their goals in a significantly shorter time, and can facilitate deep and profound transformation in fewer sessions. As a result, the investment in your therapy cannot easily be measured by the fee per session.
My current* rate is $160 per 50-minute individual session. Longer sessions of 75 or 90 minutes can be arranged and are often helpful during our EMDR work.
I am sometimes able to offer reduced fee slots in an effort to make my services more widely accessible. Please call me if you would like to talk about this option.
Specific Issue(s) I'm Skilled at Helping With
My two strongest areas of focus are healing trauma through EMDR, and Diversity.
I am passionate about working clients from diverse backgrounds. As an immigrant and a woman of color, I am able to draw on personal and professional experiences in addressing nuanced issues around race, culture and immigration. Through exploration of intergenerational and historical trauma, as well as awareness to the impact of microaggression faced by minorities on an ongoing basis, EMDR allows clients to feel seen, heard and understood, while providing them new tools to find greater ease in navigating through the ups and downs of life.
What I Love about Being a Psychotherapist
Early in my life, I began to be fascinated by that which remains unspoken. I watched the interactions around me with great curiosity, noticing that what remained unsaid often seemed to have a greater impact, than the words itself.
Slowly, it dawned upon me, that when two people truly encounter each other, it is like a chemical reaction by which both people are transformed. It is this alchemy, this everyday magic, that brings me alive in the session, that allows me to truly become present in the moment. And what sustains me during the more challenging hours, is the belief, that when we bring our compassionate attention to anything, we are deeply transformed by that. I help my clients gently bring their awareness to the discomfort in their lives as a necessary pre-condition for change, and hold their hands through the process.
My Therapy Focus
My focus is helping people to live a compassionate and joyous life in the present. Often times, a memory of the past or a worry about the future can keep us from being present in the now. This tendency is exacerbated by small and large traumatic events in our lives. These events tend to be like a greasy, heavy meal that cannot be easily digested. EMDR can help the body to digest these undigested memories and free the joy that is waiting inside.
What I Usually Need to Know to Help
The purpose of the free phone consultation is so that we may both take the time to get to know each other. My hope is to understand a little about the issue(s) that brings you to therapy, while also providing some information about myself, my training and my therapeutic approach. I believe that you have the right to be well-informed so that you can make an educated decision about the right therapist for you. I encourage you to ask questions and offer the assurance, that if this is not a good fit, I will make every effort to connect you with a therapist who might be a better fit.
If this is a good fit, I will wait for the information to unfold in a manner that feels safe and comfortable for you. This is your therapy and I will encourage you to take the lead to the extent that feels right for you.
It is essential for me to know if you have had any prior therapy and about your medical history, so that I can appropriately collaborate with other professionals, with your written consent.
In the initial sessions, my goal is to address any immediate safety and other concerns so that we can focus on the therapeutic process. Next, we will embark on a history-taking and assessment process, while determining measurable goals and evidence based methods to achieve them.
Important Factors for Choosing a Therapist
I believe that one of the most important factors when choosing a therapist is to trust your own intuition. As your therapist, I will accompany you on your healing journey, and your safety and comfort are of utmost importance to me.
Our initial encounter will help you to decide whether you could come to trust me with your pain. Trust grows over time, but your primary reaction is usually a good guide. I offer a free twenty minute phone consultation to help in this process.
Therapy is a place to explore the parts of ourselves that are wounded and painful. My goal is to provide a calm, safe space for your healing. Allow yourself, to imagine, if possible, whether you could feel safe to cry, to share your anger, your shame or a secret you have long buried. This will help you to make a decision.
I hope to communicate openly and directly with you, and would encourage you to work with a therapist with whom you are easily able to communicate. If I believe that I am not the right therapist for you, I have many wonderful colleagues who have other approaches and specializations, that I would be happy to refer you to. I look forward to hearing from you.
Importance of the Client-Therapist Alliance
Research shows that therapy is only as successful as the alliance between therapist and client. In my practice, my focus is on building a strong relationship that nurtures and supports you through the work. My goal is to empower you in the therapy room, and outside of it. At the end of each session, we will reflect on your experience of our therapeutic relationship, and my attunement to your needs, so that you can have a high quality therapy experience. I will continuously work on finetuning and refining my approach, so that your needs are being met consistently, even as they change over the course of our work together. From frequency of sessions, to goals and topics, your input will chart the course for a therapy as unique as you.
If you're ready to try something new that is all about you, call to schedule a free twenty minute consultation.
The Duration and Frequency of Therapy
I believe that for most clients, therapy is most effective when it is focused first on symptom relief for pressing issues. Since most of my clients are dealing with the after-effects of trauma, we focus both on symptom-relief and on effective re-processing of the trauma itself. My clients consistently report that EMDR seems to help them effectively store the memories in a healthier, more adaptive manner, so as to reduce the intensity of its effects.
For a single traumatic event, this can be as short as six sessions, although many clients have multiple or complex trauma that requires more than six sessions. Our conversations in the first two or three sessions will help us to collaboratively draw a road map to healing, and we can determine the milestones along this path. This will give us an idea of the likely time-frame as well.
I always let the client know that they are in the driver's seat and that they are the best judge of their needs. I support my client's independence and decision-making process. And my goal is for the client to have a sense of completion around the therapeutic process.
I also like to let clients know upfront that the termination process is an important piece of our work together and that I would like us to spend a session or two focusing on it. I educate client's about it, and ask their permission to remind them of the benefits of creating a strong and healthy termination when we get to that point in our journey together.
Services I Provide
- Individual Therapy & Counseling
- Marriage, Couples, or Relationship Counseling
- Family Therapy
- Group Therapy
Ages I Work With
Groups I Work With
Clients of diversity and clients wishing to explore issues around race, culture and immigration are warmly welcomed. Compassionate Care for Survivors of domestic violence, sexual abuse and early trauma.
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