Meet Sonya Veytsman, a therapist with A Good Place
Why did you decide to become a therapist?
Ever since I was a little girl, I have known that I wanted my work to make a direct and positive impact on the mental health and well being of others.
Part of my motivation stems from personal experience. Growing up, I watched several of my family members grapple with chronic physical and mental health issues. I was too young to understand the impact of these struggles at the time, but the more I learned, the more I realized that I wanted to dedicate my life to helping others to find hope, even in the darkest times.
As a therapist, what are you most passionate about?
Grounding our work together in compassion, mindfulness, gratitude, and finding physical or creative outlets that will enable stress reduction and healing. I firmly believe that we all possess the answers we need. My goal is to empower clients to develop the tools that will unlock these answers, and change their lives for the better in the process.
What makes you unique as a therapist?
My personal experience with trauma and my ability to tune in to the distinct needs of the diverse populations that I work with. I’ve experienced the power of an engaged, empathetic listener first hand, which is one of the reasons why I’m passionate about providing a safe and supportive space. Previous clients have said that I have a very “can-do” attitude and that they feel more connected and understood after our sessions together than they have in other therapeutic settings.
How would you describe your therapeutic approach?
There is no one-size-fits-all approach -- each of us comes in with our own unique story. My clients and I work together to assess what outcomes and issues are most important and what strategies and tools are the best fit. I am unconditionally patient, supportive, empathetic and warm, and I draw from a combination of evidence-based treatment methodologies, including cognitive-behavioral therapies, mindfulness, motivational interviewing, and psychodynamic, strengths-based, solutions-focused tactics that reduce symptoms and increase well-being.
I am able to conduct sessions in both English and Russian and have experience utilizing culturally competent and sensitive frameworks with diverse populations.
What is your favorite thing about being a therapist?
Knowing that I can be an agent for change for another person. It’s a privilege to be part of someone’s trajectory from beginning to end. I enjoy watching clients progress, seeing them overcome challenges, hearing them say they are “doing better” and their relationships have changed, etc. Therapy is the most rewarding work I’ve ever done.
Why is self-care important?
Rapid evolution of technology and its inclusion in every aspect of our lives makes it easier for us to dissociate from ourselves, each other, and our needs in any given moment. When we forget to nurture ourselves, we don’t function as well and it’s harder to achieve our goals.
Self care is essential - we need to step back from the daily grind and listen to what our minds and bodies are telling us. Finding moments of stillness to reflect on how we’re feeling, what we need, and what forces or people may be standing in the way of our progress is what enables us to adapt and evolve.
How do you practice self-care?
I’m a huge proponent of practicing what I preach, so I ground myself in mindfulness and gratitude whenever I need to refocus my energy on my hopes and goals. Ballroom dance has been my go-to stress outlet since I was young -- I find that physical and creative exercises are a powerful way to reorient oneself in the present. Our external experiences often mirror the beliefs we have about ourselves and our lives. This can be very limiting. Self care is about making time to listen to the body, stay active, get more sleep, connect with family and friends, eat healthy/well, read a book, etc. By honoring our own needs, we create our best selves.
What is most important to you?
I enjoy giving support to others, because I know what it is to need help and find someone who can give it to you. I feel fortunate that I’m able to connect with others through kindness as part of my work.
What are your passion projects?
Dance is a big one. I love it because there’s always an opportunity for me to improve my skills, develop a better understanding of my body, and strengthen my relationship with my dance partner. Ballroom is all about living in the moment - feeling and responding the energy of music and expressing oneself through movement. It has remarkable healing properties for me. Plus it’s fun!
I also love reading, especially non-fiction. I find spirituality fascinating, and find myself drawn to texts and research about how our values and belief systems enrich and impact our lives.
Learn more about Sonya here: https://www.agoodplacetherapy.com/meet-the-team#sonya-veytsman