We had the good fortune of connecting with Alyssa “Lia” Mancao and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Alyssa “Lia”, how does your business help the community?
My work as a therapist is geared toward helping people access their own internal healer and emotional compass while helping them connect with their inner child. As a therapist, I specialize in treating anxiety, depression, and trauma. It is my full belief that when a person can learn how to tend to their emotional hurts with love and compassion (versus anger and judgment) then they can enhance their ability to relate to themselves and others. When a human being heals, this has a ripple effect: their relationships improve, they model healthy communication to others, and this can inspire those close to them to work on themselves as well. Converse to the old saying “hurt people hurt people” the opposite “healed people heal people” is also true. When we learn to approach ourselves and our emotions with compassion and kindness, we can then extend that to others, and this has very healing effects on our relationships and our communities. Furthermore, my clinical training is within the field of social work and the foundation of social work is social justice. With that said, is also within my code of ethics as a social worker to advocate on behalf of the oppressed and those who experience difficulties advocating for themselves, therefore I make sure to include a lens of social justice and advocacy within my work as a therapist.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and the owner of a group practice located in Sherman Oaks, CA. Myself and my clinicians specialize in treating depression, anxiety, and trauma with the lens of helping clients understand the connection from past to present while building coping skill to effectively manage any stressors. My company also offers Reiki services with a practitioner who implements energy healing to enhance a person’s physical mental, emotional, and spiritual well- being. I believe that healing can happen on multiple levels, energetically and psychologically. In addition to my group practice, I also rent out office spaces to therapists who are interested in starting or growing their private practice. I am proud of the practice that I have built and my relationship with each of my clients; their growth and ongoing insight are very exciting to me. I am also very excited about growing my practice, through expanding into a group practice, offering webinars, and eventually providing pro bono work to those within or exiting the justice 

system. I believe that I got to where I am today through research, consulting with others, taking risks, and having faith in the process. While it was not easy to do so, I felt secure in knowing that things would unfold the way that they were meant to. Lessons that I have learned are: success does not happen over night, it takes a lot of hard- work, diligence, and consultations with others. I have also learned the importance of being authentic in your work and staying true to your mission and goals. At this moment, I am not sure what I would want the world to know about myself or my story, but I would like to encourage those therapists’ who are curious about private practice to take the leap. I would also like to encourage those who are ambivalent about going to therapy, to take the leap and learn a little bit more about themselves through the process. I think that it is important to use our own stories to help others.

Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
For full transparency, while my practice is located within Sherman Oaks, CA I rarely spend time within the city that my practice is located to create separation between work and life. However, if I could choose a city to spend a week long vacation with my best friend, it would be in my hometown of Cebu City, Philippines. There, we would spend time at the beach, go scuba diving in the ocean, eat food from the local restaurants, and go on hikes that have a view of the city (such as Tops Lookout)

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are many individuals that have been critical in shaping me as a therapist and a business woman. My family has been incredibly supportive in this journey, along with my professors in both undergrad (Cal Poly Pomona) and graduate school (USC School of Social Work). Each supervisor that I have had while working in community mental health (Child and Family Guidance Center in Van Nuys, CA) have further shaped, enhanced, and supported my clinical skills. Lastly, who is a therapist without their therapist? It is within my own personal work with my therapist that I have learned how to look inward, and have had it modeled for me how to show up for myself and others.

Website: www.alyssamariewellness.com
Instagram: alyssamariewellness
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alyssamancao
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alyssamariewellness/

Image Credits
Elizabeth Garcia & @TryFrame

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