We had the good fortune of connecting with Sharon Uy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sharon, have there been any changes in how you think about work-life balance?
I’ve long considered myself to be an expert at work-life balance, namely because life has, generally, always come before work. In fact, I’d say that work often landed at the bottom of the list! But now that I have a job which doesn’t particularly feel like work–serving others’ internal exploration through a mix of creative and spiritual practices is more of a joyous privilege–my current work-life balance feels, simply, built in.
I find joy in both my work and my non-work, whether that’s engaging in my own personal creative pursuits or just doing a version of… nothing. Still, more practically speaking, as a therapist in private practice, I get to live by my own hours, which translates to 3-day work weeks. I feel very blessed to be able to do what I love, to serve others, and to not feel as though I’m constantly heading towards burnout (if I even feel like I’m heading there at all). Balance is necessary! And that will look different for everyone, and change over the seasons and the years.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
In my private practice as a therapist, I let myself be guided by my own intuition, creativity, the innate wisdom of the body, and spiritual practices when working with clients. Sessions can incorporate a mix of conversation, art-making, visualizations, writing, and of course at times, laughter and tears.
I am most proud of how I have crafted a method of guiding clients through inner work that is specific and authentic to what I’ve learned, through study and experience, are effective means for mind-body-spirit healing. I think it’s easy (and not necessarily wrong) to fall back on what textbooks suggest, but it takes trust and effort from both therapist and client to let the heart lead us back to its true self.
I truly never envisioned that I’d own my own business, but that’s what being a therapist in private practice means! I feel the imposter syndrome part of me scoffing at the idea of “me as business owner,” maybe because it’s been, thankfully, quite easy. I’m learning more and more that it’s not about what I project others might think of me, but what I think of myself and what I offer.
What I’d want the world to know about my work is that “therapy” with me is a practice that merges the spiritual and the creative, and that I am simply guiding my clients to find the ultimate healer in themselves.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My gratitude first goes to Christy Rials at A Window Between Worlds for introducing me to the idea that art therapy was a real thing, and for encouraging me to follow that path swiftly before I could change my mind! Much gratitude also to the Clinical Art Therapy Master’s program at Loyola Marymount University and all of my beloved classmates, from whom I learned so much about myself. More gratitude for my current career mentors (and creative and spirit guides), Genia Young, LMFT, ATR-BC; and Rae Hipolito, LMFT.