LEANNE WATT, Ph.D., clinical psychologist
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Complicated people who have “given up” on finding effective psychotherapy find emotional relief in my office.  I am a clinical psychologist in Pasadena and have been in private practice for nearly 20 years, providing psychotherapy to individuals, couples & families presenting with a broad range of difficulties. As a Pasadena therapist, I specialize in treating patients who have been successful in many areas of life, but they’re still feeling incomplete, often struggling with deeply entrenched interpersonal & behavioral patterns. You may recognize yourself in one of these profiles:

  You’re depressed, bothered by self-critical & self-shaming thoughts that eat away at your self-esteem.
•   You’re anxious all the time or especially in social situations, unable to relax and feel safe in this world.
•   You’re a couple that gets entangled easily-- you bicker often, you’re feeling injured, misunderstood, enraged, or totally shut down.
•   You’re a super-achiever— skilled at many things, yet feeling unfulfilled, alone, and sometimes, overwhelmed.
•   You’re compulsively using the internet or other screen devices; you’re avoiding life and unable to stop yourself.
  You’re having a hard time finding your voice, afraid to speak your mind for fear of upsetting others.
•   You’re a parent, ashamed of the way you respond to your children, or you’re unable to set firm and kind limits.
•   You’re having work issues, feeling unmotivated & inefficient or you work too much & have difficulty saying “no” to the job.
  You’re stuck creatively, unable to find your inspiration or afraid to trust your own instincts.
•   You’re sober & working the steps, but still struggling with feelings of restlessness, self-hate, shame & remorse.
•   Your fertility or your physical health is on your mind--- you’re feeling stressed and your body is letting you down.
•   You are searching for spiritual meaning in life, or you’re trying to leave a religion that feels damaging.
•   Or maybe you’re just feeling empty and are looking for something or someone to fill you up.

In treatment, the childhood roots of self-destructive thoughts & behaviors are explored, & patients learn to replace criticism & shame with kindness. Clients develop the ability to sit still with their emotions, rather than avoiding uncomfortable feelings through compulsive, "busy", or destructive behaviors. Through this process, depression & anxiety are reduced, while patients experience an increase in self-confidence, assertiveness, creativity, & tolerance for intimacy. The most frustrated couples learn to identify feelings & needs & communicate them without using attacking words; when “buttons” are pushed, they learn how to disentangle from each other and reconnect. And as your emotional connection to yourself & others improves, a sense of contentedness replaces your feelings of emptiness.

The latest medical research in the neuroscience and mind-body literature are incorporated into my clinical formulations, to ensure a proper understanding of my patients’ struggles. In addition to my doctorate, I also have a master’s degree in theology with a sensitivity to the spiritual issues that some patients bring into therapy. Please continue reading to learn more about my Pasadena CA psychologist services.