About me: Interest in people, my work, life, immigration, commitment, areas of interest, fees
Vivek Anand, MA, M.Arch., LMFT
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
People and communication fascinate me
I work with individuals, couples and families. I have experience in working with children, families, creative professions, immigrants, the LGBTQ community, and the South Asian community. I bring a knowledge of relationships, music, the creative process, spiritual and philosophical inquiry. I am genuinely interested in people and I am curious about what is their essence and their way of relating to themselves, to others and to the world.
I am an immigrant from India and speak several Indian languages such as Hindi/Urdu, Punjabi, some Marathi and Gujarati, a tiny bit of Malayalam, and some French, although I am most fluent in English.
Psychotherapy is about the unconscious, relationships, communication, the body, and the mind. It is about awareness and curiosity.
Within the field of psychotherapy I am interested in Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy to help understand the unconscious, our defenses, our motivations, and the subtle relational space we create within the process of psychotherapy.
Attachment Theory and Object Relations are invaluable to me in understanding our early and ongoing relationship styles.
Systemic and Structural Therapy invite us to work with the family systems within which we live and to effect change through stimulating change in the system.
Art therapy techniques provide alternatives to using words for communication, and transform us through the process of working two dimensionally and three dimensionally through tactile and varied media such as paper, paint, found objects and simple sculptural materials.
Somatic experiencing and Mindfulness practices help me to bring your attention to your body, to breathing, to the mind, and this new attention allow us to inhabit our body with a sense of peace.
I am committed to social justice, honesty and collaboration, because our work occurs in full awareness of the world, it challenges inconsistencies within us and within society, and it is sustained by sustaining community.
I care about people, am a good listener and people find it easy to relax and communicate in my presence, and this allows us to earnestly begin our journey in a safe environment with an attitude of curiosity.
You might appreciate these Thoughts about Psychotherapy.
Immigration, Music and Design
You, and your loved ones, are the focus of my work, but knowing more about who I am might help you to understand how we might relate.
I grew up in India in an interfaith home, studied architectural design and music and learned several languages. I came to the United States for a Masters program in Architecture at Virginia Tech, and after completing it I moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in the mid 1990s. I designed supportive and inspiring places for people, including schools, and healthcare environments for people of all ages. I then taught architectural design at the Academy of Art.
I made a community of like minded people interested in music, design and an inner life, and learned to appreciate my new home and its residents. These experiences in India and the US allow me to understand and relate to South Asians and other immigrant communities and to understand mixed cultures and relationships.
Music and design have taught me to be attentive to how sound, space and beauty can support us, and how a life involving service and working with people is satisfying at many levels. My experience with faith and community help me to support you in your relationship to value systems and community.
Working with people is my priority
Through my work in design and music I found that I valued my work with people more and more, and wished to be a psychotherapist. I volunteered with seniors at the Friendship Line for Seniors learning about their loneliness and rich inner lives, and with adults having significant mental health problems at the Creative Wellness Center, understanding psychosis, schizophrenia, and dissociation.
I helped to create a national helpline called DeQH for the South Asian LGBTQ community in collaboration with national organizations. I worked on the training material and I help to train our call takers. This helpline allows those who might hesitate to seek psychotherapy to obtain peer support in an anonymous and accessible setting.
I then went back to school to get a second Masters degree, this time in a Marriage and Family Therapy program at JFK University in Berkeley. Simultaneously I taught architectural design studio to freshmen and facilitated their inner growth. At JFKU I learned much from my varied cohort and diverse teachers.
While in school and after graduating I worked at Rosa Parks Elementary and at an agency called Lincoln, offering psychotherapy to children and their families in public schools, and I was able to help them with anxiety, depression, peer pressure, academic challenges and family dynamics. Recently I have learned about offering emotional support to gifted 2E or twice exceptional children, and to their teachers.
A rich life informs my work with you
I attempt to let my search, experiences and practices inform and nourish me in my daily life while I support you in our work together. I am a Hindustani classical, folk, and Sufi singer and learn and perform this introspective music in private and public venues including interfaith gatherings. I study Vedanta, an Indian philosophy which attempts to help us understand the self, and am a keen student of all religions and philosophy. I am also a thoughtful critic of the excesses of religion and other institutions when necessary. I am engaged in my personal psychoanalysis, the best way for a therapist to learn how to engage in depth with clients. All these practices are a training in listening, attunement and understanding, all essential for our work together.
License and Fees
I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist LMFT 106458.
I accept insurance for UC Berkeley students through UC Berkeley SHIP and for some grocery store employees through HMC Healthworks at this time. Other than this I do not accept insurance but can provide you with superbills so that you may try to claim Out of Network benefits from your insurance provider. My fees are affordable, and are in keeping with my skills and the standards for this area. I also have a sliding scale, and some low fee slots for those in need. I do not charge for our first consultation meeting. Please get in touch via email or phone.