Dr. Piyali Chakrabarti, PsyD
I was born and raised in Calcutta, India. Not only was it my home for over 20 years but it was also home to one of my inspirations – Mother Teresa. Her compassion and care towards sick and suffering children really influenced me. Her altruistic actions sowed in me the thought of doing something worthwhile in life and helped me determine my career and life goals.
I have always loved learning about how people understand, think, and cognize in general and how they have impact on everything that surrounds them including their families, society, or the general environment at large. I decided that I would choose my career in such a way that it would help me to do something worthwhile and could contribute to the society in my own little way.
Most recently, I obtained my PsyD. in Clinical Psychology from the Professional School of Psychology, California (2019). Prior to that, I received my M.P in Clinical Psychology (1997) from the Central Institute of Psychiatry and my M.S. and B.S. in Applied Psychology (1992,1994) from University of Calcutta, India.
Having lived in the United States of America, Singapore and India, I understand the meaning of the global style of living and how it shapes to creates internal assessment of what “home” is and accepting to terms with one’s identity. The reason for sharing all of this is that I have lived in many places and I been exposed to diverse types of training and cultural experiences and have a sincere passion for learning and connecting with people. I believe that my training and skills within the realms of Individual and Group therapy helps me in creating a profound understanding of confidential, non-judgmental, and safe therapeutic alliances with my clients. I am available for consultations in English, Bengali and Hindi.
I have 15 years of clinical/research experience in Singapore, India, and the USA. My training experiences as a clinical psychologist have extended a broad range of treatment settings, such as private practice, non-profit organizations and community hospitals. I have worked with diverse populations throughout my career, ranging from high-functioning professionals exploring personal growth or experiencing job-related stress, to individuals suffering from acute or chronic mental illness.
My treatment approach is informed by numerous styles of therapy:
- Expanding Cognitive-Behavioral therapy (CBT) with Metacognitive Therapy (MCT) – exploring what you think vs. how much you listen to what you think (process based).
- Integrating Acceptance & Mindfulness in Cognitive-Behavioral therapy.
- Psychodynamic – understanding individual’s family origins and exploring what was lacking in the past and how you relate in your current relationships.
- Relational – individual’s relation to me in the session is a way to understand how they relate outside the controlled clinical set up.
Working with Adolescents & Adults: I extensive experience working with late adolescents and adults and I can treat a range of difficulties from excessive worries & rumination, mood issues to difficulties with relationships.
In anxiety, it is often seen that thinking becomes difficult to control leading to emotional suffering. In treatment, I primarily apply CBT with MCT (time-limited) approaches to handle repetitive negative thinking. In the treatment process, individuals will gain awareness of their beliefs on worry, rumination, fixed attention on threat and their reaction to it, and how to relate in a new way of responding to the repetitive unhelpful thinking. I also use the integration of acceptance and mindfulness principles within CBT. My approach is used for the treatment of cases such as Panic Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Social Anxiety, Health Anxiety, etc. (https://mct-institute.co.uk/therapy/).
In depression there are mood disturbances in which the person feels sad or loses interest in activities and often associated with sleep and appetite issues. The most common depressive disorder is called major depressive disorder (MDD). Some episodes may be single or repeated that can last from weeks, several months or years. I use CBT with MCT (time-limited) when individuals thinking, and behavior gets out of control as well as attention becomes fixed in patterns of brooding and dwelling on the self and threatening information.
I prefer to apply a wide range of therapeutic modalities while dealing with couples. I am a Certified Choice Theory Reality Therapist (CTRT) through the William Glasser Institute of Singapore. CTRT is based on the principals of helping people to learn internal control and improve important relationships (https://wgis.org.sg/reality-theory/). I have also completed Level 1 and 2 Gottman Method of Couples Therapy. I prefer to work collaboratively with couples to create a sound relationship house, such as, building sound friendship, learning effective communication and manage conflict in a relationship (https://www.gottman.com/). Additionally, I have completed Basic and Advance level of Schema Therapy. In Schema Therapy couples learn to identify each other’s maladaptive thinking patterns leading to maladaptive coping styles which does not allow to build harmonious relationship (https://www.schematherapysociety.org/page-18983).
Other Areas of Clinical Focus
I am a Certified Group Psychotherapist (CGP), and I am experienced in conducting group psychotherapy to support clients in managing their challenges. Group psychotherapy can act as the powerhouse of support during stressful life events or difficult transition. That is why some individuals also choose to see me in a group setting for some duration in addition to their individual sessions. The overall life satisfaction can be viewed by the lens of our relationship quality and group psychotherapy helps individuals to work in the here-and-now to connect with themselves and others meaningfully. The following concerns can be addressed in the group setting: anxiety, women’s issues, adjustment, or life transition. I am open to discuss this option based on my client’s therapeutic goal.