I am a psychotherapist with over a decade of clinical experience in community health. My experience spans across community-based clinics, NYC public schools, residential programs, hospitals, gyms, homes, secure facilities and private practice. Working predominantly in community centers and school mental health, I found myself drawn to the unique position of being on the front line of the education system and community mental health. To be an effective clinician and supervisor required I learn to be acutely aware of my clients’, colleagues’ and own needs in context of our environments, social, cultural backgrounds. The rich clinical experiences while immersed in a breadth of systems informs my technique. Being cognizant that unexplored workings of privilege, access and resources, social norms and structure impact resiliency is central. There is no “one size fits all” method. Mental health of the individual exists within community and intersects many systems. Just as the mind exists within body and is connected with other humans and broader society. I strive understand of the individual and collective forces which shape the nervous system.
I approach therapy as a collaborative process with clients. A practice that is done with intention, authenticity, presence, compassion, curiosity and humor, through feeling safe, and gently confronting unhelpful patterns and behaviors.
I use a psychodynamic and relational informed approach to help manage difficulties including depression, anxiety, relationship and family problems, trauma processing, life transitions, school, aging, complicated grief, displacement, personality issues, living with chronic illnesses, identity, body image and more.
Neena Ajwani, LCSW holds a Master of Social Work from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. She completed a postgraduate fellowship in psychodynamic psychotherapy through Institute for Psychoanalytic Education. She has been an adjunct instructor at Columbia University, School of Social work where she taught psychopathology and research methods and Chinese American Psychoanalytic Alliance where she taught supervision. Neena is currently a doctoral candidate at Smith College School of Social Work.