Therapy approach


“In some respect we are like every other human, like some other humans, like no other human.” From an extinct social psychology text book

Each individual is whole and continuously changing. Shaped by genes and environment, we all have a unique history of wounds and blessings, and a human spirit that continuously unfolds moment by moment. Sometimes we find ourselves stuck in some important part of life and we feel confused in figuring out how to move forward. Not uncommonly, our typical tools for dealing with life’s problems and challenges – tools that used to work well in the past – may no longer be working well in some significant contexts. Even worse, our old tools may actually be making the problems worse. We are left at a loss and find ourselves feeling unsure and maybe even helpless about how to proceed.

A psychotherapist is the client’s ally and support in the journey toward (1) understanding the client’s unique situation, history, gifts, and challenges, (2) accessing the resources the client uses in trying to fix or cope with his/her/their problems, and (3) strengthening and expanding the client’s resources and skills to increase awareness and authenticity, relational and emotional attunement and compassion, cognitive flexibility and behavioral efficacy.

Extensively trained in the most current evidence-based psychological interventions, and informed by contemplative practices, existential-humanistic and Eastern philosophies, as well as cultural/ethnic/sexual diversity, Sevitar offers a wide as well as deep platform from which to assist individuals, couples and families in getting unstuck and growing and increasing their psychological flexibility and well-being. Dr. Viveka Ramel has comprehensive graduate and post-graduate training from top U.S. universities and institutions in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR), Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT), Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples, and family systems. She has taught the Search Inside Yourself (SIY) mindfulness and emotional intelligence leadership program at Google and other organizations and is a Prosocial Facilitator.

Viveka is experienced in working with adults who present with the following:

  • Relationship and communication difficulties
  • General stress or adjustment problems
  • Anxiety (e.g., social anxiety, panic disorder, and generalized anxiety disorder)
  • Depression (e.g., major depression, dysthymia, and postpartum depression)
  • Trauma (including post-traumatic stress disorder)
  • Eating disorders (e.g., bulimia nervosa and binge eating)
  • Insomnia
  • Life transitions
  • Personal growth
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As a therapist, Viveka uses an active, present-oriented, warm and collaborative approach in working with her clients. After an initial assessment phase, a treatment plan and therapy goals are established. Viveka invites a safe, trusting, and genuine working relationship with her clients where open communication and feedback about the collaboration are frequently encouraged.

A characteristic of Viveka’s style of psychotherapy is an integration of approaches that emphasize relational, functional and contextual sensitivity and expansion via (a) mindful awareness, (b) active willingness to access and experience inner events (e.g., emotions, thoughts, and sensations) and understanding their needs and purpose, and (c) skill building and behavioral activation toward valued goals. Not only has she found this to be most effective in working with the diverse needs of clients, but scientific research also indicates that the strongest support for treatment gains come from approaches that combine relational attunement, acceptance and change-oriented approaches toward increasing psychological flexibility, self-efficacy, collaboration and co-regulation. By necessity, this work needs to be deliberately anchored in the client’s unique values, goals, and context.