Rachael Bloom

How I work

Are you someone who struggles to ignore that voice in your head that is constantly telling you how things "should" be? The voice that tells you the kind of job you should have, the sort of relationship that you should be in, the life stage that you should have already mastered, the type of parent that you should be? Maybe you are watching your child struggle with their own set of shoulds and you can see it starting to take a toll.

I definitely get it. We all have an idea of how we think things should go. But the problem with defining ourselves by our shoulds is that so much of the time, we find that we come up short. I work with adults and teenagers to reduce feelings of anxiety, depression, inadequacy, and dissatisfaction by eliminating thoughts about what you should be and instead building upon and celebrating what you already are.

I very much believe that my clients are the experts of their own experiences. You are the only one who knows what it's like to be you. My role as a therapist is to provide the space and support for you to break through the mental and emotional blocks that are getting in the way of you accessing the very best version of yourself. With children, my job is to provide them with the tools and words to express big emotions in ways that are empowering and effective, laying the foundation for a strong emotional self as an adult. Clients often tell me that I'm different from other therapists that they've had. My style of therapy is directive and collaborative. I don't just listen, but I actively engage with you- asking questions, offering strategies, and challenging unhelpful patterns and tendencies. My goal is that you leave every session feeling greater clarity and more hopeful about lasting change. And if you don't, I want to work with you to figure out why, and how to get you there.

I favor a holistic approach to treatment that relies heavily on a mind-body connection. While our feelings and emotions are tricky and complex, our bodies are pretty good at sending us straightforward messages and learning how to listen for and respond to those messages is integral to our mental health. I am a strength based and solution focused therapist. This means that we focus on what works, rather than what isn't working.

In treatment, we’ll work together so help me gain an understanding of who you are within the context of your life experience. When working with anxiety we’ll rely heavily on cognitive behavioral and behavioral strategies as these types of interventions tend to bring the most immediate relief. I also focus on helping my clients develop greater mindfulness and self compassion, as we know that being kinder and gentler with ourselves is crucial.

In my work with children, I look at the whole child and their cumulative experiences. Through play, art, behavioral interventions, and parent involvement I work on managing anxiety and developing greater emotional regulation, reducing challenging behaviors, and developing social skills that support improved functioning across environments. I am certified in UCLA's Program for the Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS) which allows me to incorporate strong, evidenced based tools into my work.

Ultimately, I embrace a collaborative approach to treatment where we will work together to determine a treatment plan that meets your needs and that you feel comfortable with.

Education and Training

It’s important for you to have information on your therapist’s background and training. I received my BA in Creative Studies with a minor in Education and Applied Psychology from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Following this, I received training in Applied Behavioral Analysis and trauma focused therapy at The Help Group in Los Angeles, where I provided early intervention to children on the autism spectrum as well as milieu therapy to children and adolescents dealing with complex trauma and PTSD.

I completed my Master’s of Social Work from San Jose State University in 2010. As part of my graduate training, I worked with Mission Mental Health in San Francisco where I provided therapy, crisis intervention, and case management to adults dually diagnosed with substance abuse and severe psychiatric disorders. I also obtained my Pupil Personnel Services credential, certifying me to provide mental health services in school settings, and giving me specific insight and expertise into the psychosocial challenges faced by my school age clients.

Upon completion of my Master’s, I returned to Los Angeles where I spent the next eight years working with the non-profit Family, Adult, and Child Therapies (FACT). Founded in the 1990’s FACT specializes in providing comprehensive support and mental health services to individuals on the autism spectrum and their families. In my time at FACT, I supervised their school based services, provided assessment and diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders and managed their clinical intern program. During my last several years at FACT, I successfully developed their outpatient mental health clinic expanding the clinical scope beyond autism services and into general mental health including treatment of severe anxiety, mood disorders, eating disorders, and parenting support.

In 2017 I left my position as FACT’s Clinical Director to focus on my private practice full time. In my private practice, I see families, couples, and individuals of all ages and with a variety of diagnoses . I focus on working with anxiety in children and adults, autism spectrum disorders, and maternal mental health including prenatal and postnatal anxiety and mood disorders.