Dr. Nina has worked in various therapeutic settings, including a youth homeless shelter, a domestic violence shelter, substance abuse outpatient programs, community mental health center, and in corrections settings. She was the Clinical Director for a young adult transition program.
A 15+ year veteran of providing mental health services, Dr. Nina has a strong background in the mindfulness-based modality and concentrates in behavioral and cognitive therapies. She is an EMDR practitioner, as well as a facilitator of DBT, Seeking Safety, and SMART Recovery. Dr. Nina is also a facilitator of Path of Freedom®, the mindfulness-based emotional intelligence (MBEI) curriculum developed for at-risk populations by Prison Mindfulness Institute.
Dr. Nina brings unparalleled multicultural awareness and understanding, as well as compassion and sensitivity toward cultural differences. Her style of therapy is collaborative and supportive. She brings empathy and humor to her work with clients, and she challenges clients when necessary. Her versatile experience in counseling makes her a highly responsive and effective therapist.
My Mindfulness Journey
I was born in Tokyo, Japan and raised as a Buddhist; however, my parents were not as religious as others in Japan. I had never had any teachings on Buddhism, mindfulness or meditation until I moved to the United States.
Before coming to the U.S., I first moved to Europe after finishing college in Japan. I studied English in Britain and Spanish in Spain. At 29, I moved to the United States to study Psychology. In my 20s, I travelled to more than 10 countries and mostly lived abroad where I cultivated multicultural awareness and an understanding of diversity.
My study of mindfulness began when I was a student of Transpersonal Counseling Psychology at Naropa University in Boulder, almost two decades ago. I first puzzled with the concept of mindfulness because it is similar to what I learned growing up in Japanese culture! Even though I had never had formal Buddhist teaching, the concept of mindfulness was familiar to me.
I became a daily mindfulness practitioner after I graduated from Naropa University. I have a formal regular meditation practice and am a devoted yoga practitioner.
To me, the ultimate goal of this practice is to love. Love yourself and others, including people who are difficult to deal with. I have learned to be gentle to myself and others.
Meditation and mindfulness practice unfold organically in my sessions with clients.
It is up to you how you want to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life.