Licensed Counseling Psychologist

Sailaja is an American trained  Licensed Counseling Psychologist, with over 25 years of clinical experience in the field of Mental Health, Counseling, training, teaching and supervision.

Prior to joining Openminds Psychiatry, Counseling and Neuroscience Centre, Sailaja worked in various leading  Public and private settings – non-profit mental health centres, prestigious Universities and clinical mental health settings in the USA, Singapore, India and Dubai.

Sailaja graduated as the first Psychologist with a Post Masters Degree specializing in Multicultural Counseling from the world-renowned and prestigious Johns Hopkins University , A Masters Degree in Psychology from Radford university and a Bachelors Degree in Psychology from Presidency College, Chennai.   Sailaja is an American of Indian-origin, born in Malaysia and spent her childhood there before moving to India where she spent most of her formative years.

In her clinical capacity, Sailaja strongly emphasizes the importance of incorporating a holistic model of services that takes into consideration the mental/emotional, physical/biological, social, community and the spiritual aspects of the client to ensure well-being and self-sufficiency.

Her theoretical orientation is primarily client centered; however, however she is eclectic in her approach and often integrates other models of therapy such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Compassion based therapy, Mindfulness based therapy, Emotion focused therapy, Acceptance and Commitment therapy.

Sailaja works primarily with couples, individuals and families on a broad range of mental health issues.

With Couples, Sailaja has worked extensively on issues related to- relationship issues, breakdown in communication, trust and confidence, loneliness and sadness, inability to adjust to a marital life conflicts with extended families, infidelity, addictions, anger management and abuse.

With Individuals, Sailaja has worked extensively on depression, anxiety, personality issues, anger management, stress management, and issues related to adjustment and acculturation in new surroundings, relationship issues and management, workplace conflicts, loss of identity and grief and loss

With Families, Sailaja has worked extensively on issues related to intergenerational issues, parenting, conflict management, grief and loss, stress management, abusive and dysfunctional family functioning

Some of Sailaja’s key Therapeutic approaches

  • Couple’s/ Marital therapy
  • Client Centered therapy
  • Acceptance and Commitment therapy (ACT)
  • Solution focused therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioral therapy(CBT)
  • Supportive therapy
  • Mindfulness and compassion based therapy
  • Critical incident Stress Debriefing
  • Family therapy

Some of Sailaja’s specialized counseling Services are:

  • Mood disorder (e.g. Depression)
  • Adjustment Issues
  • Relationship issues
  • Personality issues
  • Marital /relationship issues
  • Acculturation / Assimilation issues
  • Intergenerational conflicts
  • Psycho education
  • Family conflicts
  • Issues of transition in youth
  • Corporate/employee assistance
  • Academic challenges and behavioral issues in youth
  • Cross Cultural Training

Sailaja’s Educational Qualifications

  • Post Masters (CAGS- Multicultural Counseling), Johns Hopkins University, USA
  • MS (Psychology), Radford University, USA
  • BA (Psychology), Presidency College, Chennai, India

Sailaja’s Professional Memberships

  • American Counseling Association (ACA),
  • American Psychological Association (APA)
  • American Multicultural Counseling and Development (AMCD)
  • International Association of Marriage and Family Counseling (IAMFC)


English, Malayalam, Tamil and Hindi

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