Katherine Chan, MMFT
Teen & Adult Therapist
Insurance: Can provide a superbill for PPO plans
My name is Kat. It’s nice to meet you.
Welcome. You can take a deep breath here.
Life on the outside seems okay, but you feel anxious or down all the time. You’ve been sensitive your whole life and are often overwhelmed by big emotions on the inside and chaos on the outside.
You’re constantly in conflict with yourself—pulled in one direction by the capable person you think you are, yet pulled in another direction by the person you’re afraid everyone will find out about.
It gets in the way of deep connection with others, ambitions for your career or education, and truly feeling comfortable in your own skin. It’s holding you back from loving this life and taking risks.
You’re not alone. And, it’s okay to feel lost right now and unsure of what to do.
I help adults and teens find their inner compass.
My job is to help you gain a deeper understanding of yourself and what you’re going through. We do this together by slowing down in the present moment and making room for previously hidden thoughts and emotions to come into the light.
As a second-generation Asian-American from an immigrant family and a former corporate professional, I understand that mental health hasn’t always been the first priority.
In fact, many of my clients are in the same boat as you. They are highly sensitive people (HSPs) or empaths trying to find balance and more satisfying relationships, people held back by past traumas, working professionals dealing with burnout, teens struggling with perfectionism and identity, and family members with cultural clashes, toxic relationships, and addiction.
The important thing is that you’re here now and you’re in good company.
Therapy for the Highly Sensitive Person (HSPs) and Empaths:
Reclaim your sensitivity as a superpower and make it work for you
Being sensitive means that you feel very deeply. You’re often moved by an awe-inspiring view or a profound scene in a movie. You also tend to notice subtle details about other people; you might even absorb other people’s energy and feel it like your own.
You could also be easily bothered by fine sensory details that others don’t seem to notice, such as loud sounds, scratchy textures, or strong smells.
Being sensitive has always been more of a burden than a strength. You were often told that you’re “too sensitive” or that you need “thicker skin.”
This is a common struggle for sensitive people. Often, they feel out-of-place around family and friends. They may question whether they are in the right career or struggle to find fulfilling relationships that aren’t exhausting or one-sided. I’ve asked myself the same questions because I’m sensitive too.
I believe that your sensitivity is a superpower—even if it doesn’t feel like it right now. Like all gifts, we have to learn how to work with it. Therapy is a place where you can slow down and deepen your relationship with yourself. It’s a place to safely process the impact of being told “you’re too sensitive” your whole life.
With greater understanding and self-compassion, you can finally stop trying to fit yourself into other people’s boxes and instead:
Feel more comfortable in your own skin
Develop deeper, more meaningful relationships
Find work or a career that is the right fit for you
Design a life that allows you to actually rest and recharge
Therapy for Anxiety and Relational Trauma:
Heal old wounds, embrace your emotions, and find ease within yourself
Anxiety is when you worry about something terrible happening even though there is no logical reason why. This type of anxiety has you worried about your performance at work or school, where you stand with your relationships, and your direction in life.
You often feel pressure to show up in a certain way. Oftentimes, you don’t feel good about yourself. The fear of embarrassment, failure, or “losing face” lingers in the back of your mind all the time. Worry keeps you from enjoying your life because you are mentally preoccupied and exhausted.
Anxiety seems like the problem, but it’s actually your nervous system’s natural response to perceived danger—just stuck on overdrive.
What many people don’t realize is that chronic anxiety often stems from painful past experiences, in which they felt alone, overwhelmed, rejected, unsafe, or in some way not “good enough.” These kinds of experiences, no matter how “small” or mundane can leave an unconscious, lasting impact on your sense of self and safety. This is also known as trauma.
Despite these experiences, we can find freedom from anxiety and past trauma since human beings continue to grow throughout our lifespan. Therapy can help you uncover the roots of your anxiety, develop practical tools to soothe your nervous system, and safely move past old beliefs that may be holding you back.
Therapy for Teens & Adolescents:
Making way for their best self to shine through
As a parent, you worry about your child all the time. You remember them as a carefree kid, and now it breaks your heart to see them struggling with anxiety and depression. They seem to be on an emotional rollercoaster and change moods at the drop of a hat.
You might wonder if you’ve failed them or did something wrong. You just want them to be their best self. It’s okay to not know what happened or what to do. You’re not alone in having these worries.
It’s important to remember that there is nothing wrong with your child. Anxiety and depression are often the only ways they know how to unconsciously cope with hard situations involving friends, family, academics, worries about the future, and more.
Therapy can help your child work through big emotions, low self-esteem, and fears about the world that are getting in the way of them being their best self. Sometimes, we even work as a family to transform what’s not working in the environment.
Even I know that therapy isn’t a magical cure—and it can’t do it alone—but it might give just the right kind of support to help them navigate the challenges of being a teenager.
My approach: Rediscover yourself and truly COME ALIVE
I am a trauma-informed therapist who helps people gain awareness of unhelpful thought and behavioral patterns, ride the waves of difficult emotions with greater ease, and ultimately move through painful experiences that may be holding them back.
Gestalt therapy invites us to break out of habitual thought patterns and instead to get in touch with our present-moment experience. This allows previously hidden or avoided emotions to surface. With greater awareness, new meaning and change become possible.
Internal Family Systems (IFS) helps us to better understand the different, often conflicting parts of ourselves. By understanding and reclaiming all of our various parts, we can find greater clarity and self-acceptance to meet life’s challenges successfully.
Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR) is a research-supported trauma therapy that alleviates the emotional distress associated with past traumatic experiences as well as present-day triggers. Tapping into the brain’s natural capacity to heal, it is possible to transform recurring memories, old beliefs about yourself, and difficult emotions into more freedom.
Attachment theory tells us the importance of early relationships on our sense of self and the ways in which we relate to others today. If you’ve ever felt unseen or unmet in some way, healing your relationship wounds with a kind, present therapist can reshape your patterns of relating today.
In addition, I am also a trained yoga and meditation teacher. This allows me to bring in additional mind-body skills, such as mindfulness, to help you deepen self-awareness and ease the endless mental chatter.
Education & Training:
- M. of Marriage & Family Therapy, University of Southern California
- B.A., New York University
- EMDR Basic Training, EMDR Consulting
- Clinical Training & School-Based Program, Southern California Counseling Center
- Gestalt Therapy Weekend Program 2019-20 & 2020-21, Pacific Gestalt Institute
- Trauma Resiliency Model® (Level 1), Trauma Resource Institute
- 200-Hour Meditation Teacher Training, Unplug Meditation
- Mindful Self-Compassion, InsightLA
- 200-Hour Yoga Teacher Training, YogaWorks
Therapy with me is warm, interactive, and full of compassion.
You can show up exactly as you are—lost, excited, confused, figuring things out… I make space for those parts of you that are struggling to be seen and met with kind eyes.
While each person’s therapy is different, some examples of our work together might include: befriending difficult emotions by noticing our thoughts and body sensations with curiosity, identifying limiting beliefs about yourself, learning tangible techniques to alleviate worry or panic in the moment, experimenting with new behaviors in a judgment-free space, processing distressing past experiences using EMDR, and more.
I’m excited to go on this healing journey together.
“The best way out is always through.”
–Robert Frost, poet