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Nora Zou

​She/ Her

Tier I Therapist 

I believe in the uniqueness of every client and see each new therapeutic relationship as a unique and special journey of healing, growth, and self-discovery. Every individual brings their own set of experiences, challenges, and strengths to the therapeutic process. My role is to honor this individuality and to support clients as they navigate their personal journeys. This involves creating a therapeutic environment that fosters trust, openness, and authenticity, where clients feel empowered to explore their true selves and work towards their goals. 


My passion lies in providing a safe, non-judgmental, and empathetic space where clients can freely explore their concerns. I understand that seeking therapy can be a vulnerable step for many individuals. Therefore, I strive to create an atmosphere of acceptance and understanding, where clients feel heard, validated, and respected and where clients can safely express their thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or criticism.


I view therapy as a collaborative process that must be tailored to meet the individual needs of my clients, and I believe that motivation is essential for both the client and myself. This collaborative approach means that therapy is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor; instead, it is a dynamic and evolving partnership. My passion for helping people through therapy stems from a deep belief in the potential for growth and transformation within each person.


My professional path has been deeply influenced by my personal experiences with significant life transitions and changes. In many ways, helping others has felt like helping myself, and this drives my dedication to offering a guiding hand to those in need.


I offer services in both English and Mandarin, with availability for weekday and weekend sessions, both online and in-person.

I view each therapeutic relationship as a unique journey of healing and self-discovery, providing a safe, non-judgmental space for clients to explore their true selves.

My Story

My journey as a therapist began with my role as a crisis line phone worker, where I provided emotional first aid and engaged in meaningful interactions with callers in distress. This experience was transformative, as it equipped me with essential counseling skills and deepened my empathy for those in crisis. Through these interactions, I discovered a profound desire to form longer-term relationships with clients, enabling me to accompany them through their healing journeys and witness their growth over time.


Following this, I worked as a mental health counselor at a private practice in China, where I gained extensive hands-on experience with children and adolescents. This period of my career was particularly enriching as I incorporated techniques such as sand play therapy, which allowed me to explore the congruence between the body and the inner self. Working with young clients taught me the importance of creating a safe and expressive environment, where they could explore their emotions and develop resilience.


With exposure to diverse cultural backgrounds, including Chinese, American, and Japanese cultures, I bring a culturally sensitive perspective to my practice. I recognize that cultural influences significantly shape a person's identity, values, and worldview. By being culturally sensitive, I aim to provide therapy that respects and acknowledges these influences. I am dedicated to understanding the unique cultural contexts of my clients, exploring how these backgrounds impact their experiences, and addressing any culturally specific challenges they may face. This cultural competence enhances the therapeutic alliance and ensures that clients feel seen and understood in the context of their cultural identities.

Therapeutic Approaches

My therapeutic approach is holistic, integrating techniques from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Psychodynamic Therapy, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). This blend of modalities allows me to tailor my approach to the specific needs of each client, ensuring a comprehensive and personalized treatment plan. 


My approach is collaborative, interactive, and client-centered. I see my role not as someone who changes clients, but as a facilitator who helps clients make informed choices and become more aware, thereby fostering positive changes in their lives. This perspective is rooted in the belief that clients are the experts in their own lives, and my job is to guide and support them in uncovering their inner resources, building resilience, and making empowered decisions.

Specialties

My specialties include anxiety, stress, depression, relationship issues, cultural and life transitions, immigration stress, and identity.  I am particularly attuned to the complexities of cultural transitions and immigration stress, understanding how these experiences can impact an individual's mental and emotional well-being. My goal is to provide targeted support and interventions that help clients navigate these challenges, build healthy relationships, and develop a strong sense of self.

Credentials 

  • Supervisor: Huilin Lai, LCSW: R081942

  • Degree: New York University - M.A. in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness (in process)

  • Degree: University of Washington - B.A. in Psychology

More about me

Beyond my professional life, I am a passionate dog lover who finds immense joy and companionship in the company of my furry friends. I have a deep appreciation for their loyalty and unconditional love, which often serves as a source of comfort and solace in both my personal and professional endeavors.


In my leisure time, I am a gamer for both video games and board games. Gaming not only provides me with a much-needed outlet for relaxation and fun but also serves as a means to stay connected with old friends scattered across the globe. Through shared experiences and friendly competition, gaming has fostered lasting bonds and moments of camaraderie that enrich my life beyond measure.


One of my adrenaline-inducing passions is my love for rollercoasters. There's something exciting about the rush of wind against your face as you plummet down a steep drop or loop through twists. Like rollercoasters, we all have our thrilling moments of uncertainty and to hold on tight during the inevitable twists and turns, and I am here for you to explore more about yourself.

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