Today we’d like to introduce you to Alyssia Cruz.
Hi Alyssia, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today.
Looking back the signs always pointed to me becoming a therapist. Not only did I love talking, but I grew up watching my mom be the person in the community who gave advice and helped others. Seeing this value as a kid, I knew I wanted to “help people” too. I attended university for the first time straight after high school, but the culture shock of being at a primarily white institution got to me. I withdrew after a semester of being homesick and feeling like an outsider. I joined the military to travel and get money for college. When my service was over, I was busy raising a family and pursuing my professional interests. My magic has always been in connecting with others and talking through their stresses, so I was overjoyed to finally. Throughout my college years and career, I focused on working in a variety of spaces but felt that there was so much I would change if I ran the show. After becoming fully licensed, I felt it was time to create what I envisioned- my own space for client work. It has been an amazing experience.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back, would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
There have been highs and lows- as with most things in life. Some of the struggles included overcoming mindset blocks, insecurities, and learning about running a business. Because I had my vision of what I wanted my practice to be, at times, it was frustrating to know it would take time to get there. I am so grateful for those lessons, and now my practice has blossomed. I also had to learn which clients I do my best work with. Most of my client fall into 2 categories: high achieving black women and fellow therapists. In the beginning, I did not advertise specifically to these groups, so when I noticed the trend of attracting these clients, AND our work together was on point- I knew it was my purpose.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
I support anxious folks to set better boundaries, stop spreading themselves thin and cultivate better relationships with themselves. Many times, I see clients who struggle with perfectionism and people-pleasing. These symptoms can have various roots, but often times it can be traced back to trauma or childhood issues. What sets me apart from others is the unique combination of lived experience and professional knowledge I bring with me. I am a human first- therapist second. I like to let clients know that I, too am a perfectionist in recovery. There are still days that my anxiety feels overwhelming, or I do not use all the coping skills I know, and that’s ok. Showing up with my realness to walk beside clients with their own struggles is what helps them connect with me. I believe in the power of relationships, and our relationship in therapy is part of the healing experience. We navigate through difficult conversations and being held accountable- having a person who can acknowledge your pain while helping you make the shifts you want in your life is powerful.
I offer virtual therapy services for individuals in Michigan.
What would you say has been one of the most important lessons you’ve learned?
I have learned to prioritize the things I value. Every time I lead with that- the other areas of my life fall into place. Sometimes I think we compromise our values or accept people disrespecting our boundaries and this leads to more stress in the end. When I am honoring my values, it may be uncomfortable in the short term, but the reward is my peace. And I think that’s the beautiful balance of life.
- Sessions- $150 per hour
- Website: www.alyssiacruz.com
- Instagram: www.instagram.com/therapistaly
- Other: www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists/alyssia-cruz-ann-arbor-mi/974058