Anna Matyja, Ph.D.

Dr. Anna Matyja is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in the State of Illinois.  She completed her Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree in Psychology and Sociology from Northern Illinois University in 2005.  Dr. Matyja went on to earn her Master of Arts (M.A.) Degree and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Degree in Clinical Psychology from Southern Illinois University – Carbondale in 2014.  She completed her pre-doctoral internship at the Thomas E. Cook Counseling Center at Virginia Tech where she received extensive training in psychological testing, individual, and group psychotherapy with young adults.

Dr. Matyja works with adolescent and adult populations on a wide array of issues, including depression, anxiety, trauma, eating disorders, ADHD, and learning disorders.  She has an extensive background in psychological evaluation of ADHD and learning disabilities, working with women’s issues, and Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy approaches.  She joined the outpatient staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2017 where she provides professional services to outpatient clients.  Dr. Matyja is fluent in Polish and is an active member of the American Psychological Association.

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Michael Juhasz, LCPC, CADC

mike_juhasz picMichael (Mike) Juhasz, LCPC, CADC is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) in Illinois and received his Masters of Arts Degree in Psychology from the University of Illinois, Springfield in 1980.  He is also a Certified Drug and Alcohol Counselor (CADC) in the State of Illinois.  He has spent many years working in the mental health / substance abuse field utilizing a wide range of cognitive-behavioral interventions to focus on relapse prevention and mental health wellness.  His clinical orientation is eclectic – meaning he is able to provide specific counseling strategies to meet the needs of his clients.

Mike believes in a wellness-based approach to behavioral healthcare – advocating that his clients take care of themselves physically, mentally, and spiritually to live a balanced lifestyle for optimal psychological well-being.  His professional interests include treating self-esteem issues, depression, anxiety, life-transition issues, and substance abuse related disorders.  Mike has extensive experience working in an outpatient community mental health clinic as well as an inpatient settings.  He joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2015 and works in the Mount Prospect office location.

Mike has been married to his lovely wife for 31 years and lives in the Northwest suburbs.  He enjoys barbecuing on the grill, visiting with friends, exercising, and is a Chicago sports fan.  His peers tell him that he has a warm personality and is easy to talk to.

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Melissa Colon, Psy.D.

dr_melissa_colonMelissa Colon, Psy.D. completed her Bachelor of Science Degree (B.S.) from Roosevelt University of Chicago and her Doctor of Psychology Degree (Psy.D.) in Clinical Psychology from Adler University in Chicago.

Dr. Colon is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist in Illinois specialized in Clinical Neuropsychology and Psychophysiology.  She is also a certified parent educator.  She has extensive experience in brain-mapping (QEEG) techniques, neurofeedback treatments and technologies, neuropsychological assessment, and cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Dr. Colon works with both pediatric and adult populations on an array of issues, including:  Autism, ADD / ADHD, TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury), Pain Management, ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder), Parenting Techniques, Dementia, Anxiety, Depression, and Learning Disorders.

Dr. Colon joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. in 2016 and works in both inpatient and outpatient settings.  Her passion lies in the neuroscience field.  Dr. Colon enjoys keeping up with the latest research and technologies in the field of Clinical Neuropsychology and neurofeedback techniques.

Dr. Colon enjoys spending time with her family, reading, traveling, and spending time outdoors.

Nupur Sharma, LCPC

nupur_sharma picNupur Sharma, LCPC is a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) in the State of Illinois and is certified in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.  She obtained her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology for Loyola University in Chicago and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology.

Nupur’s clinical experience includes assessment and counseling of adolescent, adults, and elderly clients.  She has expertise in the areas of depression, anxiety and relationship issues.  Nupur treats both individuals and families and has a strong, multicultural orientation in her therapeutic approach – recognizing the importance of cultural sensitivity with clients with immigration and acculturation difficulties.   She joined the staff of Dr. Parisi & Associates, P.C. as an outpatient counselor and works in the Mount Prospect office location.

Nupur is passionate about advocating for individuals and families – empowering them to change.  Her clinical approach has been influenced by both Eastern and Western philosophies that help restore balance to her client’s physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual well-being.

Nupur is a bilingual / bicultural psychotherapist and is fluent in both English and Hindi.

5 Tips to Help You Make Better Decisions

You know you have to make a big decision. You know it is important. But we are often caught between making decisions with our head or with our hearts. The truth is, you are likely to make a better decision if you use a combination of the two. Too often, our decisions are based on emotions. Our Chicago counselor offers five tips to help you make better decisions.

  1. Remove yourself from the situation. This is not easy. But if you think about the situation as if it was someone else, you are more likely to base the decision off of the important aspects rather than involving emotions. Wise reasoning includes thinking of others’ perspectives, thinking about the situation in a different way, and thinking about compromises to the situation.
  2. Consider all your options. There are often aspects that you haven’t thought of. Do a little brainstorming to make sure you have looked at the problem from all perspectives. What haven’t you thought of? Make you need an affordable psychologist to help you look at other angles.
  3. Sleep on it. Research has shown that we make better decisions when we use our unconscious mind as well as our conscious mind. Literally, sleep on it. Taking time to let you brain work things out also keep you from making a decision too hastily.
  4. Make a list. Yes, it is a bit cliché’ but a list of pros and cons can really be helpful. When you put it on papers, you can easily see if one side is outweighing the other.
  5. Know your emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the ability to identify and manage your emotions as well as emotions of others. Being able to keep your emotions in check and know how your react to certain situations will help keep you from letting emotions from influencing decisions.

When you combine all these tips, you will know you are making every effort to make a good decision based on facts and needs instead of reacting to emotion.

If you need further help in the Chicago and the surrounding area (Des Plaines, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Barrington, Hinsdale, Skokie, Lincolnwood, Park Ridge, and Wilmette), contact Dr. Parisi.

What You Need to Know About Bullying This School Year

The news is constantly buzzing with news about the tragedies related to bullying. It has become an epidemic in our children’s schools. But what can you do?

First, we must understand what bullying is. We all get picked on or teased at times from a sibling or friend. This is in a jokingly manner. This is not bullying. There comes a point when this crosses a line. Bullying is intentional. It is meant to be mean and hurtful. Bullying is aggressive and unwanted behavior that is often repetitive and torturous for the person being bullied. It can be physical or verbal threats. It is spreading rumors. It is insulting. I can even include excluding someone from a group. It is serious and very harmful. In today’s world, much of bullying is not even happening with the child near. Electronic devices and social media are often used to say hurtful things and taunt another child. Bullying can cause physical harm, but it usually inflicts severe emotional pain for the person being bullied.

How do I know if my child is being bullied?

Obviously, any physical injuries are worth a full investigation. It is the emotional damage that you have to be more cautious of. Watch for signs that your child is unhappy or uncomfortable, especially going to school. Perhaps your child doesn’t want to ride the bus any more or even go to school. You may see a change in mood or eating and sleeping patterns. You child may act anxious or start to be more withdrawn. If you have more concerns consider a low cost psychiatrist in Chicago.

Having conversations and asking your child about bullying is a good way to keep communication open. If you child is reluctant to talk about it, try to find ways to relate. If you see an example of bullying, maybe in the news or in your life, use that as a starting point. Ask if something like this has ever happened to them or if they ever see others being bullied. Try to help make it more comfortable to talk about and let them know that if they see it happening it is ok to talk to another adult to help the person. If you need further help recognizing signs, a Chicago counselor at Dr. Parisi and Associates can help.

How do I help my child if I think she is being bullied?Chicago counselor | Dr. Parisi | Bullying

Bullying is not something that should be “toughed out.” It needs to be address. You have to be willing to listen and believe. If you child tells you she is being bullied, take it seriously. Listen to her talk about what is going on and make she sure knows you are a safe place.  Do not pass any judgment and make sure you validate your child’s feelings. Thank her for opening up and let her know you are proud of her for taking this step.

Some children feel like it is their fault they are being bullied. They need to know that no one deserves to be disrespected or mistreated. Explain that although bulling is very wrong, it is common and that many people experience it at some time. Perhaps you can share a time when you experienced bullying with your child. Praise your child for doing what is right by letting you know. It is vital that the child know that is the bully who is doing something wrong, not them.

Also, make sure you take action. Let you child know that this is something that must be addressed and taken care of. If the bullying is happening at school, you will need to discuss a plan with them. Schools and community organizations have a policies and rules to help stop and prevent bullying. Many times children like to be involved and what the plan of action is. An affordable Chicago counselor or the school counselor can be great help.

To help your child in the moment, tell them to avoid the bully and hang out with a friend. Bullies thrive on making other students mad and react. Let your child know that it is hard, but try not to react or show the bully that whatever they are doing bothers them. Walk away and ignore the bully, but then go tell an adult when the bully is no longer near.

Make sure you child doesn’t feel alone and that there are many people supporting her. Be encouraging and supportive. Help your child find friends and positive influences. Often, children lose a little confidence when being bullied. Help build them back up and make them know it is not their fault.

If you need more help in the Chicago and surrounding areas including Des Plaines, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Barrington, Hinsdale, Skokie, Lincolnwood, Park Ridge, and Wilmette, Dr. Parisi is an affordable psychologist or psychiatrist who specializes in Biofeedback Training for Stress / Anxiety Reduction.

4 Reasons You Struggle to Express How You Feel to Your Significant Other

You know you aren’t great at expressing your emotions, and you want to improve to help your relationship. That is great! But where to start? Dr. Parisi, an affordable counselor in Chicago, wants you to know that expressing emotions isn’t something that is just going to change because you want it to. There are likely many reasons why you aren’t able to say what you feel.  Learning why expressing yourself is hard for you may be a first step in getting better at it. Here are five common reasons people struggle to express themselves according to your marriage and family therapist in Chicago.

Dr. Parisi is an affordable chicago counselor

  1. Fear is a huge reason why people don’t want to say what they feel. Either the fear of conflict or fear of rejection are usually the culprit. Many people don’t want to ruffle any feathers, or they believe that they will be deserted if their significant other doesn’t agree with them.
  2. Often people believe that others should already know how they feel and what they need. They expect them to be able to read their mind and they start to feel resentful when others can’t.
  3. They have already given up hope. Sometimes people really don’t think that anything in their relationship will ever change, so they aren’t willing to put in the emotions and effort needed to improve and strengthen it.
  4. People suffer from low self-esteem and they don’t feel that they should be entitled to feel a certain way. They think it is their job to always to be person who needs to make a change in order to please someone else.

Learning to express yourself in a way that helps you while strengthen your relationship is important. A marriage and family therapist can help couples address what the root cause of not wanting to express an emotion and help find techniques that are more suitable to address your individual needs.

If you have a relationship that needs further nourishing, you can contact any of our affordable psychologists and marriage and family therapists in Chicago.

 

5 Ways to Build Your Mental Muscle

We all hear how important it is to stay fit and healthy. You go to the gym, run, do crunches, but are you doing anything to challenge your mental muscle? It always surprises me how health and fitness take a focus, but the brain is left on the back burner. The brain needs exercise to keep functioning at its best. Here are a few tips to make sure your mind is also looking good.

  1. Get some brain food. You know that eating right is good for your body, but did you know it is good for your brain too! Foods that are high in Omega-3 fatty acids (fatty fish and grass-fed animals) are instrumental in allowing your brain membranes to remain fluid and allow signals to easily pass. You also must eat enough food every day. If you are starving your body, you are also starving your mind. You also need to avoid some foods. There are studies showing that foods that are high in cholesterol are linked to brain diseases. Too much sugar and fat effect the brain as well as rest of the body. Eat brain food to make sure your memory and cognitive ability are functioning at their best.
  2. Challenge your brain. People are running on routine. They get up, do the same job, see the same people, and relax in the same ways. This may be comforting to them, but they are not stimulating the brain. Try something new! When you mind is doing something it doesn’t know how to do, it is building synapse. It can be simple such as crosswords, Sudoku, or other brain games or something even more challenging such as learning a new language or craft. To build new synapses you bust work your brain in ways that it has never worked before. Think of it like this, going to the gym and doing the same exercise will eventually quit producing results, so you must switch things up to keep your body (AND MIND) gaining progress.
  3. Remember? How often are you forgetting things? Do you try to purposely remember something? Your memory is a use it or lose it muscle. If you haven’t been challenging your brain or switching things up, it is likely that you haven’t been forced to remember much knew knowledge. You are probably doing your same routine, and don’t need to remember anything. Start small by trying to remember the details of a favorite day or event and then build up to trying to remember entire conversations. Can’t remember what you did yesterday? Start journaling your daily activities and review them in the morning. Get your memory working and challenge it each day.
  4. Focus! Do you notice that you can’t concentrate like you used to? This is another cognitive process that must be practiced and put to use. One of the best things to do to help keep your focus is to learn what is distracting your. If there is something else on your mind, you probably need to address it first. You will also need to practice concentrating to get better at it. You have to force yourself to stay on a topic of a certain length of time, and then give yourself a break to think of other things. This is more difficult than it sounds.
  5. Relax and sleep. This one sounds super simple and a no-brainer, but most people do not get enough sleep and do not take time to relax their bodies and brains with something they enjoy. Your mind needs a break as much as your body. REM sleep is critical for your brain to retain information and maintain cognitive function.

If you would like more tips building your mental muscle or need an affordable psychologist or psychiatrist, contact Dr. Parisi in the Chicago and surrounding areas including Des Plaines, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Barrington, Hinsdale, Skokie, Lincolnwood, Park Ridge, and Wilmette

Why it is Important to Offer Help in Many Different Languages

English, PolishRussian, Tagalog (Filipino), SpanishHindi, Gujarati, Urdu, and Arabic Spoken and Understood Here

No matter your culture or background we all need a little help sometimes. If you are seeking a low cost therapist in the Chicago and neighboring area, we know you have many choices and we appreciate you seeking the best fit for you. It has come to our attention that many of our clients were unaware of the language services that are available to them. Not only does Dr. Parisi and Associates offer affordable counseling in Chicago and surrounding areas of Des Plaines, Arlington Heights, Schaumburg, Barrington, Hinsdale, Skokie, Lincolnwood, Park Ridge, and Wilmette, we also have psychologists who most likely have speaks your native language to better meet your needs.

We have a wide array of services, including psychotherapy treatments for ADHD, anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addictions, bipolar disorder, psychosis, OCD, and couple counseling and family problems. If you are seeking any mental health services including, a marriage and family therapist, a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a play therapist, a psychotherapist, a counselor or counselling, please contact us to help us find a program that best fits your needs to help you be your best. We are dedicated to the mental, emotional, and behavioral health of children, adolescents, adults, geriatrics, and families in and near Chicago.