We’re excited to introduce you to Sara Olivia Dallendorfer, LMSW – one of the newest additions to the Nourish Your Mind Family!
Sara Olivia brings her expertise from working as a school-based therapist to our private practice setting, specializing in supporting children, adolescents and young adults in their mental health struggles. She promotes a safe and peaceful atmosphere for her clients to feel heard, work towards healing, and discover their hope. Sara Olivia is committed to walking alongside her clients to support them in their journey to becoming the best versions of themselves.
Sara Olivia in her own words…
What is the most important thing you have learned in the last five years?
- How valuable time can be. Our time is precious and how we choose to use our time or what we choose to spend our time doing matters. During my time living in Uganda my host grandma showed me the value in “just being” while I sat under a mango tree with her for a majority of our morning time. Our time is a gift, it allows us to connect with ourselves, others, and provides us space to learn, grow, and heal if we use it well.
What is your favorite part about working for Nourish Your Mind?
- I love that Nourish Your Mind integrates the whole person, not just mental well being, but taking a holistic approach of mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing of their clients and creating awareness of how they are all interconnected.
Tell me how you first got involved in with Mental Health . . .
- I can still remember the day I visited my college campus and heard one of my professors talk about the Diverse Mental Health Field and her own experiences as a social worker. In that moment my heart connected to the work my professor described doing and I knew that I wanted to be someone who could be a safe person for others to talk to and be able to help guide them on their journey to a healthier more balanced life, cheering them on along the way. My education and internships were pivotal in driving my passion to becoming a psychotherapist.
What do you like most about your job at Nourish?
- The environment that is created at Nourish provides an inviting and comfortable setting that allows the clinicians to walk alongside their clients in their journey to healing and wellness.
What are your hopes for the future of the Mental Health Industry?
- There are so many hopes I have for the Mental Health Industry. One specific hope I have is working towards decreasing the delay in making initial treatment contact with therapy after experiencing the first onset of mental health symptoms, through education and awareness. When we feel physical symptoms of an illness most of us will make a doctors appointment for an evaluation. I hope the future of the Mental Health Industry looks the same, so when people experience mental health symptoms they choose to make a therapy appointment to come in and talk about what they’re experiencing and receive help.
How would you describe your style as a Therapist?
- I am client centered with the awareness that each client is an expert on the struggles and challenges they’re walking through. I take an empathetic and strength based approach while working with my clients to address their struggles and concerns from a holistic perspective. I will walk them through painful emotions, provide coping skills and strategies, and help them find their own hope and balance in their lives.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
- Since my senior year of high school I have dreamed of being a farmer. I am so passionate about sustainable living and hope to one day have a thriving farm with vegetable gardens, fields of flowers, and animals to help with upkeep. It’s small steps everyday and mindful decisions that help us reach our goals.
Motto or personal mantra?
- The sun will rise and we will try again.
What are three career lessons you’ve learned thus far?
- I will always be learning, no matter how much experience I have, I will be a lifelong learner.
- Mistakes happen, even as a professional, mistakes occur. Correcting them, learning from them, and seeking guidance from professional support are all integral to moving forward.
- We can only do our best work when we are well. Taking time for ourselves is not selfish, it’s the fuel to keep us going.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about seeking counseling services for the first time?
- There is always a first time for everything, and the unknown can be scary sometimes. We offer consultations which can help you gain more insight into what therapy may look like for you and get a feel for the clinician you meet with to see if you’d be a good match. Finding a therapist that you feel comfortable with is a key factor to build a therapeutic relationship and do the hard, yet important work of healing.
What do you do when you aren’t working?
- As the spring weather arrives you could find me on my favorite hiking trail, spending my days outside doing mundane daily tasks with my pup Titus by my side, and making floral arrangements in my backyard. In the cooler months I could be found again on a hiking trail, cozy by a window watching the snow fall, and baking my favorite things.
If you were an animal what would you be? And why?
- I think I would be a Golden Retriever, just like my pup Titus. They truly embody love and loyalty and those are characteristics I hope to bring to all the relationships in my life. They have such a joyful outlook on life and love adventures which relate to my personality so well.