Why Work With a Therapist At San Francisco Stress and Anxiety Center?

At San Francisco Stress and Anxiety Center you are more than just a client, you are a valued individual. We understand how difficult it can be to reach out and ask for help.

Our treatment is customized to you. Your history, challenges, goals and ambitions are completely unique – and our approach is as well. We specialize in rolling up our sleeves and working one-on-one to develop a plan that works at your pace and in tune with your needs.


San Francisco Stress and Anxiety Center is a group of experts who are licensed in their professional field to help you overcome issues and to lead a healthier, happier, stress-free life.

Each professional is educated in their field and have come together to work as a team to wrap around clients in the field of counseling and psychiatry. We offer face to face as well as online resources so that you do not have to go without getting treatment because of a busy schedule.

We offer appointments within 48 hours (sometimes same or next day!)


With 50 highly qualified clinicians we are sure to match you with the best therapist for your needs. Whether engaging in individual therapy, couples work, long- or short-term therapy, our clients discover quickly the value of working with experts whose hearts are in the game.

Our Care-Coordinators are sure to match you with a clinician that would be the best fit for you.

Over 98% of our clients have been matched with a clinician that they want to continue working with.

If you are unsatisfied with you first session, or think your clinician isn’t the best match, we will set you up with someone else free of charge.

We Are An Evidence-Based Practice

Evidence Based Psychotherapy is a set of research-tested therapy interventions that are proven to reduce symptoms and improve quality of life.

Qualities of Evidence-Based Treatments:

  • Scientific data supports its effectiveness. If a specific treatment is classified as “evidence-based,” it means that researchers have conducted well-designed studies showing its true success. Results in the lab and the real-world show that the underlying methods in these evidence-based therapies significantly reduce illness symptoms or cure them altogether. These studies, published in peer-reviewed journals, usually feature a relatively large sample population, pre- and post-treatment analyses, and statistically significant results.
  • They are highly structured. Clinicians who administer these treatments follow a well-defined protocol. They don’t just “make it up” as they go along or take guesses on how to proceed session by session. Therapists follow a treatment manual which dictates the number of sessions to offer, what to talk about and teach, and what techniques to use.
  • They are goal-directed. Evidence-based treatments are well-defined; they aren’t designed to be open-ended. Since they focus on solutions instead of problems, evidence-based treatments usually end when the client meets the goals of therapy.

What Kind of Treatments Do We Offer?

We offer in person and online therapy for:

  • Adult Anxiety
  • Children and Teen Anxiety
  • Work Anxiety Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Mindfulness Based Therapy
  • Couples Counseling
  • Sex Therapy
  • Trauma

We also provide organizational support through professional coaching, stress management-training and consulting, grief counseling and support, and onsite therapy.

Advantages of SF Stress VS Other Online Platforms

With the rise in technology-based software and applications in last few years it’s no wonder, there has been a surge in provisions of services online. One of the areas that has seen the most rise is the provision of therapy services. We are all looking for the flexibility and convenience of doing more things from home and therapy is no different. While there are a variety of online therapy platforms to choose from it is important to remember that they not all created equal.

Online therapy platforms (like Talkspace and BetterHelp) were developed by entrepreneurs in technology who created their own proprietary software that connects therapists with clients.  Many of these entrepreneurs describe themselves as technology providers rather than providers of mental health services. Many of these platforms have no real way to train therapists or ensure that they are capable and competent.

Some platforms use email and text as their only form of communication between client and therapist, while others offer access to a therapist via videoconferencing or phone.  Those live phone or video contacts are often limited and cost a lot more per month for subscribers.

Many online therapy platforms say that they are offering “unlimited” access to a therapist. What they often provide is the option of texting, emailing or using a chat-bot rather than a real-time conversation with a therapist.

At SF Stress you know exactly what you are getting. We handpick our clinicians because we know they are aligned with our philosophy and mission. Our highly trained staff is qualified and care deeply about the growth and progress of all our clients. Our therapists have master’s degrees or higher in social work, psychology, counseling, and/or marriage and family therapy.

Can Therapy Help Me?

Sadly, there is still a lot of stigma associated with seeking professional help (therapy). Many people think that in order to see a therapist, things have to be “really bad” or that it suggests severe mental illness. The truth is, even very successful people embrace therapy for its benefits as being able to talk to an impartial listener who can help offer guidance can be a real benefit to your life. Life does not have to get out of control before you reach out for help.

Some of the most common benefits of therapy are:

  • Being more able to identify problems and unhelpful patterns in your life
  • Becoming more confident in your ability to make positive changes or respond to problems differently
  • Increases in your communication skills as well as in your interpersonal skills
  • Decreases in your symptoms which originally brought you to counseling
  • Clarity on your goals, values, and self-worth
  • Improving your overall quality of life

No matter what you’re going through, no matter what you need, a therapist can partner with you and help you find the healing you’re looking for. If therapy sounds like something that is for you, we have trained professionals who would love to meet with you.


6 Reasons To Consider an Out Of Network Provider

If you are considering therapy, and you have health insurance coverage, it makes sense that you’d prefer to use that coverage.

But there are a few good reasons to consider an Out Of Network (OON) provider, like SFStress.

  1. Get a therapist who is the best fit for you. If you’re trying to find an in network provider, you may have to call several–even dozens–of therapists before you find one who can see you. This almost inevitably means settling for a therapist who is not the ideal fit for you. You wouldn’t choose a hair stylist, or an attorney, from some random list. So why would you choose a therapist that way? Opting for OON means you can choose your best provider.
  2. Freedom to get ALL the care you need. Insurance companies often restrict your frequency of care (one of them authorizes therapy visits only once a month). This means you’ll see results much more slowly–if at all. Good, effective care often requires a short, focused period of regular sessions. This can often only be done via OON care.
  3. Freedom from insurance company hassles. If you’ve ever had to deal with your insurance company, you can appreciate how difficult it can be. Robotic phone menus, long wait times, no clear point of contact or accountability. It can be time consuming and frustrating, and sometimes impossible, to get your care authorized and reimbursed.
  4. Privacy and confidentiality. Insurance companies frequently subject providers to clinical reviews, in which they access all your clinical records. So if you discuss a sensitive topic in therapy, someone at the insurance company could be reading your therapist’s notes about it.
  5. Insurance companies require your therapist to assign you a clinical diagnosis, which is then communicated to them and held in their records. This can impact things such as life insurance premiums, even many years later.
  6. It may be your only option. The sad fact is that many insurance companies don’t have nearly enough therapists to serve their members’ needs. Or, they maintain “ghost networks” of inaccessible providers. They sell coverage based on the expectation–and the legal requirement–that they provide adequate care. But despite class action lawsuits, and action at the state and local levels, many insurance companies continue to keep their networks too small. So while, technically, you may have coverage, you practically may not.

If you are ready to work with the best therapist for you, click the button below to reach out.


Grounding Techniques to Manage Stress and Anxiety

Grounding techniques are designed to help a person cope with traumatic memories or strong emotions and can be used to pull your attention away from painful emotions so that you can focus on the present moment. Of course, anyone can use grounding techniques as a tool to help calm distressing feelings, but they’re especially beneficial for people dealing with a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and panic disorder (PD).

With anxiety disorders ranking as the most common mental health concern in the United States, millions struggle with anxiety every day. Intense anxiety can cause a significant amount of psychological and physical distress that’s only heightened when you don’t take the proper steps to ease the painful feelings. Daily life can be filled with all sorts of negative emotions, but grounding techniques can help you break free from distressing thoughts, so you can focus on what matters.

While grounding techniques are a great short-term coping strategy to use when struggling, they do not replace professional mental healthcare. Instead, they should be considered a supplement to professional treatment.


Grounding is a type of meditation that helps put you back in touch with the present moment by focusing attention on the physical world around you. Grounding exercises are quick and easy to try for yourself, and you can use them as a coping strategy in lots of different situations. They can be particularly helpful if you are feeling very worried, stressed out, distracted, or overwhelmed. Most grounding exercises draw your attention to the present by focusing on one or more of your 5 senses. Often, grounding aims to help you reconnect with your body. Your mind can often live in the past or the future, but focusing your attention on the physical sensations in your body can be a powerful way to return to the present.


People find grounding exercises useful for supporting their wellbeing in lots of different ways. You can think of grounding as a tool that you can add to your self-care toolkit, no two people will use it in exactly the same way or for the same reasons. Here are some of the things grounding can help with.

Managing worries

Grounding exercises can be a great temporary support if you’re feeling worried or anxious. Worrying never feels good, but it can sometimes be useful because it can help you to solve problems or make a change. However, if you find yourself worrying about things that are out of your control, this isn’t helpful and you can use grounding to take your mind off the worry and refocus on the present.

Coping in stressful situations

Experiencing stress is a normal and understandable reaction when you’re navigating a challenging situation. While it happens to everyone from time to time, it’s distressing to find yourself stuck in an environment where you feel your stress levels become overwhelming. In situations like this, a quick grounding exercise can help you manage your emotional reaction and feel more calm and in control.

Combating overthinking

Grounding can be helpful for overthinking. If you find yourself continuously thinking the same thoughts about the past or future that are upsetting you, you can use grounding exercises to help guide your attention away from those thoughts and towards the here and now.

Improving your focus

Lots of people use grounding to help their focus and concentration. If you’re struggling to complete a task because your head is muddled, grounding techniques can help clear your mind and help you concentrate. This can be useful if you’re doing homework or coursework, getting ready for an exam. Athletes can also use grounding exercises to get into the zone before a game, race, or performance.

Practicing mindfulness

Grounding exercises are often used as part of mindfulness meditation. If you get home after a long stressful day, meditating can feel like the last thing you want to do, even if you know it would help you unwind. When your state of mind is distracted and unfocused, grounding can pull you back to earth and help you to enter a mindful headspace.


There are many techniques you can practice, but these 10 are a great place to start. The first five focus on physical grounding techniques, while the last five focus on mental/cognitive grounding techniques.

1. Breathing exercises

There are many different types of breathing exercises that help you to focus and lower anxiety. One activity, diaphragmatic breathing, has been scientifically shown to help those who practice it improve their concentration and mood and lower cortisol levels (a marker for stress). For this, you will breathe deeply, allowing your belly to swell, and focus on how your body expands with each inhale and contracts with each exhale.

2. Physical exercise

Try a few exercises or a bit of yoga. You can also do jumping jacks, skip rope, jog in place, or clench and stretch different muscle groups one by one. Pay attention to how your body feels with each movement. How does it feel when your hands or feet touch the floor or move through the air?

3. Dance

Put on your favorite music, and dance like no one else is there. Feel the strength in your limbs as you move with and against gravity. Feel the rhythm and percussion of the music. Grounding is a key concept in dance and movement therapy.

4. Engage the senses

Try the 5-4-3-2-1 technique to list items around you that you notice with your senses. For example, notice five things you see, four things you hear, three things you can touch from where you’re sitting, two things you can smell, and one thing you can taste. Try to pick out the little things you might not always pay attention to, such as the hum of your computer or a speck of color in the carpet.

5. Notice your surroundings

Make it a point to notice the feeling of the air against your skin as you move, the grass beneath your feet, the sound of nearby traffic, or any other objects in your immediate area. Intentionally noticing your surroundings has been shown to help decrease feelings of dissociation and improve the quality of life for those with post-traumatic stress disorder.

6. Distraction activities

Pick a favorite activity that requires a little bit of concentration. You can read a book, watch a TV show, play a game on your phone, or work on a puzzle. Try to focus entirely on that activity instead of your feelings of anxiety or the situations causing them.

7. Talk with someone

Connecting with the people around you is a great way to stay present. You can talk about anything, not necessarily just what’s bothering you (but that helps too). Alternatively, if no one is around, you could call someone, send a text or email, send a card, or write a letter.

8. Mindfulness practices

Mindfulness is the non-judgmental awareness of the present moment. This means noticing things as they are without labeling them as good or bad. You can be mindfully aware of your sensations, thoughts, bodily states, consciousness, and the environment. Mindfulness practices such as sitting meditation, body scans, and yoga can help you focus on and accept your body’s sensations.

9. Use an anchoring phrase

Anchoring phrases or cognitive updates are statements of known facts that you can recite to help calm down. This might be something like, “I’m Full Name. I’m X years old. I live in City, State. Today is Friday, March 3. It’s 10:04 in the morning.” Keep adding as many factual details as you need. You can also write these on an index card to help with dissociative episodes or nightmares. These facts can ground you in reality.

These techniques are useful tools to help cope with distressing thoughts, situations or emotions in the moment. They provide relief, however, it’s generally temporary.  If anxiety, stress or feeling overwhelmed are things that you struggle with regularly and you continue to have trouble coping with these feelings, please call us today at (415) 799 – 3688 to schedule a session with one of our qualified clinicians today!