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Michael Villanueva, PhD

Michael Villanueva, PhD Adolescents, Adults

Professional Statement

My name is Michael Villanueva, and I am a licensed Clinical Psychologist in California. I graduated from UC Berkeley and took my Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Palo Alto University. I have worked as an NIH-funded professor, provided research and clinical services on remote tribal lands, served as a US Army combat clinical psychologist in Afghanistan, and implemented research with computational neuroscientists at UC San Diego on the effects of psychedelics on the human brain. Also trained in visual and quantitative analysis of the EEG (i.e., brainwaves), I implement cognitive-behavioral methods, Jungian dream work, problem-solving skills, and insight-oriented conversation within a neurophysiological framework. In partnership, we will examine your internal and external assets, assess strengths and deficits, and set short-term goals. My "theoretical' orientation is that the self (i.e., '˜you'), similar to the brain, prefers an optimally efficient approach to adapting to the necessities of life's challenges. I am committed to ensuring all lines of internal communication: emotions, thoughts, nighttime dreams, and physical sensations from the body (especially the stomach) are respected, acknowledged, and integrated. Forged by years of working with Native American tribes, in rural and urban clinics, in research settings, and a combat setting, my communication style is invariant: Listen to what is stated and implied, accurately reflect that communication, jointly define the problem(s), map solutions, and set short-term goals so to mark progress. Keep track of what works; what does not and adjust accordingly. I am transparent and direct in my queries, reflections, and suggested strategies. Over the past 25 years, I have worked with clients of all ages, occupations, and socio-economic statuses. While I work with no "typical' client, my most satisfied clients share commonalities: They knowingly felt they could be better. Second, they practiced our work outside the office. Third, they remained open to reframing established perceptions of events and thought patterns while maintaining motivation through difficult times. Most of us do not want to change, but we would embrace a few needed transformations. I look forward to our initial conversation. Thank you for reading my blurb.


PhD in Clinical Psychology - Pacific Graduate School of Professional Psychology
MS in Clinical Psychology - Pacific Graduate School of Professional Psychology
BA in English and Latin - University of California at Berkeley

Insurances Accepted

Blue Shield
Carelon Behavioral Health Strategies
Carelon Behavioral Health, Inc
Provider Network of America
United Behavioral Health

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