We had the good fortune of connecting with Dr. Vanessa Ruiz and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Dr. Vanessa, how do you think about risk?
This is such a great question because it fits so well with what I’m grappling with personally and professionally. I think about calculated risk as a necessary part of growth and stepping into your next level. Risk can help guide us to take on actions and mitigate damage/harm to ourselves or others. The downside is that it can keep us too safe or unable to act. In the past, risk used to delay me or stop me in my tracks from reaching my goals. Now, I’m used to having small and large successes (failures too!) so risk is just an inherent part of that growth process. Professionally, I’m creating a unique holistic approach in the field of behavioral health and complex trauma – one that encompasses mind, body and spirit in a community setting. It’s a different paradigm so there’s normative fear around what it could look like or how to execute it with success. The upside to this for me is that it’s incredibly exciting and I’ll be able to make a greater impact for others. The risk is there but the call to act is louder.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My private practice offers a truly holistic approach to common mental health concerns such as anxiety depression and complex trauma. What sets us apart from others is that I like to call it “mental health without labels.” It’s an approach where I look at how to strengthen others with their unique challenges and, life paths through nutrition, counseling, mind-body therapies, movement, stress management and more. In the beginning, it was challenging because I didn’t know how to create a model like that, so I had to continuously change and tweak it until it honored my healing approach and my patients’ journey.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Where do I even begin? In Arizona a week isn’t nearly enough! First, I would take them to Yoga Nirvana’s weekly Saturday morning series of “Yoga in the Park” at the lush Singh Meadows. Starting my weekend off with this class always helps me ground and center from the busy week. After that, I would take them to Lou’s Bar and Grill in Papago Park to watch the sunset and the planes take off. I would also make sure that they get to experience the El Dorado Hot Springs at Tonapah, where they have the cutest rustic decor and private suites. One of my favorite coffee places is Infusion Coffee in Tempe, where they serve some of the most flavorful, complex coffees from all over the world. If you see Paul, the roaster and Patrick with his beautiful wife Anca, the owners tell them I say hi!

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Jim Keegan, Yoga Nirvana His yoga studio has been an oasis to me and my clients. When many yoga studios closed or were closing down, his was able to stay open as it provided others the opportunity of coming together in (socially distant) community during an isolating time. He collaborates with other businesses such as Singh Meadows with his weekly “Yoga in the Park” series, which numbers over 30-40 attendees on a given week. He also offers sunset yoga, and creates special yoga classes at local businesses such as Lou’s Bar and Grill and Pedalhaus Brewery. Jim is the model of creating community, collaborating with local businesses and being a retreat for others during a trying time.

Website: www.enlivenmentalhealth.com

Facebook: @drvanessaruiz

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGH8ocTdQooQVczp5ckPUQg

Other: Clubhouse: @mindbodyhealing

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