Shainna Ali is a mental health clinician, supervisor, educator, and advocate. Dr. Ali is passionate about destigmatizing mental health counseling and helping individuals worldwide recognize the importance of fostering mental wellness. She is the author of The Self-Love Workbook: A Life-Changing Guide to Boost Self-Esteem, Recognize Your Worth and Find Genuine Happiness and an active blog contributor for Psychology Today, the American Counseling Association, and the National Alliance on Mental Illness.
Dr. Ali is a licensed mental health counselor in the state of Florida, a nationally-certified clinician, and an approved clinical supervisor. She is the owner and operator of Integrated Counseling Solutions, LLC, a strengths-based clinical mental health and consulting practice located in Downtown Orlando. She presently teaches counselor education courses at the University of Central Florida and at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Beyond professional conference presentations, she also provides tailored educational workshops for the local counseling community.
As a mental health advocate Dr. Ali has been featured in the media such as on NPR’s On Point, Yahoo, and in the Daily Mail. She is a past president of the Florida Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development and presently serves on the editorial boards for the Journal for Creativity in Mental Health and the Journal of Counseling Sexology & Sexual Wellness: Research, Practice, and Education. Dr. Ali was named an emerging leader by the Association for Counselor Education & Supervision and Association for Creativity in Counseling. Further, Dr. Ali was awarded the Pete Fischer Humanitarian award for her efforts in counseling.
What do I do best?
I’m fortunate to have the ability and opportunity to help empower people to take charge of their mental health. Using a strengths-based perspective, I am able to help others learn and grow in their healing journeys.
What makes me the best version of myself?
I am at my best when I am myself. When I am able to honor my true self by aligning by sincere goals, values, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors I experience harmony and I find myself at my happiest.
What are my aspirations?
I aspire to contribute to widespread change in the way we view mental health. Mental health awareness, education, and care is essential across the globe, however, stigma, accessibility, and lack of awareness cause mental health concerns to perpetuate while many individuals suffer in isolation. My hope is to contribute to a dialogue in which I can assist people in understanding that we all the responsibility and ability to foster our mental well-being.
My Biggest Success?
I am happy to reflect on many privileges I have been lucky to have in this lifetime. If I had to choose just one, I would say that my biggest personal success would be earning my doctoral degree. While I was fortunate to be emotionally supported by my loved ones, this feat is a challenge that I endeavored on my own, with the motivations of personal growth and ability to help others in the future, and conquered that hurdle independently. While I can look back with gratitude for this achievement, I am also thankful for the obstacles I faced during that time that taught me about my personal character, mental endurance, and self-worth.
Perspective is power.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
I have many favorite people! My field has taught me that everyone has something to admire, and I have incorporated this into a practice of gratitude and growth. I appreciate the unique strengths of the individuals in my life, and use them to empower my personal growth as well. On a larger scale, I am deeply awed by incredible women such as Malala Yousef, Amal Clooney, Angelina Jolie, Michelle Obama, and Oprah Winfrey. I an inspired by their ability to hone their intelligence and compassion for humanity and the greater good.
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
I love anywhere my loved ones can be found. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to delve into cultures that I dreamed of as a child in history class. My favorite spots have certainly been Santorini, Positano and the Phi Phi Islands. From this, I have learned that I love destinations in which the hills kiss the sea.
My Favorite Products/Objects?
I appreciate this question because it stumped me a bit! Most of my favorite things are intangible. Nevertheless, I love my journal, essential oil diffuser, and my laptop. These are the makings of a simple self-care break in my world.
My Current Passions?
While I am always passionate about mental health, my current passion is self-care. I am learning more to listen to my instincts, heart, and body and to prioritize my needs. Part of this passion includes highlighting the importance of self-care to others. We can’t pour from an empty cup; therefore, we all need self-care to foster our mental health.