Getting to Know Dr. Ingrid Nkongho

July 2019 - This summer, we are so pleased to welcome Dr. Ingrid Nkongho to our clinical team. She is a psychologist with extensive experience in many different clinical settings, and she uses theory-informed psychoanalysis, mindfulness, and cognitive behavioral therapy in her patient sessions. At Seleni, she will be seeing patients as well as guiding our New Moms Group. To introduce her to our greater community, we sat with her for an interview, which you can read below.

What excites you most about being part of the Seleni family?

I'm super excited to be part of Seleni! l love Seleni's mission to destigmatize the issues surrounding maternal mental health, and I am inspired by the focus on the entire spectrum of concerns that arise during the family planning years from reproductive challenges, to PMADs, to loss, to navigating transitions into parenthood. The concerns that bring clients to Seleni are not exclusive to the mother, but impact the entire family unit. I'm excited to be part of group that prioritizes these concerns, thoughtfully attends to them, and emphasizes the professional development of its staff towards providing services to address the concerns of women and men who seek out our support.

We are so lucky to have a warm team of clinicians striving towards the same goal of providing excellent and empathetic support to people during their family building years. What is your favorite mental-health-related podcast, movie, book, or magazine?

I love the mindfulness-based meditations of psychologist, Tara Brach. From her web site, one can access an entire free library of meditations that range from 1-minute up to an hour, maybe longer. She has a soothing presence, is easy to follow, and she teaches the practice of breathing and self-compassion, which we all can benefit from.

Thank you for sharing a resource that is accessible to everyone! Thinking about the sharing of knowledge, what is the best piece of advice you have ever received?

I'm not sure if it's the best advice ever, but what comes to mind is a question someone once said to me: "But why not me?". This always comes to mind when I have a challenge ahead and begin to self-doubt.

It can be easy to doubt yourself, especially when you start something new or difficult. What quote inspires you; what quote uplifts you?

JUST DO IT. It's a bit cheesy, but, I like a simple mantra to untangle when feeling immobilized. It is action-oriented and encourages one to start. You can always modify. But start. Start where you are and see where it takes you.

It has been lovely getting to know you, Dr. Nkongho. Finally, we would love to know - what motivates you to work in the field of mental health?

I enjoy being a witness to individuals bettering themselves. It takes immense courage to be in therapy. There is self exposure as one's vulnerabilities are laid out. To witness someone be willing to grapple with those discomforts and over time begin to feel empowered by their self discoveries, and then to make positive changes in their lives as a result, is special. It is personally gratifying to help someone along the way, but what is most enriching is to witness this process unfold within the shared therapy space between myself and the clients I work with. I find that experience to be motivating and keeps me inspired to work in this field.

At Seleni, we are so proud to have mindful, down-to-earth clinicians as part of our team. Welcome, Dr. Nkongho!

For more information about Dr. Nkongho, click here.

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