Holly Houston, Ph.D., Director

Dr. Holly Houston is the founding director of the Anxiety & Stress Center, P.C. which has helped hundreds of people since it was established in 1990. Dr. Houston established the Anxiety & Stress Center in order to provide excellent clinical services for numerous forms of distress in accordance with current scientifically based standards.

Dr. Houston treats a wide variety of problems including, but not limited to, anxiety disorders, depression, bipolar disorder, stress-related illnesses, relationship/work problems, abuse/trauma, and issues of sexuality and gender identity.  She works with people across the life span from diverse cultural, ethnic, religious and spiritual backgrounds. Dr. Houston adopts a collaborative, problem-solving approach to therapy.  Her therapeutic style encompasses creating a warm, down to earth, compassionate environment.  In this way, thoughts and feelings can be expressed in a shared effort to overcome problems.

Dr. Houston has expertise in cognitive behavioral therapy and routinely integrates insight-oriented techniques, relaxation therapies, meditation/mindfulness techniques, trauma reduction techniques and dialectical behavioral therapeutic techniques into her clinical work. In addition, Dr. Houston emphasizes the role of brain functioning (neuroscience) in the development and maintenance of both adaptive and maladaptive behaviors. She provides techniques that help shape brain functioning to strengthen targeted behaviors and mental states.

In addition to providing direct service, Dr. Houston has taught and trained other mental health professionals by providing supervision, consultation and didactic presentations.  She has held faculty appointments in the Department of Psychology, Behavioral Medicine Division at the University of Chicago, Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois, Department of Applied Psychology at Loyola University of Chicago, and the Department of Medicine and Psychology at Cook County Hospital. Dr. Houston has been instrumental in the training of psychology interns, medical residents and social work students.

Dr. Houston is a graduate of Loyola University of Chicago where she earned a B.S. in applied psychology, a M.A. in clinical psychology and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Dr. Houston recognizes the importance of staying abreast of the latest research and findings in order to provide high quality care. Therefore, she regularly takes advanced training seminars and incorporates this knowledge in her work. Dr. Houston maintains professional memberships with the American Psychological Association, the Illinois Psychological Association and the Anxiety and Depression Disorders Association of America.