“Positive change only happens when a client and clinician are speaking the same language and viewing life through a similar lens”
What was your path to becoming a therapist?
Before I graduated from Columbia University, I founded a tech company and went on to guide startup founders through the process of initial capital raises, team hiring, and business pivots. I noticed that the success or failure of a company was not predicated on the founding team’s ideas or ability to raise capital, but it was instead a result of interpersonal team dynamics and the ways individuals dealt with fear and stress. I observed a profound change in how company leaders optimized performance when they prioritized their mental and physical health. This realization compelled me to go to graduate school and acquire tools to go much deeper with my clients, from a psychological perspective, than the parameters of traditional executive coaching/advisory work would allow.
What should someone know about working with you?
My perspective is that mental health clinicians need to be agile and creative in personalizing their approaches to support their clients’ individual life perspectives, truths, and needs. Positive change only happens when a client and clinician are speaking the same language and viewing life through a similar lens. My approach focuses on reorienting an individual from viewing his or her past self as a victim and establishing new perspectives about their strength, survival, resiliency, and resourcefulness.
How does collaboration with other providers inform your work?
As a holistic practitioner, I work closely with functional medicine doctors and holistic nutritionists to provide a complete evaluation and treatment plan for individuals to obtain long-term results. My practice steers clear of bandaid approaches—I collaborate with my clients and my robust network of healthcare practitioners to solve an individual’s issues at the root.
What are you most excited about within the evolving mental health landscape?
I am thrilled to see that the stigma that once surrounded mental health is dissipating at a rapid rate. The mind-body connection is being embraced and people are beginning to recognize that our bodies are an intricately complex and highly integrated system. So much of our mental health is predicated on the health of our guts and our entire bodies. My practice takes an individual’s entire lifestyle and diet into account when treating mental health-related symptoms.
Have you done any research-based work that you found particularly exciting? How does it inform your practice today?
So many mental health issues, namely depression and anxiety, are rooted in stress, gut-microbiome imbalance, and inflammation. Understanding that 90% of our serotonin (the happy hormone) is made in the gut and that there are five times as many—or 100 million more—neurons in the gut than in the spinal cord is the driving force behind my treatment of mental health symptoms. Happy gut, happy brain.
“My practice steers clear of bandaid approaches—I collaborate with my clients and my robust network of healthcare practitioners to solve an individual’s issues at the root.”
Interested in speaking with Kathryn?