We are so happy to announce that on May 1st, 2019  Isom E. White LCSW will be opening his new office in Smyrna / Vinings Georgia.    We will be sad to see him leave the Athens area, but he will be a tremendous addition to the Atlanta area. Isom sees a variety of clients. He is excellent with the young adult, college age group, and also has experience with professionals struggling with high pressure careers, or those in life transitions.   Isom is in-network with Blue Cross Blue Shield, Kaiser and Medicare, and he can also file with other insurance plans for out of network benefits if needed. He is ready to schedule you an appointment, whenever you are.  Call him at 706-425-8900 or email him at Isom@ca4wellbeing.com

Isom E. White, LCSW

We here at Counseling Associates for Well-Being are so excited to announce that Stephine W. Smith, LCSW, CADC II is joining us in our Athens office.  She is going to start seeing clients in our Athens office starting April 1st.  Stephine  has most recently been serving clients at The Samaritan Center for Counseling and Wellness, and we are thrilled to have her make her new professional home with us.  Here is a little bit about Stephine that she  wrote about herself so you can get to know her:

Stephine W. Smith,
Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor II

I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a history of working with individuals and families with Co-occurring Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders.  I discovered my calling while visiting my sister in the hospital after she had been burned in an auto accident.  The therapist who prepared us to support her on her journey of healing was a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and that wonderful experience enabled us to know how to support her and my family.   For this reason, I believe one of the most important aspect of therapy, is the relationship between a client and therapist.

I’ve had the privilege of working with a diverse population of individuals and families on their journey of discovery and healing for over 20 years.   I’ve gained knowledge, experience and wisdom working in the field of behavioral health and substance use disorders.  My career started at Phoebe Putney Health System/Behavioral Health in Albany Ga, which was my first introduction to direct care for those living with and managing mental health and substance use related concerns.  I’ve learned that it’s okay to ask for help and accepting help can be a sign of strength, which is sometimes the most powerful thing one can do to heal.

My holistic approach to therapy centers on the connections of mind, body and spirit, and equal attention to these areas are important in the healing process.    My client centered approach strives to provide a safe, compassionate, relaxing, non-judgmental environment in which individuals, couples and families find the opportunity to grow and heal.   I believe my role is to help clients identify their strengths and encourages each person to live their best, authentic life as defined by themselves.

I utilize techniques such as CBT, ACT, REBT, Solution-Focused Therapy, Systems Theory and Meditation. My integrative, complementary approach strives to provide a personalized approach, tailored to each client. Areas of interest and specialty include: Depression and Anxiety, Addiction & Recovery, Stress Management, Conflict Resolution, Emotional Management, Trauma, LGBTQIA affirming and Career Counseling.

You can contact Stephine W. Smith to make an appointment at 706-425-8900 ext 720 or email her at Stephine@ca4wellbeing.com

We are so excited to welcome Isom E. White, LCSW to Counseling Associates for Well-Being here in our Athens office!  He is a  very thoughtful, skilled, and warm clinician who enjoys working with older adolescents, young adults, and adults through the lifespan.  He has some rich experience working with  people to help them  heal from trauma as well as  helping them navigate life transitions. He enjoys helping people with relationship struggles, anxiety and depression.  He is available to schedule new clients in our Athens location. Isom is offering a limited number of reduced fee openings for those that cannot pay regular fees.  Please contact him at 706.425.8900 ext 719 or by email at Isom@ca4wellbeing.com to set up a time to get started.

From Isom about himself:

“My passion centers around guiding clients throughout the journey of life while assisting them in the cultivation of their dreams, ambitions, and goals. My approach to treatment begins through a compassionate lens of the “person-in-environment”, the idea that an individual, couple, or family cannot be understood fully without respect for the various aspects of their social, familial, temporal, spiritual, economic, and physical environments.

I enjoy working with a variety of populations: late-adolescents, college students, adults, LGBTQIA, couples, and families dealing with anxiety, depression, anger, grief and loss, trauma, and life-transitional issues. I also embrace working with men’s issues and athletes with performance issues. As an African-American therapist I hold a strong commitment to enhancing the quality of life and empowering people of African ancestry through advocacy, human services delivery, and research.

In  both my personal and professional life, I am cultivating a mindfulness practice. Practicing mindfulness has allowed me to intimately connect with the present moment thereby enhancing my relationship between mind-body, with loved ones, and with nature. I find incorporating mindfulness-based Cognitive behavioral interventions including Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) and Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) enhance the therapeutic process by cultivating non-judgemental awareness, compassion, and purpose. I apply these principles to the therapeutic relationship by cultivating a warm, non-judgmental environment, allowing clients to feel safe in connecting with the most intimate parts of themselves so that they may begin the healing process.

My therapeutic philosophy incorporates trauma-informed approaches to therapy. Often times out of necessity, survivors of trauma need to disconnect from themselves (mind & body) to survive the most difficult and horrific experiences of their lives. Using a trauma-informed lens, my hope is to assist clients in healing the fractures of trauma by re-establishing the connection between their mind and bodies. I find the use of the evidence-based trauma treatment “Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing” (EMDR) assists individuals in the healing process by making links between unhelpful aspects of traumatic memories and present day problems.In my personal life I am a husband, brother, and devoted dog-parent to my, pitbull-boxer mix, Maple. Georgia has been my home for over 15 years now but I still consider myself a native Chicagoan. During my spare time, hobbies I enjoy include: coaching & playing lacrosse, video games, weightlifting, and caring for my Bonsai tree collection.”

 

 

 

Our second date is set! We are having an Ethics workshop in Athens, GA!
The Ethics of Self: Self-Awareness, Values and Wellness of the Therapist.

This has been approved for 5 hours of Ethics CE’s by LPCA-GA and NASW-GA (If you already have your ethics count this as your Core hours). This will be a 5 hour Ethics CE Workshop on Friday, August 17th, 2018. Registration is $100. Sign up now!
We will be learning some important ethical principles and having some excellent experiential learning around self care and mindful awareness– doing some relaxation, learning some light yoga skills. Put on some comfortable clothes and come and give yourself some love!
Contact Aimee.cawb@gmail.com to register — or call her at 706-425-8900 ext 710.
See you there!!

We at Counseling Associates for Well-Being want to extend our warmest wishes to our long time colleague and friend, Pamela Clardy Key, who has left us to develop and expand her work. She is working on a new and innovative Biofeedback and Neurofeedback program nearby.
Please check out her newest endeavors:
Pamela Clardy Key, Neurofeedback Practitioner
Creating Clarity, LLC
1 Huntington Road, Suite 205
Athens, GA 30606
(706) 395-3097
Email: creatingclarity@live.com
Website: creating-clarity.net

We are so very happy to announce the latest associate with Counseling Associates for Well-Being. Leslie Sessley, LCSW has a fabulous new office in Decatur. This is another location to add to our already existing locations in Athens, Madison, and Alpharetta, Georgia.  She is available to see clients in Decatur and surrounding areas. Leslie accepts Medicare and Blue Cross Blue Shield  insurance plans.

She is a skilled family and individual therapist who has some valuable experience helping those who are stressed by the tasks of caregiving or having aging parents as well as other complicated family dynamics. Leslie has training and expertise on neurodegenerative conditions and does peer training  on these topics. She has completed training  in mediation.  She is warm and friendly and super smart. We couldn’t recommend her more.
Please check here for more about her.
https://ca4wellbeing.com/about/leslie-sessley/

Leslie_Sessley_Associates_Page

We are so pleased to welcome the latest addition to our team at Counseling Associates for Well-Being, Aaron Kirkwood.  Aaron is a masters graduate of a marriage and family therapy program.  He is available to see couples, individuals, and families in our Athens office. He is offering reduced fee services for those that need that and offers some evening and weekend hours. He will also be serving as our new intake coordinator, assuring that people who contact us for care are connected to the best options for them.
https://ca4wellbeing.com/about/aaron-d-kirkwood/

Aaron D Kirkwood

 

Congratulations to our colleague and friend who has just opened her own new office in Athens. Susanna Rains Moriarty,  LPC, CRC. She can now be found here:

Athens Counseling Center
160 Tracy St.,  Athens  GA 30601
We wish her all the best in her new location

 

I recently watched a TED Talk by the world renown relationship expert, Esther  Perel,  about infidelity.   http://www.ted.com/talks/esther_perel_rethinking_infidelity_a_talk_for_anyone_who_has_ever_loved

In it, she points out that the data about the occurrence of affairs is hard to pin down because the definition of an affair or infidelity is varied. She says that the numbers range from  26% to 75% depending on the source.  That’s very common even at the low end.  So it seems that information about affairs and their impact on our lives is extremely important for all of us.

I have worked for quite some time now with couples reeling in the aftermath of the discovery of an affair, or individuals who have been affected by an affair in their relationship—either because they are in the midst of one, grieving the end of one, or blown apart by the discovery of their partner’s affair.

I think that Ms. Perel’s assertion that affairs can be the final blow to an already damaged marriage or relationship,  or may in fact be  the greatest opportunity,  is absolutely correct.  The chance to examine and search for what she terms “lost parts” of ourselves or our partners is invaluable.  She jokes that she isn’t “pro-affair”, and to be so would be akin to being “pro-cancer.”  But in the aftermath of such a life-changing event, one cannot help but be somehow different.

I have suggested on many occasions to the couples I have been privileged to work with that, that they may eventually come to be grateful for the discovery of the affair.  I am often initially met with doubting looks  to put it mildly.

You don’t just get married or move in together and never feel an attraction for any other person ever again. You don’t simply remain “in love” and tremendously attracted to your partner either. The intimacy and closeness in a relationship takes work. It takes attention. It needs to be tended to and nurtured, in a conscious, deliberate way.    The awareness of this is the gift that can come from of the discovery of an affair.  Even in instances in which one partner does not know about the affair because it is neither discovered nor disclosed, the person having the affair has an opportunity to explore the meaning of the affair. They can learn about the desires and the longing that may have led to the crossing of some line. In that process of reflection, there is a fantastic chance to grow—t o be more mindfully aware, and to clarify who we are and what we value.

When there is a discovery that leads to the trust being  broken between two people,  it can seem like an overwhelming blow,  one  that seems impossible to recover from.  However, I have witnessed the beautiful transformation that can happen between two people as they work to understand themselves and each other, and to truly love one another through the most painful of processes. I have seen the bond or connection that deepens in the most remarkable ways as people share their most vulnerable selves, and find that the person  that they once felt a giddy  in love feeling with,  can see all their flaws, forgive their mistakes,  and still remain lovingly there –committed to the relationship.   It takes time, and work, and hope, and patience, but yes, you can recover.

For help with Affair Recovery contact Claire Zimmerman at Claire@ca4wellbeing.com

canstockphoto17833035

 

We have a new Career counselor in Athens! We at Counseling  Associates for Well- Being are  very happy to welcome our newest associate this week. Marian Higgins, PhD., LPC  is joining us. She is an experienced Career Counselor who specializes in helping people with all things work related. This includes making choices about career paths, dealing with work stress, workplace diversity issues, work or career transitions, and  workplace relationship challenges. Dr. Higgins is an experienced speaker and educator as well. She presents on topics related to leadership, inclusion, and strategies for  college success . Check here for information about her speaking:  http://www.marianhiggins.com/#!speaking/cv53

She can help if you are feeling stuck in your career and looking for direction. If you are struggling with a difficult job change, having problems with co-worker relationships, or managing things related to your work-life balance, consider seeing Marian.  These are all great reasons to see a great career counselor. She has a great deal of experience with helping young adults with navigating educational choices as well. We are thrilled to have her join us!

https://ca4wellbeing.com/about/marian-higgins/

Please call her for all your work and career related needs at 706-425-8900

Marian Higgins

Marian Higgins, PhD., LPC, Career counselor