Our apologies that it’s been so long since we posted anything on the Aspire Counseling Group blog. No excuses. . . except, well, we have been very busy over the past six months. First, we moved in June 2012 to a beautiful suite of offices where all staff can be together on one hall. Thus far, we’ve heard nothing but compliments from our clients about the calming effects of the new office space. Trust us, we tried very hard to create a space with just such an effect: calming, balancing, welcoming, inviting. It’s nice to know that the hard work and vision paid off!
We’ve also been working hard to create an organization with a certain mission, culture and values. What are those, you ask? Let’s see, it’s a work in progress, but this is what we’re aiming for at Aspire:
- To provide high quality services to our community from a holistic perspective that is strengths-based and health-focused in the form of individual, family and group counseling and education.
- To enhance the well-being and functioning of people in the greater Triangle area by increasing joy, happiness, balance and connection in individuals and families.
- To support and cultivate healthy, balanced professional clinicians who continue to develop personally and professionally.
- To find creative ways to be more accessible to all members of the community who need support and services.
- To create networks of like-minded service providers in the Triangle area and serve as a conduit in connecting people to the services they need, inside or outside of Aspire.
At Aspire, our clinicians happen to be Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs), so the idea of creating more connection, well-being and health in our communities, in our practice and in our work is a natural outflow of how we are trained. LCSWs are trained to look at the person in their environment, not just a particular array of symptoms and problems.
This commitment and approach has helped Aspire grow a little faster than we anticipated. Not a bad thing, of course, but it has made it harder to spend the time writing and connecting to you as we want. Here are a few of the things that have also happened over the last year–we believe as a result of this hard work and commitment–that we are really excited about here:
- Ongoing Introduction to Mindfulness and Mindful Teens classes that reach and offer support to a broader audience than our one-on-one counseling services.
- Recently, we began working with a UNC Integrative Medicine researcher who has a National Institutes of Health (NIH) grant to study mindfulness and adolescents. Our Mindful Teens classes will be adopting her curriculum and participating in this important study! Help us spread the word about Mindful Teens!
- We signed a co-management agreement through BCBS with Wake Internal Medicine Consultants, the largest and oldest primary care practice in Wake County! Through this agreement, we work with Wake Internal patients in securing the mental health services they need, whether those services are inside Aspire or outside Aspire.
- Our clinicians continue to grow and expand their areas of expertise! For example:
-Allison Grubbs, LCSW, LCAS, began teaching the Connections class this year through Aspire. Connections is based on the research by Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW, whose TED Talk is one of the most-watched ever. Allison will be training with Dr. Brown later this year in Texas.
-Tammy Blackard Cook, LCSW, will pursue certification in the Trauma Resiliency Model (TRM) this year, which is a mind-body approach that focuses on the biological basis of trauma. She will also join Allison in Texas this summer to pursue certification in the Connections curriculum created by Brené Brown, PhD, LMSW. And she still teaches the Introduction to Mindfulness course offered through Aspire.
-Anne Siegel, LCSW, one of Aspire’s couples therapists, will now offer an Intensive Couples “Boot Camp” (9 am to 12 noon) for a flat fee (no insurance is billed). This Boot Camp format will jump start therapy, and will be followed by more traditional, weekly visits. For anyone whose ever been in couples therapy, the Boot Camp format makes a lot of sense. It’s too hard to get into the work of relationships in one-hour sessions initially, and Anne is creatively tackling this problem!
-Lynne Houck Hefetz, LCSW, will be completing the course Attachment and Psychoanalysis: Restoring the Capacity for Secure Love in Adult Psychotherapy this year through the Psychoanalytic Education Center of the Carolinas. As a couples therapist, this training offers Lynne new tools to better help couples get to the root of what causes issues in their relationships.
Whew. We are a busy bunch at Aspire.
Lastly, we recently sent out a Client Satisfaction Survey to 444 past and present clients, and the results were overwhelming positive. Because we’re not the most technically savvy, we’re not sure how to embed the graphs, etc. to this blog post. However, we’ve uploaded the summary to Droplr and you can view the results here: 2013 Client Satisfaction Survey Results. We also want to thank you, our followers, clients and supporters for helping us achieve a 21% response rate to our survey–that’s unheard of! Thank you!
So, all in all, you can see it’s been pretty busy around here, but mostly in very good, “stretchy” ways. We’ll continue to work to make our clients, our work, our community and our world better. If you ever have any ideas, comments, concerns or shout-outs, please let us hear from you! You can comment below or email us at info@AspireGroupNC.com. Thank you!