By Alycia Burant, MA, LPC, NCC
The official definition of trauma is a deeply devastating or disturbing event or emotional shock following a stressful event or a physical injury, which may be associated with physical shock and sometimes leads to long-term neurosis. The words “trauma” and “resiliency” are in my everyday vernacular as a trauma therapist.
I am the founder, owner, and therapist at Healthy Minds Therapy, an outpatient mental health group practice, providing specialized services for emotional health and wellbeing. Before the pandemic, we comfortably served our community via three brick-and-mortar offices in Northern Virginia, sporadically using telehealth services for inclement weather days or remote clients. On March 11, 2020, the world collectively experienced a stressful event, forever changing us. Within one week, our team successfully converted all three brick-and-mortar offices and 279 patients to an online platform to seamlessly provide quality mental health care to our patients without a lapse in services. Our team quickly jumped into action to figure out how to pivot and provide new services to our community in transition and shock. We began to offer a new service, called “Virtual Vent Sessions” offering acute support to our community. These sessions were offered at an affordable rate, with all proceeds going directly to my team. We wanted to wrap our arms around our community like a warm, cozy blanket. We knew that people still needed us, in whatever way that looked like. Just because a global pandemic ensued, that did not mean that people’s mental and emotional challenges suddenly stopped. No, in fact, this meant they were just about to ramp up.
We are coming out of one of the toughest years in modern history. We were pushed to our limits, reached our breaking points, but we pushed through…
These Virtual Vent sessions are still being offered today. We continue to have diversified services to include webinars, Instagram lives, and groups to ensure an expanded reach during this uneasy time. In the past year, our practice has grown to serve over 400 clients a week and has added 8 new team members. We are not bouncing back; we are bouncing forward. We are in the business of resiliency.
We are just coming out of one of the toughest years in modern history. We were pushed to our limits, reached our breaking points, but we pushed through to limitless bounds of gratitude and found ways to keep from breaking down and falling apart. The human spirit is remarkable and has an incredible ability to rebound and recover. This has been the most challenging time ever in my career. I have learned to support and care for my community, all while learning to navigate and heal myself through the same painful events. I may have days when I am down, but do not ever count me out. This is a therapist’s Super Bowl, if you will. We champion each other for this. Nothing makes me more encouraged than to see the success and healing of those we serve.
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VIP Alexandria Magazine is proud to present The Resiliency Issue. Featuring small business COVID-19 success stories, as told by the owners who lived in it, learned to pivot + survived.
You can read all of our Resiliency Stories in our digital issue HERE.