Today we’d like to introduce you to Janice Twesten.
Hi Janice, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself
I am from Michigan and completed my Bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University. I moved to California in 2013 and my path to becoming a clinical therapist began there. I thought at the time that I wanted to go back to Nursing after the birth of my daughters, but life had different plans for me. Or so they say, right? I wanted to help people not just from a physical standpoint but also through an emotional and mental capacity. I started graduate school at Pepperdine University in the Fall of 2014. I was nervous initially as a new mom; how was I going to manage being a mom to 3 toddlers and do graduate school? It was a leap of faith and trusting my decision. My biggest supporter is my husband; who fully supported my career aspirations and still does. In the Spring of 2017 and a few internships later, I graduated! I knew I wanted my internships to be a learning experience, and an opportunity to grow as a clinician. I worked in a psychiatric hospital, and at the same time did a 2-year training in psychodynamic therapy at Maple Counseling Center in Beverly Hills, CA. I would later go on to work with Eating Disorders and Addictions in Southern California.
In the summer of 2019, we moved back home to Michigan after living in SoCal for 7 years. Do I miss the amazing sunny weather? Yes. Absolutely. But being back in Grand Rapids is home.
I opened my practice here in Grand Rapids in the Spring of 2020. I had initially planned to have an on-site/in-person practice. Well, then the pandemic hit and my practice went all teletherapy. It works! I had been continuing to see my clients that reside in California via teletherapy prior to the pandemic, so I was familiar with navigating this with clients already.
If this pandemic is teaching us anything, it is to be flexible and embrace new changes in our lives. I think clients have adapted well to teletherapy, and it allows clients that may have been hesitant to begin therapy feel comfortable reaching out for help from the comfort of their own home. The pandemic has undoubtedly enabled many of us to face our fears, anxieties and so many challenges of the unknown.
I am seeing couples that are trying to navigate this new space of being quarantined together, or the challenges of working from home together, and discovering that they want to make healthy changes in their relationships, or work on learning how to effectively communicate with one another. I also work with mental health providers and navigate the emotional and mental toll this pandemic has on our frontline workers.
I have got here today by making a choice to want to help my community and those around me. I truly believe that anyone can change and improve their life. When we lean into ourselves, we create an opportunity to find ourselves.
We all face challenges, but looking back would you describe it as a relatively smooth road?
I try to see challenges as an opportunity to learn and grow. The pandemic has certainly switched up my plans for my group practice, but it has also created more opportunities to help others throughout Michigan. I think throughout my life there seems to always be challenges, but I would like to think I try to persevere. I knew I wanted to help people from an early age, and I have always been an empath. I reached out in support of helping our community and have met some amazing people in and around Michigan. I have had the honor of working with outstanding clinicians that have mentored me in the process.
We’ve been impressed with Evolve Therapy Group, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
We are a clinical therapy group. We are offering teletherapy services across all of Michigan. We work with individuals and couples. We try to help people get to the core of who they are and why they have adapted to certain behaviors. We specialize in those struggling with addiction; both substance abuse and behavioral addictions. We work with couples that are trying to navigate this new space of being quarantined together, or the challenges of working from home together, and discovering that they want to make healthy changes in their relationships, or work on learning how to effectively communicate with one another. I also enjoy being able to work and give back to our medical health providers and navigate the emotional and mental toll this pandemic has on our frontline workers.
I am most proud of the change I see my clients make. I named my practice Evolve Therapy Group because we are all evolving and changing and that is beautiful to see. I love helping couples learn to communicate and learn to connect again. My brand is to embrace change and evolve into who/what you want to be. I want our clients to enjoy coming to therapy and look forward each week to seeing their therapist.
Before we let you go, we’ve got to ask if you have any advice for those who are just starting out?
Where to begin…my best advice to a new intern or someone just starting graduate school to become a clinical therapist is to get experience in many different clinical settings. The population you might be hesitant to work with or afraid to work with…do it anyways! You will grow the most and learn so much! You will make mistakes and be afraid. With that being said, be scared and lean in to finding what you’re capable of. Even if you don’t want to be a therapist, still lean into discovering your potential and create positive change!
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.evolvetherapygroup.com
- Instagram: @janicetwesten
- Facebook: Evolve Therapy Group
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