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Therapist Spotlight: Teresa Gross, LPC

What made you decide to become a counselor?

I decided to become a counselor after a long-standing, heartfelt desire to turn my passion for personal growth, deep curiosity about personality, and fascination with human nature into a profession. While I started my transition from high tech corporate marketing to the healing arts with massage therapy and yoga instruction, I had known from the beginning that I wanted to be a therapist. Now after years of facing my fears, learning to trust life, and having finally settled into my life’s work as a fully licensed and credentialed professional counselor, I cannot imagine doing anything else that could bring me greater joy. I treasure each and every opportunity to gently guide others to know, accept, and love themselves; live their lives full-on, full-out from the heart; and enjoy more peace, freedom, and vitality in their relationships and daily lives.

If you could teach the world one skill or technique to improve their lives, what would it be?

Although it’s certainly not easy at times and likely takes a lifetime, this skill is self-acceptance.​

What are the most common problems your clients bring to you?​

Anxiety/panic, major life or career transitions, relationship challenges, and personal growth.

Have you personally been in counseling and if so, what did you learn about yourself?

Yes, a few times, off-and-on since my mid- 20s. More than anything else, what I have learned about myself is that I can trust and love. What I have learned about life is that I am being gently guided by a loving Lifeforce; and there is no greater privilege than to become who we truly are.

If you could recommend one book to all your clients, what would it be?

Way of Mastery by Shanti Christo Foundation

What inspires you to help others?

My own and others’ transformation towards greater love, fulfillment, and meaning in life that inevitably emerges from the challenging pursuit of positive change and growth, the choice for inner peace, and an unwavering commitment to purposeful and passionate living from one’s true self.​

Who is your ideal client?​

Individuals challenged by major transitions, struggling in their relationships, burdened by anxiety, derailed by depression, or grieving a loss and who are willing to fully engage in the therapy process, committed to exploring their “growth edges”, and open to mindfulness.​

How do you personally practice self-care?​

Yoga, meditation, mindfulness and spiritual practices, Enneagram studies, spending time with family and friends, squeezing in a good read or movie, settling in quiet solitude, and taking a time out every now-and-again for a wellness retreat.

How do you relate to Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is a way of being, approach to living, access to full contact with life, an essential form of inner strength training, and an empowering practice. Hence, my primary approach to therapy is Acceptance & Commitment Therapy. ACT uniquely combines cognitive, behavioral, and mindfulness interventions that are not only intended to relieve symptoms and facilitate positive change and growth, but at once expand and deepen one’s experience of life. It is also why I make mindfulness a priority and a daily practice, even if only for a few minutes a day!

How do you incorporate Mindfulness into your sessions?

I often incorporate mindfulness into my sessions by describing mindfulness as a concept; introducing and exploring various mindfulness practices to discover what will work best for each person based on their preferences; and create experiences of present-moment mindfulness by way of breathwork, short meditations, or guided visualizations.​

Your favorite quote?

"Seek the wisdom that will untie your knot. Seek the path that demands your whole being"-Rumi-

If you are hosting a dinner party, who are the 3 people you would invite and why?

Mother Mary – My Spiritual Person

Jeshua – Wisdom Teacher and Loving Presence

Irvin Yalom – Master Therapist

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