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Written by: Sarah Kirton on Nov 29th, 2022

Step by Step Counseling Services LLC 2022: Improved Mental Health and Intuitive Eating

Ellie Herman LCSW from Step By Step Counseling Services LLC divulges a little about her new online private practice and shares her knowledge and passion for helping others achieve improved mental health.

What can you tell us about your online ‘step by step’ therapy?

I am a licensed clinical social worker and certified intuitive eating counselor. I opened my private practice - Step by Step Counseling Services LLC- this year so I am really excited to be able to provide accessible Mental Health Care to a wide variety of people using telehealth platforms. I have grown to love this way of working. I am both the owner and provider of the practice. 

Is the paradigm ‘Health At Every Size’ something that most of the population resonates with?

It is actually still considered to be a paradigm shift because it differs from the traditional medical model in terms of the way we think about weight and health. Because of this, it has its fair share of critics and may not resonate with everyone. I have worked with, and read a lot of material by many other medical providers who express much support for the movement and I find this very encouraging. 

For someone who has never heard of Health at Every Size, I can understand feeling it is totally wrong as it probably contradicts everything they have ever heard or learnt about the medical model and our relationship with health and weight. For those who think a little more critically about HAES, I do think there is a lot of rational thought behind it that resonates with those who take the time to learn about it. In particular, the paradigm resonates with most who have ever struggled with their weight in some way, whether this be through medical conditions or disordered eating patterns.

Given the concerns that your clients may face, which would you say are the most common, and why?

I would say the most common concerns definitely fall on the anxiety and depression spectrum. Struggles with life transitions are equally very common. I like to work with the college population and this is a time of life full of immense change. I also see older individuals who are experiencing similar problems.

I also see a lot of people concerned with their relationship with food and their body - as the two go hand in hand. I believe that both nature and nurture contribute to these tendencies; on the nature side, many people have genetic components that promote and make them susceptible to mental health conditions, and on the nurture side, we are living in some really challenging times. 

Do you work with the same methodology regardless of the client’s ‘issue’?

Not necessarily. I try to make it a very personalized experience and I use a person-centered approach with all my clients. I believe we all have the ability to create our own solutions and so my job is to help my clients to learn the skills to do this, to feel confident in doing this, and to encourage them to promote their own wellbeing. I therefore identify with my clients in more of a behavioral intervention model and then incorporate others, like cognitive behavioral intervention later cognitive behavioral intervention, for example.  

Over what period of time do you recommend working with clients for them to see long-lasting results?

I think the time that is needed to see results will vary from person to person. Sometimes, it can be weeks, and for others it may be years. It is a very individual choice and all depends equally on what else is going on in their lives. 

What do you believe your life purpose to be?

I am truly passionate about the work that I do with people, and healing in particular from disordered eating relationships with food and their body. I myself had an eating disorder when I was younger, and one of the best things to come from this is that I have such good insight and such ability to empathize with people going through the same thing. My purpose is to use my experience to help others heal.

If you would like to know more about Step by Step Counseling Services LLC, visit https://stepbystepcounselingservicesllc.com/

About The Author

Sarah Kirton
PR Writer, Delivery Rank
A wannabe global ‘food-trotter,’ Sarah nurtures a deep-seated passion for food and cultural diversity and believes the two go hand in hand. Having lived in Europe for many years she has a great knowledge of Mediterranean and French cuisine. She now lives in Cape Town, the food capital of Africa. When she is not dining out or cooking up a storm you will find her kite-surfing on the ocean, up a mountain, or cuddling her cat Samson!
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