Brianna M. Pezon, MSW, LICSWbrianna.pezon@affinitypsych.com

Brianna M. Pezon, MSW, LICSW

brianna.pezon@affinitypsych.com

Did you have your coffee yet today? I hope so because this ball of sunshine is very excited to meet you! Congratulations on making the first step towards healing and taking a peek at my high spirited, empathetic, and compassionate page. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) who works primarily with adult populations. I have a plethora of experience working with those who struggle, have struggled, or have a family member struggling with substance abuse. I also specialize in Co-occurring disorders, and have personal experience in this field as well! I know what it is like to sit in the client’s chair of a therapy room, and I hope that you feel the same compassion and kindness that has been given to me in that seat throughout the years! I look forward to meeting you and taking this healing journey together!




How I Work

I will always meet you where you are at that exact moment. If you feel the need to come to a session in your pajamas? Do it! I am going to treat you with kindness, respect, empathy, and compassion regardless of how you come to sessions. I will let you set the scene, pace, and topics of conversation within sessions as I am here to merely be a guide to this healing journey you are on. Imagine we are both in a car, you are in the driver’s seat taking us on the journey- and I am in the passenger seat with some directional suggestions along the way! Do not worry if an exit gets missed, we will find a new path to our destination!


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

Are you a fan of a therapist who is able to sing and dance freely without a care of anyone’s judgment? Or a fan of a therapist with a “hip” hairstyle and multiple tattoos? If so, I am the therapist for you! I enjoy bringing my authentic self into each and every session. I will be your biggest cheerleader, someone who will call you out in the kindest way possible, and the person who will sit with you in your pain without any fear of judgment. We can use my “Rainbow Cards of Affirmation” or the poetry books in my office to break the ice, or settle into our comfy chairs and begin the work right away. I enjoy matching the physical, mental, and spiritual energy that is brought into my office and I let that guide where our session goes. My level of empathy is only matched by the therapist character from The Sopranos – and we all know what that entails. I am a therapist who attempts to practice what I preach, and if we need to shake it out, stim it out, or dance about during our session, I am game for all of it! Outside of work, I enjoy playing sports in the Minnesota winters, creating diamond art paintings, and fostering kittens and cats who need forever homes! I look forward to meeting you exactly as and where you are, so that we can work together to get you where you want and need to be in order to move life forward!



Issues I Treat:

  • Substance Use
  • Co-occurring Disorders
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Traumatic experiences including abuse, neglect, and violence
  • Personality Disorders
  • Identity Crises
  • Pet Loss
  • Self Esteem
  • Controlling negative thinking pattern

Populations I Serve:

  • LGBTQIA+ Communities, including those in the current coming out process
  • Young Adults
  • Middle Adults
  • Identity researchers
  • Family concerns or “black sheep” identities
  • Victims of Traumatic experiences
  • Victims of Abuse
  • Victims of Violence
  • Self Esteem builders
  • People with creative or writing blocks

Professional background:



Education

  • University of Wisconsin River Falls, Bachelors degree in Social Work
  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, St Paul, MN
  • Masters of Social Work

Trainings

  • TF-CBT

Previous Employment

  • ResCare Inc., Community Options Fridley IRTS
  • The Heights Treatment Center for Women, Mental Health Practitioner
  • Associated Clinic of Psychology, In home mental health therapist and ARMHS worker

Licensure

  • Minnesota, MSW, LICSW, 25879

Sarah Gokey, MA, LMFT sarah.gokey@affinitypsych.com

Sarah Gokey, MA, LMFT

sarah.gokey@affinitypsych.com

Hi there! My name is Sarah (she/her) and I am a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. I have had the privilege of practicing in a number of different settings with folks in all stages of life. I see individual adults, adolescents, kids (6+), and families. I’m open to in-person or telehealth sessions, whichever is the right fit for you. When my therapist hat is off I can often be found painting, reading (preferably by a body of water), or doing Nerd Stuff.




How I Work

I am a firm believer that one-size does not fit all, especially in therapy. I believe in honest, ongoing conversation about what feels meaningful for you, what growth looks like to you, and what specifically I can do to support you in achieving your goals. I believe in your infinite capacity for growth, strength, and self-advocacy. You can do hard things, and I am here to support you!


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I pride myself on being down-to-Earth and my sessions tend to be less formal and more conversational. I understand when humor can be healing, and when it’s time to hunker down and be serious. I believe in transparency and will tell you why I’m asking a particular question, or why I think something may be useful (no sorcery here!). And finally, I am neurodiversity-affirming and have a deep appreciation for all the brilliant ways different brains bring beautiful things to the table.



Issues I Treat:

  • Unresolved Family of Origin concerns
  • Shame
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Life Transitions
  • Parenting concerns
  • Burnout
  • Difficulties with Self-Advocacy
  • Childhood anxiety
  • Autistic identity exploration/thriving in a neurotypical world
  • Relationship difficulties
  • LGBTQIA+

Populations I Serve:

  • Women
  • Adults
  • Young Adults
  • Teenagers
  • Kids (6+)
  • Families
  • LGBTQIA+ folks
  • Autistic folks
  • Internalizers
  • Parents

Professional background:



Education

  • University of St. Thomas, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts (Cultural Anthropology and African Studies

Trainings

  • Transgender and Non-Binary Youth: Advanced Practice Gender-Affirming Interventions to Help Clients Live an Authentic Life
  • Trauma Conference: The Body Keeps the Score– Trauma Healing with Bessel van der Kolk, M

Previous Employment

  • Fraser, Minneapolis
  • True Balance Counseling, Cold Spring

Licensure

  • MN, LMFT, #3872

Marilyn Court, MA, LMFT marilyn@affinitypsych.com

Marilyn Court, MA, LMFT

marilyn@affinitypsych.com

(She/Her)

Good day. My name is Marilyn. I help individuals and couples to identify and modify problems (that are either big or small, from the past or present) at their own pace. I’m a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist who believes strongly in the power of joy, not being judgmental and being able to laugh about the ebb and flow of life. I received my masters degree in Marriage and Family therapy at St. Mary’s University of Minnesota.




How I Work

Do you struggle with staying in this moment; feeling stuck in the past or worried about the future? I would like to help you to get back to the present. Help you learn skills that highlight your strengths and redirect your attention to what matters most in life to you. Together we can make a plan that focuses on building self esteem, reducing anxiety, and building insight into thoughts and feelings that take you away from your best version of yourself.

My aim is to provide a space where you can clear your mind and refocus on what is most important and meaningful to you in your life. When you feel stressed, anxious or overwhelmed we can work together to discover which therapeutic skills are most helpful to get back on track.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

Who said therapy has to be depressing and serious all the time? Balance in life is important in all things.

There is a time for humor and fun, as well as a time for us to discuss very serious and delicate topics such as trauma or loss of someone.

I love being around friends, family, animals, and kids. I enjoy reading, watching movies, and hiking. My partner and I have been married for 10 years and we have a 3 year old Beagle/Jack Russel named Dolly.



Issues I Treat:

  • Anxiety
  • Trauma
  • Religious trauma
  • Life Changes

Populations I Serve:

  • Young adults
  • Adults
  • LBGTQI

Professional background:



Education

  • Masters of Arts in Marriage and Family Therapy
  • Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. Minneapolis, Minnesota

Trainings

  • How to apply Mindfulness to your clinical work
  • Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (Certificate in Mindfulness)
  • Treating Trauma

Previous Employment

  • Associated Clinic of Psychology
  • Internship at Pride Institute
  • Community Involvement Programs (now called Accord)

Licensure

  • Minnesota, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, 3690

Melissa Larson

Melissa Larson, MSW, LICSW melissa.larson@affinitypsych.com

Melissa Larson

Melissa Larson, MSW, LICSW

melissa.larson@affinitypsych.com

Hello, I am so glad you are here! My name is Melissa (she/her/hers) and I am a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. I work with individual adults and couples who are interested in dedicating some well deserved time to explore themselves and their relationships with those around them. I love spending time outdoors and at the lake, listening to music, eating Italian food, and connecting with family and friends.




How I Work

Experiencing issues like depression, abuse, addiction, grief, infertility, or relationship problems often make us feel like we are invisible and alone. In addition to a multitude of other issues you may be facing, sometimes in combination, it can feel like day-to-day tasks are impossible. Maybe you are feeling scared, hurt, stuck, misunderstood, unfulfilled, or numb.

These things do not make you weak or crazy, and they do not make you a failure. Maybe what you need is someone to tell you that you do not have to carry those feelings alone. Regardless of what you’re feeling, YOU MATTER. You are important and you have value. I want to hear your story and help you figure out what you want, and more importantly, what you need.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I am very down to earth. I believe in being real with my clients. I have a great sense of humor and enjoy opportunities to bring humor into the work. I will do everything I can to make sure you feel supported and validated, while also challenging you to grow.

I have done extensive research in the presence of postpartum mood disorders in new fathers/non birthing parents.



Issues I Treat:

  • Depression
  • Life Transitions
  • Grief
  • Pregnancy/Perinatal/Postpartum
  • Adoption
  • Anxiety
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Codependency
  • Coping Skills
  • Depression
  • Divorce
  • Domestic Abuse
  • Family Conflict
  • Infertility
  • Infidelity
  • Marital and Premarital
  • Men’s Issues
  • Parenting
  • Peer Relationships
  • Relationship Issues
  • Self Esteem
  • Stress
  • Transgender
  • Trauma and PTSD
  • Women’s Issues

Populations I Serve:

  • Adults
  • Young Adults
  • Couples
  • Parents

Professional background:



Education

  • MSW from University of St. Thomas/St. Catherine University, St. Paul, MN

Trainings

  • Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program – Minnesota
  • Psychoanalytic Society and Institute

Previous Employment

  • PrairieCare
  • Associates in Psychiatry & Psychology

Licensure

  • Minnesota: LICSW #26844

Sherry Fridlund, MA, LPsherry@affinitypsych.com

Sherry Fridlund, MA, LP

sherry@affinitypsych.com

Hello! I am Sherry Fridlund. I am a Licensed Psychologist with 26 years’ experience working with children through seniors. I am a Minnesota native, and I enjoy everything from boating to snowmobiling. I received my Master’s degree from Saint Mary’s University in Minneapolis, and I have worked in the metro area ever since. I have worked with a wide variety of clients across my career, and I can help clients with many challenges including depression, anxiety, trauma, sexuality exploration, and family problems. I also have a special interest in working with those who have autism or think they have autism, and the families and partners who are navigating life while supporting their autistic loved ones.




How I Work

I love helping you problem-solve and learn the skills you need to take the next steps in your life! I offer clients my complete time, attention, and accumulated wisdom in our sessions together, so that you know you have a true partner in your journey. I practice from a strengths-based approach, which means that I am laser-focused on helping you find, know, and celebrate what you’re great at! Then we can use that as the foundation to build additional skills and abilities to help you further your goals. Along the way, I will provide clear and direct instructions for a variety of skills and will work with you to practice these skills in our sessions. Together we will non-judgmentally process your emotions, help you to understand yourself better, and implement the strategies that will move you towards the goals you seek.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I have a long, successful history helping individuals with a wide variety of symptoms and diagnoses. At this point in my career, I can confidently support you in nearly any mental health challenge or life transition you are facing. As you face whatever difficult situation you are in, I want to utilize my accumulated clinical wisdom and expertise to help you and/or your families better understand yourself and your unique strengths. And if you are a person with autism, or someone who loves a person with autism, it may be helpful to know that I have lived experience with family members who have struggled to understand autism in themselves and that have been misdiagnosed by others, which is particularly true for women and adult adults.



Issues I Treat:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Trauma
  • Autism Spectrum
  • Personality Disorders
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • LGBTQ Issues
  • Relationship issues
  • Life Stressors
  • Behavioral Issues

Populations I Serve:

  • Individual Adults
  • Adolescents 15 and up
  • Families
  • Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
  • LGBTQ Individuals

Professional background:



Education

  • Master’s in counseling, Saint Mary’s University

  • Bachelor’s in psychology, North Central University


Trainings

  • Numerous trainings related to the topics of anxiety, depression, personality disorders and   schizophrenia

  • Specific training related to autism spectrum disorder.

  • Certificate in Telehealth Therapy.


Previous Employment

  • Res Care

  • Health Star Home Health  ( current )


Licensure

  • MN Psychologist, License LP 3367

Sara Eby, MA, LPCC sara@affinitypsych.com

Sara Eby, MA, LPCC

sara@affinitypsych.com

(She/Her)

Hi! My name is Sara, and I am a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor. I have been in practice for over 15 years in both Minnesota and Oregon, doing individual, family, and group therapy, and crisis intervention. I have worked in both short and long-term settings, but working one-on-one with clients in an outpatient setting is my favorite!

I provide individual therapy to older teens and adults who are experiencing things like depression, insecurity, anxiety, low self-esteem, grief, and anger. Often these things are related to past and present trauma, difficulty in relationships, and life transitions. My clients typically want things to change but feel at a loss as to how to make that happen. They want to understand themselves more deeply, and also feel that they are understood.




How I Work

I always say that I am a therapist who believes the past matters, because the past impacts the present, and I believe that there is always a reason for behaviors, emotions, and reactions. I practice primarily from a psychodynamic framework that focuses on treating the root of the problem rather than just symptoms.

Research shows that a positive relationship is at the core of what makes therapy successful, so I focus on creating a safe and supportive therapy experience where you will be able to express yourself without worrying about how you will be perceived. I have experienced that when people feel understood, seen, and accepted, they are empowered to make the changes that they believe will improve their relationships and quality of life.

It takes courage to come to therapy, and I am honored to be trusted to be a part of your process of healing.  In sessions, I will both listen and give feedback.  Because many of the people I work with have been in situations where they didn’t have control, or control was taken from them, I believe it is important that they have a sense of control in the therapy session. I will not tell you what to do, but will help you identify the decisions and choices that you feel are right for you. I will acknowledge that your experiences and feelings are valid, and will attune to you so I can better understand you and respond to you in a way that feels helpful.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

My clients tell me that I am empathetic, but they also appreciate that I have a sense of humor and a strong appreciation for sarcasm. I do not get overwhelmed, which allows me to help you contain and manage whatever feelings that are coming up for you. I appreciate surprise interruptions by pets, and apologize in advance that my own dogs occasionally show up in the sessions and can be very “assertive” in asking for attention.



Schedule an Appointment!

Issues I Treat:

  • Trauma (acute, chronic, and complex)

  • Family of origin issues and developmental trauma

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Relationship and communication difficulties

  • Women’s issues

  • Body image and self-worth issues

  • Adjustment difficulties and stress

  • Identity issues

  • Transitions

Populations I Serve:

  • Individual adults and young adults (18+)

  • People wanting to better understand themselves

  • Survivors of abuse and/or traumatic experiences

  • Mental health therapists or other helping professionals

  • People who feel overwhelmed, alone, or misunderstood

  • Individuals with difficulties in their relationships

  • Women

  • Individuals who tend to prioritize taking care of others rather than themselves

  • Those needing teletherapy

Professional background:



Education

  • Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology – University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, MN
  • BA in Strategic Communications – Arizona State University, Phoenix, AZ

Previous Employment

  • Lorenz Clinic
  • Prairie Care Medical Group
  • United Hospital
  • Albertina Kerr Centers
  • Family Networks
  • Hennepin County Medical Center

Trainings:

  • Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program – Minnesota Psychoanalytic Society and Institute

Licensure:

  • MN LPCC 1065

Abby Heisserer, MA, LPCC abby.heisserer@affinitypsych.com

Abby Heisserer, MA, LPCC

abby.heisserer@affinitypsych.com

Hi, hello, and welcome! My name is Abby (she/her) and I’m a licensed professional clinical counselor in Minnesota as well as a certified clinical trauma professional. I have a Bachelor’s degree in psychology from Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin, and a Master’s in counseling and psychological services from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.

Those degrees are what make me a professional, but what makes me awesome is that I have a goal to visit all 30 major league baseball stadiums, I am the mother to two guinea pigs who only tolerate my love because I feed them, I won a hay bale tossing contest three consecutive years in high school, and I have a very real passion for helping people manage their mental health to create a life of meaning, fulfillment, purpose, and a sense of control over their own destiny.




How I Work

Going to therapy can be intimidating, so my first priority in our work together will be helping you to feel safe in our therapeutic space. I want you to feel like you’re talking to a real person, and not a “therapy robot” using psychological terms and jargon that’s impossible to understand, let alone apply to your life!

I take an extremely collaborative approach because you and I are experts on different things. You are the expert on yourself (even if it doesn’t always feel like it!). And I am an expert on a lot of stuff that we will help you implement in order to reach your goals. I want to help you identify and expand on the strengths that you already have, so they can be adapted to multiple aspects of your life. Along with my strengths-based approach, I also utilize aspects of cognitive behavior therapy, narrative therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, and implement all of these with a foundation of trauma-informed, person-centered care.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I decided a long time ago, back during my hay bale tossing days, that if I was going to spend 40 hours of my week working, I wanted to do something that was meaningful and helped people. I found the perfect combination of this in therapy.

Many of my previous clients have said to me that they appreciate the way I can balance the heavy and the light, using humor and empathy to discuss mental health and trauma using a non-judgmental approach. (I will, however, judge you harshly for being a Yankees fan. Consider yourself warned.) I want all of my clients to feel that while they are talking to a professional capable of providing real help to manage their mental health and life challenges, they are also talking to a person with whom they can be vulnerable and authentic.



Issues I Treat:

  • Trauma
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Women’s Issues
  • Personality Disorders
  • Severe and Persistent Mental Illness

Populations I Serve:

  • Adults and Adolescents
  • Individuals
  • Couples
  • Victim/Survivors
  • LGBTQ+

Professional background:



Education

  • BS in Psychology- Viterbo University, La Crosse, WI

  • MA in Counseling and Psychological Services, Minneapolis, MN

Trainings

  • Certified Clinical Trauma Professional (CCTP) Intensive Training

  • Sexual Assault Advocacy Training

  • ACT for PTSD, Anxiety, Depression & Personality Disorders

  • LGBTQ Clients in Today’s World: Treatment Strategies for Gender & Sexual Identity Issues

Previous Employment

  • Touchstone Mental Health

Licensure

  • Minnesota: LPCC #2308

Kelly Sternhagen, MSW, LICSW kelly@affinitypsych.com

Kelly Sternhagen, MSW, LICSW

kelly@affinitypsych.com

Hello and welcome! I appreciate you taking the time to get to know a little bit about me and consider whether we might work well together. I’m Kelly (she, her, hers) and I am a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. I received my BSW undergraduate degree from Winona State University and my MSW from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

My “therapist gift” is being able to see the whole system that surrounds my client, and all the dynamics within that system that are impacting my client’s ability to thrive. I developed this ability through many years of working with children, adolescents, and their families, and now I bring that expertise to my work with adults as well.




How I Work

We are continuously being shaped by the important people in our lives and situations that have happened to us, all of which have made us into who we are today. These experiences, both positive and negative, can either drive us to reach our full potential and goals or can get in our way. That’s what can cause us to feel stuck and hopeless, to re-live painful experiences over and over again, or to recreate unhealthy relationship patterns.

I will work with you to explore and understand these past experiences so we can get to the root of what’s keeping you from reaching your full potential. When you feel empowered to reshape your future, nothing can hold you back!


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I have a calm, steady, unflappable energy that helps to create a safe environment for us to do the sometimes challenging, always gratifying work of therapy. I will help to guide you through the process. At times, you will take the lead, and at times I will help you to figure out how to take the lead, in therapy and in your own life. This holds true for my work with children as well. I use experiential play therapy to help children work through their experiences and feelings so that they can find and create the healing they need.



Schedule an Appointment!

Issues I Treat:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Grief and loss
  • Life transitions
  • Self-esteem, self-confidence, and assertiveness
  • Shame
  • ADHD
  • Body image and body acceptance
  • Eating disorders
  • Behavioral issues
  • Divorce
  • Trauma

Populations I Serve:

  • Adults
  • Young Adults
  • Children (5 and older) and adolescents
  • Stressed out students
  • Families in conflict
  • Kids with social or emotional struggles
  • Parents with parenting challenges or differences

Professional background:



Education

  • Winona State University – Bachelor of Social Work

  • University of Minnesota-Twin Cities- Master of Social Work

Trainings

  • Yoga Calm Integrated Approach to Wellness 1-3 courses

  • EMDR Part I, EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Programs

  • Experiential Play Therapy

  • Sand Tray Play Therapy

  • Filial Play Therapy

  • Intro to DC:0-3R, MN of Human Services

  • Minnesota Psychoanalytic Society Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Training Program

Previous Employment

  • Prairie Care-PHP program

  • Headway Emotional Health Services

  • Children’s Minnesota St. Paul Hospital

  • Family Connections

Licensure

  • Minnesota: LICSW #20679

Magan Callaway, MSW, LICSW magan@affinitypsych.com

Magan Callaway, MSW, LICSW

magan@affinitypsych.com

Welcome! I’m Magan (she/her/hers) and I’m a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW). I received my Bachelors in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and my Masters in Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As you might have guessed, I’m a former Wisconsinite! Now I’m glad to have called Minnesota my home for the last 10 years. I love to spend any free time that I have exploring local trails/parks or sitting outside with a cup of coffee and a good book (usually an audiobook).




How I Work

I’m an empathetic problem-solver. Just what does that mean, exactly? Good question! It means I am all about two things – connecting with you and helping you get where you want to go. In fact, it’s the connection we create that informs how we figure out your next steps, together.

For me, this means creating a warm, affirming, and judgement-free space where you can feel safe to be your authentic self. I have been told I’m wholeheartedly present in sessions, and my clients feel I’m centered in the moment with them. I want you to feel safe, heard, seen, and empowered. Only then can we uncover and cultivate your true resiliency.

And I do believe you are resilient! I am a strength-based therapist to my very core. Even when various systems around you get in the way of living the life you were meant to, which definitely happens sometimes, I still 100% believe you are capable and that we can find a way forward. Sometimes my job is to help you uncover that awareness and/or learn to believe in it for yourself.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

I’m a lesbian cisgender queer woman and understand the courage and daily work it takes to live fully as our authentic selves. I don’t claim to have all the answers. What I can offer is to put in the work, stay informed, seek out information and not to shy away from thinking outside the box to find something that resonates for you. I truly believe we’re all doing the best we can. If you’re ready to take the next step or have questions, I’m here and eager to connect with you.



Schedule an Appointment!

Issues I Treat:

  • Mood disorders
  • Anxiety
  • Ongoing, persistent mental health struggles
  • Trauma
  • Shame
  • Grief and loss
  • Substance use disorders
  • Personality disorders
  • Sexaulity and gender exploration
  • Self-worth
  • Life transitions
  • Family/relationship struggles

Populations I Serve:

  • LGBTQIA+ communities
  • Adolescents and young adults
  • Adults
  • Marginalized communities
  • Survivors
  • Helping professionals
  • Caregivers

Professional background:



Education

  • Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) – University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire
  • Master of Social Social Work (MSW) – University of Wisconsin – Madison

Trainings

  • Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
  • Attachment Focused Therapy
  • Personality Disorders
  • DC-05: Diagnostic Classification of Mental Health and Developmental Disorders of Infancy and Early Childhood
  • Telehealth for Mental Health Professionals

Previous employment:

  • HealthStar Home Health (current)
  • Out for Equity of the St. Paul Public Schools

Licensure:

  • #22605

Tessa Wolden, MA, ATR-BC, LPCC tessa@affinitypsych.com

Tessa Wolden, MA, ATR-BC, LPCC

tessa@affinitypsych.com

Hi! I’m happy you’re here and hope that you find a therapist that fits you best. I strive to help people who long to uncover their best selves, but are buried under stressors that get in the way. My approach as a Board Certified Art Therapist and Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor is client-centered, so my art directives focus on your specific goals, and I follow your lead.

I know from making my own artwork to process experiences in the natural world that living my best and authentic life is found through regular grounding practice and genuine connection with others. This passion for incorporating nature into my practice comes from working as a therapist in Grand Marais and many years guiding trips in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. Sharing the gift of bringing nature into everyday life and the empowerment that is felt when overcoming adversity in the outdoors is one of the best parts of my work.




How I Work

Many people don’t know what art therapy is and often I explain it as simply using art as another way of communicating than talking alone. Using art often accelerates getting to the heart of an issue while also distancing you from the situation rather than talking directly about yourself.

I work primarily as an art therapist. Our work together will start with an intake, where I learn more about you, your goals and your life experiences. Here we can talk about whether using art is something you’re excited for, curious to learn more, or nervous about but interested in trying. Art is a main focus of my orientation, but is in no way the only tool I use and not something that needs to be done every session. Generally, in the second session we would introduce art materials and I would provide you with a prompt that can further help us determine our goals and plan for treatment. Starting in the third session, we begin the real work diving into the meat of what you are wanting to change or explore and we go from there. This is just a general timeline as I work to maintain a pace that feels best for you.


What Sets Me Apart As a Therapist?

My focus on using art and nature in therapy is unique compared to traditional talk therapy. My job is to give you the tools and perspectives that help you ride the waves of being human and foster positive relationships with others.

Clients often tell me how easy it is to connect with me and they feel comfortable talking about difficult things. My colleagues talk about how I stick with clients, particularly during tough times. Sitting with you through the muck is my goal and my strength. To be with you and not judge, and to offer you other perspectives when you are feeling stuck.

I believe living authentically changes the world around you. Click on the link below to schedule a session together!



Schedule an Appointment!

Issues I Treat:

  • Anxiety
  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Life transitions
  • Self-confidence, self-esteem & assertiveness
  • Burnout & compassion fatigue
  • Trauma & PTSD

Populations I Serve:

  • Adults
  • Children & Adolescents
  • Queer Folks
  • Artists and other creatives
  • Perfectionists
  • Helping Professionals
  • Those in need of teletherapy
  • Transplants to MN

Professional background:



Education

  • MA – Art Therapy: George Washington University
  • BSBA – Marketing: University of Denver

Trainings

  • Trauma Informed Care
  • Child Parent Psychotherapy
  • Sand Tray Training
  • Telehealth for Mental Health Professionals
  • Reflective Supervision

Previous employment:

  • St. David’s Center
  • Accend Services

Licensure:

  • Minnesota LPCC: #cc1907
  • Art Therapy Registration – Board Certified: 18-302