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  • Writer's pictureJaye Kelly-Johnston

My Story


When Healing Matters

Good morning, afternoon or evening. Glad you could take a few minutes to read a bit about myself. With almost 30 years in the mental health field, I began to feel an unexplainable void, totally existential. At that time, I had given 20 years of my life for an amazing agency in Houston, Texas that provided mental health service to clients that might otherwise go without services.

I saw a huge revolving door when it came to these clients. They would come in for services usually after having experienced a psychological crisis in their lives, be stabilized on medications then assigned a therapist for 6-8 weeks of counseling, sometimes inpatient but quite often on an outpatient basis. After the sessions, they would be referred to clinic for monthly medication management from a psychiatrist, a case manager and another therapist.

The last 10 years with the agency, I was a civilian partner with law enforcement going on mental health calls. It was exciting and rewarding helping people as they were experiencing a crisis. I knew the routine that would follow. The routine mentioned above.

While not all clients relapsed or had repeated crisis episodes, many did. I wondered what was missing that prevented them from healing and getting on with their lives. I began to see all mental health issues through the lenses of crisis and needing crisis intervention.

It wasn't until a rainy day off work, that I was curled up in a blanket on an oversize chair in what I refer to as my library; basically a room with a lot of books, a desk and a couple chairs, that I really began processing these above mentioned factors This was not how I saw myself when I first started out as an intern working towards licensure, and while I have absolutely no regrets for the paths that life led me down, I knew it was time for a change.

The big question for me became "if I were to go into private practice (an entirely different mindset of clients), how would I like to see them heal? What modalities would I like to use that would help the client make progress, heal from their emotional pain then get on with the business of living their lives to the fullest with joy and happiness.

The answer was to offer hypnosis as a psychological modality to the art of psychotherapy. Thus, my journey began. I began to do intense research not just in the field of hypnosis but into the training to become a certified hypnotherapist.

It seemed that the more I researched the more information I received via email and snail mail. There was so much information that it was practically overwhelming.

I did not look at the cost of these programs, choosing to at first focus only on the material offered. Then once I had my options narrowed to two schools, then I looked at cost. There were courses online where for 49.99 you could become certified over a weekend. There were courses that offered a couple weeks training but no hands-on experience.

I ultimately choose The Hypnotherapy Academy of America in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A ten-week program with hands on experience, along with coaches and the opportunity to be the client as well.

This required taking off 10 weeks of works. I had 8 weeks of paid vacation and a boss that did not want to let me have 2 weeks off work, unpaid. I was basically told "if you can afford to take two weeks off work unpaid, then maybe you do not need this job" Never had truer words been spoken.

I resigned my position, spent 10 amazing weeks at the academy, then after returning home, I opened my own private practice, Kelly-Johnston Counseling. My last name is Kelly-Johnston but so many people call me Kelly and I'm totally good with that.

I offer both psychotherapy and hypnotherapy services. I have had the honor of being part of the healing journey with so many people. I have watched people weep with joy at their breakthroughs. I have also had people drop out of sessions as well.

I have had people drop out of sessions then return a year or so later when they were ready to

address their emotional pains. I know that people heal when they are ready to heal and that we are all on our own healing journey's in life

What I have never heard is "I'm sorry I ever got help for my emotional pain." Nor have I heard "The journey was not worth it". Rather I hear people praise the process of addressing their issues and I know that they have done the hard work, they have accomplished their goal or goals, and now they are once again embracing life and happy.

My motto is so very true.... When Healing Matters...

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