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Daily Inspiration: Meet Ginny Kappel

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ginny Kappel.

Hi Ginny, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
I remember taking the most interesting class in high school called “Intro to Psychology.” I had no idea what an impact that one class would have on my life at the time I signed up for the elective. I was so interested in learning about how the brain functions but never quite knew what I would do with that interest. I spent time after high school going to a community college until I could get a more clear picture on my educational path. I had another intriguing class within my 2- year degree called “Sex Psychology.” I had two incredible and influential professors that ultimately led me to my next stop-Webster University to get my 4-year degree in Psychology. I didn’t get to necessarily use my degree right away. I was working, got married, bought a house, had a baby (all the things I wanted to do) but something was missing. I decided to work toward a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling. Half way my online graduate program, my husband, 2-year old and I decided to move to FL for a fun life adventure. It was soo fulfilling and we learned so much about ourselves as individuals and as a family. I completed my internship program just minutes away from my favorite beach in Clearwater, FL-it was so delightful! I then finished my degree (just days before baby #2 came!) After about two years in Florida, we moved back home to St. Louis to be with family. I quickly connected to my current office at Diversified Health and Wellness Center and built my practice with clients I love working with.

I currently work with all ages mostly treating anxiety. As someone who has struggled with anxiety, I know the cost of not treating it, but I’ve experienced the beauty in learning how to live with anxiety. I love working with parents of anxious kids, teen girls, and moms that need to take the time for themselves.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Has it always been easy? Of course not! Some of my coursework required me to do my own personal healing, which I was not expecting but completely value. Healing from my own challenges & emotional wounds while being a mom, going to grad school, living 1,000 miles from family was tough!

Becoming a counselor also meant taking on a new identity. I’m not just a wife or a mom, but I have the brain of a counselor. When my kids struggle, I subconsciously try to help as a counselor. When my husband and I have to work through conflict, I respond as a counselor-sometimes…it’s hard to disconnect!

I’m also a highly sensitive person and deep empath. I feel very deeply for others. Sometimes I carry the pain or struggle from others, again, I’ve had to learn how to separate myself from my client’s issues.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
As a mental health counselor, I specialize in treating anxiety. I love the work as previously mentioned because I personally have benefited from anxiety treatment through counseling and learning other coping techniques. I believe most of my clients and people that know me would tell you I’m kind, compassionate, down to earth and have a very light-hearted approach to counseling.

I’m proud everyday when I begin my day of work and when I leave. Somedays there are sessions that reiterate this is the perfect job for me. Especially when clients say things like, “that’s exactly right,” or “I tried the new thing you taught me.” Oh, it’s so rewarding!

What sets me apart from others-I think there are so many factors that make each counselor great with this work. It’s hard to say just one factor that makes me different than others. However, I feel that this work was made for me. This isn’t just something I do for money, I do this job because this is my life’s work. This is definitely part of my identity and I’m so proud it is. I love when my son tells his friends, “my mom is a counselor, she helps people.”

In terms of your work and the industry, what are some of the changes you are expecting to see over the next five to ten years?
I think the pandemic actually helped this field grow tremendously. We now have more access to telehealth, which opens the door to so many possibilities and gives access to many more clients. Working with the busy college student or mom, telehealth can offer convenience, whereas before it wasn’t an option. I see more talk about laws passing for licenses to be accepted across state lines, which again offers so much for accessibility for clients. A major shift I hope to see in the next 5-10 years is the stigma continuing to be removed from mental health treatment. I think we are certainly moving in that direction but I believe we still have a long way to go. I hope people know that mental health is just as important as physical health and there is no shame in therapy.

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Image Credits
Photo of Ginny Kappel: Lemon Cherry Photography Logo Image: Brand with Style

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