Today we’d like to introduce you to Melissa Webb.
Hi Melissa, 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 backstories with our readers.
I used to be a teacher. I taught social studies to middle and high school students for two years. I had a five-year plan for teaching. In the last week of my last semester of my master’s program for education, a school counselor came and talked to my class about the work she did. I was intrigued and knew that was what I wanted to do for my career. I enrolled in the Master’s program for counseling and started the next semester. That was the fall of 2011.
I graduated with my second Master’s in 2013 and was still teaching. I decided to step out on faith and get a counseling job. I started at an agency in the fall of 2014 and have been doing therapy since. I have a wealth of Knowledge doing different jobs, from being a therapist to a supervisor, to becoming a program director, working with insurance in the behavioral health department, and back to the title of clinical therapist.
I had a dream of being the head person of all clinical departments for a big nonprofit agency, and I was working my way to becoming that. Then 2020 happened. When the pandemic started, my department was furloughed. I had the opportunity to get unemployment, which would have been a little more than what I would be getting paid, or take the private practice, Purposeful Counseling, I had on the side and make it full-time. I had no desire to do private practice full-time unless I was married and had a partner I could lean on when times got rough. I was a single lady living on my own and wanted the security of having a steady paycheck. But God had other plans, and I decided to step out on faith and went full-time with private practice.
It was a scary time. I was avoiding an unknown virus and navigating entrepreneurship. I was outside of my depth and was unsure of so many things. I leaned on Facebook groups with many therapists, wondering the same thoughts I had of entrepreneurship and many of my therapist friends, who were lost like me, to get through that tough time. Then, in October 2020, I became pregnant with my first child.
Being pregnant and running a business is INSANE! But I did it, and I was able to find my niche. I realized I loved working with people, helping them navigate their relationships, and helping to decrease their anxiety. After I gave birth in June 2021, I realized that new moms need help navigating their perinatal experience, and now I work with moms dealing with postpartum anxiety and depression.
Purposeful Counseling has helped countless people and strives to help adults heal from relationship issues and anxiety and have a healthy perinatal experience. I am now in a place of peace. Going to full-time private practice during a pandemic, getting pregnant, and having a baby was chaotic at times and a huge learning curve. I feel like I’m on the other side of the craziness and am now enjoying the hard work put in from the beginning.
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
The road was not smooth! I had to learn to put myself “out there.” Therapists are humble, and marketing ourselves is not taught in grad school. The fear of “not being good enough” stifled me sometimes. I often wonder how far I would be if I marketed everything I did and used social media to my advantage.
I struggled with running a business. Everything was self-taught. There were many days and nights I researched and googled all the business terms and theories to understand how to run a successful business.
Getting clients was a huge learning curve. Private practice has many ebbs and flows. One month you can make a shit load of money, and the following month, you can barely get by. It’s about being okay with not having a consistent flow of money every month and preparing if that ever happens.
I also struggled with imposter syndrome. I wasn’t confident in my skills and thought everyone was better than me. It wasn’t until I got pregnant that I gained confidence. I figured I needed to figure out this private practice thing because I had to take care of a tiny human soon. I could market myself and put Purposeful Counseling as an excellent private practice.
We’ve been impressed with Purposeful Counseling, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Purposeful Counseling is a private practice that strives to help heal broken relationships, manage anxiety and encourage a healthy perinatal experience through therapeutic means and healthy Christian theology.
I work with couples and individuals to help them along their journey. What makes Purposeful Counseling different is the authenticity and realness of the practice. I am not the standard therapist that will sit back and ask, “how does that make you feel?” the entire time. I ask tough questions and get to the core of the issues. I love to challenge my clients and hold them accountable for their actions or if they fail to do homework. I will curse and say, “I love Jesus,” in the same sentence. If my clients want to change, I will help them reach their goals.
Right now, Purposeful Counseling offers therapy services for individuals and couples. And in September 2022, Purposeful Counseling will present “Your Guide to Healing: A Therapy Journal” to help guide people along their healing journey and keep track of their therapy sessions and journaling.
What was your favorite childhood memory?
My favorite childhood memory was playing softball every spring/summer. My father was the coach and taught me the game’s fundamentals. It was always a good time, and I was pretty good! This led me to love going to Cardinals Baseball games at Busch Stadium. We went every summer, multiple times. I loved eating hot dogs at the stadium and getting peanuts.
- $130 – individual therapy
- $150 – couples therapy
- Website: purposefulcounseling.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/meltheetherapist/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/melissa.webb3/