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Meet Glenna Anderson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Glenna Anderson.

Glenna, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
When I was a senior in high school, I read this book called “Orphans of the Living: Stories of America’s Children in Foster Care.” I immediately knew I wanted to go into Social Work. I got my BA in Social Work and had the opportunity to work with youth in juvenile probation as well as children that were diagnosed with a mental illness.

I soon realized that I a strong desire to help the adults in their lives, as a way to best help the children. I went into a Masters of Social Work program, with a focus in mental health. After graduation, I started working at a large non-profit as a mental health therapist. I absolutely loved it! I realized mental health was my passion and felt like I was “home.”

I eventually went into management before I got the itch to offer services in a different capacity. In March 2016, I branched out and opened my private practice, specializing in anxiety-based disorders and emotional abuse recovery. Opening a private practice was interesting because all of my training was in social work, and not business.

It’s been a journey, but with help from my “business besties” (other women that are also in business) I have been able to grow tremendously in the last {almost} three years. In Aug 2018, I completed the Doctorate of Social Work program at USC, a program that focuses innovative ways of solving traditional problems.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
NO! Not at all… I am a mental health expert. I came in knowing nothing about marketing, content planning, business taxes, networking… nothing!

One of the hardest parts was not knowing how to best allocate your resources, meaning time and money. You can’t attend every event you are invited to, and you can’t spend every dime you have on marketing. It’s difficult to decipher the best course of action. The reality is you will waste time and money. There is no getting around that. But as long as you count it all a learning experience, you’ll be okay.

Another struggle was not knowing who to trust. There are so many people out here presenting themselves as branding specialist and business strategist with no real credits to back this up. And early in the business, you don’t always have the means to pay the legitimate coaches. No easy answer.

We’d love to hear more about your practice.
I am a mental health therapist, speaker, and author. Primarily, I treat adults with anxiety-based disorders and emotional abuse recovery. Anxiety based disorders may include Generalized Anxiety Disorder, PTSD, Social Anxiety, etc. Emotional abuse recovery is the process a person goes through after they were in an abusive relationship of any sort.

I also teach “Therapy is a Lifestyle,” the idea of addressing your mental health before it becomes mental illness. This is done through my workshops and annual brunch. I teach a workshop that teaches people how to structure their lives in a way that pursues goals in every area of their life, with respect to their overall mental health.

I created “The Little Black Book: Dr. Glenna’s Secret to Starting and Finishing,” a self-help planner that marries mental health and productivity. This planner teaches you how to map out your goals and break them down into realistic chunks. The planner offers a theme for each quarter and a monthly journal entry to keep you on track.

What I am most proud of is my ability to reach my audience with sound clinical information, but in a way that feels like a good friend chatting over a cup of coffee. I think that, traditionally, mental health information is dispersed in a very formal manner. I like to share a little something… keep it casual.

There’s already a stigma around mental health, why do something to make it harder to get to?

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success for me is defined by personal satisfaction. If I can look at every aspect of my life and feel satisfied, then I am successful. If my children are taken care of, know that I love them, and feel that they have a bond with me, then I am a successful parent.

If my business provides mental health information to people through the use of social media and gets them to access services they would have otherwise never pursued, then I am successful.

My overall goal is to get undeserved and overlooked populations to mental health services, using non-traditional methods. When I see things like people of color talking openly about seeing a therapist, I know I’m doing my job.

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