How to Find a Therapist Who Takes Your Insurance


I get a decent amount of calls from people looking for a therapist...not surprising since that is what I do for a living! :) However, often people are looking for therapists that accept a specific insurance. Although I do work with a few insurance companies, there are a lot I don't work with and I get a fair number of calls from people who are frustrated and overwhelmed with the process. The common complaints are therapists don't accept their insurance or don't call them back. I can't help with the not calling back part (I always return phone calls and emails even if I already know I am not going to be the therapist for them). But maybe I can help with the insurance part. So I decided to write this blog post with my suggestions for finding a therapist in hopes that this information is helpful!

First, let's start with the insurance question. If you are trying to find a therapist who takes your insurance, it can sometimes be a pretty daunting process. My first suggestion is to call the number on the back of your insurance card to figure out your benefits and get a list of local therapists. Unfortunately, I have found that insurance companies are not always the best at keeping their lists up to date regarding therapists who are actually accepting new patients. Despite this problem, it is still a good place to start. You can also usually find this same information on the insurance company's website. It is also important to make sure your mental health benefits are actually managed by your insurance company. These days, it is not uncommon for insurance companies to farm out the management of mental health benefits to another provider. For example, a lot of Blue Shield of California members' mental health is actually managed by Magellan. This information is generally not very apparent on your card and people don't realize it until they go to access their mental health benefits and realize they need to look at an entirely different list of providers.

Second, I recommend using the Psychology Today website to help search for therapists in your area. This is the website that most therapists use to advertise.  Each therapist has a profile, often including a picture, that tells you more about them and a website link if they have one.  It has a lot of options for filtering results including location, insurance companies, ages they work with and specialties. If you are not planning to use insurance you can also filter by session cost. If you don't have mental health coverage and finances are an issue, I recommend looking for low cost counseling services on This website features therapists who have agreed to see clients for $30-50 per session.

Third, and by far the most important, is a good fit with the therapist! I know it can feel a little, or maybe even a lot awkward, but I firmly believe in speaking directly with a therapist before scheduling an appointment. In my humble opinion, good therapists should offer a free brief phone consultation. There are a couple of reasons these are a very good idea. It gives you an opportunity to ask questions and the therapist an opportunity to learn more about why you are seeking treatment to help ensure they treat your identified issues. In addition, they will likely go over how to get started with them and hopefully put you more at ease with the process. It should also give you a reasonably good idea if this is someone you feel you can talk to and trust to help you. There are a lot of terrific and very skilled therapists out there, but we all have different styles and clients have unique needs. It is vitally important that a good fit is achieved in order for therapy to be successful. A healthy, solid therapist/client relationship can lead to incredible change for the client and a very rewarding experience for both! I wish you the best of luck in your search for a therapist and hope you find these tips helpful!

You Were Born to be Real, Not Perfect...


Oh the pressures of my first real blog post! It's intimidating, but I'm going with my passion here and starting with one of the major realizations in my life that has allowed me to relax a little more and be a little less intense. No one is perfect. Yes I said it. I'm not a fan of absolute language, but this one is earned. When I say no one, I really mean no one. Humans are flawed. We all have things we can do better. We all make mistakes. We all have regrets. And let me tell you, we all have skeletons in our closets, some just more than others. If anyone tells you they don't have any of these, my guess it they are lying. I'm actually relatively certain they are lying.

I have worked with a lot of perfectionists. Truth be told I am a self proclaimed perfectionist in recovery =). The reality is perfectionism can be very helpful, but too much of anything generally becomes a bad thing and it can get out of hand. Perfectionism is a common trait of successful people, but no matter how successful you are, it does not guarantee happiness. Perfectionism can lead to unwarranted and unnecessary feelings of inadequacy and take people on a wild goose chase of the ever elusive but oh so coveted idea of being perfect. It is truly an endless quest with no foreseeable finish line.

I want to let you in on a little secret, the reality is that perfect does not exist, and can cause a lot of pain in the quest to attain it. Perfectionists tend to be incredibly hard on themselves, harder than anyone else is on them. The self judgement can get really out of hand and lead to feelings of inadequacy, deep unhappiness, low self-esteem and depression. So give yourself one of the best gifts you can and let it go. I realize this may be easier said than done, but learning to let go of the small things and accepting yourself, flaws and all, can be incredibly freeing. It will give you more free time, less worry and likely feel like a heavy weight has been lifted from your shoulders.

If you need permission to let it go, I'm giving it to you. I can't make you any promises, but I am pretty sure you will feel better. Life with less self judgement can be a huge relief! From one perfectionist to another, I sincerely hope this helps you let go of being perfect and refocus your efforts on being happy!

Welcome to Keepin It Feels Therapy Blog!


This little bad boy sits on my desk at work. When I saw it, I really didn't have any room and wasn't looking to add anything to my office, but I made room because it is me, unequivocally me. I created this blog as a play off of Keepin It Real which is something I live by both in my personal life and in my counseling practice. I believe in open, honest communication and strive to keep it real! When I decided to create this blog, I debated about whether or not to be strictly professional, but that just isn't consistent with who I am both as a person and a therapist. Don't get me wrong, I think I am plenty professional, but I want to be passionate about my blog, so Keepin It Feels seemed like the best way to accomplish this goal. I will post about therapy related topics that hopefully are important and helpful to you, but still keep it consistent with my style which is pretty straightforward and practical. Additionally, I am a big fan of humor, so hopefully you find some of that on here too! Laughter really can be one of the best types of medicine, or at least quite helpful when we are feeling lost, stuck or overwhelmed!