Janet Bayramyan is an Armenian-Russian-American licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) in the states of California and Florida working from a trauma-focused and attachment oriented perspective, supporting individuals and couples through their healing of past and current distressing events. Janet is also trained in EMDR and Havening Techniques, as well as being the founder of Road to Wellness Therapy.
Creating that perfect work-life balance isn’t always easy as we think, yet Janet’s own personal love for her work spans over anything and everything that has to do with understanding healing, emotions, and recovery. Adding another string to her bow, Janet part-time, works as a professional dancer performing at different venues and parties in different international styles including middle eastern belly dancing, Latin and Samba styles, as well as Russian and Armenian folk dancing.
Welcome Janet, thank you for coming on board with us, can you introduce yourself to us?
Yes! I am a licensed clinical social worker, professional dancer, as well as therapy nerd. I started my company Road to Wellness Therapy in June 2019, which is an online psychotherapy practice where I offer both individual and couples therapy, as well as life coaching.
Can you talk us through the path you have paved to where you are now as a Licensed clinical social worker?
The path to get to this point has been a rewarding yet also challenging path. I began my journey into psychology in college when I was struggling and having my own mental health and wellness challenges. I decided to study psychology and make clinical social work my path when I began my own therapy and doing my own work. After completing my bachelor’s degree, I decided to take some time off and live life before I entered graduate school. In graduate school, I decided to study social work because of my passion for social justice. During those years, I began working on my own past trauma history in my own therapy with a trauma specialist. As I was doing so, I again, felt the inspiration and inner calling to work with other trauma survivors as my own life goal. Healing my own trauma gave me a new sense of purpose to give back and be a trauma therapist, helping others with their healing. Postgraduate school, before starting my company, I worked for 3 years supporting impoverished and lower functioning children and families in managing mental health as well as life stressors, which included a history of trauma, family challenges, boundary issues, and cultural stigma related to mental health. After experiencing some burnout, I decided it was time to start my own company.
What was the start-up process like for you with the road to Wellness Therapy and what was it like working with your first client?
The startup was a labour of love, both joyful while also time-consuming. I started my company because it was important to me to be my own boss and to practice psychotherapy in the manner in which I felt was best practice and ethically appropriate. I write all of my own content and all of the material I share on my website and social media. I feel it is my ethical responsibility for me to share who I am, how I practice, and my perspective on different themes and issues related to mental health and wellness. In addition to creating my content, it was important to me to speak to my ideal clients and people with whom I felt connected to work. My business isn’t just about seeing clients and generating income. It’s about starting a movement to educate ourselves on issues and information that is beneficial, while also reducing the stigma related to therapy and mental health. Working in my private practice is wonderful. I love working with clients, and I love sharing tools and providing empathy. Often, therapy is the first time people may ever experience empathy by another person and it’s a pleasure to do so.
How are you working with your clients to help them improve their relationship and sexual wellness through sex therapy and what methods are you using?
Often my clients tell me that they haven’t worked with a therapist who has felt comfortable talking about sex wellness in counselling. This information saddens me as sexuality and sexual health is an important component of one’s individual and relational life. I start off by creating a safe space for clients to express where they are feeling challenged sexually and relationally. Thereafter, I do a comprehensive sexual history assessment with my clients to obtain background and understand the big picture of what’s happening that they’re needing support with.
Thereafter I work with my clients collaboratively to create goals to work on related to sexual wellness, and I provide tools and homework to complete to help in this process. The important thoughts and questions to consider include the following: What does healthy sexuality mean to me? What qualities/behaviours enhance my pleasure? Are there aspects of my sexual life where I feel shame? Where/how do I feel sexual aliveness? How does it show up? How does shame show up in my sexuality? Many of us are not given space to explore these questions in childhood or adolescence. And sadly, the majority of our sexual learning comes from the limited sex education received in middle schools or through pornography, which is not real sex. I highly recommend sex therapy for both relational and sexual wellness.
Can you talk us through the Havening Technique?
Havening Techniques is a psychosensory modality that helps in de-traumatising stressful events in the brain. It’s not your traditional talk therapy. Really it’s a way for people to learn how to self soothe and re-process stressful experiences, challenging thoughts, and painful moments. I help teach and support clients in producing delta waves in the body through this type of therapy. This type of therapy helps bring the body and brain into a state of relaxation, where an individual feels ready to work on and manage distressing feelings and memories.
What has been the best client project to date you have worked on where you saw overwhelming results?
Right now I am expanding my marketing platform and engaging in Instagram live discussions with professionals, and I’ve been able to reach a wider audience sharing awesome content. This helps me educate more people and share knowledge outside to a wider group of people outside of my one to one sessions.
Can you share with us a particular career highlight so far?
It’s currently in the works but I am in the process of creating courses and guides that will help expand my services to more people that are needing additional information and literature. I don’t think career highlights have happened just yet, as I have so many more goals that I want to accomplish and I am currently just getting started. The primary highlights that I get to experience are seeing my clients become and feel more empowered in their lives.
How are you working towards your own personal development?
I go to my individual therapy on a bi-monthly basis. I have since graduating school with small breaks. I know that in order for me to do this work, I have to do my own internal work at the same time. I also am working with a business coach on a monthly basis for additional support with the accountability of my commitments. Finally, I also maintain contact with my mentors and people that inspire me and support me and my work.
What are your preferred marketing methods for your services at Road to Wellness Therapy?
Instagram, Facebook, Road to Wellness Therapy website, Psychology Today, networking with colleagues and other professionals.
Where are you looking to expand to next throughout 2019?
I hope to grow my practice and reach more people with my services. I hope to create great content and educational materials for clients wanting tips and tools for healing and wellness. And I hope to continue to reduce the stigma and support people in feeling comfortable enough to talk about getting help and support, and that it doesn’t have to be so taboo.