Newsletter Article –December 2014

When you are in business for yourself, you get to decide what you want to be known for in this world.  You get to choose and establish your “personal brand identity”.  Having a strong and consistent personal brand identity allows your target market to really get to know you.  It helps you establish credibility and trust with them.

Here are a few examples of qualities that you might want to include in your personal brand; these qualities should come through in everything you say and do as you develop a relationship with your target market.
  1. Be known as an authority (expert) in your field. Take the time to study your area of expertise and your market.  Keep learning and keep teaching what you know.  Become that “go-to” person when it comes to your market
  2. Be known as a leader.  Write and speak on topics that will help your target market solve their biggest problems.  Be innovative and visible in your market.  Take the lead and get involved in things related to those you serve
  3. Be known as authentic.  Show your:  competence; warmth; honesty; integrity; kindness; and consistency whenever possible
  4. Be known as a valuable resource.  Go the extra mile to help your target market.  Develop a network of colleagues and related services that you might recommend when serving your people
  5. Be known as generous.  Refer to others when appropriate.  Give without expectation
Your overall personal brand will evolve over time, but these qualities are timeless and will allow you to make real connections with your clients and your referrers.  They will help you establish credibility, likability, and trust.

Deb Legge, PhD CRC LMHC

Dr. Legge is known nationally as “The Private Practice Mentor”.  Her work has been featured by ACA, Counseling Today, AMHCA, ACA-NY, and in her website,   For more information about how to get more clients and referrals, download her free Rapid Referrals Report:

Newsletter Article –November 2014

I’ve mentored literally thousands of mental health professionals over the past 20 years.  By far, those who build the fastest and who continue to grow and flourish started out by choosing a target market (or two).  Those who’ve chosen a target market get their names on the map more quickly; they get more referrals in their areas of specialization and more general referrals as well.

There are many reasons to determine, choose, and focus on the population you feel you are really meant to serve.  Here are three great ones:
  1. You'll know where to find them:  People in a target market tend to hang out together, and/or in places that can be identified.  For example, let's say your target market is “children with ADHD”.  Think about where you might find these folks, or the people who have access to and influence over them.  Pediatricians; family doctors, pediatric psychiatrists; schools; churches; youth groups; online forums and groups for parents; etc.  Once you know where to find them, you'll know just where to most efficiently focus your marketing efforts
  2. They have an established network:  People in a target market often already communicate with each other.  They look to each other for support and camaraderie.  They have some important similar interests, needs, and desires.  Start doing some great work within your target market and they will help to snowball your marketing efforts with word of mouth referrals!
  3. They'll know you really care:  When people know that their issue/situation is your specialty, they will appreciate the fact that you have dedicated your life work to understanding and helping them.  They will look to you as an expert and your expertise will beef up your credibility very quickly.  Because you are an expert in what they need, they will see you as the best (perhaps the only) option for them
  • With whom do you want to work?
  • Where can you find them?
  • How do they communicate with each other?
  • What can you do to show them your dedication and expertise?

Deb Legge, PhD CRC LMHC

Dr. Legge is known nationally as “The Private Practice Mentor”.  Her work has been featured by ACA, Counseling Today, AMHCA, ACA-NY, and in her website,   For more information about how to get more clients and referrals, download her free Rapid Referrals Report:

Gestalt Internation Study Center Presents: Working with the Body in Mind, November 7-9 on Cape Cod: Embodied Presence in Practice

Presence - Awareness - Impact   

November 7-9, 2014
Wellfleet, MA on Cape Cod
The way in which we embody ourselves is integral to our experience of others, and to others' experience of us - our impact. This highly experiential workshop will draw on knowledge from the frontiers of neuroscience and clinical practice to help practitioners exert a powerful, mindful influence on their client's conscious and unconscious experience. Learn more

The messages we send before we even open our mouths are the ones that others respond to most directly and most powerfully. Becoming more aware of these messages means becoming more aware our physical carriage: the timbre, pace, and pitch of our voice; the speed of our gestures; the engagement of our facial expressions; the ebb and flow of our breathing; and more. 

Awareness of these typically unconscious aspects of our physical presence allows us to experiment with them, to gain greater and greater skill with them, and to recruit them as powerful allies in our work. In addition, the body is an extraordinarily sensitive "register" of subtle events in the field. Attending to our own physical responses gives us a great deal of information about what's happening in our environment and offers insight into a client's reality that is unavailable through direct questioning.

This workshop will allow participants to understand and work with their embodied presence in new ways and to track their moment-to-moment physical awareness with growing precision. Using these foundations, participants will begin to build fundamental body-oriented observation and intervention skills.

Participants will:
  • Gain insight into their own physical presence.
  • Experience and practice new techniques to support their own embodied experience and awareness.
  • Develop a wider range of options in using their physical presence to heighten their impact.
  • Develop deeper access to relevant information
    in the field.
  • Start to build body-oriented intervention skills for heightened impact.

ovember 7-9, 2014
Begins Friday, 9am; Ends Sunday, 1pm
Fee:  $600; GISC members: $550 
CE hours: 19 - APA, ICF
Faculty: Ann Carr, MA, MCC, GPCC; Archie Roberts, MA 


Continuing Education

Coaches: This program is International Coach Federation (ICF) certified for 19.25 core competency hours. 

Psychologists: GISC is approved by the American Psychological Association to offer continuing education for psychotherapists (APA, CE).  GISC maintains responsibility for all programs and their content.

Please see the Continuing Education page for full details.  

Contact the GISC office at 508.349.7900 or or visit the program page online for more information. We are happy to assist you in selecting the best training to meet your professional development needs.

Seminar: Mind Stimulation Therapy

Join us on Monday, October 20th for 2.5 CEUs, breakfast, and more!

Mesa Cafe
100 Rolfe Square
Cranston, RI, 02910

8:15-9:00am: Registration & breakfast
9:00-11:30am: Presentation
$10 for RIMHCA members
$15 for non-members


Mind Stimulation Therapy: Working with Varied Clinical Populations
Presented by:
Mohiuddin Ahmed, Ph.D.
Charles M. Boisvert, Ph.D.

Clinicians will learn the fundamental components and goals of Mind Stimulation Therapy (MST) – an innovative model designed to help clinicians work with varied clinical populations such as clients with schizophrenia, substance abuse clients, traditional outpatient clients, and geriatric clients. 
Clinicians will learn practical counseling techniques and strategies outlined in the book Mind Stimulation Therapy: Cognitive Interventions for Persons with Schizophrenia (Ahmed & Boisvert, 2013).  Clinicians will learn how to use multimodal communication strategies to more actively engage clients in the therapy process, particularly clients who may not respond optimally to traditional verbal therapy interventions.  This may include, for example, traditional outpatient clients who do not seem to be making expected gains from the therapy and who may continue to present the same symptoms and problem areas.

Attention will be given to helping clinicians learn practical strategies to access clients’ intact skills, strengths, and adaptive capabilities, and most importantly helping clinicians develop competency and confidence in working with clients.

The MST model is grounded in information processing and cognitive stimulation techniques and operates out of a positive psychology framework. The three core MST activities include: 1) body movement-mindfulness-relaxation exercises; 2) cognitive stimulation using discussions of various mental health and general knowledge topics; and 3) cognitive stimulation using paper-pencil cognitive exercises and self-reflection exercises. The presentation will cover the core MST interventions, illustrate various ways that these activities can be implemented in clinical practice, and invite clinicians to present clinical cases.  The presentation will also discuss homework recommendations to help clients practice various skills and exercises in between the therapy sessions. 

We ask that you help support a fragrance-free environment by refraining from using strongly scented personal products prior to attending our RIMHCA event.  Thank you for your cooperation and care to those with this sensitivity.

Registration is now closed. Thanks to all who signed up!

Congratulations to new and upcoming Mental Health Counselors!

Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of RIMHCA, I would like to congratulate our newly licensed mental health counselors and the recent graduates.  We all know the effort and dedication it has taken to reach this point.  Now, you can enjoy your accomplishment and look forward to continuing the work you have begun.  In recognition of your achievement, the Board of RIMHCA is offering you to attend the seminar on June 27 free of charge as a congratulatory gift.
I hope you will consider joining RIMHCA, if you haven’t already done so, as a way to remain connected with your classmates and to form new relationships with those working in the field.  Our members work in schools, agencies, and private practices and have a wealth of information and an abundance of support to offer.  The benefits of joining and becoming active in the Association are numerous.
Membership also provides a formal way of advocating for our profession.  With the changes in health insurance, current and future, it is critical that we have a voice in crafting these policies for the benefit of our clients and our colleagues.
I hope to see you at the seminar.  You can also join us at any Board meeting, the schedule for next year will be on the website, and learn more about your colleagues and your profession while sharing your talents.


Vera DeMarco


Join us!

JUNE 27TH, 2014
Mesa Cafe, 100 Rolfe Square, Cranston

Counselors with cultural awareness of the military will find it easier to build rapport and work more effectively with military clients. This presentation will explore unique characteristics of military culture through case scenarios.
2.5  CEUs

PRESENTER:  Monica G. Darcy,  Ph.D., LMHC, NCC

Go to for further description, learning objectives and Biography of Monica Darcy.
This is Part II of the fall seminar Titled “Counseling and MIlitary Culture”

8:00 - 8:30am - Registration and Full Breakfast Buffet
8:30am - Opening Remarks/Welcome
9:00 - 11:30am - Presentation

Registration via email at:
Cost:  $15, non members
To show our Appreciation to RIMHCA Members; fee waived
As a Congratulations to:
2014 Graduates and 2014 Newly Licensed LMHCs
this event is complimentary and is our gift to you; “Welcome to the Mental Health Profession!”

DATE: June 27th - 9:00-11:30

TITLE: Working with military clients: Counseling scenarios

Counselors with cultural awareness of the military will find it easier to build rapport and work more effectively with military clients. This presentation will explore unique characteristics of military culture through case scenarios.

The lack of knowledge of a military lifestyle is a roadblock to establishing rapport in a counseling relationship.  Understanding military culture includes topics such as:
a)     Branch of service, rank, combat arms vs non-combat arms;
b)     Indoctrination to a military mindset in which affinity to team and unit supersedes individual needs;
c)      Deployment cycles and the impact of transitions on families;
d)     National Guard and Reserve service members with different military experiences from active duty or full time military personnel due to their civilian status in our communities;  
e)     Retirement or discharge from the military with identity challenges separating from the Armed Forces.

1) Explore unique characteristics of military culture through case scenarios;
2) Practice rapport building skills for military clients;
3) Understand the impact of military culture on military clients particularly related to stigma and mental health .  

Presenter: Monica G. Darcy,  Ph.D., LMHC, NCC
Dr. Monica Darcy is a military spouse and counselor educator, bringing an informed perspective to understanding military culture. Her personal experiences, clinical practice as a mental health counselor, and scholarly inquiry have all involved military service members and their families.   She has presented at several local, regional, and national conferences on the topic of infusing military culture in counselor preparation both pre and post license.