Diverse Clinicians Series: Making Therapy Easily Accessible to Diverse Populations with Dr. Holly Sawyer | POP 732

A photo of Dr. Holly Sawyer is captured. Dr. Holly Sawyer is a licensed therapist in Philadelphia. Dr. Holly Sawyer is featured on Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

How can you learn from others while following your own path? What are some things to consider when working with diverse populations? Why is harm reduction so important?

In the third episode of the Diverse Clinicians Series, Joe Sanok speaks with Dr. Holly Sawyer making therapy easily accessible to diverse populations.

Podcast Sponsor: BiOptimizers

An image of the Practice of the Practice podcast sponsor, BiOptimizers, is captured. BiOptimizers is a magnesium supplement for reducing stress and improving sleep.


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Meet Dr. Holly Sawyer

A photo of Dr. Holly Sawyer is captured. She is a licensed therapist in Philadelphia and the CEO and lead psychotherapist at her solo practice Life First Therapy and Therapy Loft Collective, an online group practice. Dr. Holly Sawyer is featured on the Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

Dr. Holly Sawyer is a licensed therapist in Philadelphia. She is the CEO and lead psychotherapist at her solo practice Life First Therapy and Therapy Loft Collective, an online group practice. Dr. Holly is also an entrepreneur mindset coach, national mental health public speaker, and college professor!

She is the author of Get Your Mind Right, Get Your Money Right! The Mental Health Guide for Successful Entrepreneurs and It’s Time to Talk About Trauma. She has been featured on Philadelphia’s Fox News 29, Bustle, Popsugar, and more.

Visit Life First Therapy and Therapy Loft Collective.

Connect with her on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn.

Laugh with Dr. Holly on Instagram.

In this Podcast:

  • Making therapy accessible to all
  • Stay true to what it is and who it is that you want to serve
  • Working with diverse populations
  • Racial disparities in dealing with substance use disorders

Making therapy accessible to all

As soon as the pandemic hit everything went virtual in Dr. Sawyer’s solo practice. She however started noticing that there was a need for black and brown folks to really attend therapy, it was this realization that led to the launch of a fully online group practice.

The mission is, to allow people who are black brown, to come into this space and to be able to heal from home or in their car, wherever they can so that they don’t have to worry about the commuting. (Dr. Holly Sawyer)

Aside from being 100% online, and in an attempt to make therapy even more accessible, Dr. Sawyer’s group practice accepts several types of insurance.

Stay true to what it is and who it is that you want to serve

Since making all the changes and shifts in her practice, Dr. Sawyer has learned some important lessons when it comes to realizing who it is that she wants to be.

Carve out who you want to be as a clinician, entrepreneur, a business owner, and stick to that. You can look to others as far as the things that they’ve done, mistakes, and things like that, however, you don’t have to look at them as your prototype. (Dr. Holly Sawyer)

Learn from those who inspire you and those who have made mistakes that you can avoid by learning from, but do not copy them entirely.

Figure out what your core is and build your business around that while learning from those around you, but stick to your values and your mission as your guiding light.

Dr. Sawyer’s advice for black business owners and therapists:

Stay true to what it is and who it is that you want to serve and work from that space. (Dr. Holly Sawyer)

Working with diverse populations

If a white clinician has someone who wants to enter a clinical relationship with them, whether it’s staff or a client and they are non-white, Dr. Sawyer recommends that they be open to learning about the cultural differences and their way of thinking.

If you are ever in those positions, I think the best thing that you can always do is ask questions and come from a place of curiosity and not from a place of ‘knowing’. (Dr. Holly Sawyer)

Be open and be curious. Respectfully ask questions if you are not sure, and be open to listening to and providing the space for new experiences and perspectives in your practice.

Racial disparities in dealing with substance use disorders

Addiction and substance abuse disorders are not racist, they don’t discriminate, but medical doctors, therapists, and policymakers do. (Dr. Holly Sawyer)

Practice harm reduction for all people.

The addiction, race, or gender does not matter when it comes to providing and offering treatment to someone who is seeking recovery.

Useful Links mentioned in this episode:

Check out these additional resources:

Meet Joe Sanok

A photo of Joe Sanok is displayed. Joe, private practice consultant, offers helpful advice for group practice owners to grow their private practice. His therapist podcast, Practice of the Practice, offers this advice.

Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.

Thanks For Listening!

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