How to Level Up Toward The End of Your Career with Ellen Gigliotti | POP 766

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A photo of Ellen J.W. Gigliotti is captured. Ellen J.W. Gigliotti, LMFT, is the clinical director of Sanctuary Christian Counseling in Shippensburg, PA. Ellen J.W. Gigliotti is featured on Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

What do you want the rest of your life to look like? Do you have control over your schedule? How can you create sustainable mindsets and habits to level up your practice?

In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks about how to level up toward the end of your career with Ellen Gigliotti.

Podcast Sponsor: Level Up Week

A photo of the Podcast, Sponsor Level Up Week, is captured. Level Up week sponsors the Practice of the Practice Podcast

You’re probably entering that phase where you start to set yourself up for 2023, you’re thinking about what your goals are gonna be, what you’re not going to do, and what you hope to achieve.

But regardless of where you are within your private practice journey, I’m challenging you to make these last few months count, to dig deep, and to make next year the one for big changes within your business – and more importantly – within yourself.

So if you’ve been looking for a sign to either start your own private practice, grow from solo to group, or become a next-level group practice boss, this is it…and you’re certainly not alone, because Practice of the Practice is doing something we’ve never done before.

We’re so convinced that now is the time for you to grow that we’re dedicating all our resources to help you do it. We’re all in. Every single one of us. And we’re inviting you to go all in and level up.

From September 12 to 15 we’ll be running ‘Level Up’ week to help you decide what will work best for you in your private practice journey. There will be webinars, Q&As with experts, and a chance for you to meet your accountability partners, facilitators, and community.

So if you’re ready to make a change and level up, register at and follow our Facebook and Instagram pages @practiceofthepractice for live updates and event details.

Make September 2022 the month that you start your journey and level up.

Meet Ellen Gigliotti

An image of Ellen Gigliotti is captured. Ellen is the clinical director of Sanctuary Christian Counseling in Shippensburg, PA. Ellen is featured on Practice of the Practice, a therapist podcast.

Ellen J.W. Gigliotti, LMFT, is the clinical director of Sanctuary Christian Counseling in Shippensburg, PA, with more than 15 years of experience. She has an undergraduate degree in psychology, earned her MA in marriage and family therapy from Evangelical Theological Seminary. She has also done postgraduate work in Gottman Method Couples Therapy, EFT, and sexual addiction.

Ellen is a member and clinical supervisor for the American Association of Marriage and Family Therapy, and the American Board of Christian Sex Therapists. Currently, she is awaiting certification from the ABCST and board certification in telemental health.

Visit the Sanctuary Christian Counseling website. Connect with them on Facebook and Pinterest.

Connect with Ellen on Twitter and LinkedIn.

In This Podcast

  • Consider the future
  • Sustainable mindsets
  • Ellen’s advice to private practitioners

Consider the future

For your business – and your personal life – what do you envision for the future? What do you want the rest of your life to look like?

Ask yourself what you love and what you want more of in your daily life, in both business and daily life.

When I started thinking about that, I realized that I could use the Audience Building Academy information and I could build on that for something else, so I started to think about other ways that I could level up. (Ellen Gigliotti)

You do not have to fit into predetermined boxes. You can decide what you want your life to look like, and all you have to do is put in the effort to get it there.

Sustainable mindsets

It’s all good and well to have a goal and a desire to improve and level up your business and personal life, but you need some kind of structure in place that will sustain your success. You need to adapt your mindsets and habits to get you to that new place.

If I don’t get control … of my schedule, I can’t do [the things I want to do]. (Ellen Gigliotti)

Work backward and clean out your calendar. Plug in all the things you want to do in your calendar, then all the things you have to do, and sort out the rest by delegating it, deleting them, or finally doing them to get them done.

If I’m going to do the work that I’m doing, I want to feel rested and rejuvenated and to have new experiences that can inform my clinical work or my consulting work. (Joe Sanok)

Ellen’s advice to private practitioners

This is an incredible field to be in. You are in the privileged and wonderful position to help people heal and resolve powerful emotions, and become better versions of themselves. You can do this, multiply it, and level up.

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!

Feel free to leave a comment below or share this podcast on social media by clicking on one of the social media links below! Alternatively, leave a review on iTunes and subscribe!

Podcast Transcription

[JOE SANOK] This is the Practice of the Practice Podcast with Joe Sanok, session number 766. Well, I’m Joe Sanok, your host, and welcome to the Practice of the Practice podcast. We are here four days a week helping you from that moment you want to start a practice to that moment that you want to add your first clinician, that you grow into being a group practice owner, and even potentially leave your practice and maybe start e-courses or write a book or maybe even retire. We have membership communities and groups from that moment that you want to start to that moment you want to leave all the way through. I’m really excited because throughout the month of August and early September, we’re going to be just doing spotlights on people that have leveled up in a variety of different ways. Some of them have been in our programs, some of them have been in other people’s programs but just to hear a lot of different voices all around how you level up. You’re going to hear a lot about Level Up Week, that’s going to be kicking off on September 12th, and that’s exactly a month from today when this episode goes live. So on the 12th of September, Level Up week kicks off. If you’re on the main page of Practice of the Practice, you’ll see all the call-to-action around Level Up Week registering for the free webinars. We’re going to have probably 15 free webinars that week interviewing people, doing case studies, talking about specific aspects of leveling up. So you’re going to want to join us for that. You can also go to and that will direct you to all the different webinars we have going on today. Well, I am just so excited to have my friend Ellen, you just said your last name, Ellen, I’m going to have you unmute. You said Gigliotti and then I had in my head, Ellen Gillopi, and then you screwed me out. You’ve been on the show a bunch of times. In fact, a month ago, you and your husband Pete, were on it for the How We Got Through It series which was just an amazing interview where you guys talked a lot about just your marriage and health problems and all of that. You’ve been on many times on this show. You’re a friend of our communities and I know that you can laugh with me that I can’t even say your last name correctly when I just asked you it. So, welcome Ellen. [ELLEN] Joe, that’s funny, when I met my husband, I wrote in my diary that I met Pete Gigliotti, and I spelled it completely different than it’s actually spelled, so I totally get it. [JOE] That’s great. I have friends that still say Sanik, like it’s S A N I K and I’ve known them 25 years, and I just stopped correcting them. it is what it is. So, yes, well, Ellen, welcome back to the show. This series, I couldn’t think of a better person to kick this off because you’ve been through Next Level practice. You’ve been through Group Practice Boss, you’re doing Audience Building Academy right now and you’re just killing it. So I want to just start with, you signed up for Audience Building Academy with one direction, and then some things happened. I think what I like about your story is that we’re just going to follow the ups and downs of it and sometimes we have to change course, sometimes we have to think through things differently. We started talking before we started recording, and I was just like, we just, let’s just talk about this on the show. So take us through maybe with Audience Building Academy, the direction you thought you were going, and then some of the stuff that hit the fan and where you’re at now with that [ELLEN] I like the way you put that, Joe. Yes, I was so excited when I saw that you were doing Audience Building Academy, because I have all these ideas, but you get stuck, like when you start to try to level up, you get stuck going, who’s going to buy this stuff? Who’s going to listen to me and who’s going to do that? So when you said Audience Building Academy, I was like, absolutely. That’s exactly what I need. I know that you had done the research and that you knew that there were a lot of us out there that needed that. I entered Audience Building Academy and we were talking before we got on, my husband and I have also been working through Podcast Launch School because we have a podcast that we intend to launch. We’ve actually been talking again about how to re-maneuver it because of what I’m going to say now. So I had pretty much cleared my schedule. I’m a woman of a certain age, and so I had started to clear my schedule so that I could spend some time working on the podcast and on other things, not my group practice and not my personal therapy practice, but just the Audience Building Academy stuff and the Podcast Launch School stuff. [JOE] I want to pause you right there. I like how you parsed that out. I think that’s an important thing that may feel normal for you, but some people listening may not do that, where you said your own personal therapy practice, so the counseling that you’re choosing to do and then your group practice. So even that, you’re pulling that apart and saying they’re almost separate businesses. One is your direct work to make money, and the other is this group practice. I just wanted to stop you there because I think that’s something that a lot of people newer in private practice don’t think through, especially when they jump into a group. [ELLEN] Oh gosh, I think that comes so naturally to me at this point, but it might be because of all the things that I’m thinking through about what I want my future to be and how I’m going to level up. So I absolutely agree with that. I view them very differently, very different. [JOE] So you were looking at your individual therapy work, your group practice work, you’re trying to put some extra time into the Audience Building Academy and what you wanted to create with Pete. Then what happened? [ELLEN] Then I lost a clinician. And we’re not that big a practice and so losing a clinician really meant that I had to pick up the pace a little bit. I had to take some more clients than I intended to. You and I had talked in the past about me wanting to get down to, I actually was down to 10 clients a week. Instead of dropping back down to five, which is my eventual goal I wound up going back up to 20 again. So that really impacted my ability to do the work with Audience Building Academy. It was amazing meeting everybody, doing what I could of the assignments and the the activities but every single time I was going, oh, I wish I had time for this. I wish I had time for this. Then I would think I would have time for it. I would try to carve out time and then something else would happen. That’s what happens to group practice owners if something else happens. But each time I did what I could and what I did is I have copious notes and of course we have, because Practice of the Practice has provided like the videos and the slides and so on. I’ve been able to go back in a couple of cases and pick up some things that I needed to pick up, but it really sidetracked me. Instead of carving out that time to spend with my husband and to be planning the podcast, which is what we’re doing, Audience Building Academy for, I had to work more. That was not the original part of the goal. So now I’m trying to figure back out of all of that now and make some do something different. [JOE] Now, just from a mindset standpoint, I feel like there’s a few different reactions people could have if that happened. One would be to beat yourself up and be dang it all, I wanted to do this, and why didn’t I make time for it? There’s another mindset that might be small steps in the right direction, at least it’s something, I’m sure there’s a lot of other ways people would react. For you, how did you react and how did that way that you reacted help you and how would you maybe change that in the future? [ELLEN] Oh, that’s a good question. So I learned a long time ago that if you’re, and I think maybe I want to say that if you’re a group practice owner, but honestly, it’s probably true if you’re just a therapist in private practice, your email is overflowing with people trying to tell you how to do something. All of those things are good things, but you have to focus on what it is that you’re doing next, learn how to do that and then do that well. So I think when this happened to me, I was like, okay, I’m going to go, I’m going to continue to make the meetings for Audience Building Academy, partly because I loved my small group, I loved all the people, I love all the people in it, and it was such a good cohesive coaching group anyhow. I’m going to make those meetings and I’m going to do what I can, and then I’m going to file it so that I can do it later. Now, as it turns out, I imagine if you run it again, I’ll do it again and this time hopefully I’ll be able to pull back and be able to do it in its entirety and the way that you formulated it. I’d like to do that, but there’s no point beating up on myself. If I beat up on myself for all the things that I couldn’t do or didn’t know how to do or didn’t have time for, I’d be in big trouble think that that’s a lot. [JOE] Well, and I think that that’s what business, is you take steps in the right direction and then there’s things that hit you sideways and you realize, oh, we didn’t have the systems or the structure, whatever and then you just adjust to that. As long as you don’t take it personally, it’s like we’re all building something here and to realize that things are going to go awry and then we’re going to change it and improve. I bought an Airbnb back in April of 2022 and oh my word, so two days before the first renters were coming, I went to go water the landscaping and the previous owners had left the hose plugged into the water spigot all winter long. So I had cracked the inside so the whole time that I was watering it was also flooding the basement apartment. So things happen now we have these warped floors and I can either cancel all these Airbnbs for the summer or these floors that are warped, we just let people know and put carpets over it and say careful of the tripping hazard, let my insurance guy know, hey, do we need extra insurance on the place? Then we get through the season and at the end of the season we’ll rip out the flooring, we’ll put new stuff in. So, yes, I was super off when it happened, but I had to make a choice. Do I just cancel the whole season until I can get new flooring there or reduce the amount of beds or not? That’s just how business is. So I think it’s great, the mindset that you had there. Now when you and Pete are thinking about entering into the podcast, has that changed the direction changed for you or is it more just starting to put time into it? Or how is that process of figuring out what you’re going to spend time building an audience around? How are you guys working through that? [ELLEN] That’s really interesting because, and I bet you other people from Audience Building Academy will say the same thing, I started this thinking, I was doing it for the podcast. And I am doing it for the podcast and we are still intending to do the podcast. We have way so many podcasts planned out and we’ve started to do some of the other things. Our website is actually ready to go live. What’s not quite ready to go live is the podcast, but we’re getting there. So we actually, to say that we have done nothing would not be true. We have done a number of things and we’ve moved forward in some really key ways. We just haven’t moved forward in all of the ways that we need to yet to get the audience that we need. I think what we’re probably going to do is launch maybe and continue to build our audience while we launch, which I guess is the plan anyhow. So we didn’t really change our plans in that regard, but I did start thinking about, I really sat down and started thinking about what, and this is Joe, what we were talking about right before, what do I want the rest of my life to look like? So again, I’m a woman of a certain age. Actually, at Slow Down School I will be 66 years old and I’ve been thinking about how do I want, what do I want to do with that and how do I want to to make the rest of my life look? I certainly am, we therapists, we can do therapy until forever because we can, but that doesn’t mean I want to. So I started thinking about what, I think you handed out something at one point, one of the things was something about what we want, and maybe it’s something for Slow Down School actually, what do we really love and what do we want to do more of? I started thinking, what are my options here? When I started thinking about that, I realized that I could use the Audience Building Academy information and I could build on that for something else. So I started to think about other ways that I could level up courses that we could do. Pete and I had in mind at one point that we might do some marriage coaching around the podcast, that thing. So I started thinking a little bit broader and I don’t have those things teased out. That’s actually something I’ll be talking about in a couple of weeks. [JOE] Well, and I think that that’s really, it’s like Simon Sinek’s Start with Why, your why is, hey, I want to have some time freedom. I want to decide what this part of my life looks like, what this phase of my life looks like to decide, like I look at my parents who are in their seventies and my dad makes sure he golfs every Thursday. He’s right now at, the time of this recording, the league leader so he won’t miss a Thursday even for like a kid’s birthday but it’s like, that’s something he’s decided. He loves golf that much. That’s how Improv is for me on Wednesdays. I think when you start with what do I want to be for myself as a father? Who do I want to be? Who do I want to be as a friend? What do my romantic relationships look like? What does my free time look like? Then what impact do I want to have on the world? It makes it easier to not just fall in that trap of, ooh, I have to fit in this box. Everyone tells me I have to fit in. [ELLEN] Exactly. Exactly. I think you know I just went on a Mediterranean cruise with my best friend and my best friend is not a therapist. She’s a university professor, but she was the head of some departments at her school. When we came back from that, she said, she’s very wise, she should be a therapist maybe, she said, “I forgot how wonderful life could be because I was so lost in the, in the craziness of my job.” I think as a group practice owner, it’s really easy to get lost in, “I have to do this and go do that.” Even if you have a virtual assistant, which I do, you still, there’s a lot to do. I think it’s easy to get lost in that and forget what you want to do. That’s not okay. Specifically at my age, that’s not okay. [LEVEL UP WEEK] I think it’s time that we speak about you and your goals for a minute. Hear me out. For a while now. We’ve been speaking about how to market your practice, how to grow your practice, and how to be a better boss and encourage a company culture. But isn’t it time to start making it happen? I’m serious. I’m challenging you to just do it. Take that leap of faith, put yourself out there and level up in your practice. Think about it. You’re probably entering that phase where you start to set yourself up for 2023. You’re thinking about what your goals are going to be, what you’re not going to do, and what you hope to achieve. But regardless of where you are within your private practice journey, I’m challenging you to make these last few months count, to dig deep, to make next year the one for big changes within your business and more importantly within yourself. So if you’ve been looking for a sign to either start your own private practice, grow from solo to group, or become a next level group practice boss, this is it. You’re certainly not alone, because Practice of the Practice is doing something we’ve never done before. We’re so convinced that now is the time for you to grow, that we’re dedicating all our resources to help you do it. We’re all in every single one of us and we’re inviting you to go all in and level up. From September 12th to September 15th, we’ll be running Level Up Week to help you decide what will work best for you in your private practice journey. There will be webinars, Q&As with experts and a chance for you to meet your accountability partners, facilitators, and community. If you’re ready to make a change and level up, register at and follow our Facebook and Instagram pages at Practice of the Practice for live updates and event details. Lastly, before I jump back into this episode, I just want to say that I really hope to see you there, even if it’s just online. Remember that leveling up week isn’t about us. It’s not about me or about Practice of the Practice. It’s all about you and growing your practice, whether it be your first solo practice or growing you from group practice boss to reaching a national audience. Make September, 2022, the month that you start your journey and level up. [JOE SANOK] I want to dig in even more to that idea of how you’re going to spend your time right now. What other either exercises or mindsets or journaling or habits is helping you sort out how you want your career to look? [ELLEN] Oh, that’s a really good one. So I have been meeting with someone, another therapist in my practice, my clinical director. She’s an amazing therapist. She’s the best therapist. I know that’s not me. That was a little bit of lack of humility there. [JOE] No, I love it. [ELLEN] Anyhow, she’s a fantastic therapist and she has really been helpful at saying some things to me that have really helped me to understand my own mindset around having a hard time backing out of seeing clients. She’s been helpful for that. I think talking to people is always good for me and bouncing ideas off people. My husband and I took a Saturday actually, this past Saturday and it was specifically involving our travel schedule because we’re both like, like I said, getting up there. So we wanted to think about where do we want to go and when do we want to go there? He, in particular, because I’m the big travel arranger, he was like, I’m so confused about where we’re going and when. So we got these big post-it notes, the ones that you can buy at Staples and so on that you put on the wall. We had these big post-it notes for every year for the next five years. The first thing we did was put up, these are the travel places we want to go in this year. Then we put up, these are the other dates that we know this year, things that we’re involved in that we know have standing dates. Then we put up goals for the year. When we started to do that, I realized if I don’t get control, and I was talking this over with my husband, if I don’t get control of my schedule, I can’t do these things. I can’t be gone for a four-week vacation if I’m still seeing clients or maybe I could get away with one a year, but if I think it’s 2023, we’re planning three, four-week vacations, I probably can’t get away with that and still see a whole lot of clients. Virtual only, so I can see one or two clients from wherever I am in the world. But still, all those things, just talking to bouncing ideas off people and helping them to see me through their eyes and the things that I do or don’t do or how I can maneuver or level up, that’s really been helpful for ME [JOE] I love the practical giant post-it note idea. Sometimes just having that visual, like we have a huge, one of those huge family calendars and I don’t need it because I’m not going to lose my phone and all my calendar stuff’s there, but for my girls to see what’s coming up, what camps do we have. Like just this morning one of my kids had a biking camp that went from 9:00 AM until 1:00 PM and then the other one had a sailing camp from 12:45 until 4:00 PM. So there’s like some overlap there and just to talk through and look at the calendar and know here’s what we’re doing. Or even with our goals I think that that’s great. So how does that impact the way that you live your life, either on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis? [ELLEN] Woo, Joe, you’re the king of the great question? [JOE] Maybe I should go back to being a therapist. [ELLEN] Maybe you should, right? No, I know that you don’t want to go back to that right now, but I think that, so I’m trying not to mention other things, but I bought a calendar system at the, around the first of this year actually, because my to-do list was out of control. I often do therapy with other therapists and I love doing that. That’s actually something I thought maybe I would specialize in, but I don’t think it’s actually going to go that way. But still, I love doing that. I was talking to another therapist this week and she was like, “Tell me about your calendar.” But the calendar system that I use now, and it’s a paper calendar because my standard joke about that is one time I lost, my iPad crashed and my calendar was in it and I had to call every single client and ask them when they were coming to see me. That was so stressful. I was like, paper calendars from now on. So I keep this paper calendar and it does a pretty extensive weekly recap and thinking about where you want to go in the current week. Then it does, these are the three goals that I have for every day in that week. That has really helped me because when I don’t, when I use it appropriately, now, of course with anything you have to be disciplined to actually use it, but when I use it appropriately, then I take the goals that I have overall for the year, because it also has a way to manage those and then I break them down into little pieces and that’s really wonderful. It makes it sound better than I actually do though. I know what I’m supposed to do. Doing it and actually having the discipline to sit down and do it every week and just transposing those goals repeatedly, the travel gets done, Joe. [JOE] Yes, well, I mean, I think that’s so true. I’ve taken this posture of if anyone asks me to go to a music concert, as long as it’s safe with Covid and all of that, or as safe as we can be I’m going to say yes. So a friend of mine just like a month ago said, “Do you want to go to Iron Maiden?” I’ve never heard, even listened to Iron Maiden, but I’m like, it’s probably going to be a crazy show. Then two days later, a friend of mine said, “This band Death Cab for Cuties playing at the same location.” So it’s like to just put these things in. And that’s six months from now, just get it in the calendar and remember to live life. That then allows you when you’re doing your work, I think to show up differently. I think obviously it’s from a position of privilege and all those things, but to be able to say, if I’m going to do the work I’m doing, I want to feel rested and rejuvenated and to have new experiences that can inform my clinical work or my consulting work. Because to me, by going to Iron Maiden and putting myself in a very uncomfortable situation, even though I know it’s going to be fun, it’s probably going to make its way into the podcast. It’s going to make its way into some teaching or maybe it won’t, who knows? I’m not going to Iron Maiden just to like have teaching moments for the podcast. [ELLEN] I think that’s funny. I’ve heard of Iron Maiden. I do like Death Cab for Cuties though, Cutie though. That’s fun. So I think you’ll have a good time. [JOE] Yes, yes. Well, so when you think about other adjustments that you’re hoping to make with, and I would actually say your business is because I like how you parse that out with the individual, the group, and then your audience building stuff, when you think about just where you’re headed and how you’re thinking through that, what else are you thinking through in regards to how you level up? [ELLEN] So I think that, what I’ve done repeatedly in the past was to look at each individual entity and then say, what are my goals, I’ve done this every year, what are my goals for the year for this entity? And can I break those down? I think as I look at leveling up, I’m not, well, see, you’re getting me a little ahead of myself because one of the things that I want to parse out with the Audience Building Academy people is that I think I have four ways to go. Besides doing the podcast and besides continuing to own the group practice, just not practice as a therapist as much anyhow, I have a couple of different ways to go. So it’s been hard to tease out are these things worth it. Some of the, some of the options would be very easy, like, let’s do an e-course, or let’s write a, I know this again, I’m again operating from a position of privilege, I understand because I have a journalism background as well, but writing an e-Book is really easy for me. I have 150 some blogs on our website that I can, they’re not all about marriage, but I could probably write a marriage e-Book pretty quickly just using blogs as articles. I could do something like that. There’s a lot of different options on the plate and that’s the problem is because there’s so many things that you could do, what really excites me. So I’m still parsing that out and what I’m doing is I’m trying to do, I often tell clients to do this as well. For each item I’m doing a pro and con. So a pro would be, so one of the items on my list that I have to decide about would be to, I could continue to see about five clients a week. What’s the proof that? What’s the con of that? Then when you actually write that down or electronically write it down, depending on, sometimes it seems like things become clearer, so I’m in the process of doing that, if that makes sense. [JOE] Yes, absolutely. So I’m really excited to hear about after Slow Down School, even though this is coming out after Slow Down School, we’re doing this recording before, what’s your general guess on the direction of things with you and Pete? Like you said, there’s all these other options. Do you feel like you’re headed towards the podcast? Do you, are there any things that you want to make sure listeners know about or is it better to wait six months when you’re ready to launch it to talk more about it? [ELLEN] We are absolutely doing the podcast. There’s no question in my mind about that. So we absolutely are planning to do that. I think that, and this is going to, again, from a place of privilege, we have planned quite a bit of moving around, quite a bit of travel in August and in October so I think that we, and we don’t really want to launch at Christmas time, so I’m thinking that we’re going to launch in the beginning of January, which is maybe a little cliché but I think that it works for our schedule. We might do something different. That’s actually something I’ll ask you about at Slow Down School. But in any case, we are absolutely going to launch the Two to Talk, that’s on Life’s Journey podcast. We’re absolutely going to do that. I think some of the other things, and I’m absolutely have a firm step back date from my personal therapy practice, I think I will still see five clients, but that will be it. Maybe that will last for a year or two after that but that also is firm. Some of the other options on the plate, and you’re right, this is coming out after Slow Down School, but some of those options I really want to tease out at Slow Down School because I feel like some of them are going to be a lot of work and I don’t know if I want to do the work right now. [JOE] Yes, well, I think it’s so important to just think through what do you really want? I mean, this is really top of mind right now. This was something that I’m about to share that I didn’t share with you but my ex’s father, he just passed away this past weekend. My girl’s grandfather passed away. So we’re dealing with all the reminders of grief and death and the shortness of life. It was pneumonia that was induced by Covid and so just to realize my seven-year-old was doing swim lessons with him and she’s like, I don’t get to finish swim lessons and to just say, there’s so many things in life that we say someday I’ll do this. It’s so cliché, but it’s also so true where that idea of yes, do things with your parents if they’re still around, do things with your kids or your grandkids or your friends or for yourself. It’s just so top of mind. Even yesterday as I was falling asleep, I was just thinking about all the things that feel so important with Practice of the Practice and that feel so pressing and to be like, if I died, they would just be done. Or maybe there’d be things that would continue, I would hope, but my role in them would just come to an abrupt end. So to just realize, okay, like there is a finite amount of time that I have and that’s just top of mind for our family right now. [ELLEN] I can imagine that it is. I’m so sorry that that happened. This has just been a really rough time for an awful lot of people with Covid and that thing, and I know it’s just really hits your heart because of your daughters. [JOE] Yes. [ELLEN] That’s awful. I’m so sorry. [JOE] Oh, thank you Ellen. Sorry I didn’t prep you for that. It came to mind as we were talking that it just feels like it’s applicable to just this idea that we’re going to level up in a way that feels authentic to how we want to live our lives and what we feel is best for the people around us. [ELLEN] Exactly. I think that’s very important and I do think it’s topical to this because I would be thinking differently if I was 46. I would absolutely be thinking differently. I have often thought, and I have often said to other group practice owners, if I were your age, this is what I would do, but I’m not your age. So this, I mean, I’ve had another whole career, so this is not what I would do. But there is a difference there and there is also a obviously again, coming from a place of privilege of being able to look at even retirement. I know there’s many people who can’t do that, but there’s also a little bit of what do I want that to look like? How do I want the rest of my life to look? I don’t know how long that is or long or short that is. So that’s an important consideration, I think. [JOE] Before we get to the last question I ask, I would love to hear a couple of the things that if you were earlier in your career that you would focus on that maybe now, you’re not focusing on as much. [ELLEN] Oh man, that is completely — [JOE] I know that’s an episode in and of itself, but what’s a handful of them? [ELLEN] Okay, I’ll tell you the very first thing that I would do if I was not at the end of my career. I’m operating an independent contractor private practice. I would change it to W2. I know that that can be done even now. I just simply don’t want to do that work right now. It works beautifully. I have the best therapists in our area by far working for me. They’re just all phenomenal, wonderful people and they’re all happy with what we have. But I think I would be able to expand more if I did that and provide some different things. That’s one thing that I would do if I were younger. I think if I were younger, I would have already expanded to towns around myself. I might run into Allison that way because we’re geographically pretty close but there are a couple of towns in our area that are very underserved in terms of therapy and there’s some really, I think there’s some really good opportunity there. But again, that’s a lot of work to start another second site or a third site or whatever. That’s a lot of work. That’s something I would do differently. The biggest thing I would do differently is I would probably go back and get a psychology degree so I could be under that CYPAC so that I could actually do therapy across the United States. That would be amazing. [JOE] Some great tips there. Well, Ellen, you’ve answered this question before, but you’re going to get to do it again. If every private practitioner in the world were listening right now, what would you want them to know? [ELLEN] I think I would want them to know that this is the most amazing field, that you get the opportunity here to speak into people’s lives, to hold space for some really profound emotions and to just love and care for people. There’s so few people out there doing that. When you can do that and multiply it, because then you’re a group practice owner and then maybe even level up in some important ways, doing e-courses or taking Audience Building Academy, taking Podcast Launch School, joining Group Practice Boss, learning how to do it well, I think it’s just an amazing life and I would just encourage you, I know there are days where it’s really discouraging, but looking at it from the end of a long time of doing it’s just been really phenomenal to think of the impact that what we do can have on people. The more people that you can get coming around you doing that, the better off everybody is, I think, if that makes sense. [JOE] That’s amazing. If people want to follow your work, if they want to learn more about your counseling practice or what you and Pete are creating where are the best places to send them? [ELLEN] That would be great. is my practice website and they can find out more information about me there. Pete and I, our website is, So it’s t-w-o t-o We will be up with that podcast on January one, if not before. [JOE] So, Awesome. Well, Ellen Gigliotti, thank you so much for being on the Practice of the Practice podcast. [ELLEN] You got my name right? Thank you, Joe. [JOE] I did, I was thinking about it the whole time. I’m like, you can do this, Joe. I believe in you. Good self-talk. Awesome. I did it. I have Ellen’s affirmation. Well, thank you for being on the podcast and I’ll see you at Slow Down School. [ELLEN] Thank you, Joe. [JOE] It’s always so fun to hang out with Ellen and to just feed off her energy and all the cool things that she’s doing. I hope you’re inspired. We’re doing all sorts of interviews with people that have leveled up in a variety of different ways and it’s just amazing how many cool people both within our communities, but outside of it that we’re finding that just have cool stories of how they went from starting to really growing, to really scaling. It happens in a lot of different ways. Sometimes people think it always has to be a solo practice then a group practice and then e-courses, but as I interview people, there are so many different paths and I think that’s the great thing that Ellen really pointed to, is figuring out what is it that you want? What does it look like for you? So even as Ellen and Pete start their podcast who knows what formats they decide really fit for them and their personalities? When John Lee Dumas launched Entrepreneurs On Fire there was nobody doing a daily business podcast. He owned that space by creating a totally new genre. So you can come up with what for you fits. Even if we teach one thing in Audience Building Academy, it’s a basic format that then you can try in other areas. So thank you so much for hanging out with us today. We hope that you’ll join us for Level Up Week. Level Up Week kicks off on September 12th and it’s going to be going all week long. We’re going to have a ton of webinars around starting, growing, scaling, and exiting your private practice. We’re going to be talking to people about what works, doing some Q&As and really helping you get to the next level as much as possible. Thank you so much for letting me into your ears and into your brain. Have a great day. I’ll talk to you soon. Special thanks to the band Silence is Sexy for that intro music, and this podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is given with the understanding that neither the host, the producers, the publishers or guests are rendering legal, accounting, clinical, or other professional information. If you want a professional, you should find one.