Combining family therapy and nutrition health

 

Last updated 8/9/2022 at Noon

Justin Little has returned to Sisters with his family to open a new practice that combines marital and family therapy with nutrition. PHOTO PROVIDED

Justin Little is no stranger to Sisters. He grew up here and has fond memories of a childhood full of outdoor adventures, music, and family. He and his wife and their four young children recently relocated from Southern California to give their children the same excellent education and childhood he received in Sisters Country.

Little left Sisters High School in 2002 to attend Azusa Pacific University. After graduation he spent time teaching music lessons that always seemed to be about more than just playing guitar and singing.

“Writing songs is so expressive and therapeutic in itself,” he said.

His proclivity for teaching and reaching his students, along with encouragement from friends who were marriage and family therapists, led him to pursue a master’s degree in marital and family therapy from Fuller School of Psychology.

He attributes his passion for music to teachers Jody Henderson and Brad Tisdel.

“I have a deep love of music. My family plays music together and I’m still writing songs and recording on my own. My senior year was the first year of the Americana Project. I loved playing guitar and recording together in a studio. We were the guinea pigs that first year,” he said. “We recorded the first Americana album and I still have it.”

Choosing therapy as a profession came from personal experience. His decision to combine marriage and family therapy and integrative nutrition health coaching was sparked by his own health challenges.

“Gut health, mental health, nervous system, and nutrition are all connected,” he said. “Stress and inflammation show up in each of these areas. When those connections are overlooked, you can get stuck with temporary fixes and a lifetime dependency on counseling. Ten years ago, for example, we didn’t know serotonin is produced in the gut. There is so much our bodies can do to heal when given the chance.”

This fall, Forage Wellness Collective will be offering therapy groups in addition to individual and family therapy both in-person and via telehealth. All of the fall groups will be held via telehealth and will run for eight weeks. Topics include an introduction to mindfulness for new clients; couples’ mindfulness; parenting skills focused on children from 2 to 8 years old; an adult ADHD support group; sessions on forgiveness work; and sessions specifically for those who identify as Christian who want to learn about mental health and engage in spiritual practices to improve mental health and relationships.

Little is touring offices in Sisters and will eventually have an office in town. Once he’s chosen a location, he’ll let people know via ads in The Nugget.

When Little works with clients, he looks at their whole wellness journey.

“It’s not just what’s going on in the mind but also your posture, gut health, sleep, hydration, relationships — the whole person. With modern western therapy many practitioners separate mental health from physical health. Everything is so siloed and focused on one aspect of the person. There are connections between with nutrition, movement mental health, and joy,” he said.

Life has been hectic as Little and his family shift into life in Sisters. With four young children, they’re busy enjoying all that Sisters has to offer. Little is also looking forward to having an office again and moving out of the closet he’s using as an office.

“It’s been our goal to move to Sisters for so long,” Little said. “My wife fell in love with Sisters when we would come back here for vacations. It’s good to finally be home.”

Little is looking forward to stewarding clients, both current and new, on their wellness journeys. For more information about Forage Wellness Collective, visit www.foragewc.com or call his office at 541-640-9310, or email [email protected]

 

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