BY SHELTON HENRY | STAFF WRITER
BLKPRENEURSHIP THE MAG | 11/07/2022
The Washington Wellness Institute (WWI) is an institute based in Cleveland, Ohio and is founded by the namesake licensed psychologist William Washington. He is becoming an expert on Moral Distress. William Washington is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Clinical Hypnotherapist, collegiate level adjunct faculty, and a counseling mentor. He graduated from John Carroll University with a Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and is working to obtain his Ph.D. in Health and Psychology at Walden University. He is becoming an expert on Moral Distress. William has more than 5 years of experience under his belt partnering with residential facilities, homeless shelters, family restorations, interventions, and community-based services.
WWI’s approach to counseling is purely philosophical and innovative. They find the chance to know each client as individuals by using a lens that sees them in “80 different ways”. When William’s with a client, he works on creating a safe, therapeutic environment as it relates to them through his many types of therapy. These options include Internal Family Systems, Virtual Reality Therapy, Restorative Enhancement Management (REM), and MDMA-assisted therapy. WWI prefers their clients to choose the healthier option rather than their best one. They help to not only start their road to recovery, but to put them on a journey to live through their healing as well.
In 2018, William Washington was able to see the state of mental health and how it managed to decline within a decade. “You always tend to see people sitting in a chair as they attempt to have their patient pour their heart out for hours. I want it to be more than that. There’s more to therapy than just sitting in a chair in a room.” He says. As a part of his mission, William Washington created WWI as the result of the large amount of mental decline taking place within the community of Ohio, especially for the African American community. The Institute aims on expanding the scope of therapy that will bring impact to the state of Ohio for years to come. WWI collectively wants to provide holistic healing that can be reciprocated through education and application to every customer that he serves, especially as it relates to the African American community, bringing about a new age of mental wellness. William stated, “The bronze age of modern mental health is upon us, and I want to make sure that what I give back to this world is durable and accessible.”
William Washington always sets monthly goals for his business that focuses on clinician-centered care to make sure that his company is healthy. For example, one of the goals that he recently has is to integrate his therapeutic practices into the schools of Cleveland in order to break generational burdens. They believe that the only way to do so is to modernize medicine and mental health for every person that they help. In his own words, “Mental health in general is extremely outdated. People need to look at mental health with even fresher eyes, because my institute will provide revolutionary ways of treating clients with many different diagnoses such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, and more. Mental health support will never be the same once we understand the value of holistic care and legacy burdens.”
William Washington’s company offers extensive therapy services. One of WWI’s many specialties is the way they think outside of the box with their therapy options with their vast amount of services. His clinical team is able to understand the modern psychological approaches in effect today, and that they need modernized solutions to overcome hurdles in therapy. Each service they provide can potentially overlap with each other depending on the client (For example, if the client needs Holistic and Couples Therapy, WWI focuses on providing that. They help customize each client’s overall therapeutic experience). This manner of suitability helps tackle each client’s needs as they see fit. For WWI, the customers that William and his team serve are at the forefront of focus, and the more stories that the client tells, the better their journey will be. “We do not care how good, bad, right, or wrong it may seem. You are here, you matter, and there is a goal for a better self.”
WWI has a variety of diverse care services that they offer depending on the needs of their client, with people ranging from Veterans, LGBTQIA+, CEOs, athletes, fast-food industries, high schoolers, ex-convicts, and other fellow clinicians. They believe that each client holds a story of where they came from, and how said client got to where they are today, and the organization works on helping those types of people overcome the struggles that life tends to offer in order to become a better version of themselves. To better understand the services that the organization offers to each client, WWI asks them these types of questions:
- Have you been adjusting to a new way of life?
- Is what you used to do to get happier not working as well?
- Are you unsure if this really is worth your money?
- Are you trying to break a mold?
- Do you just want to talk and not be judged?
- Is being obligated hurting your ability to be who you need to be for yourself?
- Are you a professional dealing with unprofessional situations?
- Are you a survivor?
- Are you a clinician that needs a pulse check to make sure you aren’t “tripping?”
One of the many unique services that WWI offers are Virtual Reality Therapy (VRT). This type of therapy includes the utilization of computerized systems in an attempt to mirror reality that can be both immersive and interactive. WWI focuses their VRT through meditation, and they’re able to teach the basics in order for their clients to do it on their own. It is proven to help their clients overcome PTSD and many other mental health issues including phobias, anxiety, and depression.
WWI is also very active in the community as well. They provide keynote speakers to create workshops, speak on behalf of companies and communities, and give back through their services in order to make an everlasting impact in Cleveland. William believes that impacting each person in the community at a time can help break the generational burdens that arise. To promote this line of thought, education for his company is the key to bringing a steady, yet potent change to their community.
They are also staunch believers in Hypnotherapy. Hypnotherapy is heart-centered therapy that is also a form of meditation, but it allows his clients to manifest their own spiritual healing into existence. These forms of therapy helps not only to create healthy affirmations, but establish these affirmations that relieves negative cognitions. This type of therapy is one of the staples of the business, as this therapy technique is greatly well-received to deal with depression, anxiety, and other severe mental health issues.
In addition, they offer three different types of typical therapy sessions: Group Therapy, Family Support Intervention, and Couples Counseling. Group Therapy is great for people who are entrepreneurs, clinicians, or any other working individual that needs to vent their frustrations out, especially when they have to be professional during certain situations. This is the typical “sit in a chair” therapy that the institute provides in order to offer a free, safe and confidential space to air their client’s thoughts out.
Family Support Interventions are a type of therapy that the organization provides which helps gather families together and discuss family traditions that can break their generational curses or address issues that fundamentally changes families for long periods of time. Interventions for most family and friends are great starts in creating healthy traditions for the families involved. Lastly, WWI offers Couples Counseling, which as the name implies, gives relational counseling for couples struggling with the usual complications of being in a relationship, whether they’re married or not. Their vast array of services allows them to adapt to each person’s individual needs, no matter how big or small they may seem. This type of flexibility is what helps their business stand out compared to other mental health facilities as a whole.
With each client, WWI focuses heavily on a term called Lifestyle Management, which is a mental health resource center designed to be the ultimate toolbox of producing wellness. They use what is called the “Wellness Wheel” that offers a framework for several areas of wellness: Mental and Emotional, Educational, Social, Financial/Occupational, Family, Spiritual, Physical and Environmental. Each of these areas of wellness are centered under an umbrella they call modalities. This is how WWI looks at each client in “80 different ways”. William has created his own way to integrate this holistic approach.
Mental & Emotional
““What kind of mental health symptoms are you dealing with due to your lifestyle?” This type of modality mainly aims at providing emotional support to the client that this modality applies to.
Social modality looks into the chemistry of companies that clients are aligned to and how one may value their impacts they may have into their lives. Usually, the therapists at WWI ask: “Are you creating meaningful and healthy relationships?”
The family modality mostly veers in on how the factor of genetics affect the course of many of their clients’ health, especially based on the story each client tells to them. “How does your familial knowledge affect your self-worth?” Family culture can be the main catalyst for many of people’s current mental health struggles.
The physical modality is not necessarily geared towards physical activity, but nutrition, cognitive health, and the overall knowledge of one’s body. WWI usually asks: “How knowledgeable are you about your body? Are you connected to other people that manage your overall mental wellness?”
The educational modality is the overall process of how, what and why their clients learn. Self-improvement is an important key aspect that can’t take place without a hint of self-awareness, knowledge and/or education. They usually ask their clients: “How much work do you put into your self-learning?”
The financial modality is about the financial stability that each client holds; This focuses on each client’s career/job satisfaction and measures their investment into their mental health as far as their wealth. “How is your career and financial obligations supportive?”
The spiritual modality stems not only from religious affiliations, but how these powerful conversations show meaning and purpose for each individual’s life. For WWI, this is an essential subject they focus on because the best change is made by complete understanding of the human and moral compass. “Do you create meaning out of the things you do?”
The environmental aspect of modality is the root of how each individual defines oneself. “Are you surrounding yourself with people who are nutritious for your self-esteem?” In most of WWI’s client cases, it’s not who they are, it’s where they are.
WWI is a uniquely curated company that makes a vast impact in the city of Cleveland and continues to do so to this day. WWI proves such success through its various accolades through 2020 and onward. William won “Best Therapist in Cleveland, Ohio” in 2020 by Onlinetherapist.com, William won “Best Therapist in Cleveland, Ohio” in 2020 by Onlinetherapist.com, and is currently in works to be a part of Cleveland Metropolitan’s School Districts future in mental health. He was also a keynote speaker for Cleveland School of the Arts in 2022, giving inspiration to the future of our country. William Washington himself attributes his success as being able to create a company that encompasses all of the values he sees in what makes a successful person healthy. “Everything that I wished to do in society: healing, impact and art, culminated into my business all in one; This company is an embodiment of me, and healing is my art. I will change the world.”
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