Tuesday, October 27, 2015

We Moved!!

For now, our blog "The Good Brain" is now directly connected to our website. It's growing nicely there with all kinds of entries on . Please stop by often:

Thursday, February 12, 2015

We're Now Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois Providers!

Have you  been putting off counseling, psychotherapy or neurofeedback because you thought you couldn't afford it? In an effort to help you Reach Your Peak in work and life, we have become in-network providers for the following Blue Cross Blue Shield PPO plans:

Blue Choice PPOSM
Blue Choice Bronze PPOSM
Blue Choice Silver PPOSM
Blue Choice Gold PPOSM
Participating Provider Organization
Blue PPO BronzeSM
Blue PPO SilverSM
Blue PPO GoldSM
Blue PPO PlatinumSM
Blue Security PPOSM
Blue Cross Blue Shield Basic, a Multi-State PlanSM
Blue Cross Blue Shield Solution, a Multi-State PlanSM
Blue Cross Blue Shield Premier, a Multi-State PlanSM

Every insurance policy is different so check yours, or ask us and we will help. We look forward to working with you. Call us at (312 925-5176)
Kind regards,

Monday, January 12, 2015

Shonda, the Merediths and You...

What do Meredith Grey, Olivia Pope and Annalise Keating have in common?
If you watch even a shred of television you know these are characters created by Shonda Rhimes, and each stars in her own dramatic TV series. If you watch Grey’s Anatomy, Scandal and How to Get Away with Murder, you are bound to have become fascinated by one of them.

They are people who confront life in different worlds but with the same magnetic quality. As millions tune into the TGIT season beginning January 24th, I ask: Why are we so attracted to these women? What makes them like friends or mentors, people we want to have in our lives? 
Says one student of law professor Annalise Keating: “I want to BE her.”
In a recent interview with ABC’s Robin Roberts, Shonda Rhimes and the actors who play these roles talked about the new season. Roberts asked about the writing and how it would play in these juicy roles.

Scandal star Kerry Washington (Olivia Pope) made a point that’s stuck in my head for days now. She said, Shonda doesn’t write our characters from the outside in, how they look to others. Instead, she writes from the inside -- the essence, the guts. She writes from knowing their soul.
That nailed it.
You see their confusion and pain, their vulnerability and strength, yes, the strength of these women. They’ve become real people to us with real lives filled with uncommon courage. They live close to the bone; they go after what they want; they make mistakes, own and fix them, then pursue the next thing. We connect with that realness and want it for ourselves.
As a coach and a psychotherapist, I find that to be inspiring – for my clients and myself.
Can we be compelling characters in our own lives? Can we embrace the truest sense of ourselves, the raw essence of who we are? Can we use that as the main vehicle to create the stories that comprise our lives? Can we be our own heroes – on the good days and bad? We must!

The Raw Truth

A couple years ago I was at home sick with the flu and my husband brought me the ultimate consolation – DVDs with a few seasons Grey’s Anatomy. Dopey on the couch, I watched them for days. Episode after episode, seeing some more than once, I studied Meredith Grey’s communications. One thing stuck out to someone as polite as I: She told off her snappy friend, Dr. Cristina Yang, on a regular basis. She did it with a kind little smile but with the bluntest messages possible: “You’re acting like a bitch, Cristina.” The rawest truths made it all the richer.
Can we create that richness and honesty for ourselves and each other? Can we lead lives that are direct, skillful and from the soul?

The New Year is about you!

Some people don’t trust or like New Year’s resolutions or goals. They think they are hokey. I agree that making the same resolutions over and over makes no sense. Who hasn’t failed at the  I want to exercise more and lose five pounds game?
The concept of new beginnings and having a calendar marker can be beneficial though. What are we doing otherwise? Just running in circles?
That’s why every year in my counseling practice I try to offer people the opportunity to reflect on their lives and move forward.
This year’s theme is Move on, move up. 
 I take people out of their lives for a day, cocoon them together in a comfy place and ask questions about where they are, where they want to be and how they will get there.
Moving On, Moving Up
Many of the clients, former clients, friends and colleagues who do it, love it by the end of the day. They leave with a one-page summary to guide their upcoming year.

We offer this program in mid-January since that’s when the traditional resolutions have faded and people finally have the head space to reflect.
Many come back the next year and share their results. We have lots of testimonials. A benefit for me is that I have to go through the exercises myself before facilitating the group.

Moving On Moving Up

Our Best Year Yet program is Saturday, January 17th.  Moving On, Moving Up in honor of this lovely, little fish. We still have room and would love to have you join us.
With new beginnings in mind, one of mine is to speak with you on this blog.
I’m dipping my toes into the blogging world where I’ll share stories, insights and new ways of looking at life. I may ask questions, cause you to reflect or challenge you to think about your life – much as I do my own. And, of course, I’ll welcome your feedback.
I’ll close with one of my favorite topics, peak performance.


The Other Meredith

Meredith Dincolo   Photo: Jason Birnholz
Peak Performance: What is it and how is it achieved and sustained?

That will be a recurring topic here as it’s a passion for me. I’ll soon tell you about another Meredith, Meredith Dincolo who danced at the elite level for 14 years with Chicago’s renowned Hubbard Street Dance Company.
It’s a fascinating story… stay tuned.


Friday, June 20, 2014

Are We There Yet?!.. The Clarification and Questions

The Clarification

Working on a website is a demanding yet clarifying experience. The project is a journey that lasts for weeks and weeks and hangs heavy. It presses you to answer hard questions like:
Photo: Jason Cordell

  • What do I really do? 
  • What do I love, believe in and value?
  • What am I good at? My "genius?" 
  • What do people say about my work?
Looking back, the  process really wasn't easy but was helpful. And maybe we all should ask ourselves these questions from time to time. 

Here are some insights I gained, followed by some questions for you that could help us both:
  • First, my work doesn't easily summarize into a few simple buzz words. The core of it involves developing partnerships with people. Each has unique strengths, weaknesses and goals. We collaborate to create results. And, oh, I do love results.

  • Second, I enjoy finding tools and technologies to improve life. My father was a self-taught electronics hobbyist. As you'll read in my story, neurofeedback has played an important role in my life and work.  Even before that, I always loved testing, finding numbers to measure and plotting elusive things like personality, behavioral and leadership style. My husband's nickname for me is MacGyver which some days I don't feel like I deserve but do consider the ultimate compliment. 

  • Third, I love being of trusted counsel to others. I am most touched when people say things like I can share things with you I would never tell anyone else, you really listen and give honest feedback in ways I can hear it. That's at the essence of what I value and believe helpful. It's an honor and what I love most about being a coach and therapist.

  • Lastly, I have a talent for attracting amazing people into my life --- professionally and personally. Lisa Files, web designer, is at the top of my list.  I am grateful for her kindness, patience and artistic and technical expertise in taking my thoughts and partnering on this lovely site. Lisa's family is deeply rooted in creative arts and it shows here. Thank you Lisa!