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Name: Dayna Wood (Integrative Counsel)

Posted By Keara McGraw

Says Dayna Wood: "I earned my Masters of Education and an Education Specialist degree with a concentration in Mental Health Counseling. I hold a Certificate in Creative Arts Therapies from the New School in NYC and am a Registered Expressive Arts Therapist (REAT). As a licensed psychotherapist in New York and Florida, I have worked in several different industries including not-for-profit, healthcare, and entrepreneurial. Importantly, I’m an enduring student of the arts – dancing flamenco, playing with my Leica camera, and devoted newbie to martial arts. I continuously find the creative process to be profoundly humbling and edifying."

Years in Tampa Bay


Hustle (job)

Founder of Integrative Counsel (Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Registered Expressive Arts Therapist)

What do you do?  

At Integrative Counsel, we offer an eclectic style of counseling that integrates the mind, body, and spirit. Our “special sauce” is a unique blend of creativity, evidence-based modalities, and a synthesis of Eastern/Western philosophy. Furthermore, Integrative Counsel values making mental wellness accessible regardless of where someone is in their journey towards Self (with a capital S, a term coined by Jung signifying the unification/integration of the psyche as a whole). We, therefore, know the importance of multiple-entry points for care – from relatable and relevant articles, free resources, affordable workbooks and workshops to in-depth courses, retreats, quality one-to-one counseling, hybrid coaching and business consulting. 

Why do you do it?

Our sights are set on making mental wellness accessible and as commonplace and necessary as flossing – through a variety of creative means. We understand that mental health is more than just its symptoms. At Integrative Counsel, we focus on the meaning and growth gained from our journey toward wellness.

What was your Catalyst? (How did you get started?)

Learning the business side of therapy was an enormous learning curve (none of which was taught in graduate school!). And, all of these were put to the ultimate test when I transitioned from a solo practice to a group practice (three weeks before the pandemic hit). I often wondered if I had made the right decision and if I could endure. Hundreds of thousands of details for which you can never be fully prepared when taking on the responsibility of bringing additional people onto your team. I am thoughtful and wanted to “do it right,” but I quickly learned I had to make many initial mistakes in order to learn to do them differently. As they say in Silicon Valley, fail fast, fail often. 

What’s a common misconception or unknown aspect of what you do?

I’m not entirely sure … However, one misconception about therapists is that we are “analyzing” someone when we first meet them. This is not true. We are taught, though, and practice every day to truly listen, which means remaining curious and interested in authentically hearing another. Therefore, very often, someone in a grocery store line ends up telling us about their life story and they don’t quite understand why. The power of listening! 

What’s the most challenging part of your Hustle?

We, the team at Integrative Counsel, pride ourselves that one of our primary company values is creativity. However, at the core, this means multiple iterations – prototyping, testing, analyzing, and refining novel ways to best meet our clients and customers where they are in their wellness journey. And, as a leader, this means I’m continually humbled in this creative cycle.

What’s the most valuable piece of business advice/insight that’s helped you?

Iterate, iterate, iterate. “Mistakes” are a core component of the creative process.

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