“Today we’d like to introduce you to Joyce Marter.
Joyce, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My world opened up when I moved to the Chicago area in 1994 when I began the Masters in Counseling Program at Northwestern University. I found a community of people who cared about the deeper things in life–how our families and earlier experiences shape and mold us into who we are, how we unconsciously recreate what is familiar until we choose something better, and how we are all emotionally/relationally/spiritually connected to one another and the world around us.
My work as a psychotherapist has been meaningful, dynamic and rewarding on every level. After working in addictions and for a national Employee Assistance Program, I started my own private practice, providing therapy for individuals and couples. I saw the need for an insurance-friendly practice and founded Urban Balance, which today has over 100 therapists working from nine locations (four in Chicago, four in the Chicago suburbs, and one in St. Louis.) I was honored to be selected Distinguished Alumni of the Year in 2008 by The Family Institute at Northwestern University and by Crain’s Chicago Business for their “40 Under 40” List of 2010.
It has been amazing to provide work/life balance for therapists who want to do great clinical work, but don’t want the hassle of managing their own practice. It has been powerfully rewarding to be the founder of an organization that has touched so many lives and provided lives by making individual, couples, family and group therapy accessible and affordable by accepting most insurance. I now am the VP of Marketing for Refresh Mental Health, a company that has purchased Urban Balance and other mental health practices across the country, including KP Counseling in Rockford, Illinois.
Today, I have a passion for sharing what I have learned from over 20 years of counseling clients through public speaking, board work, writing/blogging and contributing to the media. As a corporate trainer and keynote speaker, I have enjoyed providing workplace wellness seminars and my signature keynote address, “The Psychology of Success” for Fortune 500 companies. Board work has been important to me, and I am currently serving as the Chair-Elect of the Midwest Region of the American Counseling Association.
I have blogged for the Huffington Post and PsychCentral for several years and my pieces have been picked up by such sites as Spirituality & Health and The Good Men Project. I’ve been honored to contribute to hundreds of articles on issues related to mental health, relationships and overall wellness, including outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, U.S. News & World Report and CNN. It has been fun contributing to countless radio and television segments, most notably as the therapist on Real World Chicago on MTV!
Has it been a smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road! When I started my private practice, many people told me I was too young and the market was too saturated in Chicago. I respectfully chose not to listen and to forge ahead, one foot in front of the other. My mentor and others who believed in me were a huge part of guiding me through the challenges.
One of my darkest hours was in 2011 when my former business partner left Urban Balance due to the stress of cash flow problems. Many of our staff quit; sensing instability and uncertainty. This was the moment when I opened myself up to humility and asked the world openly for help and support. This is when my life changed!
Suddenly, I had more support than I ever imagined and quickly learned that success in business is about surrounding yourself with good people and lovingly tending to those relationships so that they remain mutually beneficial, reciprocal and positive. I believe the universe will support any business that is a win for both the clients, the staff and the ownership.
In my work as a blogger, speaker and in the media, I have had to work to overcome some social anxiety and deal with the vulnerability of putting my ideas and feelings out into the world. I’ve hit upon rejection time and time again (today it is in the form of wanting to publish a couple of books and struggling to figure out the best way for that to come to fruition.) I continue to hold my head high, practice self-care (like meditation and yoga), access support from my loved ones, and continue to put myself out there!
So, as you know, we’re impressed with Joyce Marter Enterprises – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Urban Balance is one of the largest counseling practices in the Chicago area. UB is known for making therapy accessible and affordable by accepting most insurance and offering sliding fee services as well. I am most proud of having such a diverse staff providing psychotherapy and counseling to such a diverse group of individuals from the Chicagoland and St. Louis areas.
At Refresh Mental Health, we are proud to own and operate some of the best outpatient mental health and eating disorder companies across the country. What sets us apart from the rest is that we have a system of national experts.
Finally, Joyce Marter Enterprises brings all my expertise as a psychotherapist and entrepreneur to the public through motivational talks, trainings, writings and the media. I am known for having passions for de-stigmafying mental health issues and applying psychology to business and career success. I love helping individuals, organizations and businesses thrive and succeed in every way!
Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
One of the things I like best about our city is the diversity. I love how we have people from all over the world, living together in Chicago. That culture is reflected in the food, the art, the festivals and the energy of the city.
I also love the lake and the beauty of our city. I love the Midwest values of the people and all the great sports teams!
One of the things I like least about our city is segregation between socioeconomic and racial/cultural groups. Diversity is always a strength. We are stronger together. I would like to see our neighborhoods and communities continue to become more integrated.
Finally, the thing I like least about our city is the gun violence. Through my work as a counselor, I support groups that focus on violence prevention, such as the Illinois Counselors Association Non-Violence Task Group.
Address: 990 Grove Street Suite 405 Evanston, Illinois 60601
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