Lauren McAllister, M.A., LPC
Life is unpredictable. Many times, our best laid plans get derailed because of circumstances outside of our control or even poor choices that we make–often both. I think everyone could benefit from seeing a therapist at least once in their lifetime; having someone to help process through all of life’s difficulties.
Many years ago, I felt like God was calling me to pursue a career in counseling. The more I pursued this career, the more I knew that it was exactly where I wanted to be. I’ve now been working as a counselor for 8+ years and I can honestly still say that I LOVE what I do. It can be hard work for sure, but I consider it a privilege and an honor to be invited into people’s hearts, minds, and lives.
Philosophy and Therapeutic Approach
I believe that we were all meant to live full lives of emotional depth and healthy relationships. We often become too comfortable with the “Ok” or the “fine.” I believe there can be more to life than just getting through. Having a counselor can take you to a deeper level to understand yourself and relationships in a healthier way.
My main approach to counseling is a combination of a Client Centered approach along with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. This means that I help give you tools and resources, while providing a safe and nurturing environment, while you do the healing. I provide empowerment and encouragement, but you are the one in control of the process. I will take an in depth look at the unhealthy beliefs that you might be stuck in as well as unhealthy patterns of behavior and how our beliefs, behavior, and emotions are intertwined. In children, I still use a similar approach but in a simpler way with play therapy. I’ve worked with adults and children ages 3 to adult!
I’ve received 60+ hours of formal training in EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) which is an evidenced based form of treatment for trauma. I am also a certified Level 1 trainer in PCIT (Parent
Child Interaction Therapy) which is also an evidence-based treatment that I’ve seen work wonders with young children with behavior problems. I also have experience in working with ADHD, Autism, OCD, PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Addiction, grief, and many others.
My faith is also an important part of who I am. I enjoy incorporating the truth of God’s word as a part of your healing process. God created us to live full, abundant lives, and I believe His truth and presence can carry us through even the most difficult circumstances.
What To Expect During Therapy
I strive to connect with you and help you feel comfortable from the start. It is a brave thing to begin a counseling journey, and I will help you navigate those first few awkward steps. The first appointment will be focused on getting to know each other and deciding on what your goals for
this process will be. Each session will vary depend on what you are experiencing that week, what we’ve worked on in previous weeks, and what elements and principles that will help you reach your goals.
I want you to be in charge of your process as much as possible. I’m here to be your co-pilot–to keep us on track and help navigate where things might get tricky. I greatly encourage honest feedback and am committed to helping you find the help and healing that you need.
Professional Qualifications and Experience
I graduated in 2011 from Liberty University with my Masters in Professional Counseling. I immediately began working for a public mental health agency in East Tennessee, where I predominately worked with children and youth. In working for that large agency, I was able to gain a wealth of experiences in all areas of mental health. In 2015 I moved to Nashville, TN and starting working for an integrated Christian Agency that offered medical and mental health services. There, I began working with
more adults and specializing in trauma. I have experience running my own private practice, where I worked up until joining the Cornerstone team.
Personal Life and Interests
I was born in Tennessee and lived there most of my life. I love the mountains and I love adventure, so I spend most of my free time enjoying time outdoors with family and friends. I love to travel and have new experiences. I love good coffee and good food.
Nothing fills my cup more than just being with the people I love and experiencing life together. I feel pretty confident is saying I have some of THE BEST people, both family and good friends, by my side. I was married for 6 ½ years before my husband tragically passed away in a car accident. He passed away only 3 days before our first son was born, so I am certainly not a stranger to hardship or difficult journeys.
But I feel that pain is not wasted. God has given me a purpose to share my story to hopefully inspire others. God is writing my story in every way, and I can see his handiwork all over it, in even the tiniest details.
I’ve always loved Colorado, so in the summer of 2019 my son and I took a leap and made a fresh start here, and we are loving it. I’m excited to see what the future brings!