Acacia Spotlight looks to highlight the clinicians, staff, and programs that make Acacia what it is today. July’s clinician is Dr. Jayce Long.
Originally from a small western Kentucky town called Paducah, Jayce made his trek over to the west coast to continue working as a clinician in our Acacia Westwood office. Jayce has been with Acacia since January 2019, came with a stellar recommendation, and has been a welcome addition to the Westwood team ever since!
What do you enjoy most about being a clinician?
Jayce: To know people deeply is an honor and privilege. To be a part of helping others connect to our deepest desires, to be known, recognized, and witnessed, brings me joy. Getting to know and loving ourselves deeply is a prerequisite to loving others and sustaining intimacy.
What is your therapeutic approach?
Jayce: I primarily use psycho-dynamic approaches. This means I tend to focus on underlying emotional and relational patterns that come up in the therapy, then promote healthier ways of being and relating through a safe and connected therapeutic relationship. I also enjoy integrating acceptance and skills-based interventions (e.g., Mindfulness), and welcome discussion of daunting existential issues that are looming in the back of each of our minds. —- At the end of the day, theories and therapeutic modalities are meant to help individuals get what they need. My focus is to cultivate a meaningful therapeutic relationship in order to help them figure it out.
When did you know you wanted to be a therapist?
Jayce: It was a slow unfolding process that started as an introspective young adolescent and then culminated into a sense of confidence during graduate school. I declared my psychology major the summer before attending my first undergraduate semester. This led me to follow interests in research of adolescent identity and spiritual development. As a Masters student studying these areas, I was introduced to applied psychology while taking classes along MFT doctoral students. This sparked my curiosity in the practice of psychology. After finding a doctoral program that fit my emerging passions in research and practice, the sense of knowing was solidified. It is an honor to be doing something I enjoy and feel in which I have great passion.
If you could only recommend one life change to every client who walked in the door, what would it be?
Jayce: Getting to know and loving ourselves deeply is a prerequisite to loving others and sustaining intimacy. Fight shame, embrace humility and vulnerability and surrender to life together with other imperfect beautiful humans.
And this one is just for fun… if you could switch places with anybody for a week, who would it be and why?
Jayce: Nothing savvy or wise here, just a guilty and joyous pleasure. As a huge University of Kentucky basketball fan, I would have to say the starting point guard for our Wildcats during a Final Four run. I was an athlete before I was a psychologist, Kentucky basketball is part of the lifeblood of the state, and this would fulfill somewhat of a childhood dream, so there you go!
Trust us, we are honored to have Dr. Jayce Long working alongside our Westwood team and with the college community – and if we ever start an Acacia basketball team, we know who to call.
Stay tuned for more Acacia Clinician Spotlights! And check out Jayce’s bio on the Westwood page!
Authored (a lot) by Dr. Jayce Long and (a little) by KorbyQuan Reed.