Acacia Spotlight looks to highlight the clinicians, staff, and programs that make Acacia what it is today. January’s clinician is Angie Carman, LMFT.
This Oahu, Hawaii native joined Acacia’s team when our Irvine location opened September of 2018. Her passion for mental health glows bright, and we are so glad she shares her light with us!
What do you enjoy most about being a clinician?
Angie: I enjoy [possibly] being the one person in my clients’ lives who can be non-judgmental, affirming, and allow for them to really choose to be their own authentic self. I also enjoy seeing my clients have an “aha” moment in session. When they are able to implement positive coping strategies on their own throughout the week and tell me about it during our session, I feel so proud of them. I love being my clients’ cheerleader.
Knowing what we feel about, during, or after something allows to make informed decisions on how we want to respond.
Could you tell us why therapy and discussing feelings is helpful?
Angie: Growing up, I never understood why therapy was so important until I realized I wasn’t able to acknowledge my own feelings, especially when I was stressed or overwhelmed. Feelings are like little post-it notes you write yourself when you need to address something; it’s so important to recognize that there may be negative feelings, neutral feelings, and positive feelings. Regardless though, they tell you ‘something’s happening! I need to be present and notice’. Knowing what we feel about, during, or after something allows to make informed decisions on how we want to respond. When we are not as aware, we tend to be more reactive, which can have long term consequences. I once heard someone say, “Feelings remind us we’re alive!”
What are your interests outside of therapy?
Angie: I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. Community is everything to me and I love being a part of such amazing people. I also enjoy dining at new spots; I’m a foodie so yelp is my best friend.
When they (clients) are able to implement positive coping strategies on their own throughout the week and tell me about it during our session, I feel so proud of them.
If you could share one piece of wisdom with your college-aged self, what would it be?
Angie: I would probably remind myself that I am loved and known by others and by my higher power. I felt like I was getting tied up in the logistics of my life, and knowing what I know now, I would have told myself to be more present. Also, to learn Spanish.
If you could switch places with anybody for a week, who would it be and why?
Angie: This is a hard one! I love my life and I feel like I wouldn’t want to switch places with anyone. However, for the purpose of this question, I guess if I had to, I would switch places with Kendall Jenner just to see how the Kardashian/Jenner clan lives and to possibly use a platform to make a statement about the value of addressing one’s mental health!
Rooted in authenticity, Angie encourages others to embrace & celebrate individuality. Her mindful approach invites clients to experience feelings while staying present in each moment. Thank you, Angie, for sharing strategies that help cultivate growth!
Stay tuned for more Acacia Clinician Spotlights! And check out Angie’s bio on the Irvine page!
Authored (a lot) by Angie Carmen and (a little) by Danielle Sharkey.