Today we’d like to introduce you to Cori Hill.
Cori, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I am a licensed therapist providing mental health services to individuals, couples, and families in the state of Texas. My work mostly centers around trauma, identity, anxiety, and relationships. Though I have been practicing counseling for a few years, I have been a healer and teacher for much longer. I have always enjoyed empowering others to explore new ways of thinking, living, and loving. My previous work has included tutoring, mentoring, life coaching, and college student advising.
Aside from the first few months of my life in Michigan, Dallas has always been my home. I was raised by a mother who emphasized education, determination, and advocacy for self and others – values I hold now. Throughout the highs and lows of my upbringing, I was fortunate to have been supported by a village of loving and encouraging family, friends, and teachers who always reminded me of my strengths and purpose. Community is everything! I am honored now to be a part of that community for the individuals I work with within therapy.
I initially decided to pursue a career in counseling after recognizing that so many people (including random strangers) seemed to already view me as a counselor. I certainly felt called to it. I imagine that most people, like me, have this idea of counseling programs training students to understand and help others. You actually first learn to understand and help yourself. That continuous self-work doesn’t stop after you earn your degree and license either!
I am proud to now announce that I am continuing my work now as the owner and founder of Chill Counseling which is centered on healing the individual and the community. While I am the sole therapist in my new practice, I am not working alone! I collaborate and consult with several other brilliant therapists and healers, who also prioritize holistic, culturally competent healing. I am excited to begin this next part of my journey in connection with my amazing team!
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I will be transparent here. The business side of counseling is hands down my least favorite part of the work. I am not in this field to get rich, but I do have bills and goals just like everyone else. It can be difficult to navigate the awkward “Let me help you; give me your money” dynamic, and I am actively working to explore solutions that are equitable for me as a professional and maintain accessibility to services for the community.
Perhaps the most frustrating struggle I have encountered is the disillusionment that came during graduate school as I discovered that most of the material was not based on, inclusive of, created for, or informed by the experiences of many marginalized communities. In fact, psychology has a dark history of research and treatment that is neglectful and harmful to those communities (including Black, Indigenous, and people of color, people with disabilities, and LGBTQIA+ persons). Throughout my studies, I would read additional works by Black researchers that helped me to better understand myself and my community through a culturally competent lens. As a licensed therapist, I am committed to continued education and training to supplement the education I formally received so that I can provide ethical and affirming counseling to people from various backgrounds and identities.
My priority is to help clients thrive, not just live, and to do so requires a commitment at the community level. The challenge is working inside of and against widely accepted ideas, systems, approaches that help people to “deal” but not necessarily to heal. I want to change that.
Chill Counseling – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I do a lot of work-related to relationships, identity, anxiety and trauma. My work with relationships tends to center on romantic partnerships, friendships, unresolved family conflict, and boundary setting. With regards to identity, I help clients explore various aspects of their racial, spiritual, sexual, or professional identities or general self-discovery. Trauma encompasses a wide array of concerns but some examples I see often are racial trauma (such as microaggressions or other forms of race-related stressors), relational trauma (such as difficult childhoods or a break up), sexual trauma (such as assault or unhelpful beliefs about sex), and spiritual trauma and abuse.
Most of my clients are healers, artists, students, and educators, either by nature or by profession. However, I also have specialized training and significant experience in working with first responders. I believe I am most known for my work with Black women, and particularly the Sisters in Solidarity (SIS) group. SIS is a counseling group that has evolved over two years into a safe, supportive space that provides information, resources, and growth opportunities to anyone navigating the world as a Black woman.
Since the summer, I have also held a few iterations of Reset Your Mindset, a free 5-week coping skills group to help people adjust to the stressors brought on by the pandemic. Finally, I have recently had the pleasure of reaching more of the community via the Brunch and Boundaries podcast with my amazing co-host and friend, Serena Kumara. We have a lot of fun, but we also discuss various aspects of mental and spiritual health.
I am most proud of my approach to healing. I truly believe that everyone has the answers they are seeking and that my job is to ask the right questions. I draw from a lot of theories and use a combination of research-based techniques and exercises. I create unique to the specific person, partnership, or family. I am always myself in session, which means that in addition to expressing my care for you, you might also experience anything from celebratory finger-snapping to a corny joke.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
I measure success by how authentically I am living. I value integrity, progress, freedom, and equity. I want that to be reflected in my relationships and projects. With regards to Chill Counseling, success for me would mean consistently providing services that help transform lives and communities, increasing accessibility to those services, and addressing systemic issues that create or influence the very reasons individuals seek services.
As for the Brunch and Boundaries podcast, we are still figuring out what success means. So far, I have enjoyed the challenge of balancing my personal and professional takes on everything from healing to pop culture to world events. Success would mean that the right listeners find us and receive what they need. Overall, I want to be a part of real change and to empower others to do the same.
- $140 per a 50-minute session (individuals and couples)
- $0-40 per 80-minute group sessions
- Ask about income-based reduced rates
- Some insurances will be accepted beginning early 2021
- Website: chillcounseling.com
- Phone: 469-912-1184
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: instagram.com/chillcounselor, instagram.com/chillcounseling
- Facebook: facebook.com/chillcounselor