We had the good fortune of connecting with Arpe Asaturyan and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Arpe, how do you think about risk?
The idea of risk taking has such a negative connotation to it, I like to think its just a choice either stay put or move forward. I guess I have always been a “move forward” type of person, trying to find the next way I can do the most with what I know I can provide. I left steady community clinical work to open my private practice, which was scary because it was a new world I had no idea about. I figured I’ve built successful programs for other companies, overseen projects with several staff, why can’t I do the same for myself. Once I had built my practice, I started to coach other therapists to do the same, now I have 2 office branches with staff and continuing to grow. Last year, a war broke out in Armenia – my native country- knowing how much trauma the soldiers would be going through and the rest of the country itself, again I decided to move forward and volunteer to go there and help. I started doing trauma work with severely wounded soldiers as well as families that were displaced during the war. I quickly realized the lack of mental health services, overall awareness, and systematic issues that were preventing people from accessing care. I decided to develop a nonprofit, called Frontline Therapists, and now we provide emergency mental health services, trainings for local professionals, both individual and group work, alternative therapeutic approaches and more all in Armenia. I believe if you have the skill set, knowledge and experience, leverage those and keep moving forward. We all hold the power within us to create and be successful, we just need to believe it.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
One of the ways different in how I approach the way my practice is run as well as the nonprofit, is that I emphasize on building networks and empowering others to take leadership roles. Since I started my private practice in 2017, I have mentored 12 other therapists and supported them in building their own private practices (for free). Now with Frontline Therapists I am constantly encouraging the therapists on our team to think of ways to reach the community or ideas they feel would help expand mental health awareness and then to start them, create them. I make sure to connect with other providers, agencies, social services, and humanitarian projects to find ways to collaborate and support each others objectives. The only way we can all grow is to support change and encourage new pathways.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
My favorite past time is to go cycling around Los Angeles, so I would take them along for the ride and stop my favorite coffee shop along the LA River, go through Griffith Park, and end up at a delicious café for some lunch.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I am grateful to have met strong successful women throughout my life, who inspired me to always look forward. I’ve been surrounded by women who were the boss, who were the leaders, who were the decision makers, all of whom made sure to share their knowledge and encourage others to do the same. There are too many people to name specifically, from my first job in a window company owned by a woman to all the agencies I worked in filled with leaders who were women. These images have fostered a spirit in me that does not accept gender based limitations.
Instagram: @arpeasaturyan / @frontlinetherapists