We had the good fortune of connecting with Brette Genzel-Derman, Psy.D and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brette, how do you think about risk?
Being willing to take risks has everything to do with the success of my company, Innovative Group Psychotherapy, Inc. As a psychologist with no business training, it seemed daunting to start a business. However, after seeing Sonic Highways – HBO’s documentary profiling the Foo Fighter’s journey to create their 2014 album – I found myself on the brink of an innovative therapeutic discovery. The series profiles Dave Grohl, the band’s lead singer and former drummer of Nirvana, interviewing talented musicians across the country as inspiration for his album. Feeling passionate about the concept put forth in the series, which used interviews as the back drop for unique lyrical creations, I developed a therapeutic songwriting curriculum. Since I was using his idea, I took a giant risk and reached out to Dave Grohl. Of course, I never thought a rock star would respond to me. But I had nothing to lose. And low and behold he emailed me back, loved my idea, and even volunteered to help! Today, Innovative Group Psychotherapy has expanded beyond group therapy into providing individual therapy, family therapy, and psychological testing.
What should our readers know about your business?
Innovative Group Psychotherapy, Inc. (IGP) provides a unique twist to mental health treatment. Our mission is to provide effective therapy that speaks to people. We offer our clients an array of services to help them heal, including psychological assessment, individual, family and group therapy. We incorporate creative arts, mindfulness, and cognitive behavioral therapy into our approach because current brain research supports it! Talk therapy can be effective, but when it is combined with activities that bring joy and reduce stress – therapeutic efficacy increases substantially! What sets IGP apart from other therapy approaches is that we inspire change through creation. We use professional musicians, artists, and actors to inspire our clients. Teens write and record songs, express themselves through the canvas, and develop monologues. IGP is dedicated to bringing about therapeutic growth by utilizing a person’s interests and passions. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, IGP continues to provide high quality therapy services over Zoom.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
When a friend comes to visit me in LA I have a few spots that are a must see. Starting with the beaches, my favorite spot to go is Venice Beach. Not only is the beach beautiful, but you can choose to enjoy a relaxing bike ride on the strand or a stroll amidst the street performers. Santa Monica Pier is just a hop, skip and jump away from Venice, and it is a bonus for kids. Restaurants abound in LA, but my favorites are Katsuya for sushi, Vino wine bar, for Spanish Tapas in Encino and Black Market Liquor in Studio City. Clearly from this list you can see I’m a Valley girl. If I’m going over the hill though, Bestia is a must! If my friend is in need of a peaceful day with some culture, I would take them to Huntington Gardens, followed by a trip to the Norton Simon museum in Pasadena. If it’s an active day that my guests request, then it is off to Malibu for a hike and a refreshing dip in the ocean. To wind down, you can never go wrong with dinner at Geoffrey’s.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A good idea is nothing if it does not have the support of people who can bring it to fruition. Dave Grohl not only believed in my idea, but he brought it to life through his generosity and willingness to give back. Throughout the years, Innovative Group Psychotherapy has had the honor of working with many amazing mentors. These talented professionals repeatedly inspire our clients to use the arts as a newfound coping strategy that promotes health and resiliency. To all the mentors that have supported IGP’s journey – we could not do this work without you – Thank you!