We had the good fortune of connecting with Seth Menachem and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Seth, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I have always been independent. That’s not to say I don’t like a communal feel at work–and it speaks in part to why I have turned my private therapy practice into a group practice–but I knew I wanted to set the tone for how I practiced therapy, built my clientele, and managed my work/life balance. Having Menachem Psychotherapy Group allows me to train other therapists in how I work as a therapist, and what is important to me in helping clients succeed in meeting their goals.

Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I love the work I do–it’s challenging, it’s intimate, and it’s rewarding. I’m a trained therapist who believes in being an authentic human in the room. The therapeutic space I create is such a unique, safe, and special place for my clients and me, and it allows for deep work to happen. This year, we all had to transition to lives in a pandemic, and my entire caseload was moved over to Zoom. While it was always a small part of my practice–especially for actor clients who were out of town while shooting a movie–I, like many of us, had to adjust to my entire work life becoming virtual. It surprised me how quickly we were able to adjust, and how much good work can be done, even with a client I have never actually met in person. My practice has been pretty full, so it’s hard to take on new clients so this year I turned my private practice into a group practice, Menachem Psychotherapy Group. I now have two associates in the practice, and a child therapist joining the team. I love the supervision work, as I get to help train budding therapists and teach the team what is so important to me in being a good therapist. I also volunteer to train graduate students working at an addiction facility to help them as they start their journey with clients who are in real crisis. Although I’m lucky to have a waiting list for clients, and run a private pay group, I keep a percentage of my practice for clients who can’t afford full fee, and/or are in crisis, as it’s important work to me. My clients are diverse; so are my friends. And that’s how I like it.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
It’s a funny question mid-pandemic, but even during this time I have bought an electric bike and used it to get exercise and explore the city in ways I couldn’t do on a regular bike. I love finding these pockets of LA I wouldn’t have found otherwise. That being said, I’d try to give them a good snapshot of various LA neighborhoods. We’d go downtown, eat at the Grand Central Market, and spend hours wandering the bookshelves of The Last Bookstore in downtown. I always leave with a handful of new books. We’d have dinner at Genwa Korean BBQ on Wilshire, and picnic on a bench or in a box at The Hollywood Bowl or the Greek Theater while listening to an outdoor concert. I’d have breakfast in the morning at Swingers Diner, and then go for a hike on Runyon Canyon or Fryman Canyon in my neighborhood of Studio City. I’d get an Acai bowl at Backyard Bowls, a coffee at Blue Bottle or Alfred Coffee, and then head over to Abbott Kinney to shop, and make online dinner reservations at GJelina, while we biked along the beach. Depending on the time of year, we could listen to jazz at LACMA or snowboard in Big Bear. And, as is the case with many of us who come to LA, we don’t ever leave.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My clients deserve the biggest shoutout. They have the guts to come to therapy and to put their trust in me. Before I begin my day I remind myself how lucky I am to do the work I do, and how honored I am that my clients choose to do their work with me. I am sure this reads a little corny, but I mean it.

Website: menachempsychotherapygroup.com

Instagram: instagram.com/the.life.of.a.therapist

Linkedin: www.linkedin.com/in/sethmenachem

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MenachemPsychotherapyGroup

Image Credits
Photos by: Jill Sipkins

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