Mental Health Awareness Month
Private Practice

Meet the Therapist: an Interview with Bob Lloyd

May 13, 2024

Mental Health Awareness Month takes place every May. As part of our campaign, we’re highlighting mental health professionals in our network. You can read all the stories here.

In this interview, Tava spoke with Bob Lloyd, LCSW, who operates his private practice through Tava. Bob shares insights on what it’s like working with Tava and his perspective on therapy.

About Bob Lloyd, LCSW

Bob Lloyd has been a practicing therapist for the past 14 years. His main modalities are Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Internal Family Systems (IFS), and Motivational Interviewing. When he’s not helping people, Bob enjoys fishing and BBQing. He’s been part of the Tava Health network for 2 years. 

Learn more about Bob and if he’s a good match for you here.

What do you enjoy about working with Tava?

There are so many ways to answer that! I enjoy the variety of people I get to do therapy with, the incredible support team, the innovative ways we can do documentation, and the flexibility Tava offers.

What inspired you to become a therapist, and how has your journey shaped your approach to therapy?

I think the biggest answer to that is that I've been in therapy myself. I saw a therapist in college who discovered I had OCD. With that knowledge and help, I made some huge improvements in my life and grew to understand how mental illness is something more common than we realize but also more treatable than we realize.

Can you share a particularly rewarding or impactful experience you've had while working with a client?

I recently had a client tell me that after suffering for decades from family and individual trauma, they felt they were finally in a place of healing after doing treatment to address things. This individual discussed how they felt more free, and were no longer carrying around the weight of their anxiety and depression. They also shared how they developed a healthier self-concept, and how this has helped them grow in having better boundaries, healthier goal setting, and also being able to better accept things they can't control. It's experiences like these that have helped me love the work I do!

How do you stay informed about the latest developments and research in the field of mental health to better serve your clients?

Along with reading regularly (I'm a bookworm!), I attend monthly training meetings put on by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). I also attend various conferences both in person and online. Finally, I regularly network with fellow therapists to get an idea of what's going on in the field, which helps me get new ideas of how I can grow professionally.

In your opinion, what are some common misconceptions about therapy, and how do you address them with your clients?

I think people need to realize mental health concerns are just as real as physical health concerns, and because of this are just as vital to be addressed. I give clients the analogy of diabetes where it's a real medical condition that can be effectively managed and kept in check with good care and knowledge.

“mental health concerns are just as real as physical health concerns”

What strategies do you employ to create a comfortable and safe environment for your clients to open up and express themselves?

I find that simply listening is by far the most important thing I need to do first. When I've effectively listened, I believe I've effectively validated someone, which can help them be in a place to face the challenges they want to work through, because they feel supported. From there we can explore more in depth what types of therapies they feel best with. Finally, I strive to have what's called a healing presence, which means making sure I'm being the kind of person people feel safe and comfortable with.

How do you approach the topic of self-care and prevent burnout as a therapist?

I created a self-care group in my other practice last year because it's such a vital topic. I approach self-care as having several components: mental, emotional, physical, social, and spiritual/existential. These domains need in-depth attention regularly. To prevent burnout as a therapist, I work on addressing these domains throughout the week in various ways. I also make sure to go fishing at least twice a month!

Editor’s note: Read Bob’s recommendations for countering compassion fatigue here.

What advice would you give to individuals who are considering seeking therapy but may feel hesitant or unsure about taking that step?

It's not as scary as it seems. I promise you will discover amazing things about yourself as you engage in the healing process of therapy. Having been on both ends of the process (both clinician and client), I can tell you without a doubt in my mind that you can see major improvements in your life when you do therapy.

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