Private Practice Success

 Maria Gray,

Relax Your Back

Last year, for the first time in my life, I started to experience lower back pain. I thought it might time to invest in a new chair. I had been using a Herman Miller chair that was comfortable, but not comfortable enough. I polled my therapist friends for recommendations and several people mentioned the “Stressless” chair. When I researched the brand I learned that the entry level model would cost about $3,000: I thought that was a lot of money.

I complained to my friends and family about the cost of this special chair. When I told my aunt she laughed because her favorite “tv-watching” chair is made by Stressless. She encouraged me to buy the chair and offered to give me some money toward the purchase. I thought about it for a few weeks and from time to time I stopped by the furniture store on my way home so I could test out different chairs. Eventually I decided to invest in this important piece of furniture. The chair arrived two months ago, and it is very comfortable.

In addition to buying a new chair, I do my best to take good care of my neck and back every day. I keep a yoga strap in my office and I take a brief walk every day at lunch. I started Pilates this year and it has been life-changing.

As therapists, we spend a lot of time taking care of other people, sometimes it takes a little push from our friends and family to remind us to take care of ourselves. I am sure I’ll have no regrets about making this investment. Is there something you can think of that might help you feel more comfortable in your office?

Maria Gray, LMFT, NMP, CGP, is a psychotherapist in private practice in West Los Angeles. Maria specializes in trauma and addiction. To learn more about Maria’s practice see www.mariagray.nett. Maria’s next workshop, Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Building a Profitable Private Practice but Were Afraid to Ask, is scheduled for Saturday, February 3rd. To learn more, go to