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Inspiring Conversations with Lacrisha Holcomb of Therapy Is Light

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lacrisha Holcomb.

Hi Lacrisha, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I have been fascinated with the human condition and mind since I was a child delving into books to psychoanalyze and vicariously connect with characters. Although I was not sure of my career destination at first, there was never a doubt that my goal would entail engendering meaningful, transformative change by providing service to people in need. As a student at Howard University, I volunteered in numerous community service organizations, which confirmed my desire to uplift and emotionally empower people. Upon graduation, I was recruited as a teacher in Teach for America to serve underprivileged communities. I gained immeasurable life and career experience in understanding the psychological impact of tribulations in home environments that manifested within the students and, inevitably, the classroom. A family member’s deteriorating health led me to leave the position early. Still, it was also a blessing in disguise as I became invigorated by a new passion for working more intimately with people in mental distress. I dabbled in positions that were open in my area but did not feel fulfilled until I enrolled in a Counselor Education graduate program and began following the path in my heart, which always included storytelling and education.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
My healing journey as a first-generation two-time college graduate raised in poverty was sustained by ambition and survival mode. After experiencing mental health issues such as depression and anxiety as a young adult, I decided to become the hero I was looking for. Following a brief stint as an elementary school teacher, I excelled in my career as a licensed clinical addiction specialist. It has been a difficult path due to a lack of knowledge and resources–I recently became fully licensed within the last year for one of the two licenses I qualify for because I had no money when I graduated–I was buried in debt. I have recently decided to devote more time to expressive arts to create culturally-relevant resources for healing. It is my goal to be able to provide these resources in the future now that I have more experience and the professional wherewithal to seek mentorship from peers in the field through networking. I also wasn’t prepared for the intensity of burnout as a helping professional who also belongs to many of the categories of oppressed populations I serve. The struggles have been real, but my faith and purpose have always been greater. As the incomparable Toni Morrison so eloquently stated, “When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game.”

As you know, we’re big fans of Therapy Is Light. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about the brand?
Therapy Is Light is a mental health awareness company. It aims to amplify mental health awareness in under-resourced and historically-excluded communities through representation, art, and culture. Therapy is Light offers publications, speaking engagements, merchandise, and mental health education utilizing the arts to produce culturally competent resources for healing. The name is inspired by the belief that we “wear our victories” in the form of storytelling. I also offer wellness services as a bridge, supplement, and alternative to traditional therapy. Light is an invitation for hope. When we shine our lights, others who may be in a dark space see it and become encouraged to turn on theirs. I am most proud of the impact my brand has garnered in encouraging people to normalize going to therapy.

What do you think about luck?
No role! I do not believe in luck! I believe in God, alignment, and perseverance. I was making excellence a habit, and creating content with a spirit of serving has attracted the most unexpected opportunities into my life and business. By doing my best in school, from elementary to graduate school, I won scholarships and representative roles that I did not even have to apply for–the quality of the work brought recognition and support from the right people. With my business, I invested countless hours researching and pushed past the fear of the uncertain. Takings risks and blindly stepping forward daily, I did what felt required at the moment based on my observations of media and culture. I polished, learned, and adjusted as needed. The reoccurring theme in my life and business is that I am a forever student.


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