Christen Johnson, LPC-MHSP
Christen is passionate about working with those who have lost heart on their journey whether through trauma, abuse, grief/loss, or relationship difficulties. She desires to move near the painful parts of people’s stories in order to help them find their own voice. Christen is trained in EMDR therapy and has been heavily influenced by Dan Allender’s model on sexual trauma. Christen longs to get to the root of people’s story in order to find the utmost healing. Christen creates a nonjudgmental environment where people feel seen and heard no matter what they are struggling with. Christen values empathy, understanding, compassion, and depth in her work as a therapist.
Christen spent her post-graduate internship at the Hope Clinic for women working with crisis pregnancy situations, depression, anxiety, poor boundaries, and personality disorders. Before joining Sage Hill as a therapist, Christen worked as a family counselor at Youth Villages in Nashville. It was through that experience that she developed a deep compassion for those who have suffered from traumatic life events.
Christen lives in Nashville with her husband, Scott and their 2 little boys.
- Sexual Abuse
MA Counseling, Trevecca Nazarene
Training and Certifications
Licensed Professional Counselor, Mental Health Service provider, TN LC #4277, EMDR certified, Advanced Trauma Training, Dan Allender
Do you have pets?
Yes, a dog named Clover
Describe yourself in five words.
Creative Temperamental Fun loving Deep Kind
About Your Practice
I realized after years of pursuing a different career path with theater, media communications, photography, and sociology that it was the RELATIONSHIPS that brought me the most fulfillment and joy. I would live for the conversations at coffee shops when friends would just need a safe place to connect. It was through multiples stories that I carried that lead me to believe my gifts were found in sitting with others in tragic places. The most natural place for me was one on one with someone when they felt safe enough to be themselves. One of my college friends enrolled in the Trevecca Nazarene counseling program and I began looking into the program more seriously after that. The counseling career path blossomed more and more after I experienced my own loss as well. I never dreamed of being a therapist when I was little instead it is where the journey of life guided me through each new experience.
Who has influenced your work?
Chip Dodd and Stephen James Dan Allender Alice Miller Irvin Yalom Richard Rohr Francine Shapiro
How does your faith play itself out in your work?
For me, my faith is incredibly important. I truly feel close to God in nature, journaling, and while doing yoga. I think my faith comes out through my empathy and compassion through people’s stories. I rarely reference God unless a client brings that up in the session. I allow space for mystery and for God to be in the session without having an agenda. My heart is that when people feel like they belong and are cared for they might be more open to a spiritual path. I know God is a God of complete understanding and can meet people in the darkest of places. This work is a sacred calling. I feel completely overwhelmed with God’s grace giving me courage to step into the story of pain people carry.
This is a tough one. I have music for different moods. When I feel nostalgic I play Something Corporate, Andrew McMahon and the wilderness, the postal service, Jacks Mannequin, Snow patrol, and Dashboard Confessionals. When I’m feeling joy or sadness I play Ray Lamontagne, Bon Iver, Coldplay, the head and the heart, drew holcomb and the neighbors, and Johnny Swim. When I’m feeling far away from God I play Hillsong United. When I’m feeling silly and dancey I always play oldies from the 50s and 60s. When I’m feeling goofy I play rap music. Music is such an amazing vehicle for transporting back into old seasons and celebrating new ones.
Which TV show would you never miss?
What's your favorite book or author?
I love Nicholas Sparks when I need a good romantic novel. Richard Rohr Breathing Underwater and C.S. Lewis the great divorce when I need to connect to God’s mystery. The wounded heart by Dan Allender when I need to think more deeply about tragedy.
What is your favorite sport/physical activity?
Yoga, going on family walks, running, and swimming.
What's your favorite place to visit?
It’s between 2 places. Either Newport Beach, California or Beaver Creek, Colorado.
Just for Fun
I worked at a boat dock right by my house. I pumped gas and worked as a cashier.
What is your most treasured possession?
My pictures of all the memories I have been able to experience.
If you have friends coming over, what would you cook?
I LOVE cooking. Probably start with a cheese/charcuterie board with yummy fruits, crackers, and nuts. Then a hearty salad with fresh veggies. Then a pasta dish with warm sour dough bread. Probably some red wine to pair with the pasta. Then chocolate chip cookies for desert maybe with a warm cup of coffee.
What pastimes or hobbies do you enjoy?
I love playing with my kids in the floor, yoga, journaling, fashion blogging, going on long walks, deep conversations, traveling, watching movies, being outside near the water, and exploring new coffee shops/restaurants.
Other than your current home, if you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I’m feeling NYC right now. I would love to live in an apartment near Central Park or Brooklyn.
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