Heather Norton, MA
Heather is passionate about helping others find wholeness through the restoration of the heart, the healing of the body and mind, and the liberation of the spirit. Using both traditional and holistic methods, Heather's therapeutic approach is brought to life through narrative therapy, cognitive therapy, somatic experiencing, internal family systems, polyvagal therapy, and the spiritual root system. Her goal is to create a safe space for others to share their stories, process their pain, and discover who they truly are.
Heather is a certified Yoga instructor (200 hr) and is currently studying Clinical Mental Health at Liberty University. She joined Sage Hill as an intern in August 2021. Before pursuing a career in therapy, Heather worked as an elementary school teacher, coach, and tutor. She lives in Nashville with her husband Will and three boys. When she isn't in the therapy room, you'll probably find Heather spending time with her family and friends, on her Yoga mat, or in the carpool line.
- Spiritual Issues
- Women's Issues
Master of Arts Clinical Mental Health, Liberty University
Master of Education Elementary Education, University of North Carolina
Bachelor of Science Elementary Education, College of Charleston
Training and Certifications
Do you have pets?
three wild animals/sons
Describe yourself in five words.
Funny, kind, compassionate, dedicated, intentional
About Your Practice
Much of my life growing up was surrounded by dysfunction. My father's combat-related PTSD and depression from his time in Vietnam, made our home unstable and often times frightening. My inability to cope with life and specifically the overwhelming emotions I experienced as a child, led me into an eating disorder that spanned twenty plus years. It wasn't until I was forty that I began seeking help. Through a random series of events, I began working with a somatic body-based therapist that specializes in healing trauma. I had been in counseling off and on throughout my life, but this counseling was different from any other I had ever experienced. It was during this season that I began to practice yoga and eventually became a yoga teacher. It was the body-based therapy I had received in combination with my yoga practice that made me realize the power of the body to heal our trauma and reframe our stories. This season of pain, healing, and renewal was the catalyst that put me on the path to becoming a therapist.
Who has influenced your work?
Both Bessel van der kolk and Peter Levine's work on trauma and the body has been extremely influential. Stephen Porges and Deb Dana's work on polyvagal therapy and the nervous system continues to play a large role in both my personal and professionally life. Richard Schwartz and his theory and methodology on internal family systems has been hugley impacting. Tara Brach and her teachings on meditation and trauma continues to shape my understanding of self-healing. My yoga teacher in Nashville who has been both friend and mentor continues to teach and inspire me on the practices and philosophy of both yoga and buddhism, which spill over into much of my personal and therapeutic life. Richard Rohr continues to be a tremendous influence in shaping my understanding of the world, humanity, God, and the teachings and practices of Christ.
How does your faith play itself out in your work?
For me, the essence of faith within the therapeutic practice is trusting in the love of God and the journey of the client. It is not my responsibility or right to make the client's journey look like mine, spiritually or otherwise. My responsibility is to be in a supportive role, allowing the client to discover their own truth and their own path towards healing and wholeness. In the therapy room, this looks like providing a spacious place where spiritual questioning and doubt are permissible, and emotions like anger and rage are allowed to be unearthed.
My favorite singer is Audrey Assad. Her poetic lyrics are laced with philosophy and are hauntingly beautiful. She is my go to whenever I need to think deeply about the complexity of life, or process pain.
Which TV show would you never miss?
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
What's your favorite book or author?
I have so many favorites! As of late my favorite book is The Warmth of Other Suns, by Isabel Wilkerson.
What is your favorite sport/physical activity?
Yoga, running, and hiking
What's your favorite place to visit?
Jackson Hole, WY
Just for Fun
I worked in a drugstore called Drug Emporium when I was 16. I only lasted about two months.
What is your most treasured possession?
My children and husband
If you have friends coming over, what would you cook?
Homemade buffalo chicken tinga tacos
What pastimes or hobbies do you enjoy?
Yoga, running, hiking, reading, listening to podcasts while I attempt to clean
Other than your current home, if you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
Jackson Hole, WY
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