Jim Cosenza headshot 2

Jim Cosenza, LCSW

Director of Client Experience

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how inclusive insight was born

The work of being a psychotherapist and a psychotherapist in a private practice model has been tremendously satisfying to me. It's creative work and reflective work. I've been able to meet people with a wide variety of experiences and I have to look inside myself as to how I am going to communicate with someone for exactly who they are, challenging my expectations from them and my assumptions about who they are as a person. It's non-judgemental work. I don't create or carry around negative beliefs about who or what they are. And it's intimate, compassionate and spiritual work. People share their struggles and pain with me, I'm able to experience awe at how each of us is able to negotiate the world. It's also semi-independent work. I set my own schedule, can manage my income, and attend to my own needs and my family. I think there is dignity in all of this that is more elusive in productivity pressured, hierarchical environments.

I've wanted to share these kinds of experiences with others in the field. Years ago Laura and I had the chance to lease an adjacent office suite. We thought we could create an environment to encourage other people to consider private practice psychotherapy without the risks of leasing a space, furnishing it, and worries about all of the other infrastructure. So we signed the lease for the adjacent space, brought in a designer, broke through the wall of our existing office, built out 3 private offices, furnished them, and encouraged people to rent the space by the hour at a really nominal fee. Laura and I worked with them every step of the way, providing space for people to experiment with themselves, assisting clinicians with business practices, discussing marketing. A lot of clinicians came through our doors, each one of them unsure of the prospects of becoming a psychotherapist in private practice. For some folks it wasn't a fit. For others, they found that it suited them and went on to own their own private practices and larger group practices. I think of this experience as a kind of incubator for our ideas.

my favorite part of my job

Accompanying people as they navigate the world. That's the work in psychotherapy and I found that's the work in cultivating Inclusive Insight.

why i entered the mental health field

I was volunteering at a food pantry on the west side of Chicago that served people living with HIV/AIDS. I noticed that I was able to connect with people with kindness and directly. I never had a job where that was even possible, so I began to consider how I could recreate the experiences at the pantry into a career. Social work aligned with my values.

favorite "tools" in your tool kit

Unconditional positive regard, knowing another person is meeting or navigating the world fully at that moment, not needing to control outcomes, quieting myself and my thoughts.

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