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GINA MS., LPC, FOUNDER & CEO, EMDR CERTIFIED

“If you do follow your bliss you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living is the one you are living. Follow your bliss and don’t be afraid, and doors will open where you didn’t know they were going to be.”
Joseph Campbell

Working Through Trauma

“When I was 13 months old I almost died from a high fever causing a seizure and lack of oxygen. Later learning that this was a huge impact on my sense of safety, attachment style and cognitive development and processing. Growing up in a Southern European American family had another component to my road of recovery from trauma that included many family dysfunctions, anger, codependency issues, addictions, mood disorders and depression to name a few, which was the beginning of my journey and desire to help others gain a more fulfilling life.”

Gina Baiamonte, Founder and CEO of Authentic Healing and Counseling, received her undergraduate degree from the University of Houston, University Park in Humanities and Fine Art.  She received additional training at the University of San Antonio, working on her Master’s in Fine Arts – painting, Studio Arts International Florence, Italy and the University of South Florida in Tampa.  She went on to receive her Master’s in Clinical Counseling at Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, Idaho, and practices as a Licensed Professional Counselor, Trauma and Certified Trauma Counselor.

Gina, having received specialized training at the EMDR Institute, is a compassionate therapist who uses Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy to help people find relief from trauma. This powerful technique has brought comfort and resolution to many, including war veterans grappling with PTSD and others facing diverse mental health challenges. Gina's approach is deeply rooted in empathy, and her goal is to help you gently unearth the roots of your distress, confront and transform negative beliefs, and foster healthier thought patterns in a nurturing and safe environment.

Incorporating a holistic and creative approach, Gina also engages in Internal Family Systems work, a technique she honed under the renowned Richard Schwartz' guidance. She sees the beauty and complexity in each individual's internal world and gently guides you to navigate and integrate the different aspects of yourself. This work opens a path for you to tap into your own wisdom, confidently facing your fears, and addressing your needs.

 

Another therapy modality that Gina incorporates into her practice is Neurofeedback, also called EEG Biofeedback or Neurotherapy, which is a research-proven way to help you improve your brain function through intensive brain training exercises.  Neurofeedback is an evidence-based researched practice that will decrease anxiety, depression, addictions, and multiple cognitive and brain functioning issues and increase peak performance.  See Neuro tab

In the Winter of 2021, Gina adopted a new modality to help her clients find freedom from trauma while reclaiming their identity. Trauma Sensitive Yoga is evidence-based research adjunct to trauma treatment that helps you connect your mind and body to the present moment by regulating physical responses, giving us a sense of agency, putting us back into the present, and regaining a sense of safety. See Trauma Sensitive Yoga Tab

Gina cherishes the opportunity to foster growth in her clients. Whether you're a creative, entrepreneur, or individual seeking personal growth, she creates an empathetic and safe harbor where she assists you on your journey towards health, happiness, and confidence. Her therapeutic approach includes art in counseling, dream analysis, nutritional education, and innovative methods like "walk and talk" therapy. She blends expertise with heartfelt empathy, and every step of your journey is approached with genuine care and understanding for your unique experiences.

Gina loves spending time with her husband Bryant Packard and her 5 grown boys, traveling, learning new modalities, leading and attending retreats, fine art, painting, hiking, photography, yoga, running and biking.
 

Buddha Statue

“Gina is an exceptional counselor with extensive knowledge and advice. Gina truly strives to learn every aspect of your life and helps you see your true self and potential. Her specialty in EMDR, as well as color therapy, helped me work through some of the toughest situations of my life – past and present. I would recommend Gina to anyone needing help, self-guidance, or acceptance with any aspect of their life.”

-Julie (former client)

Certifications and specialties also include:

  • EMDR Certified

  • Ketamine Assisted Psychotherapy

  • Neurofeedback Trained

  • Trauma Sensitive Yoga (TSY) Trained

  • PTSD and Trauma

  • Depression and Anxiety

  • Sexual Assault

  • Mood Disorders

  • Grief and Loss

  • Codependency

  • Stress

  • ADHD/ADD

  • Obsession Compulsive Issues

  • Drug and Alcohol Addiction

  • Sex and Love Addiction

  • Couples Counseling

  • Family Therapy

  • Life Transition

  • Art in Counseling

  • Heart Centered Hypnotherapy

  • Walk and Talk Therapy

  • Goal Attainment

  • Business Coaching

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Come Walk with Me!

The Multiple Benefits to Walk and Talk Therapy

I always suggest to the couples that I counsel, when working on building a closer connection, to walk and talk together and share with each other about their day. The left and right step movements result in a greater connection. Let me explain further.

 

I began to realize, first noticing that as I spoke to friends or clients over the phone, when walking and pacing back and forth, I was able to think more creatively and express myself at a deeper level.  Around the same time, practicing EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) therapy, where I lead my clients with eye movements, left to right horizontal sweeps, or tapping with bilateral movements, I came to understand that walking produces similar bilateral processing.  (See the EMDR page for further explanation on how this therapy helps to reprocess memories). The left-to-right body stimulation while walking facilitates processing the issues through the workings of the brain, causing a deeper level of consciousness and increased connection.

 

Walk and Talk Therapy is also effective, according to the research, exercise stimulates our endorphins, the neurotransmitters that block pain and increases feelings of pleasure. Research also supports that exercise can be an alternative to medication for patients with depression.

 

A recent article from the American Psychological Association written by Kirsten Weir and titled, Exercise Effect, states that James Blumenthal, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist at Duke University, found a mood-exercise connection through a series of randomized controlled trials. In one such study, he and his colleagues assigned sedentary adults with a major depressive disorder to one of four groups: supervised exercise, home-based exercise, antidepressant therapy, or a placebo pill. After four months of treatment, Blumenthal found that patients in the exercise and antidepressant groups had higher rates of remission than the patients on the placebo. Exercise, he concluded, was generally comparable to antidepressants for patients with major depressive disorder (Psychosomatic Medicine, 2007).

Walk and Talk Therapy is a great way to improve mood, enhance a more open social connection, getting to the roots of your issues while helping you to move forward to attaining your goals.

On a Walk
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