Supervisor Spotlight: Jessica Pishney

Dr. Jessica Pishney is a licensed psychologist who works with adults and children in the state of Minnesota. “I initially chose to work with children with anxiety and depression as that is something near and dear to my heart,” she says. “I grew up struggling with these and didn’t know what to do or who to turn to; I want to be there for children who feel similarly as I did at their age.”

Families First 

Being a safe space for others to lean on has always come naturally to Jessica, even as a teen. “I can remember being a peer specialist in junior high and then in high school spending countless hours on the phone listening to friends and then I realized I could make a living doing this and I just loved listening to others and helping them navigate life.”

Her parents saw her ability to care for others, encouraging her to become a doctor. The first in her family to go to college, she paved the road to her success majoring in Psychology at the University of Southern California and then obtaining two master’s degrees before earning her PsyD in Clinical Psychology at Williams James College in Boston. 

We’re All Human

She adheres to a Person-Centered/Rogerian approach to her work, focusing on the theory’s tenets of unconditional positive regard, empathy and congruence. “We are all humans,” she says, “and I want to be able to connect with others first on a human level before we delve into anything else. This is where real change can occur.”

In addition to her work with children, she has also focused on substance use disorders in adults, finding hope and passion in the positive impact recovery has on an entire family system, including children. 

A Model of Supervision

As a supervisor, Jessica lists ethics, rapport building and empathy as her top values. She advocates for therapists to prioritize bringing their genuine and authentic selves in the room and to be serious about putting self-care into practice, walking the walk rather than just talking about it. 

She tackles feelings of countertransference in supervision head on, asking how the supervisees feels when talking to their clients or sharing her own feelings as a result of parallel process, modeling how to explore these feelings and work through them. 

Jessica recommends supervisees make use of early career resources, like those listed on the web sites of the American Psychological Association, American Psychology-Law Association, or National Institute of Mental Health

For her own professional development and networking, Jessica turns to social media. “I learned about Motivo from a group on FB that discusses telemedicine/teletherapy,” she says. She also promotes her own services via her Facebook and LinkedIn pages. 

A forward thinker, who is comfortable with technology (she also works with TalkSpace) Jessica sees the trend moving to a world in which more therapy and consulting services will be available online and doesn’t see why this wouldn’t also extend to supervision.

Think Jessica might be the perfect supervisor for you?

We’d love to introduce you to Jessica through a free, 30-minute video call. Click here to let us know if you’re interested in connecting with her or one of our Motivo team members.

Emily Donahue

Emily Donahue

Emily Donahue holds a Master's in Mental Health Counseling from Northwestern University. She works as a limited permit therapist at a private practice in Brooklyn, earning her clinical and supervision hours for full licensure. She has a special interest in women and alcohol use and her dream is to meet Irvin Yalom one day.

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