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Simple Empathy: Emotional and Mental Wellness are Priority for Everyone

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Seeking therapy as a man or woman does not necessarily mean you are not well. It is an opportunity to find space for growth, for maintenance and for continuation of healing throughout life. Kieri Olmstead, owner, Simple Empathy, believes if one seeks help before life’s situations get bad, it’s a proactive way to prevent a journey into those dark spaces.

“Think of it as a wellness visit with your primary care provider,” she smiled.

Kieri has always dreamed of creating a space for mental health that has not only therapy, but other healing modalities to provide a holistic approach to mental and physical wellness. She began her practice in January 2020 after finishing her post-graduate hours and supervision in another group practice in the city.

Family Systems
“The marriage and family therapy mindset is to look at the system when diagnosing issues, so my inspiration comes from the idea that the entire system should be treated if we’re going to thoroughly address the issues a person is struggling with,” she explained. “I have a master’s in marriage and family science and I’m a licensed marriage and family therapist. My acupuncturist, Anna Sloan, L.Ac., Dipl.O.M, has her master’s in Chinese medicine and acupuncture and is a great asset to those who come to our practice.”

Therapy can be a respite for strong women who may feel isolated in their own struggles with no one to turn to, especially if they find themselves, as often happens, in the emotional leadership role in relationships. A feeling of anxiousness or depression, or even just feeling a bit off with no idea why, is another reason to seek therapy. 

Simple Empathy addresses physical ailments, relaxation and energetic needs through acupuncture, apothecary and Reiki services, a bonus for clients. Kieri affirms her belief that their office is unique in the fact that they strive to be real. “If I’m running late because I need caffeine, hello Starbucks, I’ll pick one up for my client too to make up for being behind schedule,” she stated. “Anna and I are both really open about our own mental health journeys and the things that we do to maintain our balance. We provide wrap-around services to the humans that walk into our office. So, if you start acupuncture with Anna and she sees a need for therapy, you get introduced to me and vice versa. We are also introducing Reiki and massage into our services lineup to continue providing that whole wellness space for every one of our clients.”

Take a Breath
Her advice for turning your outlook around in the moment is to pause. Notice yourself having negative thoughts; don’t force them away but ask what they’re trying to tell you. Then, quite literally, lie down on the floor, breathe with your eyes closed, in for four seconds, hold your breath for four seconds, out for four, hold for four. Then stand up, look around the room and notice that the negativity has passed. 

“We so easily allow the positive to flow through us but the negative we hold on to for fear of its impacting others. I promise that the negative will impact them regardless, so let it flow. Invite those thoughts, those demons in, just for a moment, listen to them and then send them on their way,” she reflected.

Helping Modalities
Through the coming months of uncertainty, different politics and pandemic fears, she insisted that therapy, acupuncture, apothecary, Reiki, massage, working out and eating well may not always feel good. It shouldn’t be comfortable all of the time. “If it is, then you’re not working the hard stuff. Therapy should challenge you, acupuncture shouldn’t hurt but there should be spots that are a little uncomfortable for a moment; apothecary treatments don’t always taste the best, Reiki may make you cry, deep tissue massage may make you cringe a moment,” she continued. “The commonality here is that you’re processing through the hard things. Take a breath, keep going; this too shall pass.”      

Benjamin Franklin said, “Trouble knocked at the door, but hearing laughter, hurried away!” As these times continue, it is a nice thought that Simple Empathy offers ways to center ourselves and add a bit of comfort to our souls. 

Visit, or call 913-200-5546. Simple Empathy is located at 4010 Washington Avenue, Suite 401, Kansas City, Missouri.