Elizabeth Barrett

Host of The Reluctant Therapist

Elizabeth Barrett is a wife, mother, licensed marriage-family therapist, educator, eaves dropper, emotion worker, and mental health consultant. She uses all of these skills to address the subjects that we all struggle with in this conversation with the Reluctant Therapist.

Ways to Connect

Life is a series of movements forward and times of pulling back. How do we know which way to proceed in relationships, personal choices and in raising our children? Tune in for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, about navigating the emotional minefields we face in our lives.

Brandon Demchak enlisted in the U.S. Army at 21 and was deployed twice before being honorably discharged in 2015. Demchak returned home, like many veterans, with a "noise in his head" that haunted his days and nights. He was soon diagnosed as PTSD. His journey to healing led to discovering a gift for film and storytelling. Today, Brandon is dedicated to bringing a message of hope and awareness to fellow veterans and civilians through the big screen.

How far have we come? And how far do we still have to go to understand, and make adjustments in, how we view and speak about gender, sexuality and equality for all? With each new generation comes a greater awareness of the wide spectrum of human experience and we are tasked to incorporate new language, new perspectives and a broader acceptance of those with whom we share this world. Tune in Tuesday at 2 in the afternoon for a conversation with the Reluctant Therapist, Elizabeth Barrett and her guests Douglas Heumann and Keegan Meadows about their lives, loves and hopes for the future.

If self-love is the key to well-being, why isn't that skill taught and nurtured? Instead, we are a culture that focuses on chasing perfection, reveres competition and shames those who attempt to live a life of joy and self-acceptance. If you weren't at war with your body how would you spend your time? Tune in at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, for a conversation about the battles that disrupt our mental health and quality of life.

What is the polite and appropriate way to enjoy live music, or any live performance?  It seems that more and more people have become so distracted by taking selfies, recording their every experience and sharing every thought - that they’ve forgotten, or lost, the art of public behavior.

Positivity is a state of mind that must be nurtured and cultivated, especially in the face of great challenges and negativity. Surrounding ourselves with upbeat people can help to improve our own mental health. Tune in Tuesday at two in the afternoon for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the Reluctant Therapist, and her guests Mike Wood and Andre Giovanni about their inspiring lives.

Travel has a profound effect on our mental, physical and intellectual lives - and often travel can be achieved by never leaving our homes. Taking a trip - in any form - by car, by foot, by plane or by brain - can help us to widen our perspectives and make room for personal growth in ways that felt impossible when stuck in our known routines and patterns. Tune in today at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, about what inspires travel, and where we travel influences who we are.

The summer solstice is a mystical time - the longest day of the year, the midpoint in the earth's journey around the sun and an opportunity to heighten our senses and well-being with more opportunities for time spent outdoors. What will you make of your mid-year reset? Tune in today at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, about capturing the energy of the season and making the most of the healing vibrations that are available all around if we take the time to slow down, breathe in and move with joy and intention.


Graduations, Weddings, Birthdays and Births all include some sort of wish for the future of the person, or people, being honored. The intentions and hopes that we bestow upon another can carry great weight as they move on through the course of their lives. So it is important to think about what it is that we are actually gifting to another when we toast to their new adventures. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist about wishing one well, without burdening them with an impossible task.

The counseling profession has been through many changes since 1968 from differing theories on treatment to an expanded list of potential disorders and a heavy reliance on pharmaceutical intervention. So what have we learned over the last 50 years about the condition of the human psyche? And what will be the mental health challenges that we face in the next 50 years? Tune in at 2 for a Conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist about the hope of counseling in improving our lives.

We are all a product of our varied life experiences;  and how we choose to interpret and reflect on those experiences becomes the story that we live, and also becomes the story that we tell others about who we are.  One of life's greatest joys is simply listening to those  stories of other's lives and marveling at the many paths that we all end up walking. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a Conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, for the first in a series of stories shared by unique and interesting individuals.

When the need became greater than the government, established programs and state agencies could handle, caring citizens came together to address the addiction crisis, and other issues facing students and families in their community. Over 20 years later, the thriving Atascadero Greyhound Foundation is still tirelessly working to provide healing and opportunities to those who are struggling. What can other communities learn from this successful model? And what kind of help are parents still looking for?

Mother's Day is certainly a boon for the florist and greeting card industries - but does the second Sunday in May really benefit the women it claims to honor? The intention is to celebrate and acknowledge the efforts of the person who has done more for you than anyone else - but is the ideal of a sacrificial Mother really in the best interest of the mental health and well-being of women? Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the reluctant therapist, about how to really value and show appreciation for the moms in your life.

In a society obsessed with youth and beauty - how far should we go in an attempt to meet social standards for appearance? Enhancing our appearance might be good for our soul and mental health. But we may need to redefine our beauty ideal. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the Reluctant Therapist about the often precarious quest for our best self.

Is there an easy way to ask for forgiveness, to beg for your pardon or just say I'm sorry? What makes the act of apology so difficult? And how can we be sure that our mea culpa will be received in the spirit that it is offered? We all have things that we would like to apologize for - so what is holding us back? Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with Elizabeth Barrett, the Reluctant Therapist about the freedom that accompanies a sincere and heartfelt apology, and the possibility for more satisfying relationships moving forward.

48 years ago, on April 22, 1970, millions of people took to the streets to protest the negative impacts of 150 years of industrial development - and the first Earth Day was born. With global ecological awareness growing, the US Congress responded quickly to create the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and pass environmental laws such as the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act. But here we are, facing catastrophic change and instead of strengthening protections, the United States is moving backwards.

Spring is the season full of promise and wonder - new life, new possibilities and a return to the vitality of a world come alive after a long, dreary winter. Sounds a bit like the seasons of marriage - which begin with eternal hope, basking in the warmth of love and connection and then slowly fading into periods of waning light, disappointment and loneliness, followed by the cold, feelings of anger, despair and loss.

There has been a lot of activity, writing, and discussion lately around the topic of Depression and how we think about this most distressing and prevalent of mood disorders. What if everything we believe is wrong and that everything we are doing to make it better is actually making it worse? And what if feeling depressed is actually our new normal - and feelings of joy, hope and happiness have become just fleeting experiences that we enjoy through certain times in our life?

We are in an era when acts of violence have become almost commonplace. We have calls for reform, regulations and more mental health care; we call, we write, we argue, we march. But what no one seems to do is understand or address the factors that lead someone to plan and execute an attack on others. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with the Reluctant Therapist, Elizabeth Barrett, about the gaping holes in our social fabric that lead to acts of despicable desperation.

In 1848, 300 women and men gathered in Seneca Falls, NY for the inaugural Women's Rights Convention, advertised as a convention to discuss social, civil and religious conditions and the rights of women. Tune in Tuesday at 2 pm for a conversation with the reluctant therapist Elizabeth Barrett  from the Women's Rights National Historic Park in western New York, about the role of history in making the women's marches and #metoo movements possible today.

With so many causes needing our attention, how do we narrow our focus in a way that can really make a difference and prevent the inevitable burnout and overwhelming feelings that often accompany activism? Elizabeth Barrett leads a conversation about one of the keys to sustaining our mental health: service to others. How do we each create our own authentic way of taking action?

Women are rising in many ways, socially, politically, emotionally and fiercely; stepping into the spotlight and leading the way toward revolutionary change. Although women have always been an instrumental part of our cultural story, starting movements, developing patents, making discoveries and blazing new trails- but women have been widely ignored in the telling of our shared history- and their abilities have been vastly underestimated. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with the Reluctant Therapist, Elizabeth Barrett, celebrating women’s accomplishments and place in the world as we honor international Women’s Day and women’s history month.

For 28 years the Bioneers have fostered a community of revolutionary thinkers and visionaries working together to re-imagine how we can live on Earth in ways that honor the web of life, each other and future generations. The challenge for leaders and activists is how to maintain their energy and focus at a time when change is needed in so many areas. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a Conversation with the Reluctant Therapist, Elizabeth Barrett and her guest, Nina Simons, co-founder of Bioneers, about the journey to creating a new understanding of leadership and how love, the feminine and embracing our own power may be the path to a new world.

For the better part of the last decade, award-winning photographer, author, and filmmaker Chris Burkard has continued to refine and redefine his own version of success. From his local roots to gaining international recognition, this married father of two has used his curiosity about the world and passion for lifelong learning to create a life that many would envy but few would have the energy and dedication to make it happen.

Turn Worry to Trust. In an age when we are more connected than ever, why is it that we still feel so insecure, vulnerable and afraid? It might be that we've give into worry and lost our ability to trust. Tune in Tuesday at 2 for a conversation with the reluctant therapist, Elizabeth Barrett, about serendipity, kismet and an actual godsend. Your calls will be welcomed and encouraged.

How far have we traveled down the road to equality for all? In honor of Black History month and the contributions of African Americans in shaping the United States, listen for a conversation with host Elizabeth Barrett and her guests—a social activist in high school and a retired military veteran with ties to the civil rights movement—about their generational perspectives regarding the state of freedom and justice in America. They consider how we got here and where we’re going.

Jennifer Storm is the ultimate survivor, turned thriver, overcoming addiction, trauma and adversity to become an author and appointed Pennsylvania Victim Advocate fighting for other's rights. She offers insights and firsthand experiences about the complexities of biological and emotional responses to trauma and sexual assault. Tune in for a conversation with host Elizabeth Barrett and her guest about key components that can help a person turn their lives around in even the darkest of circumstances.

What is your family story? Every family has one, whether it's about a long-held family business, a home passed down through generations, or annual holiday gatherings that bring everyone together. Having a family legacy—a shared sense of purpose and belonging—is a cornerstone to our mental health and well-being. This is a conversation with host Elizabeth Barrett about creating your own family mission statement and why knowing your history matters, warts and all.

Television has struggled with a long complex and often misunderstood relationship with viewers. But although some studies may indicate some negatives associated with passive viewing, since the 1960s television has also been the driver of many social changes and introduced the American public to new issues, ideas, challenges, and triumphs. Some say television is in a platinum age of excellence. How do we harness this old school form of communication in a way that actually improves our social connections and well-being?

The are the four essential tools for mental health and well-being. The question is, how to we put them all together in challenging times? And how do you know if we're on the right path? Listen as Elizabeth Barrett discusses the paths to healing that are within our reach if we are willing to own our power and take responsibility for our lives.