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LifeTree Counseling Center, Inc.
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I can't believe it.
It is the end of September and I heard on the radio this morning we have 87 Sleeps until Christmas. Seriously?
The weather just changed. I haven't had a chance to change the office to our fall decor, nor is it time to watch my all time favorite Halloween classic,
"It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown." Poor Charlie Brown, his friends got the all candy while he got the rock in his candy bag.

"I Got A Rock."

When and my license renewal nears, I feel like Charlie Brown did, when he got a rock in his trick-or-treat bag, disheartened. I got all the "cool" CEUS, except for those 3 stinkin' hours of ethics and now I attend that uninspiring rock of a workshop. Most ethics CEUS I've attended in the past were free, poor in content and those 3 hours went as slow as molasses.
One free event comes to mind. There were 150+ attendees at this free event (hosted by a hospital). We got to listen to someone singing Karaoke songs, while the presenter was busy wandering around the room suggesting he wasn't going to do his powerpoint, since we were given a copy, and rather, talked about the gray of it all. I guess the singing was putting the "fun" back into this ethics training.

I was so darn upset, I left early. Didn't get those free CEUS. The host couldn't believe I left early and silently vowed I would never attend a free ethics ceu again.
Why do I hate taking the required ethics CEUS?
Because it is personal for me and 95% aren't inspiring or substantive or well-constructed. I would rather get a root canal than do this 3 hour gig.

Texas LPC Board- Austin Has A Problem
The LPC Board is suffocating with too many complaints. And it is about the stuff we need to know, but could care less.They are shocked that Texas LPC's haven't taken the time to learn the rules, until it's too late. As a result and effective July 2016, the LPC Board has recently changed the Ethics CEU requirements. 2 of the 4 must be "Texas Ethics."
Let the record reflect, I have been teaching Texas ethics since 2012. No one was too concerned then, until now.

Solution - Texas Approved Ethics CEUs.

If your license renewal is nearing and you are trying to find some substantive, fast-paced, hard core Ethics CEUS, you might want to check us out!
One thing I do know about our CEUS:
It is not boring and our attendees have a very good time. I talk about some fairly rough stuff, while teaching how to protect you. There is no gray in my ethics trainings: Zero-Zip-Nada. It will help you stay on the proper side of things. I have been-there-done that. You don't have to go through what I went through.Chocolate, cryin' towels, great fellowship, and food will be waiting for you at my private workshops.
And the kicker is; Our attendees come back! Here are a few comments left on the evaluation forms:"This is the best ethics CEU I have ever taken! Nobody talks about these things like you can."
"Thank-you for doing this.When can I come back?"
"Those 3 hours went by so quickly!"
" Outstanding. I love to be informed."
"I haven't seen this offered for LPC's ANYWHERE else!"
"More podcasts."

5 Different Boxes Of Rocks and It Isn't FREE, Either!
Each workshop is unique. Each are strong in content and I give you proactive things you can immediately implement in your daily operations.
Pick the rock box that best fits you!
Register on

Box Of Rocks #1. October 21 in Dallas: How To Avoid Getting the #?!! Scared Out Of You. Lori Vann, LPC-S and author of A Caregiver's Guide To Self Injury, and I are pairing up in Dallas to review some ethical sticky situations that occur for all of us and how to be proactive before it happens.

Box Of Rocks #2. November 4 in Austin: Texas at Sage Recovery and Wellness Center: How To Be Successful With A Release of Records Request I will be pairing up with my "favorite" Emeritus Senior Investigator Steve Slough and newly retired Executive Director of LPC Board, Bobbe Alexander in Austin, Texas. We will discuss how to release records, how and what the proper redaction techniques are and what constitutes a proper request. Bobbe and Steve will also give you a personal inside look of the mindset that is driving the board to uphold Joe Citizen.

Box Of Rocks #3. November 11 (Morning) in Addison: How To be Successful With A Release Of Records Request It will be just me at Life Tree Counseling Center. We will review Chapter 611, discuss redaction protocol, and how to handle a request. You will receive breakfast, workbook with good stuff in it and I will talk to you about attorneys and the relationship you will have with your affordable malpractice coverage.

Box Of Rocks # 4. November 11 (Afternoon) in Addison: Circle Of Safety Club: Post-Complaint Recovery CEU Workshop This interactive post-complaint recovery workshop, will adhere to a special format which is designed to help professionals recover, both professionally and personally, from the fallout the complaint process experience. We will review specific codes along the way, gain support and healing from this safe circle of attending professionals, complete, with a light lunch. Very limited seating.

Box Of Rocks #5. December 9 in Addison: Four Cornerstones of a Good "Ethics Program," Plus 1. This workshop is good for for anyone, but particularly Interns and new counselors who are beginning their private practice. I do an overview of the 4 big bad wolves blowing at your office door: HIPAA, PCI Compliance, Complaint Process & Malpractice Insurance Coverage. The Plus 1 is the fun stuff! My 12 "Must Haves" you need to create a successful and thriving business.

Let Me Hear From You

If you cannot attend, send me an email, let me know your thoughts. Be sure to put " Box Of Rocks" in the subject line.
I want you to tell me about your experience was like when taking free ethics CEU course.

After Party
Then, it will be Christmas.
I look forward to sleeping in that day, open presents, feast with my sweet family and, of course, watch football! (grin)

Plan Smart. Be Safe. Serve Others.

Give me a call me or email if you have any questions.
Most Sincerely,
972.234.6634 ext 101

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You literally cannot see, because "IT" extinguished all forms of light but something smells. You never saw "IT" coming. But now "IT" is here, on your doorstep. You wish you could go back to yesterday. But that isn't possible.
I tell professionals all the time, "It is not a matter of if, but when you receive that dead, stinking rat on your business doorstep. Aka; Complaint or worse.

Bitter Sweet
My heart sank the other day when I received the call from a professional who was in need of a consult. I love meeting people, but not like this.
I met a sweet spirited and very kind professional who was in a world of hurt. She sat in my office, papers in a folder and a note pad for her private consultation.The fresh Seattle's Best coffee I served was a weak attempt to welcome and soothe her. We had to review the bitter pill: a formal complaint she received just a few days prior. She was even early to the 8 am appointment!
Needless to say she was shaken, full of shame and in shock. She hadn't given herself permission to cry, yet. She was simply numb. This is not how you want to spend your early morning; meeting with the likes of me to discuss the professional incidence.
The meeting was somber, soft spoken, and metered. The room felt heavy. Because, it was.
My own set of memories, feelings, smells, suffocating due to a lack of oxygen and trauma associated with the "document" began to tug at me.... for about 30 seconds. Then it was "go time". We did not have a minute to waste.
I began to listen carefully to the story.This was her her first complaint in 24 years of doing the work she loves, which is serving those who are less fortunate than you or I. I read the lengthy complaint. All the accusations and the twisted hurt and turmoil was just beginning for her. The mess of it all.

When you receive a complaint, "IT" is personal and hits the core of you aren't. It permanently scars you.

Self Doubt occurs when you receive that dreaded complaint from your licensing board. Is it all true? What do I tell this professional? How do I handle this time with her? Do I tell her that this will go away soon? Agree that this is a bogus, an unfounded complaint and everything will be okay?

No, I can't. I can't do any of that.

But what I hope I was able to do was give her a concrete specific protocol sequence on how to handle “IT”.
I had to ask some uncomfortable questions. Giving her specific protocol was painful and honest. Much to my surprise, she seemed grateful, of course still shaken and rightfully so. My daily prayers will continue for this professional until the resolve… which may be anywhere from 425 - 765 daysor longer from today.
You see, in Texas that is the average “wait time” it may take with this particular board on how long you live with this stinking rat.FROM MY PERCH

There are evil people out there who may be wanting to hurt you. And while I cannot safely say whether you are as innocent as I was in all my 8 complaints, I can safely say this; if you don't ever have the chance to attend one of my Ethics seminars (which is cool by-the-way) the TOP 6 things you need to know when you go through the Complaint Process with your Licensing Board are:
1. You will never be the same.
2. You will change almost everything you do in your daily operations even though your business was fairly stealth prior to the complaint.
3. You will isolate from everyone.
4. You will want to quit and work at K-Mart (no disrespect to Kmart, just not the place you envisioned your career taking you).
5. You will be relentless in reading as much as you can about the Board, process and experience your malpractice/liability carrier in a whole new way.
6. Listen to my podcast. on how & what I had to do to survive.

Are You Curious Now?

Ever wonder how to properly respond to your licensing board when that treacherous complaint comes your way? Ever want to know how to testify before the board? Have you ever wanted to know those things to do BEFORE you get that thing you never saw coming? Want to know about your malpractice/liability insurance BEFORE things go awry? Well then: THIS.IS.FOR.YOU!

Monday, February 29, 2016 Private Workshop For You

My next private workshop regarding the complaint process and other things that may get you in trouble. You will thank me ... later.
I am here to help you, comfort you, and be very honest with you. I will help you weather those things that go BUMP in your business NIGHT.
You may also go to: Search: Ethics City/State: Addison Texas.

Call me if you have any questions or concerns: 972.234.6634 ext. 104
Email me ( and share your thoughts with me about this article. Put: K-MART in your subject line.

In additon to my workshops and the upcoming 2016 webinars, I do private consultations to process the complaint you have been rendered. You will get a game plan, sequenced for your own set of circumstances, and support from someone who has "been there, done that"...and is living mightly to tell you about "IT".

Final Words For You, My Colleague From Afar

It is how you respond to your failure and whether you can pick yourself back UP to fight and defend
appropriately the machiavellian acts done by others against you! Remember: It is how you respond.

I love what I do. And, I know you do too.

Stay Safe. Play Right.

Kathleen Mills, LPC-S, CEAP, Business Development Consultant For The Mental Health Professional
Ethics Workshop: Monday, February 29, 2016

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They just came in yeterday! Bonus FlashDrives with great PracticeMentors resources for our workshop attendees on a Friday.
All I have to do is load each drive between now and Friday morning. Got podcasts tips, tools, and the workshop's slide deck on this little 1GB thing of cuteness!
I decided I would much rather give my attendees a resource packet than serve food.
A big shout out THANK YOU to Phillip Crum, and Sir Speedy/Addison!!!
Registration ends Thursday, August 27 at 6p

Ethics: Duties and Obligations Under Chapter 611/Mental Health Records

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They just came in yeterday! Bonus FlashDrives with great PracticeMentors resources for our workshop attendees on a Friday.
All I have to do is load each drive between now and Friday morning. Got podcasts tips, tools, and the workshop's slide deck on this little 1GB thing of cuteness!
I decided I would much rather give my attendees a resource packet than serve food.
A big shout out THANK YOU to Phillip Crum, and Sir Speedy/Addison!!!
Registration ends Thursday, August 27 at 6p

Ethics: Duties and Obligations Under Chapter 611/Mental Health Records

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SecurityMetrics' Tod Ferran Talks HIPAA Earlier this year, Kathleen Mills hosted a half-day workshop featuring Tod Ferran of SecurityMetrics. SecurityMetrics is a company specializing in HIPAA compliance procedures and offers several programs to help mental health counselors and related professions, get “up to code”. WARNING:
The post SecurityMetrics' Tod Ferran Talks HIPAA appeared first on Life Tree Counseling.

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"Today, my group practice is completely different in how I run it and what I need to know, than when I started in 1992. I had to go through many, necessary endings throughout our 23 years, and it has always paid off. Although some more painful than other times, we have always stayed ahead of the business curve.
Life Tree remains here, strong, and thriving.
YET AGAIN, I find myself in another revision.I am ending our outdated HIPAA procedures and implementing the new plan.
Do I want to do this? No. Do I have to? Yes.
Being a good business owner means I have to do things that are not comfortable."
Hope to see you at the event. But if you cannot make it, check out the valuable HIPAA resources that is offered by SecurityMetrics.
Kathleen Mills, LPC CEAP

Guided HIPAA Compliance Workshop

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GUIDED HIPAA WORKSHOP with the One and Only;
Tod Ferran at SecurityMetrics Friday, May 1, 2015
Yes...3 LPC CEUS (Ethics)
Too many risk analyses..
... overlook critical security weaknesses that leave patient data exposed in healthcare environments. Using recent case studies, learn to accurately analyze and safeguard a patient data environment through the creation of an accurate risk analysis. Discover how to mesh apathetic over-worked staff, security-conscious patients, and rigorous HIPAA requirements to create a highly operative compliance atmosphere.
Who is This Workshop For?
Professors and their College Students. Supervisors and especially their Interns and all Mental Health Professionals who see clients.
Your licensing board will love you... more than BACON, your Board will love you if you take this course!
What may we expect to take from this 3-hour workshop?
HIPAA security expert Tod Ferran will teach you how to: Accurately analyze and safeguard a patient data environment through the creation of a complete and thorough risk analysis. Evaluate the unique Texas HIPAA requirements for counselors and analyze your organization’s patient data protections. Conduct an office walk-through to create your very own office Private Health Information map.
Do I really need to know about this? Why is this so important?
Please listen to my podcast Episode #52 in which I interviewed Tod Ferran (get to know your presenter before you attend) about the new layer of HIPAA compliance checklist each counselor is required to complete in their business practice. Then come meet Tod and let him prepare you to fully comply with the new regulations.
What can I expect?
A Fun Free giveaway prize in each session (woohoo!). One lucky winner per session. (What do you think it might be? - grin)
To be in an encouraging and uplifting environment, while learning how to continue to protect, equip, and defend your private practice from the HIPAA police (Office of Civil Rights). This is a wonderful event to help ease any worries, dispell myths while equipping you with a strong approach to helping keep your clients information safe and secure.
Where is the registration page?
Click Here, sign-up for this one of kind workshop expressly for the Texas mental health professional. This is the only time he will be in Dallas for our profession. He is the best of the best. If you listen to Tod's podcast (honor system) use his promocode: TodFerrran@SecurityMetrics for a very nice discount. (website pending: please signup for a personal announcement of our launch) is designed to bring you the best...because you are worth it!
Email me is you have any questions or concerns.
Wishing you the very best of things!
Most Sincerely,
Kathleen Mills, LPC CEAP

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HIPAA Workshop on May 1 in Dallas. Check it OUT! Is this for you? If not share with someone who needs this review.

Guided HIPAA Compliance Workshop

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Kim Smith – Seeking Counseling For Mental Health Disorders SUMMARY: Kathleen Mills and Phillip Crum talk with Kim Smith about the stigma of seeking counseling for mental health issues. Episode #58 |Kim Smith | Mental Health Disorder Treatment Speakers: Kathleen Mills-Proprietor, Counselor at Life Tree Counseling Phillip Crum-The Content
The post Kim Smith – Seeking Counseling For Mental Health Disorders appeared first on Life Tree Counseling.

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On May 1, 2015 is sponsoring two, 3-hour workshops conducted by Tod Ferran of SecurityMetrics. SecurityMetrics, Inc. is a multi-national merchant data security and compliance company based in Utah. Who is this 3 hour workshop for? Several groups: 1. It
The post appeared first on Life Tree Counseling.
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