Down to Earth Counseling: Cheryl Lewis, LMHC - Handel Behavioral Health
Mental Health Blog

Down to Earth Counseling: Cheryl Lewis, LMHC

May 9, 2024

Amy Mauro

In a busy, complex, and stressful world, finding an empathetic person who will listen to you and help you process life’s most difficult circumstances is a gift. 

Cheryl Lewis, LMHC always returns to a place of empathy and understanding in her therapy practice. 

With her person-centered and collaborative approach, Cherly will safely help you develop new tools to meet life’s challenges and tap into your strengths to forge new insights into your emotions and behaviors. 

She will encourage positive change throughout the duration of your time together, and may help you understand where you’re unintentionally blocking yourself from positive growth. 

We sat down with Cheryl to learn more about her 15+ years of experience working in the mental health field, and what her therapeutic approach involves. Learn more about working with Cheryl online or in our West Springfield office!

What led you to become a mental health counselor?

Much like the process in therapy, my path to counseling hasn’t been linear. 

When I graduated from college, where I studied psychology, I still felt very young. I wanted to gain more life experience and work in the service industry. Through those years of working in restaurants, I built meaningful connections with people because, no matter what I’m doing, I’m curious about those around me, I focus on similarities instead of differences, and I actively listen to what people are saying.  

Eventually, I wanted to deepen my understanding of psychology and apply my skills in the mental health setting. I earned my graduate degree from Springfield College, with a dual concentration in Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling. I started working with clients of all ages and diagnoses, as well as couples and families, and I’ve been practicing ever since.

How would you describe your therapeutic style and approach?

Early on in graduate school, one of my professors told me to always ask myself, “Am I being honest with myself?” People can tell when you’re not being honest with yourself, and clients will pick up on that. 

So, I focus on bringing my authentic self to therapy and form connections from there. 

Through all of the life experiences and counseling work that I’ve done, I’ve realized that everybody struggles, and while we present differently and come from various backgrounds and walks of life, we’re all people navigating the ups and downs of life.

I connect with people by helping them to feel at ease, even when our work together is challenging or feels difficult. At times, I may push clients and be more direct with my approach, but it is always my job to make sure that the client feels safe and supported throughout.

What treatment modalities do you offer in sessions?

I like to utilize different therapeutic modalities depending on what the client needs and what they feel comfortable with. 

We’ll often work through anxiety and depression with cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which aims to help clients identify unhelpful thoughts that may be unintentionally keeping them stuck, and replace them with positive and affirming thoughts. 

When I’m counseling families, we may refer to Internal Family Systems Therapy, an approach that addresses and identifies the many parts and personalities of family members interacting with each other. 

I like to offer coping techniques grounded in mindfulness to help clients gain greater awareness of their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors in the here and now. No two clients are the same, so I remain open and flexible with finding practices that build on the clients strengths and goals.

What mental health conditions and life situations can you help clients work through?

I’ll support clients who are experiencing the following life challenges and mental health conditions, 

What is your favorite part of being a therapist?

Honestly, I love the clients I work with. I love helping people and being an advocate for their gift of life. 

I feel like if you don’t love counseling, or if you’re doing it for the paycheck, it won’t be a rewarding experience for you or the person you’re supporting. 

I’ll tell my younger clients, when they’re thinking about what they want to do, to pick a career that brings them some form of fulfillment and joy.

What self-care practices do you like to engage in?

Exercising is my outlet for releasing anxious thoughts and feelings. It helps stabilize my mood and sets me up for a positive day. 

I also have a dog- my pride and joy- who I love to go walking and hiking with.

Start working with Cheryl Lewis, LMHC today

With her easy going and empathetic nature, Cheryl Lewis, LMHC will help you feel at home, even when working through challenging circumstances.  

To start working with Cheryl online or in-person from our West Springfield office, contact us today at (413) 343-4357.

About The Author

Nettie Hoagland Headshot

Nettie Hoagland is a writer with experience in local news reporting, nonprofit communications, and community development. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in Media Studies, Journalism, and Digital Arts from Saint Michael’s College in Vermont. Nettie believes in the healing power of the arts to create connection and community. She is passionate about using writing as an instrument for personal and social growth in the field of mental health. She is currently based in Brooklyn, NY.

Cheryl Lewis Headshot

Cheryl’s easy going and empathetic demeanor will help you feel at ease, even when speaking about life’s most difficult circumstances. Cheryl uses a person-centered and collaborative approach to meet clients where they are in the therapy process. Assisting with building on client strengths, Cheryl will encourage positive change and growth throughout the duration of therapy. More About Author →