We had the good fortune of connecting with Brynne Goldberg, LPCC and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Brynne, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
I am hopeful that I can directly impact my community since my business and I am one and the same. My professional goals are also my personal goals. Destigmatization and awareness of mental health and mental health care are not only a part of my business mission; they are a part of my personal mission as well. I want to do more than solely provide talk therapy. I’m bursting with ideas, passion, drive, and motivation, and I’m confident in my stamina. I feel this fire burning inside me will not go out until I am sure the changes I want for the world are visible and palpable. To put it simply, I want a trip to the therapist to be as conventional as a trip to the dentist.
Although great strides have been made in this arena, being on the ground level of the mental health field allows me to assess where people are really at. And so, I know there are more strides to be made.
I often talk to my clients about goal setting. I say, “take your goals, cut them in half, and then make them even smaller.” This tactic creates the most attainable and realistic path towards achievement.
It creates what I call “steppingstones.” Outlining manageable goals sets you up for success and avoids the demotivating and cyclical effect of failure. And, I need to remind myself of this as well. Simply thinking about taking on a hurdle of this magnitude is incredibly daunting for me, particularly while building a business. Additionally, being so attuned to the pain and suffering worldwide is a heavy thing to carry and compounds the effects of these hurtles. I must take a step back, adjust my focus, and remind myself that change must start somewhere. I have to remind myself of my stepping stones and, as my colleague Georgia Grey, owner of Whole Body Healing, says, “It’s all about the 1% changes.” Small changes over time accumulate to more significant accomplishments.
I want to think that I make minor impacts in the lives of my clients daily, but I know I’m made to do more. One stepping stone towards pursuing this change is connecting with individuals outside my office and creating a more profound rapport than casual conversation. I hope that offering insight in an amenable and approachable manner will facilitate greater understanding and reflection. I intend to ignite a small fire in those in my direct sphere of impact that will feel impassioned to further promote the message. This also includes educating, modeling acceptance for myself and others, embodying authenticity, and a willingness to talk through tough topics.
I’m most excited about working with friends and colleagues to create community programs and consulting with community organizations to distribute information to larger audiences. I have a couple of projects in the works that incorporate my love of the outdoors, recreation, and equestrianism. I hope that these projects will be powerful channels in prompting the necessary shifts in awareness and acceptance of mental health by reaching people in the Denver-Metro area as well as people across Colorado.
Having been in business less than a year, I feel fortunate to have made meaningful connections and positioned myself in a way that is already aiding me in pursuing my mission. After two of the most challenging years of my life, I feel gratefully excited for what is to come. And, I’ve only just begun.
What should our readers know about your business?
My business was a birth of necessity for two distinct reasons. The primary reason was the lack of recognition and services specific to athletes. The second reason was the COVID-19 pandemic.
I was born naturally athletic. I loved everything from riding my bike and rollerblading to playing soccer, gymnastics, diving, and horseback riding. I wasn’t born with natural confidence for competition. When the game or competition was over, I would tear myself apart, scrutinize, and ruminate over everything I didn’t do well enough. As an adolescent, I was completely unaware of why I would do this to myself. My parents even said they wouldn’t let me compete if I continued to be so hard on myself. Reflecting on those times now as an adult, I recognize that I struggled with severe anxiety. Although I am grateful for these experiences as they have bestowed upon me the ability to explicitly and authentically connect with my clients, I often wonder where my talents could have taken me had I had the appropriate mental health care.
My love of sport, snow, and mountain life eventually led me to Vail, CO. I moved there after college to pursue a career in on-mountain special event production and marketing. This pursuit gave way to a long career in the ski industry as a certified alpine instructor and coach. However, after eight consecutive seasons, the accumulation of 25 + years’ worth of sport-related injuries began to take its toll, and managing chronic pain became a reality. I knew a career change was inevitable.
Having grown up spending winters in Vermont, I was easily drawn to the illustrious mountain lifestyle and the excitement of the ski industry. But it was the rapport I built with students, athletes, coaches, and trainers that began fueling my fondness for the mentorship aspect of the career and highlighting my innate empathetic abilities. And so, when it came time to retire from the ski industry, I realized I could parlay those skills into a career in the mental health field.
Being that the mountains of Colorado play host to so many athletes, living amongst them for almost a decade offered me a unique insight into their lives. The countless hours I spent at the Howard Head physical therapy offices in Vail and Breckenridge during my time in the ski industry also provided me with an insider’s perspective on the lives of athletes after injuries and retirement and the impacts those changes had on their mental health. My physical therapist, Nate Degraaf, was also a close friend, and we’d often talk about these struggles at length. Another friend of mine, Joe Howdyshell, owner of the Summit Endurance Academy and head coach to Olympic-bound athletes, and I spent many mornings discussing where sport psychology ended, where mental health therapy could begin, and the unique challenges athletes faced.
At that time, athletes weren’t being recognized as a population needing specialization within the mental health field. Neither in mainstream media nor in my graduate program. I knew that increasing awareness of and providing mental health care for athletes would be my specialty, my practice focus, and a life goal. I had a clear vision of my dream career. But, I never imagined it would actually become a reality, and I certainly never considered how soon I would find myself in that reality.
To make a very long story short, before the pandemic, I had my life and career fairly mapped out with the understanding that maybe sometime in the far future, I could own my own practice. I had a townhome in Breckenridge, worked full time at the Summit Community Care Clinic in Frisco, and planned to stay there for at least two years while gaining hours towards my licensure. However, the pandemic significantly altered the course of all I had mapped out. In March 2020, I was laid off due to the pandemic’s financial impact on the clinic, and I spent most of the year searching for a behavioral health position at another community clinic.
In August 2020, I moved to Winter Park, CO, to pursue a prospective job with a nearby community clinic and an opportunity to shadow the Sports Psychology coach, Steph Zavilla, for the Winter Park Competition Center. However, I was also facing emotionally strenuous personal and familial issues behind the scenes. And so, when the clinic offered me a position, I had to decline to move to the front range to support my family. I began searching for opportunities all over the Denver-Metro area. When December rolled around, and I found myself still out of work, I decided to take matters into my own hands. Peak Pursuits LCC was born, and I opened up shop in a little office in Denver by January 2021. The beginning was challenging, as most entrepreneurs find in their initial stages of development. When spring rolled around, I realized that I would need to establish a Denver-based referral network to generate clients. I decided to join a WellCare marketplace, essentially a one-stop-shop for all things health and wellness. Come summertime, I began filling my practice with new clients, and I started establishing the network of providers and referral sources that would eventually become integral partners in providing the comprehensive and integrated care I saw in my vision way back when. Now I’m at a stage of my career I didn’t know I could achieve. I’m working alongside a care team of exceptional female providers and creating a space for the athlete population to seek specialized mental health care. And, I’ve only just begun.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
When friends and family come to visit, we head straight for the hills! My heart and soul belong in the mountains. It’s where I feel the most at ease, and I love sharing the experience. Wintertime in the mountains is the most magical of all. Strolling around any mountain town is a nostalgic experience, evoking the joy and giddiness of childhood. There are also endless activities for all interests and abilities. My brother and I always take my dad out for some resort skiing. Last year, we even took him touring in Rocky Mountain National park! My mom and sister love to explore and snowshoe. Together, our favorite thing to do is indulge in the local fare and enjoy some live music!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to give a shout-out to the four women who have directly contributed to my success as a practitioner as well as become a part of my personal support team in friendship and badass boss-babedom.
Georgia Grey, the owner of Whole Body Healing, has been an incredible support during my transition to the front range. She was one of the very first providers I met with and quickly became a teammate with whom I’ve enjoyed collaborating with and a dear friend. Her specialized skill set and gentle nature make her an ideal provider and confidant.
Cora Mattie, PA, owner of Balanced Health Care, and I immediately connected over the ideals we shared relevant to the importance of providing personalized care that leaves clients feeling genuinely cared for, heard, and understood, particularly in the face of our current health care systems. I feel comfortable and confident when I refer a client to Cora because I know they’ll get the attention and time they deserve.
Mara Richman Czegel, Ph.D., came into my life at a pivotal time. Our kinship was wildly undeniable as we formed an uncanny bond before even having met in person. I’ll never forget our first phone consultation. Within moments it felt like I was chatting with a long-lost twin. Mara has been such a blessing professionally and personally. On the hardest days, I find comfort in knowing she is in my corner.
Dr. Amy Osborn, the owner of Apto Physical Therapy, has been a real inspiration to me. She bends over backward for her clients, sacrificing her own time to accommodate their needs. Her practice is thriving, undoubtedly, because of her as a human and because she is unrivaled in what she does. I’m incredibly excited for future endeavors with this boss-babe because her personality is electric, and her energy is infectious.
All these women have come to play integral roles in my ability to offer wrap-around services by providing comprehensive and integrated care. I truly do not know where I would be without them. They have become my most trusted colleagues, friends, and sisters.
Bonnie Sen Photography