Janie Pfeifer Watson
Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker
Licensed Independent Mental Health Practitioner
Janie, the founder and director, has been working in private practice since 1992 and brings a wealth of experience both through her work and her personal life. She believes that as a therapist she can only work with a client as deeply as she herself has worked. She continues to work on herself with a goal towards a healthy, balanced, whole life through the integration of mind, body, and soul. She believes that we never are done with working on our self as we grow through life’s happenings.
“Therapy is a spiritual journey to me. I see my role as the therapist to be a mirror to the clients, reflecting back to them what I hear them saying about their own knowing, essence, passion, pain, and potential. It is through this process of looking at self that individuals indeed find the path to their soul. It is my role as the therapist to sit with clients in the midst of their journey and allow them the opportunity to get to know and see their own self, which ultimately leads to a process of loving themselves and embracing their own authenticity. This is part of the soul journey: learning to love ourselves which indeed is a rewarding experience that leads to the enhancement and well-being of living life.”
Janie wrote and published the book Finding the Peace in 2011. This book is the story of her own life journey to wholeness. Although it is a book about her experience of overcoming chronic depression, the book highlights the real need for each of us to learn to listen to our own inner voice and wisdom. Life offers us stepping stones to grow and learn more about ourselves and our life mission. Each event or hardship becomes a stepping-stone for growth by training us and preparing us for the next phase of our life. Perceived negative moments then become opportunity to find our self, our soul and the right path to be following. This has been the truth in her own life which is seen through the story of Finding the Peace.
As an Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker, Janie’s training centers on systems theory. This involves working with individuals, couples and families using a systemic approach which takes into account the individual’s systems that support and impact his/her life. From this perspective, changing one person in a system (family) can shift the entire family as each part influences the whole.
Janie is a member of the National Association of Social Workers and the National Association of Social Workers for Private Practitioners. She has served as a board member on the Nebraska Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. She was awarded Social Worker of the Year by NASW in 2015.
Janie graduated from Kearney State College with a Bachelor of Science degree in both Social Work and Psychology. She completed her Master of Social Work degree at the University of Nebraska from Omaha.
Janie’s expertise encompasses a broad range of areas including depression, anxiety, attachment and bonding, child and adolescent behavioral difficulties, family-of-origin, mindfulness, trauma work, couple and marriage, divorce, step-family, grief, adjustment difficulties, dialectical behavior therapy and mindfulness based stress reduction.
Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction
Janie’s most current passion and mission is centered on teaching mindfulness to others so that they too will realize the life-changing practice of implementing mindfulness into daily life. Janie is in the process of becoming certified as a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) teacher. This process takes years as it requires four silent retreats (5-10 days) along with numerous trainings that teaches the fundamentals of MBSR. Admission to the MBSR certification path is limited to those who maintain a strong, regular, meditation practice, engage in regular multi-day silent meditation retreats, and have professional experience in healthcare or related fields that align with bringing mindfulness practice to the world.
She facilitates an eight-week course (Mindful Approach to Living) based on the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction classes several times a year. In this class, participants are given the opportunity to begin to implement a formal and informal practice of mindfulness into daily life. Along with the program for adults, Wholeness Healing Center also offers a children and adolescent group for developing Mindfulness skills.
Life and Executive Coaching
Janie offers life and executive coaching for clients and businesses through the Wholeness Healing EAP. She is a certified trainer in Emergenetics which offers a self-assessment profile that is used for individual and team development. As an Emergenetic trainer, Janie provides one-on-one coaching and team development workshops which facilitate communication and enhances personal and team effectiveness.
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
Janie is certified and trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), Level I and II, and has completed ongoing training. EMDR is a powerful therapy modality that removes the strong feelings and negative beliefs that develop as the result of a painful event. It is used for trauma work and has been found to work in just a few sessions to decrease trauma symptoms significantly, allowing the person to overcome suffering due to trauma. It is also used for improving performance in many life areas and to increase positive self-thoughts while decreasing the negative thoughts.
EMDR Institute, Inc.
Janie has been trained in neurobiofeedback which is used for a variety of issues in areas of both physical and mental health. This is a technique that teaches the client to learn how to alter brain waves, which can strengthen the brain in areas that will allow for improvement of the symptoms. The better the brain functions, the better it is able to take care of body and mind issues. Her training also encompasses Alpha-Theta training which is used to stabilize the physiology of the brain resulting in the person having more brain stability and flexibility allowing the person to maintain a calm, focused place in the midst of stressful moments. It is a deep altered state very similar to the state of hypnosis. The training focuses on increasing motivation and decreasing fear. Janie is also trained in Peak Performance which utilizes braining training to stabilize the brain, while training the brain to be in “the zone” maintaining a calm, focused state to perform to the best of your ability.
EEG Spectrum International, Inc.
Special Areas of Interest
Janie especially enjoys working with women. Her passion around women comes from her own journey through depression and the understanding that depression, anxiety and other discomforts can be quite inspirational and empowering to move through. And is very treatable!
Janie has a special interest in marital and couples work and utilizes additional training in Gottman Couples Therapy to bring in the skills that are needed. Marital work often centers on communication skill building and relationship enhancement.
She also has extensive experience in working with grief and loss and finds this work to be fulfilling as she walks the fire with those who are living it. She also works extensively with the elderly. This population is growing as the baby boomers get older and she finds working with people in the sage part of their life to be significant.
She has also facilitated many groups over the years and loves group work due to the additional opportunities it offers for the clients’ healing. Because she believes in the power of group work, Wholeness Healing Center offers many group opportunities for all populations to enhance the healing and growing process.
Janie has Critical Incident Stress Management training and extensive training in crisis response. She provides these services to businesses through Wholeness Healing Center’s EAP and national EAPs guiding people through traumatic times.
She is certified as a Dialectical Behavior Therapist and finds DBT skills, when integrated into life, are “life-changing”. She facilitated the women’s DBT group for several years and developed a children’s group for mindfulness that also works on teaching some of the DBT skills all centered around a foundation of mindfulness.
Trainings and Presentations
Currently, Janie is presenting informational talks on Mindfulness and how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Janie has presented across the state on therapeutic and redirective parenting and attachment disorder. She has trained therapists, caseworkers, foster parents and adoptive parents in the area of successfully parenting behaviorally difficult children. She enjoys training parents to provide them with additional tools needed in raising children who require a different parenting approach. Her colleague, Deb England, and she also presented training for the Omaha Public Schools entitled “Giving Kids Something to Think About”. This was a presentation on teaching children how to Strong Sit, a form of sitting that the child practices, which teaches him to sit quietly with himself; be calm and learn to self modulate their emotions.
Over the years, Janie has supervised students completing their internship at Wholeness Healing Center, PC. She is committed to Wholeness Healing Center continuing to contribute to the development of therapists. Wholeness Healing Center offers opportunities for student interns to be able to attain good supervision and training while doing their internship at Wholeness Healing Center. This contributes to the mental health field and the community in offering good training to therapists as they develop and go out and offer services to others. Wholeness Healing Center regularly brings students in to learn and develop.
Janie and her husband Jerry have been married since 1976. They have three grown children and three grandchildren. They have one dog, Poppy, who is a Golden Doodle and came to them in 2016. Janie loves reading, writing, walking, swimming, biking, kayaking, and traveling. She especially loves having quiet moments connecting with those she is closest to through conversation and time together. Spending time with her grandchildren is the ultimate connecting time. Her highlight of the day is to spend evening time on the deck with her husband enjoying the sunsets.