Staff Spotlight: Maggie Ritnour, LMHC, LCAT, ATR-BC, RYT

What is your name, credentials & background?

Maggie M. Ritnour, LMHC, LCAT, ATR-BC, RYT

I'm a licensed mental health counselor, art therapist and yoga instructor.

Growing up, I spent the majority of my time making art and moving my body. These were my main modes of release and expression. I was fortunate to be supported in continuing this path as I got older and found my way through a bachelors of fine arts program at the School of Visual Arts here in the city then obtained my masters in psychology from Antioch University in Seattle.

 

What is your role at BALANCE?

I facilitate groups, predominately art therapy & body image. I also see clients for individual art therapy and case management sessions.

What does a typical day for you look like at BALANCE?

There is no typical day. My experience working at treatment centers has taught me that on any given day one must be willing to embrace the messiness of this work. I usually hit the ground running because there's always something to work on. I get stuck when I expect the day to look a specific way. More often than not, days don't match what I imagined. Sometimes it's a struggle and sometimes it's unexpectedly excellent.

I facilitate groups in both our daytime and evening program hours so there is usually information to catch up on. I try to arrive at work early to check in on the overall vibe of clients and our staff. This allows me to tap into the energetic pulse of the milieu and sense what typical will look like that day.

What is your favorite part about working at BALANCE and helping those recover from eating disorders?

My favorite part is probably the collaboration with our dynamic team at BALANCE and the clients themselves. 

A near second to this is the fact that I get to introduce people to the magic of art therapy and in this way witness the courage of clients taking risks. Some days this witnessing feels like watching flowers blossom in the spring.

What is one of our favorite foods or recipes?

To be honest, I get pretty excited about cheese ravioli... always.

Tell us about something you love to do? (an activity, hobby or interest)

I love to ride my bicycle! It's my all time favorite way to visit new places and spend time with friends or just be with my thoughts.

What is a fun fact not many know about you?

I wish I could fly.