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Johnathan Starko

Mental Health Therapist

I am an LMSW licensed in the states of Iowa and Mississippi. I graduated with my Master’s in social work from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California, and a Bachelor’s in Sociology and Women’s Studies from Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa. As the incomparable Fred Rogers stated, “Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable. When we can talk about our feelings, they become less overwhelming, less upsetting, and less scary.” My focus has always been on helping adults, families, and adolescents struggling with social, emotional, and behavioral issues.

In 2017 I started my career as a behavior interventionist working with adolescents in a special education classroom where I learned various trauma-informed approaches, including cognitive behavioral therapy, internal family systems, solution-focused therapy, and others. I take a person-centered, strength-based, and positive psychology approach and always try to provide a safe and non-judgmental space for my clients to open up and learn various skills to succeed in all environments, including, but not limited to, grounding, muscle relaxation, and mindfulness. You can accomplish anything when you can learn to find a way to get through the difficult moments in life. One of my favorite quotes is from Matt Haig, “Mental health problems don’t define who you are. They are something you experience. You walk in the rain, and you feel the rain, but, importantly, YOU ARE NOT THE RAIN.” I am here to help you learn how to cope with struggles, whether it be anxiety, depression, grief, or stress. I am excited to be here at Full Heart Family as a neuro-divergent and LGBTQ-affirming therapist, providing telehealth services and partaking in supervision with Amy Muller, LMFT, to obtain my LISW and learn new and exciting approaches I am unfamiliar with. Remember, good mental health is not a destination but a process. It’s not about where you are going but how you get there. Asking for help is not a weakness; it’s a strength, and I am glad to be even a small portion of that journey.