Expert Profile - Keith Kurlander
Keith Kurlander’s Bio:
Keith Kurlander, MA, LPC is the Co-Founder of the Integrative Psychiatry Institute (IPI) and Integrative Psychiatry Centers (IPC), and the co-host of the Higher Practice Podcast. The Integrative Psychiatry Centers offers IV Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy and Integrative Psychiatry services. He brings a professional and personal passion toward innovating the field of mental healthcare. He graduated Naropa University in 2005 with a master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, and he has practiced integrative psychotherapy and coaching with individuals, couples and groups for over 15 years. After years of treating highly complex patients, as well as a personal journey of overcoming complex trauma and mental illness, he turned toward integrative psychiatric practices as a key component to achieving mental health and understanding the healing process.
What life events or challenges that you’ve experienced (could be minor, could be major) – whether you’ve experienced them directly or via someone close to you, have had any type of impact on your desire to pursue a career in psychiatry?
My path to psychotherapy was both personal and professional. I struggled with severe levels of mental health issues including Complex Trauma, Bipolar II, OCD, ADHD, and a number of other physical illnesses. I was propelled on a search at a very young age that started as a spiritual pursuit and, ultimately, found my healing through my own career as an integrative psychotherapist, and working with integrative psychiatrists as a patient.
How did those events impact you emotionally/morally? How, if at all did those events impact the way you view how our current system teaches us to treat patients with mental health challenges?
I have a unique perspective as both a mental health professional and patient. I came across plenty of great providers over the years. Ultimately, I felt I needed to shift my career into focusing on systemic change with integrative models that include a larger focus on trauma.
When and why did you decide to actually focus on practicing Integrative Psychiatry, specifically, and how was your decision shaped by the experiences above?
I’ve always been an integrative practitioner for the last 20 years, but the toolkit and knowledge-base of what that means has changed. My skill set has grown over time to include a lot of the newer discoveries in research and emphasis on diet, gut health, brain functioning, trauma, and specific mindfulness techniques.
What methods or practices do you utilize to help individuals get/feel better?
In my individual work, I mostly rely on coaching modalities now. I mostly focus on executives and others in influential positions that respond well to coaching techniques.
How did people react when you share this Integrative/Holistic approach with them – whether it be patients or other doctors?
Generally speaking, people finally feel like they can make sense of a life-long puzzle they’ve been stuck in.