Welcome to “On the Couch” … a series of Q&A sessions dedicated to getting to know the amazing staff at Well Clinic

This week, we’re sitting down with Jill Hartman, an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist  (AMFT) at Well Clinic in San Francisco.

What is your favorite part about your work?

I find human personalities and behavior endlessly fascinating. Getting to listen to people’s stories every day is very meaningful work.

What is your favorite place you’ve ever been?

The island of Molokai, Hawaii. There isn’t a single traffic light on the entire island.

In your free time, what are you most likely doing?

Cooking, walking around Lake Merritt in Oakland with friends, reading under a fuzzy blanket or on a lounge chair in my yard (depending on the season), going on hikes with my partner and our kids (once the kids stop complaining and start enjoying the hike) and/or really enjoying my coffee

What are five albums you’d want with you if you were stuck on a deserted island?

Five is WAY too few, but if I must…

  1. Something Else by The Kinks
  2. The Who Sell Out by The Who
  3. Too Far to Care by The Old 97s
  4. Tim by The Replacements
  5. Hedwig and The Angry Inch soundtrack

What cause(s) are you most passionate about?

Free range parenting, alternative education models for public schools (particularly Montessori) and reducing reliance on standardized tests in public schools, prison reform

What was your career before becoming a mental health practitioner?

Before working in mental health, I worked in the Advertising industry for many years.

Do you have any talents that few people know about? If so, what are they?

I have an uncanny ability to identify voice-over talent. Let me listen to a commercial or narrator in a documentary and I will be able to name that celebrity within moments

What is your favorite food?

Popcorn. Movie theater or homemade on the stove, with real butter, only. None of that pre-popped bagged stuff or microwave popcorn.

What is your favorite movie?

After Hours, one of Scorcese’s lesser known films. A wonderful dark comedy.

When are you at your most creative?

After spending time with friends or colleagues who are passionate about different things than I am, and having an inspiring discussion. Also, in the morning, with coffee.

Name one guilty pleasure, past or present.

See above re: popcorn

Describe one of your first few jobs.

My first job outside of babysitting was when I was about 15, working for a company called The Soyfoods Center. The ‘Center’ was actually a husband and wife team, passionate about soybeans and associated foods. They’d written several books about soybeans. My job was to read their manuscripts into a tape recorder as quickly as I could so they could listen back and check for errors or awkward sounding language. I was paid by the page.

What’s one fun thing you wish you could do more of?

Travel!

What made you want to become a mental health practitioner?

During my work in advertising I realized I cared far more deeply about the personalities of people than the personalities of “brands.” Things developed and deepened from there, but that was the proverbial lightbulb moment


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TESTIMONIALS

  • I absolutely love Well Clinic! From the beginning, my husband and I felt like we were in a comfortable and safe space.

    Our couple’s therapy bridged gaps in our relationship and helped us understand each other that much more.

    Ivette B

  • Well Clinic is an oasis, especially for busy professionals like me.

    It’s a relaxing and safe space, nothing like the stuffy or drab offices you’d expect when going to a therapist.

    Brianna S

  • Well Clinic’s inviting and professional design makes me feel comfortable and at ease, which probably benefits the work I am doing.

    In fact, it doesn’t really feel like a therapy clinic at all, which I find awesome.

    Jim M

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