Megan Gunnell, LMSW
Founder & Director of the Thriving Well Institute, psychotherapist, writer, speaker and international retreat facilitator in private practice in Grosse Pointe, Michigan.
She is a licensed clinical social worker with a MSW from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and a music therapist with a BA from Michigan State University. Megan specializes in women’s issues and supporting interpersonal transformative work through a practice grounded in mindfulness and humanistic based support as well as integrative medicine and the healing arts. Megan has facilitated many women’s retreats locally and internationally, including five retreats in Costa Rica.
She has been a speaker for the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, MD Anderson, Beaumont Health and has presented nationally at Miraval Spa and Resort in Arizona, Red Mountain Resort, Utah and the Bryant University Women’s Summit in Rhode Island.
Megan is a graduate of the Harvard writing and publishing program for healthcare professionals and an advanced level fellow in the Helen Bonny method of guided imagery and music from the Mid-Atlantic Institute. She has an extensive background working in complimentary therapies for diverse patient populations at medical centers such as the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Bon Secours Hospital and Evanston Northwestern Healthcare. Currently, in her private practice work, she uses traditional talk therapy as well as music therapy, mandala techniques, guided imagery and music, journaling, dream work, drumming and shamanic journey work to help her clients realize and access their greatest potential.
Through individual sessions, groups, workshops and retreats, she also empowers individuals to address life transitions, relationships, communication, deeper self-awareness and inner fulfillment. From living and working abroad, Megan has developed a deep appreciation for a multicultural worldview and her calm and centered approach aids individuals in freely discovering core strengths and restoring balance.
Megan has produced and recorded three CD’s:
“Music and Imagery – experiences of relaxation, restoration and healing” (2007) recorded with UM colleague and guided imagery clinician, Claire Casselman. This album features 2 tracks of guided imagery with original piano and harp music and 7 tracks of Celtic harp music. Brookwood Studio, Inc., Ann Arbor, MI.
“Slumber Baby – soothing lullabies from around the world” (2005) A lullaby album with 21 tracks featuring flute, harp and female voice recorded with music therapist, Kristine Frias. Designed by music therapists to help babies and their caregivers fall asleep. Brookwood Studio, Inc., Ann Arbor, MI.
“Doorway to Relaxation – finding peace where you are” (2003) – 5 tracks of original music including acoustic guitar, Celtic harp, voice and piano. Track 1 is designed to engage the listener in a progressive muscle relaxation technique. The following instrumental tracks promote a feeling of peace and relaxation. Brookwood Studio, Inc., Ann Arbor, MI.
Megan has co-authored a book on End of Life Care with faculty and practitioners from Wayne State University titled “End of Life Stories; Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries.” This collaborative book examines issues confronted at the end of life as stories about individuals, families, communities, and society. Emphasizing the need for interdisciplinary approaches to end-of-life issues, we present real life patient cases that are followed by insightful responses and analyses from contributors from various disciplines. This publication is available for purchase on Amazon here.
In 2005, Megan was a group recipient of a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services grant for $25,000 to chair and organize the first national conference on Complementary and Alternative Medicine and End of Life Care.
In her free time, she likes spending time with her family. Her husband is a professional chef and owner of Cornwall Bakery and her 2 children keep her always in a place of wonder and discovery. Megan is a triathlete, enjoys travel, cooking, gardening, art, music, hiking, yoga, playing with her dogs and generally stirring up adventure whenever possible!