John BerstLPC

Headshot of John Berst LPC


In Eastern Time

In what ways have your personal experiences influenced your work with your clients?

Empathy, Respect and Honesty. Clients of all ages, backgrounds and diversity of issues have consistently remarked that they found themselves able to speak with me about things they never have. And were often wondering why, but just as often were surprised at their sense of innate trust, respect and acceptance that they felt able. I believe this comes from a lifetime of personal experience that lends to clients sensing honesty, respect and empathy not just from my words, but through their own impression and immediate experience. More important is that I am able to hear and learn what each and every persons own personal experience is... and hear it in their own words. If people feel the empathy and experience real respect, then good work can begin and real change is within reach.

How does collaboration with other providers play into your work?

Much of my work over the years involved collaboration as a vital key to better serving my clients. It may be cliche to say, "it takes a village", but a cliche is a cliche because is rings true and is repeated and remembered. We are social creatures, and we are connected to everyone. Collaboration is a way to access a wider spectrum of understanding, resources and support directly related to the clients own needs. I have always reached out to establish collaborations from within the clients own circles as well as any and all available resources in the community. It is not for you alone to help yourself. You may be seeking a therapist because you came to the point where you knew you needed a little help. One good therapist and one willing client can accomplish a great deal. Collaboration with a wider spectrum of resources can increase the depth and degree of your progress and success in ways that you and I might never consider. It is really a best practice. We humans can't do everything all by ourselves. Sometimes we can, but opening that up and working with others means we are only widening and deepening the scope and landscape of what is available to help you now, and help support your ongoing growth. Of course, the first and most important collaboration is between you and I. We can build a therapeutic alliance based on trust and respect and your own words, thoughts and feelings will set the tone for possibilities available outside our sessions.

What was your path to becoming a therapist? What inspired you to choose this profession?

Helping. I grew up in nice enough home and family, but alcoholism, addiction and dysfunction of one kind or another meant that often i was a child in a war zone of not so safe environments filled with not so nice circumstances or people. All the adults I knew were alcoholics and many to most of my peers were tangled up in drugs, bad influences and worse choices. Maybe being the last of five kids I was able to observe all this from the calm within the storm. I sought out the calm out of trauma and a struggle to survive. This survival instinct developed a habit and knack for finding and dwelling in the eye of the storm when needed. People around me noticed and were drawn to that calm, often because they were struggling and were hungry for the calm and balance they so badly needed. This led to a habit of people asking me..."can we go sit in your car and talk?" From the front seat of my 70 Pontiac Lemans in the streets of Detroit to a lifetime in the helping profession, this path has grown, expanded and surprised even me at times. I came from troubles and help was not always there. I found the calm and survived despite the odds. So it is my nature and my way to seek out reach out and help those in need. So yes I chose this profession. But in reality, life and the troubled world called me. The act of answering that call is what continually restores my faith in humanity.



Caregiver stress & support

Life transitions

Spirituality & religion based issues


General Expertise



Work Stress

Relationship Issues


Sexuality Based Issues


Abuse/Survivors of abuse

In-Network Insurance

Sana Benefits



Individual Therapy


Young Adults (18-24)

Adults (25-65)

Seniors (65+)

Treatment Approaches / Modalities

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

Mindfulness Practices

Strength Based Therapy


Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy

Narrative Therapy

Training / Certifications



MI, LPC, 6401017362


MA, Counseling, Western Michigan University


Remote Therapy - serving the greater Michigan area, MI