“All external sources of relief from trauma have expiration dates. If you haven’t done the inside work with yourself, then you haven’t found a long term solution.” – Dr. Elisa Hallerman
I first met today’s guest about 15 years ago, when she was first considering leaving her job as a top Hollywood agent to begin a more fulfilling career. Now, Dr. Elisa Hallerman is a successful drug and alcohol counselor who uses her Ph.D. in Depth Psychology and Somatic Studies to inform her work with clients. She recently wrote her first book, Soulbriety: A Plan to Heal Your Trauma, Overcome Addiction, and Reconnect with Your Soul to help people who she wouldn’t be able to reach through her traditional practice alone. In today’s episode, I chat with Dr. Hallerman about how soul-centered healing has the potential to help everyone overcome trauma and addiction. Plus, a guide to understanding your own soul journey.
- 03:10 Dr. Hallerman’s origin story: How a crisis of purpose-inspired her to write Soulbriety
- 05:35 How soul-centered work can lead to deep meaning and self-discovery
- 17:40 Recognizing and treating trauma with a focus on the subconscious
- 25:40 The behind-the-scenes writing challenges Dr. Hallerman faced
Connect with Dr. Elisa Hallerman:
Dr. Elisa Hallerman, Ph.D., J.D. has had a diverse career over the past 25 years. Without her unique journey, the Recovery Management Agency (RMA) would not exist. Dr. Hallerman is an attorney and member of the N.Y. State Bar Association. She holds a master’s and a doctorate in Depth Psychology and Somatic Studies, focusing on neuroscience and trauma. Dr. Hallerman is also a drug and alcohol counselor and certified in yogic science for addictive behavior. She is a member of the Institute for Functional Medicine. Finally, Dr. Hallerman serves as a visiting professor for film and media arts at Chapman University, where she melds the art of agenting in Hollywood with balance, passion, meaning, and purpose.
In 1990, Dr. Hallerman graduated from the University of Michigan where she majored in political science and sociology. She attended New York Law School and practiced law in Manhattan until 1996. After her parents’ divorce, she and her sister moved to Los Angeles. Dr. Hallerman quickly found a job working at ICM Partners as an assistant to a talent agent. After losing a close friend to suicide, she moved to United Talent Agency in Beverly Hills, where her career as an agent was built. She was a partner and head of the Talent department until her departure in 2008. As Dr. Hallerman began to realize that agenting may no longer be for her, she wondered if another agency would fulfill her calling—so she joined Endeavor Agency down the street, which later merged with William Morris in 2009 to become William Morris Endeavor (WME). Working at WME quelled Dr. Hallerman’s calling to leave the talent business at first. But the urge gradually became louder and louder. Knowing she had to leave was no longer the issue—what she would do next was the big question.
Curious about what else was out there, Dr. Hallerman dove into classes at UCLA and focused on drug and alcohol counseling. She had been in recovery since 2002 and had watched multiple family members and previous clients suffer from addiction and alcoholism. While taking classes at night and working for WME during the day, she began to realize the field of addiction might even be more of the “Wild West” than Hollywood.
Dr. Hallerman knew that her passion as an agent had helped her guide her clients to achieve their dreams. She recognized this strength and channeled it into a new way of helping people: she wished to guide people toward optimal wellness through their best path to healing.
Dr. Hallerman’s first book, Soulbriety: Heal Your Trauma, Overcome Addiction and Reconnect with Your Soul, is being published by Hachette on December 2, 2022. SOULBRIETY™ methodology is designed for working with individuals, families, and groups, focusing on such topics as addiction, mental health, trauma, and chronic pain.
The agency handles every inch of what is needed while advising and continuing to guide the family or business system around them toward the best course of action. Dr. Hallerman currently lives in Los Angeles and treats clients worldwide.
Here are some ways we can connect and grow together:
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