| About Us
Phyllis Grannis, M.F.T.
Marriage and Family Therapist
I didn't plan on a career in counseling. I came to the concept by a
circuitous route...my daughter's epilepsy. I began my professional
career as a graphic designer with an intense personal interest
in the human psyche. By the time I received my counseling license,
I had a wealth of life experiences and formal training
that contributed enormously to my private practice.
In 1981, I became involved with an epilepsy
research group after my daughter was diagnosed with epilepsy.
It consisted of a neurologist and a woman who had conquered the
disorder without medication through counseling and biofeedback.
In the same building, Tom Cobb had his private counseling and
biofeedback practice. Out of the need to find an alternative
treatment for my daughter, I discovered the value of EEG biofeedback
which monitors brain wave activity. Not only did the program
alter her life, but ultimately, it was the beginning of a new
career for me. As I watched my daughter gain control of her epilepsy,
I began to validate my own premise that we have much more control
over our physiology than we realize.
From my experience with this organization and the impact the program
had on my daughter, I decided to go back to school and become
a Marriage and Family Therapist. I became the Program Director of the
Andrews/Reiter Epilepsy Research Program and worked with individuals,
who despite all attempts at eliminating their seizures with medication,
were still having them. It was fascinating work and I soon came under
the tutelage of Tom, the therapist who introduced me to using other forms
of biofeedback as a technique for working with stress related disorders
such as anxiety, headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia and chronic
During that time, I was also privileged to work with Lynn Lott, M.F.T.,
who was an expert in the Adlerian approach to family dynamics
and parenting. This approach is the heart of the Positive Discipline book series that I now use
in the online parenting classes on LifeMatters.
My private practice developed in two main areas; working with families
and children using the Positive Discipline approach and using biofeedback
for clients with chronic stress related disorders.
Biofeedback provides people with chronic stress related disorders a powerful
way to alter faulty habit patterns and dramatically reduce or eliminate
their symptoms. To participate in this process is very satisfying as a
counselor. When people start to see the results of their own participation,
it puts the control of the course of the disorder into their own hands.
Having control is an incredible asset to the positive outcome of treatment.
The person emerges able to be an active participant in life rather than
a casual observer.
When I was looking for an alternative to drugs in the treatment of my
daughter's epilepsy, no one offered any alternative approach.
In fact, I was told I was endangering my daughter's health. Well,
at 37, she is not only healthy but seizure-free and has never been on
the powerful drugs that can inhibit brain functioning.
In 1991, Tom and I decided to offer online classes in parenting and in
how people can effectively alter their physiology using biofeedback.
LifeMatters is the culmination of our professional and personal
experiences and a commitment to assist other people
in obtaining the information they need to make informed choices
about their health and well-being. – Phyllis