Meet Stephanie

I was raised to be independent, to believe in myself and my abilities, and to problem-solve on my own. However, that changed when I met my husband. No longer do I make major decisions on my own, such as where to live or how much in loans to take out to pay for graduate school. We have to work as a team, collaborating to utilize each other’s strengths and support one another’s weaknesses. We’ve been married for two years, and I love the journey that God is leading me through with him. When I’m not spending time with my husband or at Northshore Family Counseling, I enjoy hiking, practicing yoga, watching Doctor Who, and horseback riding.

In the past year since I started practicing counseling, I’ve learned a valuable lesson: how to balance humility and confidence. Oddly enough, this message sunk in this spring while attempting to put a bridle on a horse for the first time. As an independent person, I thought I’d be able to figure out this simple task on my own. However, I quickly became frustrated with the horse because he kept raising his head too high for me to reach. I was too stubborn to ask for help, and my instructor was laughing next to me. It turns out that my error was simple; I was standing in front of the horse, approaching it head on instead of coming next to its head to guide the bridle on gently. This was not the first time I made that mistake in life. Sometimes, the way I approach solving problems is not the most efficient way there is. Even though I’ve always been in advanced courses, graduating with honors in both high school and my undergraduate program, I’ve had to accept that I don’t know everything.

That moment with the horse (which took 15 minutes, by the way) was quite humbling for me. It turns out that horses are pretty forgiving, just like most people. Making that mistake wasn’t the end of the world, but rather a learning experience. As a result, I’ve become a better counselor and a better person. I now know myself well enough to be able to discern between when to trust myself and my skills and when to seek wisdom from others. God has gifted us all differently. We work together most efficiently when we are confident in how to use our gifts and when to step aside to let others use theirs. So, learn to balance humility and confidence. Identify and embrace the things you do well, but also remember to accept that everyone needs a little help sometimes. If you would like to learn more about how to balance humility and confidence, please visit our website at or give us a call at 985-661-0560.

Stephanie Johnson