Happy 5th Anniversary, Andrea!
Andrea Morris, MSW, LCSW, LCAS, MAC, CCS, RYT
Andrea Morris celebrates her fifth year at LifeTutors this month. Join us in congratulating her!
It would be easy for us to tell you who she is; we know her as a steady leader whose strengths-based perspective and plethora of experience lend themselves to the evolution of what we know as LifeTutors today.
To celebrate this special occasion, we asked Andrea a series of questions to shed light on all things LT and reflect on a beautiful journey so far.
We invite you to get to know Andrea, and LifeTutors, in her own words.
We also thank her for her dedication, collaboration, and abundance of spirit for the belief in the human capacity to create change. Her belief in success as a probability, rather than a possibility, is a driving force in everything we do and stand for.
What initially drew you to work for LifeTutors?
When I first learned about LifeTutors and its mission, I was immediately and genuinely inspired. As a macro and systems thinker, I found deep admiration and appreciation that they were goaling to fill a gap in the continuum of care for young adults. I’m a big fan of process-oriented approaches and collaborations that are often direct results of people working together in harmony for the ultimate win. I was invited by a long-time college to collaborate from a clinical perspective on the coaching and mentoring work that LifeTutors was doing. LifeTutors was very early in their stages of development and as a big picture practitioner, the opportunity to create systems and effectively implement overarching programming felt like a really beautiful invitation for doing some things I really love- generating, synthesizing, cultivating, collaborating and perhaps most of all, being a part of a larger mission for wellness in a global community way.
How would you best describe your role?
Ultimately the truest nature of my function at work is really nothing more than a reflection of my truest nature as a human-being along life’s journey, which is to constantly be in service to the whole. For me, ‘work’ is far more about showing up authentically and with purpose, than it is about doing a function or a task. At LifeTutors specifically, my most primary role is to be of service to our partners, our employees, our coaches, and ultimately to our young adults and their families. In my view, any successful leader does this from a place of simple natural law, which enhances the capacity for integrating stakeholders, perspectives, knowledge, and skills, to achieve a holistic and inclusive vision and effortless success for all.
What speaks to you most about LifeTutors’ mission?
As much as it sounds like a cliché, it’s still true: It really DOES take a village!! Because I am naturally geared towards partnership and collaboration, I have a deep appreciation for a solid wrap around care model which engages the best endeavors of many good brains and hearts for best outcomes. Our mission, both internally and externally, really speaks to some of life’s most fundamental truths- that we as humans can not only survive but that we can Thrive! We model and instill integrity, accountability, partnership, respect for self and others and perhaps most importantly the belief that full-life wellness is not just possible, rather that it’s probable! What I really love is the ways we’re able to put these theories into action as they may show up in the day-to-day life of a young adult in actionable, digestible, achievable steps. Sometimes, it just takes one small win for a young person to realize that they CAN do hard things. They CAN be successful in any endeavor that has value to and for them.
How does LifeTutors look differently since you integrated your role of clinical director to CEO?
Just as any spark will turn into a fire that is constantly morphing into some different version of itself, such is the vision and modality of any business, and we are no exception. Our practice continues to grow as we commit to clean processes, continuity across all service regions, transparency in all communications and commitment to responsible expansion. We are sounder today than we were yesterday and that has been our trajectory for the past few or more years. We’ve built this company one committed professional and one meaningful relationship at a time and these really show up in our company and community cultures.
What is your proudest accomplishment professionally with this company?
I believe that LifeTutors has become more and more recognized as a group of dedicated professionals who are truly driven by integrity, using dynamic and solid programming and overall yields really positive outcomes. I am so proud of the ways we put people first in every situation. Our teams are professional, reliable and trustworthy and I am constantly humbled by the above and beyond commitment of our coach and leadership teams.
How do you define success personally?
In my view, personal success is collective success. As a dedicated yogi and as a woman committed to integrity in all domains, I draw from my Vedic teachings and interweave these principles at work as much as any other area of life- it’s all practice and it’s all about the journey. These are some of the most important principles we impart to our young adults- practice not perfection, process over content. And with these, I believe we dismantle those beliefs that are rooted in duality, black and white thinking, winning or losing, failing or succeeding, etc. This kind of absoluteness can be so damaging and cause a young adult to throw in the proverbial towel. And we all know that big success is really just a total of the sums of many smaller victories. It’s ‘bite sized’!
What do you want people to know about LifeTutors that they might not know?
That we are more than coaching!! We partner with all ancillary providers, synthesize all information, and open communication lines between all who are involved- whether professionally or personally- in the wellness journey of each young adult. And though we are clinically informed, we do not provide therapy. Instead, coach teams act as an arm of therapeutic action from concerns or areas for growth that may arise with a clinical provider in the office and we subsequently help our young adults put those into real-time practice outside of the office, where day-to-day life is happening. It’s a really beautiful, organic process and allows clients to practice what they are learning with their therapist or other providers. We pull all of the moving parts together to seamless continuum of care, thus sustainable and meaningful growth that just makes sense.
What are your hopes for the future of LifeTutors?
While we are undeniably growing and serving more and more families, my hope for LifeTutors is not necessarily ‘more’, rather it’s quality over quantity. I really believe in the domino effect- when one of us does better, we all do better. If our work as coaches and mentors can make a lasting and sustainable change in even one family, one young adult, one system aspect, I will always consider that a step in the right direction for the greater good.