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Sep 8, 2020

This week on 5.6.7.EIGHT, Aleksandra speaks with Erica Hornthal, a therapist that makes lasting changes in clients by harnessing the power of the body for improved mental health. Erica — otherwise known as “the therapist who moves you” — is the Founder and CEO of Chicago Dance Therapy. Her methods, which can be labeled as dance or movement therapy, are for those that are struggling with mental health, have exhausted talk therapy options, or are seeking a holistic approach to emotional well-being. 

To Erica, the key to unlocking a healthy mental and emotional state is by being fully in tune with your body, and every day, she works with clients to achieve that goal. On the podcast, Hornthal deep dives on movement therapy — what it is, why it is important in 2020, and how it can be achieved to better one’s life — as well as the excitement and challenges of starting your own business and many other topics.


Moving Quotes:

“In the end, it’s about how we connect to our bodies. And when we connect to our bodies and we’re aware of how we move, we’re able to manage our emotions better and have better mental health."

“Movement therapy creates change through body movement and through connection… It’s not only about the fun activity. We’re trying to achieve goals."

“Dance as a form of exercise has always proven to be one of the most comprehensive forms of exercise. It stimulates every part of us."

“For someone to gain the tools to see their body as their greatest resource and avenue for untapped potential is very empowering. That keeps people coming back."

“I tend to act and then the fear comes up. The fear doesn’t stop me from doing things; it just comes up after the fact.”

“When building my business, a lot of people told me, ’That’s not going to work,’ or asked me, ‘Why are you doing that?’ But I just kept using my own body as a reference. If it was ethical and authentic to me, then I kept going."

“I’m big into not settling the status quo… If I did a more traditional route, I know I wouldn’t be satisfied. I’d always be asking, ‘What if?’ I would have had regrets."

“I try not to get too caught up in where I see myself because, if that doesn’t happen, I don’t want it to deter me from going forward. But I also have hopes and dreams."


Bullet Points (w/ timestamps) - Highlighting key topics discussed:

2:07: Erica defines “movement therapy” and how the discipline improves others’ lives.

5:19: Erica retells her unique experience working with a prior patient who was 107 years old.

8:19: Hornthal discusses how movement therapy has manifested itself during the COVID-19 crisis.

11:01: Erica describes her career journey and the choices that she made along the way to get her to where she is today.

17:07: Hornthal shares some advice for entrepreneurs who may be looking to start their own businesses but with limited resources.

22:59: Erica, who is well known as being an expert in her field, explains what she believes is her “secret sauce” that draws people in and keeps them coming back.

25:14: Erica discloses her favorite thing about her job as a movement therapist. 

29:18: Hornthal sets expectations for any future clients who may be interested in movement therapy but may not have a background in dance.

35:59: Hornthal discusses the book that she’s currently working on and the difficulties that she’s experienced thus far working with publishers.

38:48: Erica looks to the future and discusses her hopes and dreams for Chicago Dance Therapy.


Bullet List of Resources – 

Erica Hornthal


Chicago Dance Therapy