Michael Watson

I am a psychotherapist, educator, and visual and theater artist of mixed heritage. Many of my teachers were shamans and healers and I do my best to follow in their footsteps. I live and work in Burlington, Vermont, nestled snugly between Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains. In childhood I had a life-threatening case of Polio, an experience that taught me much about challenge, struggle, and healing, and continues to inform my work. Although my father’s family identified as Native, I was raised without tribal identity or affiliation, or contact with other Native people.

I have practiced shamanic healing for almost forty years, and have learned from many generous teachers. I work with Nature and the spirits to aid individuals, families, and communities to find healing and ease, in the present, and for generations past., and my work reflects the teachings of my family and my teachers, rather than the knowledge of any singular tradition.

I am a Vermont Licensed Mental Health Counselor, and have worked, since 1980, in both impatient and outpatient mental health settings. My work is deeply informed by my experience with traditional healers, and draws from Narrative Therapy and the arts.

I work with young people and adults. My life partner, Jennie Kristel, and I work together with couples and families, and with individuals who are facing life crises, trauma, or serious illness.

My work is firmly rooted in my family’s life ways, and in the healing traditions of my teachers. (My practice reflects the traditions and teachings of my teachers, rather than the knowledge of any singular people.) At its center is an abiding faith in the healing power of story, the capacity of Nature to fill us with ease and joy, and the ongoing support of the Creator, Ancestors, and spirits. Whether our time together involves shamanic healing, curindismo, or psychotherapy, we will honor the presence of the sacred in your life.

Learn more about Shamanic Healing. Learn more about my approach to Psychotherapy. Lean more about my family.

What to Expect for your first visit.



Please Note:  Many shamanic ideas and techniques can be useful in psychotherapy. However, traditional shamanic practice is not currently considered within the scope of practice for psychotherapy and may not be covered by insurance.