We had the good fortune of connecting with Heather Wells and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Heather, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
That is an excellent question because the most essential factor behind my success is an ingredient available to everyone. It is the capacity to transform adversity into a blessing for serving others, and then discovering how to mesh that with one’s calling. I was born legally blind, with tumors on both optic nerves. Once my visual acuity improved to the extent possible, I continued living with physical and mental exhaustion, straining to process and learn unfamiliar information. Based on these and other circumstances beyond a child’s control, I did not have a voice in many aspects of my life. Through various trials, the course and purpose of my life became clear. I engaged in nonprofit and professional causes that would allow others to have a voice and thrive in their highest quality of life. When families visit my Brain Balance centers or read my book, they benefit from my insights and perspectives, born from the way God equipped me through these and other life experiences to serve them. Therefore, I encourage the individuals I mentor to ask themselves, “What is my calling? How may I pursue my life’s purpose in a way that utilizes my gifts—and all I have learned and grown into through the struggles—to serve others?” When they reflect and act upon the answers to those crucial considerations, nothing can stop them.
What should our readers know about your business?
At Brain Balance of Mansfield, Southlake, Katy, and The Woodlands, we do not put labels on kids. However, some of them come through our doors already having a diagnosis of mild to severe ADHD, dyslexia, anxiety, autism, learning differences, dysgraphia, sensory processing disorder, dyspraxia, or language delay, among others. One of the things that sets us apart is that we determine the root causes of students’ issues—through a thorough assessment of over 900 functions—and address them at the foundation rather than placing a Band-Aid on symptoms. A lack of connectivity (communication) in the brain—and between the body and the brain—causes these issues. We discern each student’s strengths and weaknesses and customize a program that stimulates the weaker parts of the brain, based on what scientists have proven about neuroplasticity. Stated differently, we can help the students grow new neural pathways! Because of the holistic and customized Brain Balance approach, both the brain and body-brain communication improve and become synchronized so that individuals can process input appropriately. The outward manifestation is an individual who grows substantially in the areas of concern—social-emotional, behavioral, academic, sensorimotor, attention, memory, problem-solving, self-regulation, impulse control, and other cognitive and executive functions. I am excited about many advancements that ensure we meet families’ needs more fully. My Brain Balance centers offer three program options: onsite, virtual with live weekly coaching remotely, and a hybrid of the two. There is something for everyone now! I am also ecstatic about the highly favorable findings of research Harvard Medical School, McLean Hospital, and Cambridge Brain Sciences teams have conducted on our program. They reported the vast improvement individuals achieve because of the personalized, integrated approach at Brain Balance. Additionally, the Journal of Mental Health and Clinical Psychology released a peer-reviewed article in their March 2020 issue, demonstrating the effectiveness of our program in improving emotional wellbeing. My book is soon to be released as well. I entitled it The Hidden Churn because frequently, the sources of students’ struggles are practically invisible, and they may appear to be lazy, defiant, or behaviorally disruptive, for example. However, those issues are symptoms of something going awry at a more foundational level. These kids are often unable to articulate what is going on because either they do not understand it themselves, or it is all they have ever known. I did not tell my mom and dad that I could not see, had terrible headaches, and was dizzy because I did not know life could be any other way. Parents are desperately searching for answers, and this book provides a voice to students, caregivers, and teachers, with a roadmap for what to do. Another message of my book centers around this critical point: It is not just about, “Can my loved one do this, yes or no?” Instead, we need to consider, “How hard do they churn to complete routine tasks the rest of us can easily take for granted?” Quality of life matters. In my centers and through the clarity provided in my book, families and professionals will realize the foundational issues, address the root causes of the difficulties instead of masking symptoms, and witness phenomenal and permanent life-changing transformations. Everyone deserves to be heard, enjoy dignity, and live their version of the highest quality of life.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
This city has so many interesting, diverse things to see and do! The itinerary would depend on which of my close friends was visiting because I would want the week to be most enjoyable and meaningful for them. My friends and I are passionate about music, so we would listen to live local music and attend a concert at the American Airlines Center or Dos Equis Pavilion. Deep Ellum is such a cool district with its vibrant murals, music venues, and outdoor eating options, including the delectable Pecan Lodge. I am fond of the Richardson area because it has a family feel and independent businesses, amidst the big city vibe. Many of my friends would enjoy a day at the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library, followed by a stroll in Klyde Warren Park. If it is their first trip to Dallas, the view from Reunion Tower is spectacular; a jaunt over to Fort Worth would be on the books for some Texas “cowgirl” memories.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There are countless people to whom I am grateful for their love, support, and encouragement along the journey. One goes back to my school days, my former basketball coach, Tony Grimes. He was a phenomenal mentor who demonstrated patience, humility, compassion, a witty sense of humor, and utter belief in me, and he further instilled a growth mindset and the power of being teachable and persistent. My aunts and uncles have loved me through life’s ups and downs: the example of warmth and kindness from Aunt Sharon, the reminders to engage in self-care from Uncle Ray (who always knows when to bring on the laughs or the shoulder to lean into), the unwavering support and authenticity of Aunt Joann, and the sweet words of encouragement from Aunt Annelle. My parents are an inspiration because they have endured so much adversity, yet they continue to press on. Finally, I am in awe of the phenomenal teams at all my centers, who pour their hearts, minds, and gifts into delivering the best outcomes for our students and families. The most challenging part of giving a shout-out is that I wish I could thank everyone individually because there are many more who have been instrumental in my story.
Stephanie Ostin Photography
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