Attention Health Professionals

Did you know most insurance plans including UI Choice allows for tele-mental health services?  After your face-to-face evaluation, you can talk with Dr. Rich about having therapy from the comfort of your office at a time when it is most convenient for you.  All you need is a secure internet connection or data service, a computer or smart phone with video capabilities, and a private place where you feel safe and won’t be interrupted for 45 – 55 minutes.

Welcome Back to School!

Welcome back to school!  Starting a new school year and even starting middle school, high school, and college for the first time can be a huge adjustment.  Here are some tips that can help with the adjustment:

  1.  Put a timer on your phone to remind you that it is time to put away social media, turn off the TV, and get some rest.  Many students find themselves up until 2 – 3 am chatting with friends, watching YouTube videos, playing games, or reading.  Screen time activates your brain and makes it difficult to sleep.  This will make it difficult to pay attention in class, and can lead to increased anxiety or depression.
  2. Make sure to take advantage of all the nice weather and get outside often.  Stay active as this can be beneficial to your overall mood.  Make sure to check with a doctor before you start any exercise routine.
  3. Stay organized, make lists, keep a calendar with appointments, due dates, and class schedules.  Staying organized can help reduce stress, especially when multiple big deadlines are approaching.
  4. Get involved:  Middle Schools, High Schools, and College are communities.  Get out and meet new people.  Get involved in a group or special interest.  Take a chance and you may find something you love and develop friendships that will last a lifetime.

If you as a college student, or your middle school/high school student is struggling with various aspects of school due to depression, anxiety, relationship issues, bullying, or low motivation, please feel free to schedule a time to come in and talk.  I have daytime and evening appointments.  You can self-schedule using the tab on the right.  If you call, please keep in mind that I don’t have a receptionist.  Please leave a voice mail and I will return your call.  Please do not text as it isn’t a confidential form of communication.


Behavioral Health Counseling

I provide behavioral health therapy for ages 7 and up.  Some of the issues I work with include:

  • Depression and Anxiety
  • Teach coping skills
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Grief & Loss
  • Impostor Syndrome
  • Life Transitions
  • Medical Professional Burnout & Compassion Fatigue
  • Men’s Issues
  • School Issues
  • Self Esteem
  • Stress Management Techniques
  • Suicidal Ideation
  • Weight Loss

I provide evaluations for Bariatric Surgery along with continuing counseling throughout the weight loss process.


About Shanthi

Shanthi Wellness has been a dream of mine for many years. I’ve spent my career working with children, teens, and adults with various mental health and behavioral issues. I’ve also taught at a few Universities and currently teach for Walden online.

I have many reasons to start Shanthi. Two of the main reasons are:

1)  I’ve talked with many physicians, social workers, counselors, and psychologists who suffer from burnout, compassion fatigue, secondary trauma, and impostor syndrome. This is what guided me to first conduct my dissertation on the topic of secondary trauma. I wanted to create a place where professionals can receive help and guidance through some of the tough issues they face every day. The suicide rate among physicians is more than double the general population. Physicians with depression often go untreated or undertreated. They fear to get help for their mood disorders because of the stigma and the possibility of losing their license. Also, most counseling practices are only open from 9 – 5 pm. This makes it difficult for professionals to get away. For this, I offer both in-office and video sessions. I will do my best to provide services to professionals that fit your busy schedules.

2) I also wanted to help people through their weight loss journey. A few years ago, I was a bariatric patient. I underwent the sleeve gastrectomy and have lost 135 lbs. A couple of years ago, I was talking to the nurse, PA and my surgeon at the University of Iowa Center for Digestive Diseases and offered my services. At the time, I was a counselor in South East Iowa, and have conducted many assessments for surgery and have provided ongoing counseling for those going through the process. I am currently working on my certification as a bariatric counselor.

While those were the main two reasons for starting Shanthi, I want everyone to know that I am a mental health general practitioner. I work with all treatment issues and love working with clients ages 7 – adults.

Welcome to Shanthi Wellness

Our lives can be busy and filled with daily stress. Sometimes this stress leads us to believe we made the wrong choices when it comes to our relationships or career.

Sometimes we begin to doubt our abilities and we compare our performance to what we see in others. During times of stress, we can develop coping styles that are unhealthy. We may begin to isolate, push people away, or make impulsive decisions. Sometimes we cope with stress by not practicing good self-care, or by overeating.

As a professional counselor, I would like to help you find balance in your life. Shanthi is a Sanskrit word meaning peace, rest, calmness, tranquility, or bliss. I work with professionals who feel like they made the wrong career choices, people going through emotional stress, and those starting their weight loss journey.

I want to help you start your journey to find inner peace.


Richard Stapleton, EdD, LMHC, NCC, ACS

Rich received his master’s in counseling in 2005 and started practicing in Colorado as a Licensed Professional Counselor.  He supervised a treatment unit at Excelsior Youth Center in Aurora, CO, which was an all-girls residential treatment center for kids between the ages of 11 and 20 with severe emotional and behavioral problems.  He graduated from Argosy University with a doctorate in Counselor Education and Supervision. His dissertation research was Coping Styles and Secondary Traumatic Stress in Direct Care Staff Working in Residential Treatment Centers.  Rich’s research was published in the Journal of Therapeutic Schools and Programs in 2016.

In Iowa, Richard is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor.  He is also a Nationally Certified Counselor by the National Board of Certified Counselors.  He is an Approved Clinical Supervisor by the Center for Credentialing and Education

Rich is Core Faculty for Walden University online, which is a CACREP accredited program based out of Minneapolis MN.  He’s also taught for Argosy University in Denver, CO and the University of Phoenix, Lone Tree Colorado Campus.

Professional Memberships:

  • American Counseling Association
  • American Counseling Association of Iowa
  • Association for Children and Adolescent Counselors
  • Association for Counselor Education and Supervision
  • Counselors for Social Justice
  • American Rehabilitation Counselors Association

Boards and Committees:

  • President-Elect: American Counseling Association of Iowa
  • Advocacy Committee – Association of Children and Adolescent Counselors
  • Reviewer for the Journal of Child and Adolescent Counselors