Get to know Mark
Mark Olkowski was born and raised in the Bay Area of Northern California. Before relocating to the Dallas area, he earned his Bachelors in Psychology at San Diego State University and his Masters in Marital and Family Therapy at Bethel Seminary San Diego. He would be the first to tell you that he loves Texas and is here to stay.
Growing up in a family of six with extended family close by, Mark did not lack for a variety of relationship highs and lows. Marital discord, secrecy, divorce, emotional abuse, childhood trauma—many of the challenging aspects of relationships were found throughout his close relationships. And yet his deepest focus remained on the “good” that can be found in relationships—love, friendship, intimacy, passion, safety, acceptance, the sort of personal and interpersonal connections that add hope, security, and vibrancy to life. Through it all, Mark grew to understand that relationships are powerful and became committed to helping them flourish.
Mark wholeheartedly believes that authenticity and vulnerability are vital to building connections. Just as he supports his clients as they dare to let others in, to really be seen and heard, he takes the time to press into his own fears and longings and share them with trusted others. He believes that it is often when we are deepest in the struggle that we grow the most. He has questioned his worth, struggled with shame, felt empty and meaningless, and painstakingly worked through difficult relationships. But, despite the hardship, he has found faith, hope, compassion, forgiveness, and peace in the process.
Today, Mark is someone who finds joy in living. Whether spending time in solitude (perhaps reading), chatting with friends, or being out in nature (even just a walk around the block), he enjoys the simple gifts that can be found in life. He sees the world and the people who fill it as gifts from God and would happily spend his life in the service of others.