Dr. Ron Mercer Ph.D., L.M.H.C., NCC The Center For Creative Living
Strong men—powerful men—achievers who have sweat blood and reached pinnacles of success—rarely agree to see a shrink. Not true in some circles, perhaps, like in L.A. where Hollywood analysts reach their own level of stardom by sheer connection to fame. Corporate America and unwritten Manly Codes have their own standards, however. For a man’s man to see a shrink, it usually takes a woman. She has had enough; she who has walked a solitary road with him. She is often a woman covertly responsible for his success because her sacrificial support helped propel him to where he is. She is strong—she must be to put up with him and his stubborn potency.
Dr. Ron Mercer’s success is rooted here; he’s a man’s man and a woman’s close advocate. He is a seasoned psychologist specializing in men’s issues. When powerful men arrive at his doorstep, finally convinced (by their women) to seek professional help to manage the extreme pressures that have brought them success and now threaten to destroy them, they can immediately relate to Ron. They are on common ground; they smell one another’s fierceness like primitive warriors on sacred ground. He can see through their smokescreen, perceive hidden issues, and guide them to a better place.
Some clients may not ask for credentials; they care only for results. But on paper, Ron’s credentials speak volumes. Co-director of the Center for Creative Living, Ron holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Tampa, an MS in Counseling Psychology from Nova University, an MS and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Miami Institute of Psychology; and a second Ph.D. in Psychology from the Union Institute in Ohio specializing in Men’s Issues and Adult Development. He is a member of the American Psychological Association (APA), the American Counseling Association (ACA), the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), and the American College of Forensic Examiners International. He lectures on a variety of wellness issues, conducts corporate workshops, facilities seminars and groups, and forays into hypnotherapy. He is an on-call expert for critical incident response; his summons to ground zero immediately after 9/11 created his own unexpected paradigm shift as he walked among tears and carnage.
But scrap the credentials for a moment and meet the man behind them.
Son of a successful Big Band recording artist father and a career-minded mother, Ron evolved in the ‘60s—the very essence of the ‘60s. Music surrounded his every sphere, and Ron consumed its influence and lifestyle to the core. The real Woodstock; he was there, and yes, he experienced all of its “flavors.” A rock and roll drummer, his intense, vigorous beat and applauded vocal talent earned a decent living
rom bars, stages, and outdoor venues starting at age 16. A full music scholarship tempted him to university and education began to lure him, entice him, and his life’s work hit a crossroads. As his musical success ascended, so did his education. His vocal coach introduced him to opera—he never knew he had it in him—and he was offered a chance to sing opera professionally in New York City. One of life’s Grand Decisions determined his fate: music or scholarship? And at that moment Ron pursued education; music took a secondary place for the first time.
He studied the human psyche, worked with drug-addicted youths in Europe, earned advanced degrees, evolved his own unique style of therapy, and creatively developed specific approaches to treatment. (Ask him about his archetypal developmental theory in men’s issues.) Time has its way, and Ron married, had children, and started his own practice with his wife Sue, a partner and fellow therapist.
Never typical, Ron mastered martial arts, studied Native American history, delved into healing drum rituals, wrote four books, and impacted the lives of hundreds if not thousands of men, women, and children through 20+ years of a thriving practice. And woven through it all like an ancient tapestry, the music remains.
Today, if you were to divide a room full of shrinks and artists, Ron gravitates to the creative ones. He’s not a split personality—successful psychologist by day and working musician by night—he’s a blend of these two worlds and so can speak to men at some core, visceral level where they connect and grow. Part rocker, part rebel, part warrior, part mentor, part sage, part intellectual, part impulsive, always an adventurer and a free spirit; and never mind separating the parts. He is who he is and women feel his empathy while men listen to his earthy, forceful-when-necessary, wisdom.
We are who we are because of how hard we work at it and who we allow to influence us. Ron’s mentors and heroes span the spectrum and include Hattie Rosenthal, who he knew as an 85-year-old Freudian psychoanalyst and dream analyst before she passed. He admired Buddy Rich, one of the greatest jazz drummers of all time, and Lou Rawls, Chicago-born soul, jazz, and blues singer. He absorbed the influence of high school civics teacher Mr. Crawford, who recognized Ron’s underachieving for what it was—intellectual boredom. He learned from various coaches who taught him to physically and mentally push beyond limitations to run faster, work harder, and pursue the goal.
Today he is still working, listening, pushing, prodding, treating, and guiding others to a higher place—arm in arm; day by day; sometimes moment by moment. And all to the beat of a different drum…unmistakably, undeniably his own.
Dr. Ron Mercer Ph.D., L.M.H.C., NCC
The Center For Creative Living
1750 N. University Dr. Suite 201
Coral Springs, FL 33071