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169 – Jess Sprengle – The Cranky Therapist on Social Media, Workaholism, and Recovery

Spoiler Alert: The Cranky Therapist is not at all cranky. At least, this is the conclusion I came to after our chat. Instead, Jess Sprengle, the meme queen behind a catchy social persona, manages her private practice as well as her popular profiles and keeps herself grounded, in part, because she does her own work. 

It’s important to highlight for folks that as therapists, we get something out of the therapy and that’s part of what motivates us to choose this profession. That said, there’s an opposite side of the coin: workaholism. 

While empathy is critical in what we do, we can push that resource to its limits, adding more clients to our roster when we just don’t have the time, space, or capacity to do so. Jess credits social media, specifically her IG and TikTok accounts, for providing a new outlet through which she can bond.

Yes, followers can and do base assumptions about Jess’ private life/profession/looks, you name it. She appreciates the privilege of her visibility while also admitting that those assumptions hurt. That’s where the lessons she’s learned from her own healing journey keep her from spiraling. “I didn’t create the account to have followers. I created the account because I wanted to do something particular, which I do feel like I’m doing.” 


Jess Sprengle owns and operates a private practice in Austin, TX specializing in the care and treatment of adolescents, young adults, adults, and families impacted by eating disorders, disordered eating, body image disturbances, and adjacent issues. She is a champion of freedom, justice, and liberation for all people and all bodies and practices from an intersectional, social justice-aligned lens. Jess considers herself to be a “radically genuine” therapist and seeks to embody authenticity and “humanness” with clients. She brings this to the social media world through her instagram account, @thecrankytherapist, and Twitter, @JessSprengleLPC.

For full show notes, resources, and links to connect with our guest, visit:


You’re invited to Head/Heart Conversations, our webinar series designed for psychotherapists who want to invite their inner healer to the forefront of both work life and personal life. In this four-part series, we will invite participants to learn about themselves as well as enhance their clinical skills.

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Friday, September 17, 2021 – Body Language by Joanna Taubeneck, LCPC, R-DMT, GL-CMA, E-RYT Friday, November 19, 2021 – Queering our Conversations by Benji Marton, LCSW


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Authenticity, caring professions, community building, community healing, community inspiration, depression, healing humanity, helping others, mental health, mental illness, power to heal, Sarah Buino, Social Change, social issues, social justice


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