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Meet Merritt Jones of Merritt Jones Family Acupuncture in Mission Valley and Carlsbad Village

Today we’d like to introduce you to Merritt Jones.

Merritt, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My journey into integrative medicine was born out of my own need for better health care options. In my early 20’s, I became very sick and struggled for years with terrible digestion, chronic fatigue and horrendously painful periods. It took me almost 10 years of suffering before a friend of mine pointed me in the direction of holistic medicine. I began exploring nutrition, eventually found acupuncture, and fell in love with integrative medicine. It just made sense to me, the idea that in order to create lasting health, we must get to the root of underlying health challenges.

My background was in psychology up until that point, but as I began learning more about natural medicine, I knew I needed to dive deeper. I completed a 2-year nutrition program through Bauman College of Holistic Nutrition, and then from there, decided I wanted to go to acupuncture school, which was, frankly, a surprisingly long and grueling process. I completed a full time 5-year graduate program at the Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine College in Berkeley, CA, graduating Magna Cum Laude.

During that time, while I was in the middle of my graduate program, I diagnosed myself with the reproductive disease, endometriosis, which was later confirmed with surgery – stage 4 (as bad as it gets). This diagnosis explained much of the suffering that I’d dealt with in those last 10 years. Through acupuncture, nutrition and other integrative therapies, I was able to begin turning my health story around. My pain reduced dramatically, my digestion improved, my energy returned.

It was then, in the final years of my graduate program, that I just knew this was my path. This revelation ignited the spark that has fueled my starting a practice here in San Diego. The practice has evolved over the last couple of years into a holistic reproductive health practice, and we’ve seen great success. San Diego is a wonderful place to practice and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

It’s true, what they say. When you love what you do, they rest is easy. That’s not to say that there haven’t been plenty of challenging moments in this journey. Starting a business was a steep learning curve for me, but most of the time, I really enjoy it, and the parts that I don’t enjoy (read: billing, accounting, etc), I outsource. Working with patients, helping them succeed in their health goals, it fills my heart with immense joy and gratitude. It’s a good life.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Surprisingly, it has been a relatively smooth road for me. I know a lot of acupuncturists who have struggled to get a practice going, and understandably. It takes a lot to see patients and keep everything running behind the scenes.

When I graduated, I made a commitment to myself that I would succeed. That was it. Failure was not an option for me after so many years of school, and I had a very clear vision of what I wanted to do. That commitment to myself, combined with my passion for integrative reproductive health and my family background of entrepreneurs allowed me to grow relatively quickly.

That being said, it’s not always been easy. I’ve had to learn a lot very quickly about business, and there have certainly been moments where I’ve wondered if it was all worth it. The stress that comes with being a small business owner is real. The pressure is on you and no one else, to keep that business going. I’ve really had to learn to practice what I preach and take time to rest and practice self-care. As I tell my patients every day, “like they tell you on airplanes, you can’t take care of others if you don’t first take care of yourself.”

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Merritt Jones Family Acupuncture – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
The practice has evolved over the years into an integrative reproductive health practice. We do a lot of work with fertility and pregnancy, but also with the many other aspects of reproductive health, from endometriosis and PCOS to menopause, LGBTQ and transgender health and more. We offer integrative reproductive healthcare for all stages of life.

Our team consists of myself, Merritt Jones, my associate acupuncturist, Kim Dela Cruz, and our billing crew. We are a small but mighty operation and work hard to create a space for patients that feels welcoming, personal, and supportive.

What really sets apart from a lot of the other folks out there is our dedication to customized, personal care. We have intentionally set up our practice to allow us time to get to know each patient well – when people sign up to work with us, they become part of our family. We work closely with each patient to ensure their story is heard, and we create customized treatment plans that fit their unique needs. Our goal is to offer guidance and tools to help patients feel empowered to take control of their health from their very first visit.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
Yes, actually! We are about to launch our new name and website for our Mission Valley location – “Natural Harmony Reproductive Health.” We will continue to offer the same awesome personalized health care, and are excited to be embracing what we’ve really gotten good at – natural reproductive healthcare.

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