San Diego Counseling Specialties

Individual Counseling and Relationship Therapy in San Diego
Although our team has worked in a range of therapeutic settings, we have some very specific areas of focus for our chosen work in private practice.  The people we enjoy working with the most are the ones who have lived with a problem for a long time and are really ready to commit to improve themselves, their family, or their relationships!For as much as we can see people for a variety of general life stressors, we have special training & knowledge in the following areas:

Learning to Cope and Heal from Depressive Episodes:
Have you felt that your depression has gotten in the way of the things you would like to be doing?  Maybe your depression gets so bad that you have lost sight of the plans your had for yourself.  We can help you learn ways to retrain your brain to combat your depressive, or negative thoughts and get moving towards the life you want to live!

Conquer Anxiety, Panic Attacks & Fears:
There are times when  a person's anxiety gets the better of them.   Do you have specific fears you want to get rid of?  Has your anxiety prevented you from participating socially?  Do you feel like your anxiety sabotages your plans?  We can help you learn tricks to calm your anxiety and  aim to extinguish your panic attacks and fears.

Change Self-Defeating Relationship Patterns: 
We  often hear from clients that talk about how they keep "picking the wrong person" or do something to sabotage the relationship "right when it was getting good!". We can help you discover how to recognize the sabotaging behaviors you may be engaging in and intercept them.  Relationships do entail being able to make some compromises, but let's see if you are actually focusing on what you need. AtCoaching Through Chaos we believes very much in the idea that if you focus on what you want, you will attract that.  Stop thinking about what you don't want -decide what you do want and go for it!

Addiction Recovery Counseling:
This can be an addiction to alcohol and/or drugs, but it can also be food addiction, gambling, internet addiction, sex, or gaming.  Each has it's own set of challenges, but if you are willing to do the work, be honest about your behavior, and "live in private as you do in public", you can be successful & addiction-free!

*In dealing with substance addictions, there are times when it is necessary to refer a prospective client for a detox program before beginning the recovery work.  This will be determined at your first appointment.  If necessary, we can make community referrals and even call to set up an intake appointment for you.

Parent Coaching
We have specialists who focus on helping you be the best parent you can be, whether that is learning to manage your time better, educating you on the "best practices" for changing your child's behavior, or  gaining a better understanding of your child's developmental milestones.  Call Valerie Holcomb to find out about our 3-session Parent Coaching Special (619) 881-0051 ext. 4.

Peak Performance for the Modern Man
This is an 8-week program designed to help men, ages 22-30, gain more self-confidence, decrease relationship anxiety, design personal goals, and have a life plan for reaching their full potential.  Call Josh Hudson to find out more (619) 881-0051 ext 5.

Educationally Related Mental Health Services (ERMHS) Assessments:
Dr. Mullen has been conducting ERMHS Assessments  for local agencies that are contracted with several school districts in the San Diego region for many years.  She has knowledge in the area of school-based mental health services and determining factors that deem school-based services necessary. Please call her directly for more information about these services.

School Safety Assessments:
In today's climate of violent acts being committed on an almost daily basis on our nation's educational campuses, it can be confusing when a student begins to show signs that something maybe troubling them.  Many schools have a "no tolerance" policy when it comes to certain behaviors.  However, there are times when it is necessary to be able to assess a student for their readiness to return to school after a suspension, or to identify if mental health services could benefit the student.  As part of the start-up team of the Institute to Prevent School Violence at Alliant International University, Dr. Mullen studied the history of school shootings, and extensively analyzed the patterns of behavior and communication, or lack thereof, among school personnel.  Whether you are a school administrator or a parent of a student who has been identified as a "potential safety risk", let's schedule a consultation and discuss what services she can provide to you (i.e. consultation with school personnel, or conduct a safety assessment for re-entry purposes).

Relationship Counseling
In addition to her Doctorate Degree and her Marriage and Therapist license, Dr. Mullen has trained through The Gottman Institute. She provides relationship therapy utilizing tools as needed from various couples' counseling methods, but focuses on Gottman Method oriented interventions.

Dr. John Gottman and his wife Dr. Julie Schwartz-Gottman are the foremost researchers in evidence-based couples' therapy. You may have read some of their books:
"The Relationship Cure",
"The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work", "What Predicts Divorce?" or
"Why Marriages Succeed or Fail".

As a therapist trained through The Gottman Institute, Dr. Mullen has exclusive Assessment and Intervention Methods that can help you transform your relationship. Don't wait until you are thinking about divorce!

Sometimes couples get into patterns of behavior they think can't be broken.

Do you feel like you are always the one compromising?

Does your partner complain that you never listen? Do you feel the only way to get your point across is by yelling?

Dr. Mullen can help you unlock those patterns and re-energize your relationship! If you want to know how Gottman Method Couples' Therapy differs from other couples' therapies, contact me to set up your 4-session Relationship Assessment today!

Methods/Theories Used

Structural Theory
Strategic Theory
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
Trauma-Focused CBT
Gottman-Method Relationship Therapy
Solution-Focused Therapy
Person-Centered Therapy
Positive Psychology