Today we’d like to introduce you to Colleen Mitchell.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
What has made the biggest difference in my own life in times of adversity were the people who were there to support, encourage, teach and believe in me. My teen years were stressful ones filled with emotional, psychological, physical, social and familial struggles, and as difficult as they were at the time I believe they were the driving force in my desire to help others.
My fascination with people (why they think what they think and do what they do) lead me to study Psychology as an undergraduate. I graduated a semester early but didn’t really have a clear career path so I was off to work and figure it out. My first job was to create and implement an after-school/summer program for at-risk middle schoolers at a local community mental health center. I loved the hands-on experience of helping young people thrive in spite of their daily life challenges. It was my first exposure to working with clinical social workers and it changed my perspective of the impact they have on helping clients in struggle. It motivated me to go back for my Master of Social Work degree at Adelphi University which I completed in 1989. My clinical experience has been diverse over the years including work in community mental health, outpatient chemical dependency, a high school, managed care and employee assistance. Ultimately, I began working in my first private counseling practice in 1994. Complications after the birth of my 2nd child lead me to take break from my clinical work and focus on raising my family.
Armed with more life experience, a series of fortunate events opened the door in 2012 for my return to the work that I love. It was about 3 years ago that I made the decision to only do work that makes my heart sing so I now specialize in providing counseling, coaching and psychotherapy for women.
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?
Every road is filled with challenges of some sort and mine is no different. My first go at building a private practice was interrupted by life at a point when things were going well. I hadn’t anticipated having to give up my work totally but it became clear that making that choice was the best thing for my family. No regrets, as I look back now it was a blessing in many ways. I put work on a shelf and reminded myself that living my life fully and dealing with my own struggles would make me better at what I do. In 2014, I got a nudge from the universe that it was time to begin again. I have to say that there were things about starting over that were easier but there are also things that were harder. This go around I made the decision to not become a part of insurance provider networks. No more spending time and effort battling for the money I earn or disclosing clinical information to gain approval for sessions. I decided to provide a fully confidential environment where my focus and energy goes into my actual work with clients. This meant that I no longer had access to the stream of client referrals from insurance. Needless to say, things started off very slowly.
Marketing counseling services can be challenging and as I continue to grow in this area, my practice mirrors that.
Being a psychotherapist is mentally and emotionally demanding work requiring that I make my own self-care a priority. In 2014, I suffered the monumental loss of both my parents. In the final days of my father’s battle with cancer we discovered my mom also had cancer. It was huge upset and then an even bigger shock when she passed away 7 days after he did. It was so important to my own healing as well as my work that I took care of my own need to grieve. As therapists we don’t live in a bubble, life happens and it requires that self-care be a priority and that we do our own work. Ultimately, I believe it makes me a better therapist.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Counseling, Coaching and Psychotherapy for Women story. Tell us more about the business.
I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a solo private practice, Counseling, Coaching and Psychotherapy for Women located north of Atlanta in Alpharetta convenient to both North Fulton and South Forsyth Counties. I specialize in helping women and teen girls believe, balance, connect, heal, learn, love, persist, open, trust, transform and most importantly shine! I am most proud of the fact that the work that I am blessed to do helps women shift from a state of merely surviving to thriving. I am inspired all the time by the strength, courage and resilience of my clients. What sets my practice apart from many others is that I offer a holistic approach for the woman who nurtures everyone else in her life to make herself a priority and tend to her physical, emotional, psychological, relational and spiritual needs.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t know that I’ve thought about my business in terms of luck. The optimist in me favors finding the good wherever I can so in situations where at first appearance it may seem to be bad luck I can usually find a gift. I get to do work that is challenging, meaningful, fun and makes a positive difference; I think that makes me pretty lucky.
- My current rate is $120 per 50 minute session.
- Address: 5490 McGinnis Village Road,
Suite 205, Alpharetta, GA 30005
- Website: www.womenspsychotherapyga.com
- Phone: (404) 271-5104
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org