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Susannah Muller, Marriage and Family Therapist

- Creating Positive Change -

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IT HELPS TO TALK TO SOMEONE

Life can be challenging. All of us need support at times. This is particularly true if you are feeling depressed, anxious, angry or confused or are experiencing grief or a difficult relationship. Research and experience show that talk therapy can help. Therapy allows people to gain insight, improve relationships, clarify issues, overcome problems, and change unhelpful behaviors.

I have a master's degree in Marriage and Family Therapy and I have conducted psychotherapy with individuals, couples, children, families and groups. My counseling clients come from all walks of life and are concerned with a wide variety of issues. I believe in providing a warm, supportive and thought-provoking environment where you can feel safe to explore your concerns. As a therapist, my approach is collaborative - we work together on discovering what is holding you back and how to overcome it. (For more, please see About Me & My Approach to Therapy).

Whether you are struggling with relationship problems, your work environment, family difficulties or a lack of happiness in your life, it helps to talk to someone. Many clients report strong feelings of anger, frustration, irritability, sadness or despair that they don't know how to handle, or that they are out of touch with their emotions. Talking with a counselor such as me offers you the chance to work through such emotions, gain a broader perspective, find hope, and change things that aren't working.

If you think therapy might be helpful for you, or if you have any questions, please call or email me. You may also fill out the Inquiry Form to the left and then click on submit. An initial phone consultation is free.

Day and Evening Appointments Available.

About Me

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I choose to become a therapist because I believe people can change their life and I find great satisfaction in helping people do so.  My clients have told me that they appreciate the fact that I am down-to-earth, warm and genuine.  My style tends to be informal, low on pretense and psychobabble, but high on support, honesty and understanding.  I have experience with a broad range of problems and approaches.

San Diego Therapist Susannah Muller

Prior to becoming a therapist, I spent 8 years as an attorney, specializing in estate planning and nonprofit corporate work.  The best part of my law practice was working one-on-one with my clients; helping them find creative solutions to their problems invigorated me and made the practice worthwhile. However, only a small percentage of my time was spent interacting with clients.  After much research and contemplation, I decided to leave law and go into a profession where I would spend the majority of my time doing what I love – working with people to help them create positive change in their life.

My Approach to Therapy

Client-Centered
My approach is client-centered, meaning that therapy is structured around you, your concerns and your goals. I respect you, your values and your culture. My role is to support you, provide you with thought-provoking feedback, and gently challenge you.

Real Listening & Responsive Feedback
My first goal is for you to feel truly heard. Having someone listen that cares about your story is in itself healing and helps one develop self-esteem, confidence and insight.

My second goal is to provide the level of interaction and feedback that works best for you. For some, all they require is a compassionate and encouraging listener. Most clients, however, benefit from a bit more interaction, from someone who will help them clarify their goals and offer ideas.

One of my strengths is that, as I get to know a client, I develop a feel for what works best for him or her. I constantly keep in mind the question – how can I best help this person? -- and I often ask the client for his or her input on what is working or not working. As a result, my clients are able to get the most out of our time together.

Positive Psychology & Solution-Oriented
Rather than dwelling on diagnosis, I focus on problem-solving, personal growth and developing insight. Part of our work will concentrate on identifying your innate strengths and capabilities and how they can help you overcome obstacles. I find that this enables clients to find creative and satisfying solutions to their problems. In addition, I encourage bringing a sense of humor to the process, which can be healing and uplifting.

A Team Approach
Therapy is a collaborative effort. I provide expertise on the process of change and growth through therapy. My end goal is for you to leave feeling empowered and able to cope on your own. In order to do this, I believe you must take an active role in your therapy. I will support you every step of the way and help you find new paths to travel, but you must do the walking.

Holistic, Authentic and Present-Oriented
I see human nature through a holistic lens. Biological, psychological, socio-cultural, and spiritual elements all factor into my understanding of human behavior and experience.

I believe in being authentic and transparent, meaning I am upfront with you about what I am thinking and why. I believe this builds trust and respect and creates a safe environment for you to explore sensitive or painful areas of your life.

I tend to concentrate primarily on the present and the future, but we may also address material from the past if it arises.

Integrated Theoretical Orientation
I draw from a variety of different approaches and methods in my work, depending on the needs and interests of each client. With individual clients I use a mixture of several key theories including Coherence Therapy, Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Positive Psychology, experiential, attachment theory, humanistic, Bowen/family systems, transactional analysis, and various cognitive and behavioral theories. In addition, I use Motivational Interviewing (MI) with addiction issues.

Many of these same theories apply to family and couples counseling as well. In addition, for family therapy, I apply Emotionally Focused Family Therapy, (EFFT) and structural therapy. With couples, I mainly rely on EFT and attachment theory.

Education
M.A., Marriage & Family Therapy
Alliant International University
(formerly the California School of Professional Psychology, CSPP)
San Diego, CA

J.D.
UCLA School of Law                                            
Los Angeles, CA
Admitted to the California State Bar, November 1996

Double B.A., Psychology & English
Stanford University                                               
Stanford, CA

Additional Training
Internship with Aimee Zakrewski
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist #43736, who has over 6 years of experience.

Internship with Daniel Carr
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist #31037, who has over 25 years of experience.

Attachment in Psychotherapy Conference
San Diego, CA

Motivational Interviewing Seminar
San Diego, CA

Summit in EFT for Individuals, Couples & Families
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Emotionally Focused Therapy for Couples: 4-Day Externship
San Diego, CA

Anatomy of Intimacy Conference: Healing Traumatic Attachment Injuries and Preventing Relapse in Couples Therapy
Irvine, CA

Memberships
American Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (AAMFT)   
California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT)   
San Diego Chapter of CAMFT

Map & Directions

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My office is centrally located in Sorrento Valley, convenient to central San Diego, Carmel Valley, Clairemont North County and the beach cities of La Jolla, Del Mar and Pacific Beach. The office building is approximately 1/2 mile east of the Mira Mesa exit of the 805. It is easily accessible from Highways 805, 56 and 5.

Address:
5665 Oberlin Dr., Suite 201
San Diego, CA 92121
(619) 787-2743


View Larger Map


Directions
From Del Mar, Encinitas & north county (from the 5 South):
1. Take 5 South to the 805 South
2. Take EXIT 27 toward Mira Mesa Blvd. and proceed onto Mira Mesa Blvd.
3. Turn RIGHT at Scranton Rd.
4. Take the first LEFT onto Oberlin Dr.

From Downtown San Diego, La Jolla, UTC, Pacific Beach & Clairemont (from the 5 North):
1. Torrey Pines Rd or I-5 North to 52 East
2. Take 805 North
3. Take EXIT 27 toward Mira Mesa Blvd. and proceed onto Mira Mesa Blvd.
4. Turn RIGHT at Scranton Rd.
5. Take the first LEFT onto Oberlin Dr.

From Carmel Valley, Rancho Peñasquitos & Poway (from 56):
1. Take 56 West and merge onto the 5 South
2. Take 5 South to the 805 South
3. Take EXIT 27 toward Mira Mesa Blvd. and proceed onto Mira Mesa Blvd.
4. Turn RIGHT at Scranton Rd.
5. Take the first LEFT onto Oberlin Dr.

From central San Diego (from 805 North):
1. Take 805 North.
2. Take EXIT 27 toward Mira Mesa Blvd. and proceed onto Mira Mesa Blvd.
3. Turn RIGHT at Scranton Rd.
4. Take the first LEFT onto Oberlin Dr.

Contact Information

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Susannah Muller
M.A., Marriage and Family Therapy
J.D., UCLA School of Law

Phone: (619) 787-2743
Email: susannah@therapy-sandiego.com
*Note: Email is not secure, and should not be used to transmit personal or confidential information.

Address:
5665 Oberlin Dr., Suite 201
San Diego, CA 92121
Link to Map

Hours Available:
Day and evening appointments available.



Copyright © 2007-2012 Susannah Muller. All Rights Reserved.

Susannah Muller, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist #49050