Support for healthy life patterns, relationships, and accomplishing your goals...healing from loss and trauma...finding relief from painful feelings...disconfirming inaccurate, self-limiting beliefs...gaining trust in self and one's own inner authority...finding solutions...learning new skills...gaining insight... enjoying a fulfilling, meaningful life...
I'm grateful to help you find your way toward a more meaningful and fulfilling life. My focus is always that you deserve the utmost respect for your process of healing, gaining professional help with challenging situations, and reaching personal goals in a genuinely safe, respectful therapeutic environment. I’m an advocate for personal rights, self-empowerment, healthy relationships and groups that support commonalities, differences, autonomy, connection, and individual growth.
With over 20 years of professional experience and training, I work with individuals, couples, families, and groups, in office and through phone sessions. Our work together is collaborative and interactive, longer or shorter term. You take the lead on what you want to work on at your own pace. I support healing and beneficial change that takes place in and outside the therapeutic relationship and I help you find solutions to complex problems. From a systems and relational perspective, I consider the influence of healthy and harmful groups and relationships, including family of origin, partnerships, marriage, work environments, and organizations .
My specialties include trauma; loss and grief; depression; anxiety; post-traumatic stress and recovery; couple counseling and relationship issues; family of origin concerns; difficult transitions; self-identity and meaning of life issues.
I specialize in working with two unique populations:
MOTHERLESS DAUGHTERS, women who have lost their mothers through death, illness, separation, or estrangement in childhood, adolescense, or adulthood since 1992. Since 1997 in Mill Valley, San Anselmo, and Lagunitas-Forest Knolls, I've developed and facilitated groups for motherless daughters, worked with motherless daughters individually, and created MARIN MOTHERLESS DAUGHTERS .
HIGH DEMAND GROUP EDUCATION, GROUP AND INDIVIDUAL THERAPY, AND CONSULTATION for former members, families, professionals. High Demand Groups can be categorized as "spiritual," "political," "large group awareness trainings," "philosophical," "New Age," "religious," etc. and includes clergy abuse and abusive relationships. I've developed and facilitated groups and workshops for former members, including Second Generation Adults (SGAs), those raised in them since 2003.
Domestic Violence has parallels to abusive, high demand groups with a dominant partner who commonly displays traits of superiority and possessivness in an unequal power dynamic. The perpetrator seduces the subordinate partner, progressively displaying signs of abuse, damaging the partner's sense of self and restricting her world. Violence against women is learned and reinforced through social, cultural and institutional influence.
If you're seeking help for your process of healing and growth, if you're looking for extra support and guidance through a challenging situation, if you're needing to change dysfunctional patterns and strengthen your relationship, or you're ready to move in a new direction in your life, I look forward to working with you to achieve your goals.
"Many thanks for your lovely presentation about a difficult topic that few therapists explore. Your preparation and concern for your patients was evident, and I think everyone in attendance appreciated your insights." Gary Gross, Chair, Friday Evening Lectures, Marin Chapter of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists
"Colleen exemplifies all of the best traits in a family therapist: compassion, insight, persistence, and a relentless capacity to bring out the best in her clients. I have personally spoken to those who have benefitted from her dedication and intelligence; they could not speak highly enough. For them, Colleen offered a safe place to explore, a place to grow and to learn to live in new ways. I recommend Colleeen highly, for individual and family therapy, as well as for the support groups that she facilitates so well." 2013, Patti Millar, PhD, ACC
"You do wonderful work, Colleen. Kudos to you for your commitment to these women!!" Hope Edelman, Author of "Motherless Daughters, The Legacy of Loss" and "Letters From Motherless Daughters". 2013.
"Colleen is a sensitive, insightful and mature professional therapist who has been greatly helpful to her many clients. I recommend her without hesitation." 2013, Daniel Shaw, LCSW
"I have known Colleen Russell for years. She is one of the most thoughtful therapists I know. I have implicit trust in her. She is much respected and known for her caring approaches. She is an invaluable therapist for those who have been (or are) in a cultic group or relationship." 2014, Janja Lalich, Ph.D., Sociology Professor at Chico State, Specialist in extremism and undue influence, Author of "Take Back Your life" and "Bounded Choice: True Believers and Charismatic Cults."
You can call or email me for a free 10-15 minute initial introductory consultation.
"Life expands or contracts in proportion to one's courage." Anais Nin
Welcome to My San Anselmo Office