Helping Professionals Counseling San Francisco CA Colette Mercier

for helping professionals


Support is crucial.

Self-Care is critical for the sustainability of those of us who are called to serve others. Often, challenging childhoods taught us the skills to be great helpers. Seeing ourselves over-come obstacles may have inspired us to help others. It is a wonderful gift to help others with their emotional or physical struggles with an open heart and from a place of knowing pain. 

Learning what restores you is necessary to be a helping professional long term. I support helpers to build a solid foundation of self-awareness. This self-knowledge then fosters better self-care, healthier boundaries and improved work-life balance. These are essential over time to continuing to be effective and satisfied as helpers. 

Service is a gift.

While service can be a great gift, it can be complicated as well. Burn out and compassion fatigue are common among helpers. Witnessing others in need can have a traumatic effect on our bodies and minds, creating vicarious trauma. Our motivation to help can be connected intimately to our own pain and wounding. Past traumas can be stimulated by supporting others in need.  

I support caregivers to find healthy, empowering ways to serve others while nourishing themselves.  A significant part of this is the ability to know our own boundaries and edges. When are we able to best help?  When shouldn’t we? When do we need to resources and tend to ourselves? I work with professional helpers to develop their awareness of their inner state so they can care for themselves, while enjoying and sustaining their work. 

Work-life balance is also essential to our mental health. It can feel selfish to take care of ourselves when encountering those who are in crisis, contending with illness or in a place of high need. In therapy for helpers, we bring to light what stops you from caring for yourself when needed. We look to your inner wisdom to identify when you can stretch, giving more and when you can’t or shouldn’t. We study what comes up when you do need to focus on yourself. We look at what supports you to be at your best in your role. We learn what keeps your heart open in your work, so it continues to be satisfying.

My background.

I specialize in working with practitioners, caregivers and helping professionals. My journey as a helping professional began in 1998 when I joined the staff of Bay Area Women Against Rape. For the past 15 years, I have delivered over 400 babies, providing holistic prenatal, birth and postpartum care as a Licensed Midwife.  


Contact me for a free consultation.

In this 15-minute conversation we can check out if we might work well together.