Julia Overlin was always one to ask people how they were doing and actually wait for an answer rather than brush them off. As an adult she was her friends’ “couch psychologist” listening to their problems.
“I’ve always been an ear to my friends,” she said.
After a career in acting where Overlin reached people through the roles she played, she found it natural to go into psychotherapy. “I wanted to reach people and normalize humanity,” she said. Overlin now reaches people by working with them one on one helping them through issues they may be going through.
“A lot of people tell me they’re crazy. I tell them ‘you’re human,’ ” she explained.
After her decision to retire from acting, Overllin decided “there was more to life and returned to school to pursue psychology and study human behavior from a clinical perspective, to normalize humanity in a different way.”
Overlin has a wide variety of clients and can help with many issues - although she feels her niche is treating anxiety. “I think I relate so easily to the niche of clients who come with social anxiety… I recognize a part of myself in them when I was younger and can empathize from my first hand perspective…having grown up a shy kid myself… The acting helped me come out of my shell and grow more and more comfortable in my skin,” she explained in an email.
Overlin grew up in Palm Springs and spent her summers in San Diego with her uncle Cedric Sanders, who was one of the original contractors who built the Coronado Cays. She has named her practice Coronado Counseling as an homage to her uncle.
After Overlin decided to retire from acting and focus her life to help others, she went back to school and received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Ashford University, a Master’s of Science in Mental Health Counseling from Capella University and is Nationally Certified Clinical Counselor through the National Board of Certified Counselors and a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor. Her comprehensive practice offers services dealing with issues that include counseling for trauma, grief and bereavement, personal addiction, social anxiety, and anger management.
Overlin’s practice is located in Chula Vista but she has the ability to see clients in other offices through her company in San Diego county. Overlin has been a therapist for almost five years and finds her clients feel comfortable with her.
“I’m an older therapist and in counseling it’s a huge plus because of my clinical and life experience. Clients trust me. I know what they are talking about because I’ve lived it,” she said. Overlin said her clients feel comfortable talking to her and she is known for making them feel at ease right away.
“My role is only in empowering you to remember what you are capable of and I do so from a very supportive and nonjudgemental approach,” she writes. Overlin empowers her clients so they can move on with their lives with the new skills they have learned through therapy.
Helping others is Overlin’s calling. “I’m conformable in my skill. I don’t even feel like I’m working. It’s natural fit. I love coming to work every day,” she said.
During this time of COVID-19 she still sees clients in her office. Both she and the clients wear masks and maintaining social distancing but she also offers Telehealth and phone sessions. Overlin said right now clients are experiencing anxiety over loss of their jobs, and not knowing what comes next. Some of the things she recommends for people to keep their minds off what makes them anxious is to remember it’s also ok to talk about problems. She finds often people are afraid of sounding stupid or don’t know how to put things into words when starting a conversation.
She says that the best thing is to talk about what’s bothering you before the volcano starts to form. “It’s really important especially now. People are isolated, they can’t go out. Older people in particular don’t have others to talk to, some of their friends may have passed away. The best thing is to reach out to others. Talk to people, call people up, know you’re not alone. Stay in touch even if there’s nothing to report,” she said.
Overlin’s goal is to get her clients to the point where they don’t need to see her anymore. “There is a stigma …from the 1970s where you’re in therapy and you’re stuck. My goal is to make you not need me,” she said.
Overlin offers a free phone consultation for prospective clients to get a feel for what she is like and whether it’s a match between counselor and client.
When she is not seeing clients, Overlin works as a Psychiatric Emergency Response Team Clinician, a first respondent with law enforcement that assesses, evaluates and aligns people with a hospital. She is called during crisis situations and rides with police officers.
“It’s another day for me to contribute. I feel blessed,” she said.
Coronado Counseling (619) 551-7061. For more information or request an appointment log on www.coronadocounselingca.com