I'm Mollie

Mollie Birney

High Performance Coach,
Celebrity Speaker, and Writer

That’s what comes up
when you google my name

But that makes me sound
FAR too polished!

If you want the truth,
here's my story:

I launched my self-improvement campaign at the age of 7. Desperate to “solve” my anxiety and loneliness, I said yes to anything that vaguely resembled self-betterment – yes to all diets, shrinks and shamans! For a decade I even joined my mom in her 12-step meetings hoping their serenity might rub off on me, but nothing cured my self-doubt or quieted my anxiety.

Like many of my clients today, I grew into a dangerously self-aware, chronically over-thinking perfectionist. I was such an over-achiever I even had bonus features: a raging case of bulimia and some less-than-honorable relationship patterns that I clung to for longer than I’m proud to admit!

But like a good girl (whatever that is) I devoted myself to therapy and 12-step work, cycled through antidepressants, attended silent Vipassana retreats, even inpatient treatment — twice! Truly, I was a self-help slut!

Relief, however, was always lukewarm. Yes, I found recovery and cleaned up my act, but my intense self-doubt and anxiety persisted. I constantly wondered “With all my self-knowledge, shouldn’t I be happy by now?”

Clarity only came when I met my coach, who later became my mentor. He demystified why I was still suffering: trying to fix myself demanded that I saw myself as broken. My approach affirmed that something was wrong with me! What if nothing was wrong? What if I could befriend the noise in my head?

Liberation came when I surrendered my quest to solve myself and leaned into embracing my shame and anxiety. Cultivating a relationship with our wounds is true alchemy – this work allows us to discover that our greatest liabilities can become our greatest contributions.

Cliff Notes

Grew up in LA, steeped in Hollywood glitz and family dysfunction.

Escaped to the east coast to study music.

Battled an ass-kicking eating disorder while getting a masters in choral conducting.

Immersed myself in therapy and self-help with only moderate relief.

Met my coach who transformed my relationship to my inner noise.

Got my masters in Clinical Psychology and spent a few years as a therapist.

Trained under my coach, ditched MFT licensure and launched my private practice.

I started as a therapist, but coaching was my calling.

Although I loved elements of traditional clinical work, ultimately the role of therapist felt too sterile. I found myself editing my language, biting my tongue and reserving parts of myself that my instinct was using me to contribute. Pivoting to coaching meant I was no longer limited by licensure, and was free to pioneer a more authentic conversation.

What’s the difference between therapist and coach?

As a therapist, I drew upon a body of academic knowledge and clinical insights. As a coach, I can also draw upon my personal experience and intuitive instincts. My personal mistakes, challenges and losses are fair game when they’re relevant to the work. Unlike traditional therapy, the coaching conversation is designed to be disruptive, stimulating, irreverent and playfully collaborative.

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In My Own Words

If you’re still learning about my coaching style,
take a look at my resource library where you can read
articles I’ve written and hear me dive in to some of my
favorite subjects on Podcasts, and of course, watch the Reels everyone is talking about.

Professional Bio

Mollie Birney has worked in the field of mental health and progressive personal work since 2011. Her clinical roles have included Primary Therapist for inpatient, residential and outpatient treatment programs, Consultant and Interventionist for families in crisis, and Private Coach for high-performing individuals seeking efficient, authentic transitions and behavioral change.

She often facilitates workshops for organizations and groups looking to deepen their definition of interpersonal and corporate wellness, and is a frequent speaker at a wide range of events and organizations. Most recently she gave the keynote speech at the 2019 North Carolina TIDE Annual Conference on Behavioral Health and the 2018 National Conference for the National Council for Addiction and Drug Dependence.

She holds a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University, a BA from Tufts University, and has developed her coaching pedagogy through 8 years of in-depth study under her coach and mentor Breck Costin.

Mollie and her husband Clint (also a therapist) are co-owners of Catch Your Breath Retreats. They live in the Wasatch Mountains with their son Wesley, and their two cats, Pig and Senator Elizabeth Warren.

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