Dr. Debra O'Shea (@droshea)

5 Tips To Increase Personal Growth

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Personal growth is different for everyone as we all have different dreams, desires and wants in life.  It can be in any area such as physical, emotional or relational to name a few.  The process of growing can help empower us, find our voice and reach new insights into ourselves.  It can challenge us to become better, stronger or more efficient at something. 

​Here are 5 tips to increase personal growth:

  1. Optimism:  Your attitude is so important in all aspects of your life.  It is the lens you look through to view and perceive the world. Optimism has been linked to happiness, improved coping skills and better health.   When you are optimistic your interactions with others will be enriched and when faced with challenges, you will be able to move forward with a positive attitude.
  2. Improve your listening skills:  Actively listening to what people say can improve all of your interactions.  When you are truly listening to the other person, (not thinking about the next thing you want to say) you will find your communication skills will advance and you will have less miscommunication with the people in your life.
  3. Learn from failure:  One of the hardest things we can do is accept and learn from our failures and most importantly try again.  If we do not learn from our mistakes, we are more likely to make them again.  If we choose to learn from our mistakes we can use these challenges to empower us, catapult us forward and help us learn and grow.  In order to continue moving forward, we must try again and not give up.
  4. Try new things:  Yes, this can be scary!  Not everyone will want to try skydiving; however, everyone can try something new just outside of their comfort zone.  These challenges can give us a sense of accomplishment, joy and can be fun.
  5. Surround yourself with supportive people:  When trying to reach your goals it is imperative to have positive people surrounding you and supporting you. Having a positive and supportive group of family and friends is important for your well being as well as your emotional health.  

​Progressing in these five areas will impact your life in a positive manner.  This can lead to increased self-esteem, deepening of your relationships and propelling you toward your goals.  

5 tips for healthy boundary setting

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

A boundary is the line in the sand that is drawn between what is and what is not acceptable behavior, toward oneself.  We have physical, emotional and mental boundaries which we should be setting in all of our relationships.  Boundaries help us feel safe, secure and comfortable and help us define how others treat us. The idea is to have firm but flexible boundaries, you do not feel as though you are a controlling person and you may need to adapt some of your boundaries to different situations. At times we may feel uncomfortable in relationships and in the moment we can not figure out why we are feeling this way.  A question you should ask yourself, "Is there a boundary violation happening?"  For example, someone is a close talker and moves into your personal space,  you may feel some discomfort.  It may take a few minutes or even days to figure out why you feel this way when this person comes over to your desk to speak with you.  They are breaching your boundary of personal space.  Another example is if you are interacting with a friend, family member or your partner and during the interaction, you start to feel resentment toward this person. You may feel they are taking advantage of you in some way, this may be a boundary breach.  The next question to ask yourself is "Did I set this boundary?"   It is your responsibility to take care of yourself, and set appropriate boundaries for you.  If you did set the boundary and it is being violated, ask yourself "What should I do about this breach?"   Boundary setting can feel daunting at times, especially if you generally have loose boundaries. You may feel a little anxious setting limits and may be concerned about possible conflict, retribution in the workforce, being perceived as mean or feeling guilty. You may have many other feelings regarding boundary setting, they are real feelings but should not necessarily stop your boundary setting.  Here are some tips for boundary setting.

5 tips for healthy boundary setting:

  1. Be direct:  State your boundary in a clear and concise manner, so people know exactly where you stand and what behavior is acceptable to you.
  2. Saying no:  Give yourself permission to say no.  Saying no helps maintain boundaries and sets clear limits for what you are and are not willing to tolerate. 
  3. Practice self care:  Self care is important in setting and maintaining boundaries as you need to start putting yourself first, at times.  This will help you set limits as boundary setting is a part of self care.
  4. Self awareness:  Be tuned into your feelings in situations as they are the key to determining if boundaries need to be set.  This will also help with recognizing boundary breaches or if someone is trying to push your boundaries.
  5. Be assertive:  Be assertive and polite when setting boundaries and when maintaining your boundaries during possible breaches.  Assertive is not the same as aggressive and you should not become aggressive when setting or maintaining boundaries. 

 

Many people feel that setting boundaries is selfish and that is not true.  They help us define where each of us end and the other person begins.   The limits we set help us to separate out who we are, our thoughts and feelings, from others in our lives. They improve our self concept and assist us in moving toward healthier relationships.

What are the Greatest Risks of Sleep Deprivation?

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Sleep deprivation is something we have all experienced.  Whether it was staying up all night in school to study for an exam or just not being able to fall asleep.  If you slept 6 hours or less you are considered sleep deprived.  Sleep deprivation can be chronic or acute.  If you are working two jobs and you are generally sleeping 6 hours or less, this is considered chronic sleep deprivation.  If you occasionally find yourself sleeping 6 hours or less, it is considered acute sleep deprivation.Chronic sleep deprivation can have long term effects, acute sleep deprivation has short term effects and with proper sleep these consequences disappear.  Regardless of whether you have acute or chronic sleep deprivation there are consequences for not sleeping enough or sleeping well.  Everyone needs a different amount of sleep to function properly.  Each of us may have a different baseline for appropriate sleep.  An adult generally needs 7-9 hours of sleep and children need more sleep based on their age.     

Effects of lack of sleep:

  1. Decreased cognitive skills:  The list of cognitive issues with sleep deprivation is long, here are several: difficulty making decisions, decreased judgment, poor memory, word finding issues, difficulty with thinking and processing information as well as sustained attention and concentration.
  2. Motor skills:  You may find that you become less agile and that you are clumsy.  You are more likely to knock things over, and your reaction time may be slowed.
  3. Mood:  You may find that you are grumpy, feel easily overwhelmed and may feel more stressed.  You may feel irritable and find you may cry easily.  You may also experience fatigue and find you are tired and no longer desire to participate in pleasurable activities.
  4. Weight gain:  Research states that lack of sleep increases a hunger hormone so you may find yourself hungry all day when you are sleep deprived.
  5. Increased blood pressure:  Sleep deprivation increases blood pressure and can increase your risk factors for heart disease and stroke.
  6. Weakened immune system:  Lack of sleep can decrease your immune system and you may find that you are more susceptible to colds and viruses. 

Top 5 Characteristics of a Healthy Relationship

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

We connect with people daily, at the grocery store, work, grabbing a coffee in the morning or a sandwich at lunch.  These interactions can lead to acquaintances, friendships or romantic interests.  Relationships come in and out of our lives frequently. They have a beginning, middle and an end.  The duration and end point are different for each one. Relationships can be long term or short in duration and may end over different reasons, growing apart, moving away, a disagreement or a myriad of other reasons.     Here are five characteristics which are needed for a happy and healthy relationship, whether with a friend, family member or partner.

  1. Honest and vulnerable:  Being truthful to yourself as well as others.  Many of us rationalize reasons not to share different things about ourselves because we may feel vulnerable.  Being honest, also means being vulnerable at times. Sometimes we work hard at NOT feeling vulnerable in a relationship, because vulnerability is scary.  Being vulnerable in a relationship helps grow trust and intimacy.  It all starts with honesty.
  2. Mutual Respect:  Supporting each other in a respectful manner.  Making decisions with your partner about those things that affect your relationship is a sign of mutual respect.  This is not to say that you will lose all decision making ability, you will still be able to buy a Cafe Mocha without consulting.  Use your judgment and make important decisions together and/or those that will affect the relationship.  This exhibits mutual respect and understanding. 
  3. Rust:  Building trust in a relationship is very important.  This is one of the key characteristic for a long term healthy relationship.  Being faithful to your partner is not enough, both of you must feel emotionally/mentally/physically safe in the relationship.  It will be difficult for the relationship to grow without feeling safe.  Trust is important for intimacy to grow and to feel more connected to each other.
  4. Forgiveness: "The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong." - Mahatma Ghandi. Forgiving someone who hurt you is a very difficult task.  Letting go of the anger you feel when someone close to you hurts you and forgiving them, can seem impossible at times.  Having compassion toward the person  who hurt you helps in the forgiveness process. Try to remember that most people have feelings and the person who hurt you most likely feels terrible about what happened.  Holding on to anger can lead to resentment and bitterness. These feelings are not good for you psychologically, emotionally or physically. They are also detrimental to the relationship you are in and other relationships in your life.  This does not mean you need to forgive the person immediately, forgiveness is a process and individual to those who are experiencing deep wounding.
  5. Communication:  Healthy communication is very important in every relationship we have.  Listening, sharing and responding to your friend/partner in a non judgmental way. Validating what your friend/partner is saying, even if you disagree, is very useful in healthy communication.  Try not to fall into negative communication patterns such as the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.  Communicate with respect, even when angry and upset with each other.  Refrain from name calling and utilizing sarcasm when communicating.Relationships ebb and flow, and require hard work through the difficult times. Those of us who have these characteristics in our relationships, should be experiencing happy and healthy relationships.  Relationships are not easy but they are worth it when you find the right people to be your friends and the right person to be your partner.       

Insomnia: I need more sleep!

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

How many nights have you spent tossing and turning while trying to fall asleep? Once you fall asleep, you wake up a couple hours later and the tossing and turning begins again.  It becomes a terrible cycle of attempting to sleep while looking at the clock.  Many of us will start calculating how many hours of sleep we will have if we can fall asleep in the next few minutes. Sometimes we are able to fall asleep rather quickly and other times, not so much.Insomnia is a sleep disorder characterized by difficulty falling asleep and/or staying asleep. There is acute and chronic insomnia.  There are many reasons which can cause insomnia, some of which are stress, change in sleep pattern, change of shift at work, anxiety, caffeine, depression, medication, eating late, exercising late and the list goes on. Knowing the cause can help with treatment and a resolution. There are also several risk factors associated with insomnia.  Women experience insomnia more than men.  This does not mean that men do not suffer from insomnia, it just means that their stats are lower.  Another risk factor is age, if you are over 60 you are more likely to experience this issue, as insomnia increases with age as sleep patterns change with age.  Another risk factor is work, if you have a varied schedule this changes your sleep schedule and you may find it difficult adjusting to the new sleep pattern.  Jet lag is also a risk factor for insomnia, so if you travel for your job, be aware of this issue.   Here are some treatment suggestions for acute insomnia:

  1. Decrease stress:  Utilize stress reduction techniques such as taking a walk, deep breathing, speaking with a trusted loved one, managing your time better and progressive muscle relaxation.
  2. Caffeine:  Decrease or ban caffeine from your diet, as this will help with sleep for most people as caffeine is a stimulant.   Some people can have caffeine right before they go to sleep and they do not have any sleep issues.  However, other people should slowly decrease their caffeine intake if it is disrupting sleep.
  3. Utilize Sleep Hygiene:  Go to sleep and wake up at the same time everyday, including weekends.  Utilize your bedroom for sleep and sex only.  Have a set routine before bed and do that routine at the same time every night.  You want your body to start associating your bedtime routine and bedroom with sleep.
  4. Exercise:  Research states that exercising for 30 minutes, three to four times per week consistently, will help improve your sleep over time.
  5. Non-Preferred Activity:  If you cannot sleep after 15 minutes, get up and do an activity you will not enjoy.  An example would be cleaning the toilet and bathroom.  If you hate cleaning the bathroom, this is the activity to do when you cannot sleep.  If you do an activity you enjoy such as reading or watching TV you are stimulating your mind with joy. You want to sleep, not watch TV.  Try a non preferred activity, you will be surprised how often this works for acute insomnia. If you suffer from chronic insomnia, you may want to consult your healthcare provider who can assist with a sleep study and treatment plan. 

Guide to coping with Loss

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Loss can be a divorce, a relationship ending, death of a loved one, including pets, a separation from a loved one and loss of functioning whether physical, mental or emotional. Coping with loss can be a difficult, draining and an overwhelming experience filled with grief. The stages of grief by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross can and should be applied to all losses, not just death.  The stages of grief are a  fluid process and not always completed in order. Kubler-Ross' 5 Stages of Grief are below: 5 Stages of Grief:

  1. Denial:  You have difficulty believing the event has happened or is happening.  You may feel numb and in complete and utter shock regarding the loss.  This is a defense mechanism as you may be so overwhelmed you can not process everything right away.  Denial is part of the healing process.
  2. Anger:  You are getting in touch with your anger about the loss in your life.  You may be angry with yourself or blame others for what has happened.  It is easier for you to be angry with doctors, family members, etc, than to process and feel the emotional pain. This is part of healing, in this stage, you may start to feel the pain of the loss and go back and forth between, anger and pain and disbelief of the situation.
  3. Bargaining:  You may bargain with God, you may ask your soon to be ex "Can we remain friends?"  You may say things to loved ones such as " if we had only gone to the doctor sooner."  Bargaining does not change the outcome and you may still be feeling quite a bit of deep emotional pain, anger and at times disbelief.  Generally you will start feeling more emotional pain and less disbelief.
  4. Depression:  You are deep in emotional pain.  You are very aware of the event and the emotional pain that coexists.  Any reminder of the situation reopens the emotional wound.  At times you can feel anger and despair.  This is part of the healing process.  Feel what you are feeling, and lean on your emotional support system. 
  5. Acceptance:  You are accepting the event, you may have a feeling of calmness and understanding.Loss is very personal and everyone experiences it differently.  There is not a right way or a wrong way to process loss and feel grief.  You must feel whatever you are feeling.  Your support system can not take your pain away, but they can comfort you while you are experiencing the loss.  Your loved ones can help support you through the grief process, but ultimately you need to grieve in order to heal. 

Anticipatory anxiety is a symptom of anxiety

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Anticipatory anxiety is a symptom of anxiety, it is not a diagnosis or disorder.  However, many people who suffer from anxiety or have anxiety traits have these common concerns/worries of “what if” thoughts.   Many of us find ourselves predicting the future by trying to foresee every possible negative outcome to a situation that may or may not happen.   These concerns or worries can be categorized as anticipatory anxiety.  There are different degrees of anticipatory anxiety, as the symptoms range from mild to severe.    What If Syndrome is NOT actually a syndrome but a term I use to explain the symptoms of anticipatory anxiety.   It is when people think about an event or situation and think of all the different ways the event could go wrong and try to plan for what they feel will be the most common negative outcomes.  Unfortunately, most of us do not have a working crystal ball, so predicting the future is difficult at best.  If you find that this resonates with you, ask yourself “Does the outcome change when I What If?”  Most of the time, the answer to that question is No.  So why do we continue to do something we know does not change the outcome?  Many of us feel that if we are prepared for the worst, when it happens we will be ready.  One of the issues with this type of thinking is that you cannot possibly come up with contingency plans for every possible negative outcome and it actually has the opposite effect.  The process of What If is mentally and emotionally draining and increases stress levels and anxiety instead of decreasing it.  Possible ways to reduce What If Syndrome is to be aware that you are doing it and to learn what is triggering this behavior. Insight into your behavior is a great first step; here are some concrete things you can do: 

  1. Utilize thought stopping:  A technique where you realize the behavior, put a stop sign up in your head and have a prepared other topic to think about.  If you do not have something else to replace the thought with, your mind will continue to return to the thought.
  2. Exercise:  Exercise is a great way to reduce anxiety symptoms, it is recommended that 30 minutes of Cardio exercise up to 5x’s a week decreases anxiety symptoms.
  3. Distractions:  Find something else to do, play with your kids, pet, or engage someone in conversation.
  4. Reach out to your support system:  Sometimes talking about these issues with a friend or loved one, helps people let go of the concern/worry. On the other end of the spectrum, examples of a severe reaction would be someone with PTSD or a fear or phobia who may become panicked at the anticipation of that fear becoming a reality, such as a fear of flying.  Someone with a severe fear of flying may have a panic attack at the thought of being on a plane and may dread an upcoming vacation due to this fear.  The anticipatory anxiety feels just as real and threatening as the fear itself.  If you suffer from some of these more severe symptoms please contact your healthcare provider as a Psychologist, Psychiatrist or Social Worker who has experience and training in working with fears and phobias can assist you with these issues.       

5 Easy Ways To Reduce Stress Today

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

It is often that we hear people saying "I am so Stressed Out" or some other phrase of the same meaning,  I have heard this said waiting in line at the grocery store, at work, in the gym, at the ATM and the list goes on and on.  In the age of multitasking, most people at times feel as though they are overwhelmed by life, family, work or relationships.  Here are 5 simple techniques that you can implement today in your life to reduce stress, the acronym is BREES

  1. Breathe:  Start by sitting in a relaxed position, either in a chair with your feet flat on the floor or lying down.  Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth.  Take slow, deep breaths using your diaphragm.  Take 30 breaths.  At the end of this exercise you should feel less stressed and more relaxed. 
  2. Relaxation techniques:  Progressive muscle relaxation involves tightening your muscles and releasing them.  Start with your right foot, tighten the muscles in your toes and release them.  Continue up your leg to your head, then go down your left side, from your shoulder all the way down to your left toes.  Do not forget to tighten and release your midsection.  This is for the whole body, not just the limbs. After trying this you should feel more relaxed.  
  3. Exercise:  Research suggests that 30 minutes of Cardiovascular exercise 5 days a week will decrease stress and feelings of anxiety and depression.  Exercise also aids with sleep, as long as you exercise up to three hours before you go to sleep.
  4. Eating:  Eating a healthy diet and keeping unhealthy foods to a minimum, will help with overall health and well being. I know it is difficult for some of us to eat healthy as we tend to crave "comfort foods" when we are feeling overwhelmed or stressed.  This is when you should be making better food choices.  Poor diet does not help reduce your stress level.  You may feel satisfied for the time you are eating, but it takes its toll on your overall health, which can add to your stress level. 
  5. Sleep:  Sleep is very important in reduction of stress.  Sleep is very important for your body to function appropriately and to help you manage your stress better.  The average adult needs 8 hours of sleep per night.  Which means that some people need more to feel fully rested and other people need less.  Know your body and how much sleep you need to feel fully rested.  Not how much sleep you need to get through the day, there is a difference.  If you are sleep deprived, you may rely on caffeinated products to help you perform or be more alert, and this may impact your sleep in a negative way as caffeine can cause sleep issues.  For some people, caffeine can cause difficulty falling asleep, where you may feel alert and tired at the same time.  If you are experiencing high levels of stress and difficulty with sleep, you may want to decrease your caffeine intake to alleviate stress symptoms as well as increasing sleep. It is important when feeling stress to get a full night's sleep. ​

Top 5 Signs You May Have Anxiety

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

“Anxiety disorders share features of excessive fear and anxiety and related behavioral disturbances.  Fear is the emotional response to real or perceived imminent threat, whereas anxiety is anticipation of a future threat” (DSM-5).  Everyone experiences anxiety and that is absolutely normal.  We typically feel a little anxious when we have a job interview or a presentation.  Feeling a little nervous, concerned or apprehensive around these events is to be expected.  Research shows that we learn best when an optimum level of anxiety is reached.  The optimum level is different and unique to each of us.  However, anxiety becomes problematic when these feelings start to impact our daily living in a negative way.      Here are 5 signs you may have anxiety:

  1. Excessive Worry:  If you find yourself worrying all the time and the worry doesn’t seem proportionate to the issue/event/activity then you may be worrying excessively.  When this happens you may also find yourself seeking re-assurance from others that everything will be okay.  If you find yourself in this cycle of constantly worrying about various things and you’re having trouble coping with your concerns, you may be experiencing anxiety symptoms.
  2. Difficulty Sleeping:  Are you having trouble falling asleep and turning the worry off so you can get a restful night’s sleep?  Sometimes you may find you have difficulty staying asleep as you wake up concerned about what is going to happen regarding your job, relationship or family issues.  You may find you are tossing and turning at night and when you wake up, you don’t feel rested or as though you had a good night’s sleep.
  3. Physical Symptoms:  You may have a stomach ache or headache if you are anxious about something specific such as an event or a meeting with your supervisor.  Increased heart rate and sweating are also signs when people are feeling stressed and anxious and can be symptoms of panic attacks.  Many people also have stress headaches which can impede everyday functioning.  If these physical symptoms are not related to a medical condition, you may be experiencing anxiety.
  4. Attention and Concentration:  When you feel stressed and maxed out, do you have difficulty with your attention and concentration?  I know that when I’m feeling anxious and/or stressed about something, I usually misplace my keys.  In this situation, I’m not paying attention and I do not remember where I placed them.  In addition, you may also find your mind goes blank at the worst possible time such as on a test, giving a presentation or while interviewing.
  5. Keyed Up:  Feeling restless or keyed up as well as being more irritable are signs of anxiety.  Feeling tense, jumpy and on edge all of the time can impact our relationships in all areas of our lives in a negative manner.  These symptoms can reduce your daily functioning and make work, school and home life more stressful.

Top 5 Ways to Reduce Anxiety Symptoms

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Feeling anxious or worried is something everyone experiences and feels.  It is absolutely okay to feel anxious.  Most of us feel symptoms of anxiety when we are about to take a test, interview for our dream job or if we have to perform in some way in front of others.  Feeling anxiety is not always negative as everyone has an optimal level of anxiety, which is needed for the ideal learning environment.  Anxiety symptoms become problematic when they are impacting our daily lives in a negative way.  When we find ourselves using “What If” statements when thinking about a situation, when we have trouble sleeping at night because we cannot turn off our mind or when we feel keyed up or stressed out.  During these times, we may need to utilize coping strategies to reduce these excessive anxious symptoms and feelings. Here are 5 ways to reduce anxiety symptoms:​

  1. Journal:  some people find it useful to write down their worries and concerns.  You do not have to write in paragraph form or even sentences.  You can simply write a list of your concerns/worries.  It also helps to set aside some time to worry, think of it as a time out for worrying.  The idea is, if you have a set time to worry, you can write down your concerns and worry about them at a scheduled time and not throughout the day and at night while trying to work and/or fall asleep. 
  2. Breathing:   when some people feel anxiety, their heart rate increases and other people hold their breath.  When you realize you are feeling anxiety/stress symptoms such as What If thinking, excessive worry or a change in your breathing, you can utilize deep relaxed diaphragm breathing, which can assist with putting your body into a more relaxed state.  Sometimes doing deep breathing for a count of 30 can make a difference.  Trying yoga and/or meditation can help with learning how to regulate your breathing and also assists in reducing anxiety and stress symptoms.
  3. Exercise:  not only is exercise good for your body, it is also great for your mind.  Exercising such as running, swimming or yoga assists with reducing anxiety and stress.  In addition, regular exercise increases mood, overall well being and assists with sleep.  If you are having trouble with beginning an exercise program, find something you love to do such as tennis, biking, whatever it is, find an exercise buddy and start.  If you are having trouble finding time to exercise, schedule it.  Start by walking once or twice per week, to get your body moving.  Please speak with your physician before starting an exercise program. 
  4. Caffeine:  decreasing your caffeine intake can help reduce anxiety.  Caffeine can increase anxiety symptoms and feelings of stress.  It can also interfere with your sleep.  If you are consuming caffeine and find you are experiencing anxiety symptoms, notice the next time you have a caffeinated beverage if you feel calmer or more keyed up and stressed out.  Try decreasing the amount of caffeine you consume.  You can try decaffeinated products or having less caffeine.  In addition, decreasing and/or eliminating caffeine from your diet will also assist with sleep issues such as feeling exhausted and alert at the same time as well as difficulty with falling asleep.
  5. Self-care:  increasing self-care, things that you do, just for you, will help reduce symptoms of anxiety.  When we are anxious and stressed, the first thing we usually cut out are the things we do to feel grounded.  We remove these from our routine due to lack of time, a sick loved one or a big meeting, etc.  When these things are happening and our anxiety is increasing, this is when we need to do self-care and take care of ourselves the most.  If you are not taking care of yourself, you will not be able to do the best job you can when you take of others.   I am not saying this is an easy thing to do, but if you take care of yourself, you will have more to give to your family, friends and career.           

Types of Issues Women Face

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Women and men can experience mental health issues differently.  There are certain disorders that women face more frequently than men, such as eating disorders, post-partum depression and body image concerns.  In addition, hormonal changes can affect the way women feel about themselves and others.  Societal and cultural pressures play a factor in mental health for women. They often have multiple roles, like being a mother, partner and worker.  Women at times may feel as though they are not treated fairly or paid fairly due to discrimination.  During times of transition, women may feel as though they have lost their identity: during motherhood, returning to the workforce and being single after years with a partner.   These concerns can increase stress levels as well as increasing women’s prevalence for anxiety, depression and a host of other disorders.    ​​

Types of Issues Women Face

  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Depression Disorders
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Sleep Concerns
  • Fertility Issues
  • Parenting Concerns
  • Discrimination
  • Post-Partum Depression
  • Pre-menstrual Dysphoric Disorder​
  • Body Image Issues
  • Menopause
  • Eating Disorders
  • Alcohol/Drug abuse
  • Violence
  • Somatic Complaints
  • Stress
  • Life Transitions
  • Sexual Harassment

You are imperfect, permanently and inevitably flawed. And you are beautiful."

-AMY BLOOM

Five Stages to Rebuild A Shattered Life

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Grief Counseling

Grief counseling is a form of psychotherapy that aims to help people cope with grief and mourning following the death of loved ones, or with major life changes that trigger feelings of grief (e.g., divorce, or job loss). Grief counselors believe that everyone experiences and expresses grief in their own way, often shaped by culture.

Five Stages to Rebuild A Shattered Life

  • Impact: shock, denial, anxiety, fear, and panic.
  • Chaos: confusion, disbelief, actions out of control, irrational thoughts and feelings, feeling despair, feeling helpless, desperate searching, lose track of time, difficulty sleeping and eating, obsessive focus on the loved one and their possessions, agony from imagining their physical harm, shattered beliefs.
  • Adapting: bringing order back into daily life while you continue to grieve: take care of basic needs (personal grooming, shopping, cooking, cleaning, paying bills), learn to live without the loved one, accept help, focus on helping children cope, connect with other grieving families for mutual support, take control of grieving so that grief does not control you, slowly accept the new reality.
  • Equilibrium: attaining stability and routines: reestablish a life that works all right, enjoy pleasant activities with family members and good times with friends, do productive work, choose a positive new direction in life while honoring the past, learn how to handle people who ask questions about what you’ve been through.
  • Transformation: rethinking your purpose in life and the basis for your identity; looking for meaning in tragic, senseless loss; allowing yourself to have both painful and positive feelings about your loss and become able to choose which feelings you focus on; allowing yourself to discover that your struggle has led you to develop a stronger, better version of yourself than you expected could exist; learning how to talk with others about your heroic healing journey without exposing them to your pain; becoming supportive of others trying to deal with their losses.

         *Joanne Jozefowski in 1999 through The Phoenix Phenomenon: Rising from the Ashes of Grief summarizes five stages to rebuild a shattered life.

Symptoms Of Depression Disorder

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Depression

Depression is a condition in which a person feels discouraged, sad, hopeless, unmotivated, or disinterested in life in general. These feelings are normal but when such feelings last for more than two weeks and it interferes with daily activities such as taking care of family, going to work or school, spending time with friends, it’s likely a major depressive episode. Major depression is a treatable illness that affects the way a person thinks, feels, behaves, and functions. Depression is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States and with the proper help, its very treatable.

Symptoms Of Depression Disorder

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, or pessimism
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment
  • Irritability
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
  • Decreased energy or fatigue
  • Moving or talking more slowly
  • Feeling restless or having trouble sitting still
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight changes
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts

When you come to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on"

-FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT

Adjustment Disorder

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Adjustment Disorder is a type of stress-related mental illness.  It is a short-term condition that occurs when a person has great struggle coping with, or adjusting to, a particular source of stress.  Some sources include marriage, divorce, starting school or staring a new job.  You may feel anxious or depressed and normal daily routines may feel overwhelming.  In essence, you have a hard time adjusting to change in your life, and it has serious consequences.

Behavioral Symptoms

  • Frequent crying jags
  • Fighting with other people
  • Being unusually argumentative
  • Ignoring bills and other financial obligations
  • Avoiding friends, family, and loved ones
  • Poor work or school performance
  • Being late to work or school frequently
  • Excessive absenteeism
  • Vandalizing and destroying property

Psycho-Social Symptoms

  • Sadness
  • Loss of self-esteem
  • Feeling isolated, apart from others
  • Hopelessness
  • Inability to feel joy or pleasure
  • Anxiety and nervousness
  • Feeling “on-edge”
  • Feelings of being overwhelmed
  • Self-harm
  • Thoughts of suicide

Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow."

-MARY ANNE RADMACHER

Anxiety Disorders

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Anxiety is a normal reaction to an important event such as a school presentation, business meeting and moving to a new city.  However, excessive, continuous anxiety that interferes with your daily life may be a sign of generalized anxiety disorder.  Anxiety disorders cause people to feel afraid, panicky and startled for no apparent reason.  If untreated, anxiety disorder can greatly diminish productivity and decrease an individual’s quality of life.

Everyday Anxiety

  • Worry about paying bills, landing a job, a romantic breakup, or other important life events
  • Embarrassment or self-consciousness in an uncomfortable or awkward social situation
  • A case of nerves or sweating before a big test, business presentation, stage performance, or other significant event
  • Realistic fear of a dangerous object, place, or situation
  • Anxiety, sadness, or difficulty sleeping immediately after a traumatic event

Anxiety Disorder

  • ​Constant and unsubstantiated worry that causes significant distress and interferes with daily life
  • Avoiding social situations for fear of being judged, embarrassed, or humiliated
  • Seemingly out-of-the-blue panic attacks and the preoccupation with the fear of having another one
  • Irrational fear or avoidance of an object, place, or situation that poses little or no threat of danger
  • Recurring nightmares, flashbacks, or emotional numbing related to a traumatic event that occurred several months or years before

Tension is who you think you should be.  Relaxation is who you are.​-JOSHUA J. MARINE

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)​

ADHD is a common behavioral disorder that affects about 10% of school-age children. Boys are about three times more likely than girls to be diagnosed with it, though it's not yet understood why. Kids with ADHD act without thinking, are hyperactive, and have trouble focusing. They may understand what's expected of them but have trouble following through because they can't sit still, pay attention, or focus on details.

Symptoms of ADHD

  • Has trouble staying focused; is easily distracted or gets bored with a task before it’s completed
  • Appears not to listen when spoken to
  • Has difficulty remembering things and following instructions; doesn’t pay attention to details or makes careless mistakes
  • Has trouble staying organized, planning ahead, and finishing projects
  • Frequently loses or misplaces homework, books, toys, or other items
  • Constantly fidgets and squirms
  • Has difficulty sitting still, playing quietly, or relaxing
  • Moves around constantly, often runs or climbs inappropriately
  • Talks excessively
  • May have a quick temper or “short fuse”
  • Acts without thinking
  • Guesses, rather than taking time to solve a problem or blurts out answers in class without waiting to be called on or hear the whole question
  • Intrudes on other people’s conversations or games
  • Often interrupts others; says the wrong thing at the wrong time

To be upset about what you don't have is to waste what you do have.

- KEN KEYES JR

Symptoms Of Academic Underachievement

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Academic Underachievement

Academic underachievement often significantly impacts the student's feelings about him/herself and hopes for the future. Professional counseling helps your underachieving child cope with and overcome lowered self-esteem, anxiety, and depression due to academic challenges. Professional counseling can help you get past blaming and feelings of helplessness in assisting your child to achieve better academic results.

Symptoms Of Academic Underachievement

  • Failure to complete or turn in homework in a class that does not involve the student's disability.
  • Lack of motivation or disinterest in school, along with a tendency to make excuses for school failure, are additional signs.
  • Refusal to accept blame or responsibility for his own achievement.
  • Daydreaming or socializing too much and making school work the lowest priority indicate underachievement as well.
  • Students with falling grades and who take no satisfaction or pride in schoolwork likely suffer from underachievement too.
  • The same goes for students who see themselves as having no chance to succeed so behave as if they're already defeated rather than try to perform well.

Don't let what you can't do stop you from doing what you can do.- JOHN GOODEN

Symptoms Of Anxiety Disorders

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Anxiety is really just a form of stress. It can be experienced in many different ways in kids, for example physically, emotionally, and in the way kids view the world around them. Anxiety mainly relates to worry about what might happen or worrying about things going wrong or feeling like you're in some kind of danger. Anxiety can effect children's grades, development, social and family life.

Symptoms Of Anxiety Disorders

  • Excessive, unrealistic fears about day-to-day activities
  • "What if" concerns that span far into the future
  • Uncontrollable worry about multiple situations, performance, social, academic, health, financial
  • Physical symptoms: headaches, stomachaches, inability to unwind
  • Difficulty concentrating, always thinking what's next
  • Low risk-taking; Need for reassurance and approval for small steps
  • Perfectionism, great fear of making mistakes, fear of criticism; unrealistic unfavorable assessment of their grades, abilities
  • Over-responsibility, feels that tragedies are preventable by worry, and if disaster happens that it's their fault
  • Any negative piece of news that happens to others, fears will happen to them; everything is contagious by association: divorce, illness, car accidents, food poisoning
  • Reviewing events to make sure that didn't hurt anyone's feelings or do anything wrong
  • Sleep difficulties, irritability, fatigue

You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do - ELEANOR ROOSEVELT

Relationship Counseling

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Relationship counseling brings people who have an intimate relationship into the treatment process to work on issues and increase their connection.  This can include family members, business partners and couples.  This type of counseling often focuses on the challenges within the relationship such as communicating more effectively, improving trust and mutual respect for each other.  Each of us has our own pattern of communicating which may be defined by our upbringing, personality styles and other influences in our lives.  Counseling can enhance our relationships by improving listening skills and understanding our partner’s point of view.  Relationship counseling sessions can teach you skills to deepen your connection and bond as well as working through a stressful event.   ​​

Benefits

Relationship counseling can help resolve conflict, gain insight and can teach you how to work together as a unit.   

  • Understand how the couple functions as a system
  • Improve mutual respect for each other
  • Enhance gratitude toward each other
  • Develop positive communication skills
  • Deepen you bond and love for each other

Conditions To Treat

People seeking a healthier, closer relationship can benefit from relationship counseling.  This type of counseling is used to treat a wide array of conditions including:

  • Infidelity
  • Breach of trust
  • Parent-child conflict
  • The effects of serious illness
  • Difficulties with your partner’s family

Guidelines For Parent Child Relationships

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Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Parenting Support

Often times, people assume that parenting is something that should just come naturally. After all, having children generally does. As any parent would agree the challenges associated with bringing up any child, whether they suffer from a psychological disorder or not, are numerous and at times overwhelming. Parents may turn to a number of defense mechanisms that will ultimately worsen the issue. Parent therapy helps parents to manage their stress levels and helps them to develop better coping mechanisms, which in turn provides a healthier more controlled home environment.

Guidelines For Parent Child Relationships

  • Try to set a side time on a regular basis to do something fun with your child.
  • Never disagree about discipline in front of the children.
  • Never give an order, request, or command without being able to enforce it at the time.
  • Be consistent, that is, reward or punish the same behavior in the same manner as much as possible.
  • Agree on what behavior is desirable and not desirable.
  • Agree on how to respond to undesirable behavior.
  • Make it as clear as possible what the child is to expect if he or she performs the undesirable behavior.​
  • Look for gradual changes in behavior. Don’t expect too much. Praise behavior that is coming closer to the desired goal.
  • Remember that your behavior serves as a model for your children’s behavior.
  • If one of you is disciplining a child and the other enters the room, that other person should not step in on the argument in progress.
  • Reward desirable behavior as much as possible by verbal praise, touch or something tangible such as a toy, food or money.
  • Both of you should have an equal share in the responsibility of discipline as much as possible.
  • Once you have stated your position and the child attacks that position, do not keep defending yourself. Just restate the position once more and then stop responding to the attacks.

At the end of the day, the most overwhelming key to a child's success is the positive involvement of parents. -Jane D. Hull

Ways To Improve Low Self Esteem

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

We all have times when we lack confidence and don’t feel good about ourselves. But when low self-esteem becomes a long-term problem, it can have a harmful effect on our mental health and our lives. Self-esteem is the opinion we have of ourselves. When we have healthy self-esteem, we tend to feel positive about ourselves and about life in general. It makes us able to deal with life’s ups and downs better. When our self-esteem is low, we tend to see ourselves and our life in a more negative and critical light. We also feel less able to take on the challenges life throws at us. Living with low self-esteem can harm your mental health, leading to problems such as depression and anxiety.

Ways To Improve Low Self Esteem

  • Recognize your strengths: We are all good at something, whether it’s cooking, singing, doing puzzles or being a friend. We also tend to enjoy doing the things we are good at, which can help to boost your mood.
  • Build Positive Relationships: If you find certain people tend to bring you down, try to spend less time with them, or tell them how you feel about their words or actions. Seek out relationships with people who are positive and who appreciate you.
  • Be kind to yourself: Be gentle to yourself at times when you feel like being self-critical. Think about what you would say to encourage a friend in a similar situation. We often give far better advice to others than we do to ourselves.
  • Give yourself a challenge: We all feel nervous or afraid to do things at times. People with healthy self-esteem don’t let these feelings stop them from trying new things or taking on challenges.

The most important opinion you have is the one you have of yourself, and the most significant things you say all day are those things you say to yourself. -UNKNOWN

Life Transitions

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Adapting to change can be hard, as even beneficial life transitions tend to cause some stress. Throughout a persons life one can expect to experience a significant amount of change. Some of these changes, such as marriages, births, and new jobs, are generally positive, although they may be accompanied by their own unique stressors. Other major life transitions, such as moving, retirement, or entering the “empty nest” phase of life may cause a significant amount of stress. Those who find themselves experiencing difficulty coping with life transitions may find it helpful to speak to a therapist in order to become better able to adjust to changes they cannot control.

 

Types of Life Transitions

  • Marriage or Remarriage
  • Divorce
  • The Birth of a child/ post partum depression
  • Empty Nest Syndrome
  • Career Changes
  • Midlife Changes/Crisis
  • Dealing With The Aging Process
  • Caring For Elderly Parents
  • Identity/Gender Questions
  • Spiritual/Moral Questions
  • Death Of A Loved One
  • Starting A New Course
  • Leaving University
  • A Child Leaving School
  • Getting A Promotion At Work
  • Going To University
  • Living On Your Own For The First Time

By changing nothing, nothing changes.-TONY ROBBINS

Stress Management Tips

droshea
Dec 27, 2018-এ লিখেছেন

Stress is very common and in many cases is a good thing.  Stress can help us feel attentive and can help us accomplish many tasks very well.  In addition, if we are too calm during certain situations we can feel less motivated which will lead us not to react well and possibly make a bad decision.  The issue occurs when we have too much stress and many times comes from overusing our bodies natural resources.  This can lead to physical problems such as difficulty sleeping, heart disease, obesity, depression and anxiety disorders.  However, stress can be managed with certain steps and help from therapy.

Stress Management Tips

  • Deep Breathing- This is always a sure fire way to lower your stress by lowering your heart rate.  By taking deep breaths it increases the amount of oxygen in your blood and will instantly make us more relaxed.  
  • Smile More - Experts agree that smiling more makes us feel more relaxed and happy.  It can trigger a key emotional center in our brain that helps us be more calm.  It is a very simple thing we can do to lower our stress, so why not try it now?
  • Meditation - This technique is probably the best one to practice. Meditation is extremely effective and it increases your calmness. It can help get rid of many negative thoughts and will help you focus.
  • Less Coffee - Caffeine is a stimulate that tends to make you more anxious and is linked to certain psychiatric disorders.  Try going decaf or even drinking green tea instead of coffee.

In times of stress, the best thing we can do for each other is to listen with our ears and our hearts and to be assured that our questions are just important as our answers.FRED "MISTER" ROGERS

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