Category: Personal Growth

A Few Thoughts on the Death of George Floyd

The tragic death of George Floyd is yet another example of the nastiness of discrimination and prejudice that exists in the United States and across the world, including Canada.  The sense and tone I’ve gotten from social media is one of frustration, anger, sadness and confusion.  How can this still be happening? What can be done to stop this violence? From a psychology perspective the judgments we harbour can be conscious (explicit bias) and/or unconscious (implicit bias).  Some people truly

Posted in Depression, General, Grief, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety

COVID – 19 and Your Child’s Anxiety – Tips for Parents

Right now, the news is a scary place and the world is starting to feel like a scary place. If you are the parent of an anxious child this is a time of increased stress, fear, and difficulties for you and your family. Perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed and are not sure how to help your child who is also feeling overwhelmed. Perhaps dealing with all of your together in a small space is getting difficult From a parent and

Posted in Depression, Family & Parenting, General, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety

How to Talk to Young Children About Mental Health – Reading With Preschoolers

All parents care about their children being health and happy. While we often get lots of information about how to help our children grow healthy and strong physically, how to help them grow socially and emotionally can be a little more complicated. The Early Development Index (EDI BC 2019 Report) indicates 16 percent of British Columbia’s children enter kindergarten with vulnerabilities in social competence, while 17 percent have vulnerabilities in emotional maturity. Both of these areas are essential to children

Posted in Family & Parenting, General, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety

Betrayal

David betrayed his life partner and he was not prepared for his partner’s emotional distress. He wanted to know when it would end. He asked “Why isn’t sorry good enough?” David needed to understand that his partner’s reactions were normal. Her healing was largely dependent on his ability to be empathic, remorseful, honest, apologetic, loving, patient and soothing over a long period of time. And most importantly to stop the behavior that devastated his spouse.  Normal reactions of the betrayed

Posted in Depression, General, Marriage & Relationships, Personal Growth

How to Talk About Suicide

Suicide is an emotional word. Feelings of confusion, fear, anger, and even disgust are common responses when the topic comes up in conversation, rare as that might be. As a clinical counsellor, I have felt all of these emotions when discussing suicide with clients and will continue to do so. But over years of working with people at some of the lowest points of their lives, I’ve learned not to let those emotions get in the way of compassion. I

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Up In Flames – part 2

About three and a half years ago I wrote the article: ‘Up In Flames’ that can be found at Psychealth.com. It was written shortly after my apartment burned down and shares my experience navigating through that challenging life event. This article is the follow-up. It took over three years to rebuild my home. I recall the first few weeks as the most difficult, as I was coming to terms with the scope of the loss. As time went on, I

Posted in Depression, Family & Parenting, General, Grief, Marriage & Relationships, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety, Therapy

Five Habits of ‘Anxiety Resilient’ People

Why are so many people struggling with anxiety? This was the question posed to me by a good friend over coffee this week, who was concerned about the levels of anxiety she was seeing in her workplace colleagues. With all that is happening in the world around us – natural disasters, immigration crises, worldwide political unrest, political shenanigans, housing affordability issues, ethical and moral failures-a more appropriate question might be – Why wouldn’t we be anxious? According to the Statistics Canada

Posted in General, Personal Growth, Stress & Anxiety, Therapy

My Child Won’t Listen

Parents often complain that their children “do not listen” and that is frequently a concern parents describe when they visit a child psychologist. When I met the parents of six year old Charlotte, they described daily power struggles over routine tasks – getting ready for bed at night – and essentially whenever they asked her to do something. Charlotte’s resistance often escalated into full-blown tantrums that occurred several times a week. This behaviour was disruptive to the whole family and

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The Mental Health Boot Camp

Think about it. Your mental health plays a role in EVERY area of your life: relationships, work, physical health, spirituality, even sex. Isn’t it time you made it a priority? The Mental Health Boot Camp is a new and engaging way to accomplish just that. Created by Joanna Boyd, Dr. Brooke Lewis and Chris Boyd (along with their friend from Los Angeles, Dr. Ryan Howes) the project is the first of its kind and combines the commitment of a traditional

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Smartphone Addiction

The headline in the Globe and Mail read, “Your smartphone is making you stupid, antisocial and unhealthy. So why can’t you put it down?” by Eric Andrew-Gee. As I began to read the article I became alarmed by the research quoted. Internet companies have spent “billions of dollars” trying o figure out how to hook people into their programs. They have come up with strategies which access the same neural pathways as those affecting gambling and drug usage. The natural

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