Tag: anxiety

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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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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Getting to Optimum Health

There are many books written about overcoming depression and anxiety, most of which are excellent companions to helping us move forward out of these difficult experiences in our lives. However, if we learn to practice proactive habits of self care and life engagement, we can inoculate ourselves against these debilitating conditions and build resilience for life’s adversities. Here are a few of the daily life habits I recommend to anyone wanting to move out of depression and create a physically and

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Using Pop Culture to Impact Positive Change – Part 2

Welcome back! In Pop Culture Part 1, I discussed how, when connecting with children/youth, I utilize pop culture to: 1) develop and enhance rapport, and 2) gather information in regard to values, traits and indicators of resiliency. Please go to www.psychealth.com if you haven’t had a chance to read Part 1; it would be like watching the Empire Strikes Back without watching Star Wars! In Part 2 I will discuss the third way I have utilized pop culture: to help

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The Problem with Pursuing Your Passion

Christine was a 24 year old university student graduating with a liberal arts degree from a nearby university. She was in a state of anxiety over the need to urgently make decisions regarding her future career. At times her anxiety was so pronounced she felt quite panicky, with frequent insomnia, digestive upsets and continuous worry. Although she had been successful academically, she was uncertain about how her education would translate into the “real world”. Christine had been given the advice

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Using Pop Culture to Impact Positive Change

Seven years ago, a colleague and I attended an annual conference in Washington DC called the Psychotherapy Networker Symposium. We were excited about meeting one of the key note speakers, John Gottman, a marriage and relationship researcher and expert whom we learned about while in grad school. We kept seeing a man of similar stature walking through the hallways of the hotel but were disappointed each time to realize that he wasn’t John. Upon arriving home and looking at the

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The Gift of Failure

I recently watched a wonderful documentary, The Barkley Marathons, about an ultra endurance trail race that takes place in the Tennessee mountains.  Only 40 runners are accepted into the race each year.  Covering the entire distance of 160 kilometres (100 mile) or more also requires climbing and descending the equivalent of Mount Everest – twice.  To be successful, runners must complete the course in 60 hours.  In most years, none of the racers finish the race.  In some years, only one or

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EMDR: A Client and Therapist Perspective

EMDR has been used and researched for 25 years, and is considered a highly effective therapy for resolving trauma. Nevertheless, it remains somewhat mysterious and misunderstood. Written explanations can become jargon filled very quickly. Visual demonstrations of the process can raise concerns as it looks strange. In an effort to shed some light on the EMDR process, we offer a personal account of EMDR therapy and a discussion of some common questions about EMDR. Mia: My husband and I suffered

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Face fears: Walk toward the lion’s roar!

Freud said anxiety is the most frequent psychological symptom, and it’s true: not only are there disorders where anxiety is the main symptom, but virtually all other mental health syndromes include anxiety somehow. Only psychopaths, we’re told, don’t experience normal fears. Cognitive therapy for depression, a widely used approach, is based on the notion that depressive symptoms—sadness, loss of enjoyment, fatigue—are actually products of fear. That is, the person has allowed anxieties and doubts to take over, and to become

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Health Anxiety

People with health anxiety focus on specific sensations such as feeling dizzy, fatigue, joint pain,  digestive problems, a headache or a quick and sudden heartbeat.  Such physiological symptoms are typically not harmful if they are short lived and do not re-occur on a repeated basis. The difficulty that people with health anxiety have is that they misattribute these symptoms as indicating there MUST be significant disease lurking. Like many people, they will make an appointment with their doctor to have these symptoms

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