by Lauren Harding, Eating Recovery Coach and Counseling Intern
The holiday season can bring a significant amount of joy; however, it also presents its fair share of challenges. There is an expectation that the next few months are the best time of the year, which can be especially daunting for those who struggle with mental health issues.
For individuals who struggle with eating disorders or disordered eating, the holidays pose unique difficulties. Between the strong emphasis on food, diet talk, and that uncle who comments on your weight each year, the holiday season may be something that you are dreading. The “busy-ness” of this time of year, lack of routine, social experiences, and painful memories can further exacerbate disordered eating, anxiety, or depressive symptoms.
Original article from Indy’s Child
Anyone else feel anxious? Given the current state of our reality, I am assuming that question would be met with a resounding “YES.”
So, what is anxiety anyway? Anxiety can be defined as a feeling of nervousness, worry or unease, typically about a future event or a situation with an uncertain outcome. Although uncomfortable, the purpose of anxiety is important and can often be helpful. Our experience of anxiety is natural and exists to alert us about possible future threats that might require a heightened state of vigilance. Anxiety can also act as a motivator, helping us to get out of bed in the morning or complete a task that’s been hanging over our head. But, when we notice anxiety persisting throughout our day, even when the possibility of threat has passed, it might be time for an emotional tune-up.
Original article from Indy’s Child
August is upon us, closing down those last bits of summer and pulling back the curtain for a brand-new school year. Here’s the truth though, there is only one thing about the future I can tell you for certain: this year will be different. By now, most of us have heard our school’s tentative back-to-school plan for the fall but given the fragility of certainty we have seen over the past few months, that “plan” might not feel so secure. As a parent, that makes me feel uncomfortable, and probably you too. You might have been a care-free, go with the flow kind of person before becoming a parent, but if you don’t agree that after having kids it’s best to have some sense of plan about the future, then you’re probably lying to yourself. For most people, uncertainty and ambiguity about their future is unsettling. And, if we adults are unsettled, I guarantee our kids are feeling it, too. Here are a few ideas about how best to navigate your family’s uncertainty bus through the new school year.
The worldwide pandemic itself is certainly reason enough to fire up our internal alarm bells, and certainly can and should motivate
taking reasonable actions to protect ourselves, our loved ones, neighbors, friends, and even strangers (friends we have not yet met). Continue Reading
Do you want to participate in New Years’ Eve parties and family gatherings during the holidays, but the thought of being yourself around other people stresses you out? Do you clam up or feel unsure of what to say during social situations? Do your negative thoughts about yourself and how you are perceived run wild? Or–perhaps this is a familiar scenario: you go to family gatherings and friend get-togethers, but feel as if you have to put on a false front in order to fit in. At the end of the day, you are exhausted and you don’t feel any more connected to the people you just spent time with. You feel as if you are on the outside looking in. Everyone else but you seems to connect. For those of us who struggle in the social realm, the holidays have a way of highlighting this perceived deficiency. In fact, social anxiety is the highest diagnosed form of anxiety disorders, so there are probably many of us walking around feeling socially defective at this time of year.
Thankfully, the dawning of the new year can also spark hope. At this time of year, we are driven to reflect on our past and make resolutions for a better future. Perhaps you have not been as involved as you have wanted to be in your social life. Or perhaps you have not wanted to be involved socially, but something in your life seems to be amiss. If you are looking for a New Years’ Resolution, here are the top 5 ways to tackle social exclusion and anxiety in 2020:
This article originally appear in the November issue of Indy’s Child.
Oh joy: Here come the holidays! And along with all the merriment and holiday happiness, ‘tis the season for feeling rushed, overscheduled, overwhelmed and just all around stressed out. Sadly, adults are not the only ones feeling the pain. Kids also feel the burden of anxiety and stress around the holidays. So, let’s not allow this year to be a repeat of last year’s holiday craze; instead, make space for a real sense of peace, calm and family togetherness. Now that is something to look forward to!
Ever google something like “therapists in my area” to discover more choices exist than you can possibly review? The increasing number of private practice therapists out there is growing, and this is great news in terms of increasing accessibility to therapy. However, without knowing who exactly you are looking for, the choices can be daunting. And let me be very clear, finding the right therapist for you is critical to achieve positive outcomes in therapy. I usually offer the same advice to anyone asking me how to go about finding a therapist…book at least 2 intake appointments – 3 is optimal. If you attend 3 intake sessions with 3 different therapist and you still don’t feel like you’ve found the right one, then it is probably a “you” problem and not a therapist “fit” problem – as in, you are probably not really ready for therapy.
We all feel stressed at times. You’ve been meaning to find a way to manage your overall stress levels. You’re going to start a meditation practice…soon. Or, you plan to make physical activity a more regular part of your busy schedule. But, what can you do when you’re running late for work, your kid spills juice on you, and then you get stuck in traffic? Here are 5 tips that can help you decrease stress in the moment.
Everyone has experienced occasional stress or anxiety. A busy day at work, overwhelming schedule, or unexpected flat tire can throw anyone for a loop. However, for those with chronic stress, anxiety takes on a whole new meaning. The feeling of panic, fear, or foreboding seems to never go away, and can actually grow over time.
There are many ways to treat both short-term and chronic anxiety, including therapy and medication. These approaches can help a person build coping skills to deal with anxiety as well as providing some relief from obsessive thinking and worry. Therapy and medication in combination can be a particularly powerful approach to address the mental and emotional symptoms of anxiety.