Increase Your Confidence Through Counseling

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We’ve all heard the saying before “be comfortable in your own skin” and this seems to be something we all aspire to, but what does it actually mean? Generally, this refers to having high self-esteem. Confidence can be communicated to others through our body language, what we do and how we talk to other people. If you have low self-esteem, then it can impact all of these things which in turn can have a negative impact on our lives. If someone is experiencing low self-esteem, they might feel as though they “can’t do anything right”, struggle to find the motivation to do things, feel inferior to others, are shy and reluctant to start conversations or have a hard time starting and maintaining relationships.

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Online Marriage Counseling

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There are many reasons why couples go for online marriage counseling compared to the traditional approach. The internet has provided people with ease and convenience from social media communication, to shopping, and yes, even online counseling. With just a click of a button, a couple can have the opportunity to resolve their issues and maybe, just maybe, save their marriage.

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How Counseling Can Save Your Relationship

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Relationships are never static. There are ups and downs through the life of each relationship. We all know there are times when our partner is our favorite person in the world and there are other times where they are certainly one of our least favorites! Often, these are the times when people tend to turn to relationship counseling (when things have taken a turn for the worse). This is certainly what seems to be depicted on television and in the movies; the typical married couple, maybe around the seven-year-itch time, yelling at each other on a couch as a therapist nods along sympathetically. However, please don’t let this taint your view of relationship counseling as this is not what you should expect. You might be surprised to know though that there are a number of ways relationship counseling can help in addition to the usual “damage control” that is often most commonly expected. Continue reading “How Counseling Can Save Your Relationship”

Mood Stabilizers For People With Bipolar Disorder (Supplement It With Psychiatry Sessions)

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“Bipolar disorder suffers from this history of being seen as an über-biologically driven disorder, with the assumption likewise that the treatment has to be biologically driven,” says Boston University psychologist Michael Otto, PhD, who specializes in the treatment of mood disorders. “It’s time we undo that history.”

Below are mood stabilizers which are found to be very useful in maintaining the remission and stabilizing the symptoms of bipolar disorder:

 

Lithium

Lithium is used to “calm down” people with bipolar disorder. This drug takes effect around 10 to 14 days and eventually, the manic symptoms would subside. For the indications to diminish totally, it will take six weeks to see the results.

 

As for its efficiency, around 50 percent of the patients who opted to take a Lithium-based drug has significantly improved during manic and depressive episodes. The other half have adjusted as well, but they also had to drink other medications. Lithium was first used in the United States to combat the tiring indicators of bipolar disorder.

 

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“The first line of intervention for bipolar disorder is medication,” says Simon Rego, PsyD, chief psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center and associate professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. So for people taking lithium, they have to visit their doctor to do a blood check regularly. It’s for safety reasons, just to see that there is nothing wrong with your body while on the drug. This check-up is also very important to monitor the kidneys and other renal organs. The medication may have an effect on the said organs.

 

Valproate or Valproic (Depakote)

This medication is for people suffering from depression, mental retardation, substance abuse and post-traumatic stress. Valproate or Valproic usually takes seven to fourteen days before it affects the person’s system. The US Food and Drug Administration approved the distribution and use of this medication. In fact, it was highly recommended as the cure for mania disorder and issues.

 

Carbamazepine (Tegretol)

Carbamazepine doesn’t have FDA approval, but medical professionals and mental health experts have been prescribing it to patients with bipolar conditions. This recommendation was backed up by extensive research and studies. It is found to be very active since a minimum of 43% up to a maximum of 63% of the people who took it gets relieved from severe symptoms. However, this would also depend on the severity of the person’s disorder.

 

Gabapentin (Neurontin)

Gabapentin is a helpful medication for those with seizures. However, it is not applicable to people with mania problems. There are personal statements which claim that Gabapentin will NOT work on those with substantial bipolar issues. Users and medical experts say that use of the said medication is quite disappointing. However, it was adequate for less severe bipolar cases. This drug is best for adults, but not for children.

 

Topiramate

This medication is best as an anti-seizure drug. It helps prevent epileptic attacks, migraines and other similar indications. It can also be used to treat bipolar disorder. The most evident effect of the said medicine aside from treating seizures are weight loss and improved psychosocial health.

 

Oxcarbazepine

Oxcarbazepine is good for bipolar disorder. It is perceived to be a possible anti-manic substance, but more research and studies on the medicine are required. This medication may not have a positive result if there is another drug taken with it. Another good thing about Oxcarbazepine is that it has no significant impact on a person’s white blood cells and liver.

 

Lamotrigine (Lamictal)

Lamictal, as a treatment for conditions like epilepsy, works wonders. Though the said drug has no FDA approval as a treatment for manic and depression issues, still it was found to be very useful for people with bipolar disorder. Studies on its efficiency are still ongoing at the moment.

 

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“The holidays can be very hard for people with bipolar disorder,” says Raymond L. Crowel, PsyD, vice president for mental health and substance abuse services at the National Mental Health Association. While the drugs are highly suggested by medical experts, those who pursue the natural way of treatment (and if possible without drugs) push the psychiatry care approach. People with bipolar disorder can very well cope and improve through psychotherapy. Use it to assist intake of these drugs to speed up the healing process.

Suicide Prevention And Counseling

 

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Suicidal Thoughts – A Silent Evil

Suicidal thoughts are terrifying to the core, and this silent evil is plaguing some people in this world. These individuals believe that their lives are meaningless, hopeless, useless, helpless, and worthless. In their minds, no one will care for them and that no one loves them. They just wish to die than to feel this type of emptiness combined with anger, guilt, extreme sadness, and self-loathe. It is their only way out.

 

Reasons Why Some People Have Suicidal Thoughts

In most cases, the main reason why people think that suicide is the answer to their problem is that of their family issues. A close second is their issues with finances or money. Would you believe that people also contemplate of killing themselves because of work-related problems? There are many other factors as to why some individuals think of suicide, but these three mentioned are the most common.

 

For them, life is worth living if you have a perfect family, lots of money, and the ultimate profession or career. They cannot see that life is all about a balance of things, working around the obstacles, and acceptance of what you have and what you lack. If you want something, with effort and perseverance, you can improve on it, correct? Well, people with suicidal thought can’t think that way.

 

While some people succeed in the three things mentioned, there are some who just can’t fathom the concept of losing a family member or having a broken family, living with limited funds, and not having the job they think they deserve. They would instead end their life than to be deficient in these life areas. Of course, these issues are pushed to the surface by mental health concerns like depression, stress, and anxiety. People with psychological disorders are more likely to think of suicide.

 

 

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What’s more shocking is that some people think of dying for very shallow factors – rejected love, debts, family fights and the likes. “I didn’t realize just how painful it would be,” says Laura Sobik, PhD, now a psychologist at James Madison University’s counseling and student development center. You know, these issues have positive solutions and repairable. Suicide should never be an option, even for life-altering reasons.

 

Self-Help: Preventing Suicidal Thoughts And The Importance Of Counseling

“We have more than 100 studies from around the world now that demonstrate how media reports on suicide impact the risk of contagion,” said Daniel Reidenberg, PsyD. For people who have suicidal thoughts, the first option is to get professional help. Call a suicide hotline which is operated by your country if you or a loved, one is contemplating self-harm and suicide. Appropriate support and therapy are available for you immediately, especially if you have an underlying mental health disorder.

 

Nonetheless, there are also things you can perform at home which will reduce your suicidal thoughts. Being in this situation can be exhausting and confusing, but these tips might help you wash away the issues you are facing at the moment. It can give you enough time to call for help:

 

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  1. Be self-aware and use your sense of sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch to distract you from your bad thoughts. Explore it whenever you feel like those contemplations are creeping up on you.

 

Look at beautiful things in life like art, flowers, the sky, the ocean or beach and whatever can make you feel better. Watching a movie can also help divert you from the thought.

 

Reach for your cologne, perfume, scented soap or aromatherapy oils and smell it. Listen to your favorite music band while you eat your favorite food. If you like pasta, then, eat pasta. Opt for a massage, go for a mani-pedi, wear silk clothing, and the likes to awaken your sense of touch. These little things will help you with your issues.

 

  1. Stay away from pills, illegal drugs, hard drinks, beer, and wine. Just don’t consume any of it.

 

  1. Practice these mantras:

 

I can get through this for I am strong.

Everything will get better.

My hormones are acting up again, and I can control it.

An hour from now, I will look back on this and say – Hey, I’ve conquered you.

Suicide is never an option.

 

  1. Journalize your thoughts and take baby steps in healing. You don’t have to rush in “fixing” yourself. Take it one day at a time, with your mantras in mind.

“unable to see beyond their acute and immediate struggles, which may be related to being victimized by a bully, being a survivor of sexual assault or violence, being uncertain about their sexual orientation, or medical and/or psychological disorders,” said Krystle Herbert, LMFT, PsyD.

  1. Ask for help. Help means moral support and assistance from your family and friend. It also implies therapy and counseling. Talk to people who will understand. Reach out to those who love you. Confide in experts like mental health counselors and suicidal ideation therapists. You will only get better and move on if you are under a therapy and treatment program like Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

When You Don’t Know What To Do In Life, Just Wait (And Find Comfort In Therapy)

 

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I don’t know what to do with my life. It’s not a unique thing. Almost all adults say that to themselves at least once in their lifetime. It doesn’t make you less of a person if you don’t know what to do at an exact moment. You have the opportunity to think, reflect, embrace the idea, move on, and take action. That’s the course. But when it comes to a point when you just can’t seem to reach a valid decision, then, just wait.

 

What Do You Do When You Don’t Know What To Do?

“But even when problems aren’t severe, therapy can help the child and family
learn new coping skills and different strategies for handling problems,” says
psychologist Kristen Eastman, PsyD. “We need to destigmatize the idea of mental
health treatment.”

Other people reach out to their parents, siblings and loved ones for encouragement, support, and reliable advice. I know I did. When my husband left me, I didn’t know what to do with my life. We’ve been together since we were 14 years old and we got married at twenty. My world was always about him and our child. After 16 years of being together, he divorced me and left me for a younger man. Yes, I said “man,” and you read it right. He was gay, and I had to let him go. “Full and meaningful divorce resolution requires that the parties actively work on accepting the emotional divorce.” Donald T. Saposnek, Ph.D. said.

 

Bits of Advice From Loved Ones

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My mother told me to take all the time that I need and process myself. That was her advice. My godmother said that it would be helpful to stick to a routine, even if I weren’t up for it, I just had to move and do chores or errands every day. I followed her suggestion, and frankly, it kept me going for months when I felt like a robot in zombie mode.

 

Father didn’t say much, and I know that he is so disappointed in my husband. You can hear him utter – He should have been honest with you from the start. Well, he wasn’t, and I was in that tight position.

 

Months after the divorce declaration, the “routine” was helping out. The “processing of self” moved at least one centimeter, and my dad mellowed down a bit. They were telling me that I have to go out more and meet new people to be “alive” again. What for and why? Was I dead? I found their comments funny, and it was during those talks with my loved ones that I’d laugh at their observation on me.

 

A Quote That Changed My Perspective

One time, I stumbled upon a quote that I read on the internet. It said:

 

“Trust the wait. Embrace the uncertainty. Enjoy the beauty of becoming. When nothing is certain, anything is possible.”

 

― Mandy Hale

 

She said, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE. Of course! I was with my husband for a very long time, and I didn’t see his sexuality. Anything is truly possible! Now, if my husband found his “possible” in life and was courageous enough to tell me after 16 years, then, I should be able to do it too.

 

Mom was right. I need to process myself. It’s not expected of me to move on in a snap or to find an answer for my problems immediately. I can wait and embrace uncertainty. Mandy Hale said anything is possible for me at this point.

 

My Life, My Move

 

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And so I did what any typical (and lost) person would do. I reached out to a divorce therapist and a life coach. Oh, I tell you it’s not easy. This life is not comfortable at all. But I am thriving, and I am slowly grasping the ropes flung to me.

“Good therapists always know the limits of their expertise,” said Deborah Serani, Psy.D, 

I can do it. My heart and mind will surpass this. I know I will.

Additional 6 Signs That You Might Not Be So Good In Bed (Opt For Online Therapy To Feel Better About Yourself)

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My inspiration for this writeup is my best friend. She’s the one talking about her experience with her husband on the first part of this writeup. (For those who haven’t read the first part, I suggest that you go there first before reading this one. This is the concluding article, and it would be helpful for you to read that before you enjoy this one.) I remember her telling me over the phone. She was crying her heart out, and I couldn’t seem to understand her words, “My husband left me. He said I’m not good in bed, and that he hates me! We’re getting a divorce.”

Continue reading “Additional 6 Signs That You Might Not Be So Good In Bed (Opt For Online Therapy To Feel Better About Yourself)”

My Child Is Always Angry – What Should I Do?

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My little sister’s best friend, Judy, is always so sweet to her. She likes to eat lunch with her and gets her various gifts every year she celebrates her birthday. In truth, when my sister got sick and did not manage to school, her best friend would come to our house to let my little sis copy her notes and so that they could do their homework together.

“Anger reactions in some children are quite frequent and troubling to parents and teachers who witness them.” Says David Gottlieb, Ph.D., in clinical psychology at Northwestern University

For this reason, it genuinely shocked me when I heard that Judy’s behavior when we are around is the opposite of how she treats her parents. I witnessed an example of that one time when my mom was too busy to drive my sister’s best friend back to their house. She was still so lovely when it’s only the two of us in the car, telling stories about her projects at school and whatnot. However, when Judy saw her mom in front of their gate, her facial expression turned sour. The girl bid me a quick goodbye, got out of the car, and pushed past her mother without as much as a hello.

Before I could pull out of their street, I heard the girl’s mother say in a loud voice, “You are extremely rude again, Judy. If you keep that up, you’ll be grounded this weekend.”

“Oh yeah? You can try!” Judy yelled back.

The last words I caught from the girl’s mom was, “Why are you always so angry at me?!”

In case you have your version of Judy at home, and you don’t know how to deal with them without pushing them farther away from you, here’s what you should do.

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1. Know The Kid’s Wants

The first thing you may try is to figure out the things they want. Kids are usually the same, in the sense that they feel an instant connection towards the people who grant their wishes. In my sister’s best friend’s case, for instance, a part of the reason why she goes to our house is that we have an Xbox with her favorite game on it. You may look for another material object that your child likes and surprise them with it.

2. Find Out What The Kid Needs

“Children who come in for counseling and children of divorce frequently express anger inappropriately because they do not know how to express their emotions safely,” says Richard L. Ward, LPC, LMFT. Parents often tell their children to separate their wants from their needs, but they often talk about tangible items alone. Say, “Do you truly need that lesson now, or do you only want to try it?”

The reality is that kids can require intangible things as well, which only their moms and dads can provide. E.g., attention, love, and time. After all, busy parents tend to neglect such needs because they assume that the children will be happy if they can buy anything they want. So, at this point, find out the non-material stuff that your kid needs.

3. Lengthen Your Patience

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Another thing you can do is to avoid butting heads with your child. Understandably, you want to show them who’s the boss in the house, but you can’t do it by shouting. That will merely make the kids dislike you even more, which is something that you undoubtedly do not wish to do.

There’s nothing you can do but lengthen your patience and look for other – calmer – ways to discipline your angry kid.

 

If all else fails, perhaps you have to sign up for family counseling so that you can resolve your issues in a safe space. According to Jasmin Jourdenais LMFT, “The outbursts are becoming not only more frequent but maybe also scary.” Whatever you do, though, don’t give up on your child. They may not be saying it out loud, but they still need you now more than ever.

 

Therapy Can’t Do Anything For Your Anxiety? Here Are Some Tips To Try

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An individual who has never had a mental health scare will not know what it’s like to live with anxiety. There is something you always can’t help but fear, such as standing in the middle of a large crowd, being the topic of gossip everywhere you go, or even getting kidnapped as soon as you step out of your house. If only the giant bubble where Jake Gyllenhaal’s character in Bubble Boy lived in has gone on the market, the people with this disorder may be the first ones to order them to ensure their safety.

According to clinical psychologist Danielle Forshee, Psy.D, “those who worry — meaning everybody — can control the intensity and duration of their worry thoughts.” Since the latter is not a thing in the real world yet, however, anxiety-ridden folks try various forms of therapy instead. Among the most popular treatments is psychotherapy in which the individual goes on a one-on-one session, learning how to face and cope with their problems. Another useful technique is hypnosis, which allows the therapist to help their client at a subconscious level.

The thing is, signing up for the most expensive or talked-about therapy cannot guarantee that it will work for you. Some people manage to feel better after trying one form; others have been searching for the best treatment for themselves up to this day.

In case you are one of those folks whose faith on therapy is hanging by a thread, you should try the following tips.

Choose To Get Better

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The problem with some distressed people is that they say they want to get out of their anxious state. For instance, they may say, “Tomorrow, I will face my fears.” However, when the moment comes, they do not do anything to make it happen. You need to choose to get better to be able to do the right things. Otherwise, your situation will not improve.

Try Breathing Exercises

You can always try to control your anxiety by trying a simple breathing technique. Inhale and exhale deeply, for example, or count in your mind from 1 to 10. The goal here is for you to calm your nerves and detach yourself from the things that many you worry too much.

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Curb Your Need For Perfection

“We want to understand not only how emotions can help us but also how they can create difficulties if they’re of the wrong intensity or the wrong type for a particular situation,” says Dr. James Gross, a clinical psychologist. A lot of individuals with anxiety deal with depression as well because they set the bar too high for themselves all the time. They say, “This person did that, so I need to better.” Because of that, if things don’t go as planned, it’s too hard for them to experience a defeat.

What you should remember is to allow yourself to be less than perfect from now on, and then you will never feel sorrowful again.

Keep On Saying “I Can Do It”

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Even if I do not have an anxiety disorder, I stare at myself in the mirror every morning and chant, “I can do it.” Self-affirmation is a reliable and useful tool to feel better, you guys. It can change your perspective in life, as well as how you view yourself. You may not believe that you can genuinely do something at first. However, the more you say those words, the more they will become your reality.

 

“In the lives of those experiencing anxiety, anxiety has almost always served a purpose as a survival function at some point, ” says Karin Draper, LMFT. The tips mentioned above may sound too simple to be true. Still, it won’t hurt to try them, especially if you have done all the other, more conventional techniques.

Good luck!

How To Get Rid Of Depression Your Way

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Living with depression can undoubtedly be not too easy, especially if everyone knows that you have this mental disorder. This is when you walk into the room, and everyone stops talking to stare at you with pity. Once someone talks to you, it is as if they are trying to choose their words extra carefully because they don’t want to offend you or depress you even more.

In hindsight, you know that the people around you mean well. The truth is, they may even wish to help you get better. It just so happens that you may be the only one with depression in your circle; that’s why they have no idea how to act naturally. According to Simon Rego, PsyD, chief psychologist at Montefiore Medical Center, “It seems obvious that experiencing a depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day, would be required for someone to be diagnosed. But some people who are diagnosed with depression do not report feeling depressed, sad or low, but rather, they report experiencing significantly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or almost all, activities most of the day, nearly every day. Either one, or both together, can be present when considering a diagnosis of depression.”

In case you don’t want your loved ones to walk on eggshells anymore because of you, though, you can try to get rid of depression using these simple techniques.

Overcome What Makes You Sad

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The first thing that you need to do is to face the things or people who bother you. You can’t genuinely pull yourself out of your misery when there is always a reminder of events that made you sad initially. It will be like putting salts on your wound; no matter how many months have passed, it’s still fresh. I know that’s not what you want, so focus on removing the troublesome for you to get better.

Live A Simple Life

There are times when our lives become so fast-paced, and we are often in a rush. Therefore, when it comes to a sudden holt, we fall into depression because we don’t know what to do with it since we’re not used to it. “Being depressed often makes us anxious, and anxiety often makes us depressed,” says therapist Nancy B. Irwin, PsyD. My advice at this point is to live each day brighter and purer than ever. That’s the only way for you not to have a hard time when the wheel of life turns again, and things don’t go as planned.

Reconnect With Your Dreams

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Do you have goals that you had to sacrifice to get where you are? Have you ever thought of reconnecting with your old dreams that you had to push at the back of your mind when you had a boyfriend or girlfriend or got too immersed in your current work? Try not to wait for another lifetime before you chase after them again. Perhaps this is just what you need to do to get yourself out of your depression.

Nourish your Spiritual Self

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When you’re in distress, you can always talk to God. From what I understand, there is a version of God in every religion. Aside from Jesus Christ, you can speak to Allah, Buddha, Krishna, and all the other heavenly beings you know. All I want to say is that you must nourish your spiritual self because you may become too consumed by all the material things that you have, and God wants to get your attention because you may be forgetting Him already. You can value the corporeal stuff that you’ve worked hard for, but don’t forget to cultivate your spirituality. “Mindfulness meditation practices are effective interventions, and sometimes for mild to moderate conditions—depression and anxiety—super-effective as front lines,” says Saundra Jain, MA, PsyD, LPC.

Final Thoughts

Getting rid of depression in one go is practically impossible. It is like a thick-walled prison that isolates you from everyone you love. Still, you can work hard to chip away at it until you see a small opening to free yourself from it.

Good luck!