Change and uncertainty can feel scary and overwhelming. But, change is a fact of life. It can be big or small, planned or unexpected – and it can carry with it both negative and positive feelings. That’s what makes it so complex. If you focus on learning how to cope ahead during times of uncertainty, you will gain control of your emotional responses and likely be able to tolerate the ebbs and flows that inevitably come with life.
Have you ever considered if you respond to situations or react to them? Imagine being at work and you receive an email from your boss about a big change in process that will add a lot more work to your plate. Is your knee-jerk reaction to fire off a scathing email response, storm out of the building, bang your hands on your desk in exasperation, or run to a co-worker and immediately start complaining about how management could possibly be...
Creativity shouldn’t be stressful, but for many people, the thought causes anxiety. #Spoileralert: you don’t have to be an “artist” to use creativity to express yourself. Creativity is a state of being and art therapy is a powerful tool that helps people express themselves! It’s time to take your inner words and learn to release them through art expression.
Go with the Flow
A "flow state" is a mental state in which a person performing an activity or task is fully immersed in a feeling of energized attention, full participation and sense of fulfillment.
The idea of flow has been well researched and shown to exist within many different forms. It's a healthy state for our brains to thrive, grow and recharge!
Flow comes from many different places, and for most it’s when you’re feeling hyper focused and relaxed while doing something. That could be playing a musical instrument,...
“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” a song that rings throughout elevators, restaurants and shopping malls at this time of year. But what if it’s not how you actually feel? Instead of feeling the joy and cheer, you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, anxious, disconnected, lonely or stressed. We are all continuing to navigate the transitional period of the pandemic in 2021. This holiday season may be your first time traveling, or seeing extended family, or attending a large gathering, and so even if the holiday season has always been a joyous experience in the past, this year may feel different and that’s okay! Mental health experts Audrey Grunst, LCSW & Brittany Polacek, LPC are here to help with their top three tips to surviving the holiday season.
What we are experiencing is hard. Regardless of what your iteration of pandemic teaching has looked like, I know it’s been challenging personally and professionally. I know you’re worried about your students, their progress, and their social-emotional well-being. I know you’re trying somehow to embrace a new normal.
I know you’re tired. I am, too.
I get that we can’t pour from empty cups, but for just a moment, can we pause?
Self-care cannot be something to check off the list. Self-care is not one-size-fits-all.
Self-care is not an initiative.
Cultural shifts that value teacher mental and physical wellness take time to fully impact the system. Incredibly, the conversation is starting. It’s helpful that many see our value in a new light and want us to be well.
But, a slow shift is not enough right now, and we’re third-year...
I had the pleasure of co-hosting a wellness workshop with our therapist Jacqueline Ritz, LCPC. We created this workshop in response to the overwhelm and stress so many of us are feeling as our lives return back to a busier state post-pandemic. As a provider for mental health, we understand how much of a toll stress can place on our emotional state and physical bodies. Our goal was to share tools that would help us manage that stress and find more peace to quiet the constant chatter and to-do list in our heads.
As we joined together on the mat, we spoke about the shift back to busy schedules and overly demanding days. We shared our struggles to quiet our minds and the exhaustion felt from overactive thoughts rooted in stress and anxiety.
Jacqueline started with a breathing technique called Wim Hof that had us move through multiple cycles of deep breathing and a long hold at the end of the breath...
In the last twelve months I have found people accepting that mental health is real in all of us.
Therapy is trending, anxiety is a buzz word, and mental health is a common discussion in the media...and for that I say HALLELUJAH.
What if therapy is not available?
What if you are not ready for therapy?
What if therapy is too expensive?
What if you are curious about mental health and you don't know where to start?
What if you need a break from therapy?
Where do you go when you need a inspiration and new ideas to keep your mental health, healthy?
Despite all of this you are are struggling with accountability, consistency and inspiration.
You. Are. Not. Alone.
noun: mantra; plural noun: mantras
A word or sound repeated to aid concentration in meditation; a Vedic hymn.
I use a mantra to guide and inspire me. I like to think of it as a daily message guiding my path, a place to return to and encourage me to move forward. Typically when we want to create change in our life, we use goals or resolutions to keep us on track. However, goals and resolutions require structure and planning. They require lists and when I fail to check off the boxes on the lists, I am constantly faced with disappointment. When I work with a personal mantra, I have more freedom. My mantra gently guides me to what I want to manifest. Sometimes it is a word or phrase that I need in a pivotal moment in my life or sometimes my mantra will change based on circumstance. At the beginning of every year, I always begin with a new mantra to open the door to all the possibilities I can manifest.
My yoga practice has taught me the importance of letting go every time I step on my mat. When I first began to practice yoga, my focus was on perfecting the poses. After a while though, my practice would not progress. I was burnt out, frustrated, and unkind with myself when I could not master the poses perfectly. I discovered I needed to let go of all my preconceived notions, my perceived limitations, and perfectionism in order to grow in my yoga practice.
The COVID-19 pandemic crashed down on me like a fierce mid-afternoon thunderstorm. It was unexpected, jarring and left me soaking wet in disbelief. It seemed that no matter where I turned, the rain surrounded me. At first I accepted the rain, then I refused it, then I briefly tricked myself into using playfulness to temporarily deny the reality of what was happening. But then I was forced (quite literally) into shelter and forced to fall on my knees and surrender to the storm that has still yet to pass.
Every day this week, I wake up in hope that it will stop raining—but I look and only see flooding all around me. I pray for relief—but I am only met with uncertainty. The despair creeps in and I can no longer fight the rain. But even in dark hours when the rain is beating down on me, I force myself to find my inner voice of hope. Sometimes, I hear a little whisper that tells me that I will survive. I hear the...