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Overcome Post Traumatic Stress

Overcome Post Traumatic Stress

Trauma is a silent creeper. Its triggers can creep up when you least expect it and can sabotage you into a myriad of complex emotions. Just when you think you are living your best life, emotional stress from a past trauma can be presenting havoc in your life. There are ways to overcome post-traumatic stress.

You might not have expected it but trauma can present in the form of low self-esteem or feeling like a victim. It can show up as having uncontrollable emotionally intense reactions, nightmares, flashbacks or anxiety. It can even show up as depressive symptoms. Some people might be wrongfully diagnosed with anxiety or depression and truly suffer from past trauma.

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7 Ways to Change Your Attitude

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7 Ways to Change Your Attitude

What is attitude? It is your outlook on the world. It is something that you choose. That’s right you choose what kind of attitude you want to have in this lifetime. How you react to a situation or event in your life shows your attitude. If you think you need help, here’s 7 ways to change your attitude. Read more

The Truth Behind Lies Inside Your Head

The Truth Behind Lies Inside Your Head

Photo Credit: Kat Jayne Pexels

Your opinions and beliefs in your mind can be playing tricks on you. Just because you sincerely believe one thing to be true does not mean it is truth. It can be an opinion and even a negative viewpoint on the world or towards yourself. Your meta-messages could be ruining your life. Here is the truth behind lies inside your head.

What is a Meta-Message?

How you live your life or define your truths is based on your belief system. In counseling, we refer to these “truths” as your beliefs or your “meta-messages.” A meta-message is a message received from reading in between the lines. As you might infer, meta-message itself may not be true but you might define it as being truth. Read more

Good Foods, Good Mood

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Good Foods, Good Mood

Have you ever thought about how your mood reacts to the foods you eat? Some say it is easy to become addicted to sugar, carbohydrates and processed foods. In today’s society, it is hard not to be. It can be appealing because wherever you look there are foods that are presented to you for convenience.

What Are You Buying?

Take a look at the middle aisles in your grocery stores. These are full of processed or high sodium foods. Or take a look at all the fast food chains throughout America. There are too many to count.  One could argue that the commercials on television are geared towards convenience and especially busy moms.

By staying away from these processed foods and gravitating towards eating raw, whole foods, you are increasing the likelihood to have a healthier, happier life. If you are fighting depression, these food choices become extremely important.

There is a reason why the more sweets and processed foods you eat, make you feel up at first, but overall prove to show a decrease in energy. Depression and depressed people need to pay attention to this article. The foods you eat in conjunction with simple lifestyle changes can make a major difference. It could be the difference between you suffering with depression or overcoming depression.

(DISCLAIMER: Medication-management is recommended by psychiatrists for those suffering with severe to extreme depression. A healthy diet can be a helpful factor in aiding your battle against depression. For mild to moderate depression, alternative treatment and modifications to diet can be noticeably helpful.)
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Have Happy Thoughts

Have Happy Thoughts

Photo credit: Bruce Mars Pexels.com

Let’s get real simple here. Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy or CBT is based on the notion that your thoughts and feelings are related to the actions you choose. These thoughts and feelings ultimately may lead to mental health problems if you see things in an irrational or unstable perspective. The notion that you might be seeing yourself, the world and other people’s actions in such ways as irrational or twisted might make you question your interpretation of events and situations. That is exactly what I am challenging you on. Try to look at your interpretation of events from an objective (non-emotional) perspective. The challenge for you is to have happy thoughts. How do you do that? Keep reading…

Twisted Thinking Takes a Toll on Everyone

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Take Control of Your Own Happiness

Take Control of Your Own Happiness

Photo Credit: Daniel Xavier Pexels

How can you take control of your own happiness? The mind/body connection is a powerful connection and by understanding how your body’s actions are connected to your thoughts and feelings, you will start to understand how your body gestures can command your happiness. Emotions show through our bodily sensations or reactions. At times, emotions creep up so quickly and naturally that it feels nearly impossible to control them. However, there is the possibility to control your emotions. First, you have to become aware of them. Emotional awareness is a step towards understanding the physiology related to happiness. Do you have ‘butterflies’ in your stomach when anxious? Have you ever felt a lump in your throat, a shiver or trembling in your hands when scared? Can you sense your teeth clenching or redness in your face when angered? Although these physiological responses might happen naturally, there are others you can do to ‘fake’ your happiness. Whatever you do, take control of your own happiness.

Physiology and Our Emotions

In 2013, Finnish researchers studied different emotions and the body’s responses. This research probed 701 participants to experience various emotions. Then, the researchers asked them to color in a body map of where they felt a marked increase or decrease in activity due to feeling the emotion. (Nummenmaa et al., 2013). See the images below of the findings: Read more

Find Your Self-Worth

Find Your Self-Worth

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In Philip C. McGraw’s book called Self Matters, he references a chapter about labeling. Labeling is a not only something you say to yourself inside your head with your critical voice, but it is also something that others say about you. Labeling has a powerful influence over your psychological development. It can define your self-worth.

Labeling can be living in your subconscious. Labels come from the outside world and inside your mind. Your labels are important because it is the inner core of what you believe about yourself. “Label” means a term of classification. However, you could benefit from looking at these labels to understand your self-worth.

Labels are Judgments

Labels are judgments of self. They crystallize a type of self-characterization. Labels allow someone else to define you based on a personal, perhaps biased perception. You either allow others’ labels to creep inside your head to become a form of self-characterization. Do you beat yourself up by listening and believing what others are assuming about you?

Whether labels are true or not, there is a certain self-fulfilling prophecy that happens with labeling. When you pay attention to labels, there is a prediction that is somewhat made. That prediction can lead you to continue with those types of credits or continue to live life in that manner. Read more

How to Find Your Passion

How to Find Your Passion

Are you wondering how to find your passion or a life of purpose? When I am counseling various kinds of people including younger clients, those struggling with addiction, depression, or even those after retirement, the common theme is they question their life’s purpose. Having not found your passion or life purpose can beg this question at any age. Here is how to find your passion or a life of purpose. Check out these 10 ways… Read more

5 Ways to Be a Happier You

5 Ways to Be a Happier You

Author: Virginia James, M.A., LPC, LMHC, Strategic Life Coach

You Have an Attitude

At one time or another, I am sure you heard what it means to have an attitude. Your parents might have said to you, “You better change that attitude of yours!”

The thing about attitude is that it can be either positive or negative but you get to choose. You get to choose your attitude in life.

Some people live in a constant state of anger: anger towards others, blameful or simply unhappy about personal life decisions.

Maya Angelou said this quote: If you don’t like something change it. If you can’t change it, 
change your attitude.

I saw this couple shopping at Aldi the other night. The man kept patronizing this poor woman telling her things like, “Why did you pick that type of cheese?”, “Move faster! You’re walking too slow,” “You’re just in the way!”

I thought to myself, “This woman just needs to leave him and get away from that negativity. What are those toxic statements doing to her on a daily basis?

Can You Choose Your Attitude?

Have you ever been around someone like that? Someone who emotionally and verbally assaults you on a daily basis. Hopefully you are not the person doing it to someone else.

Or have you ever been around a daily complainer? Unfortunately, it is all-too-common.

One thing is for sure, it’s definitely easier to have a poor attitude. Why not be different? Why not work on having a happier, healthier attitude? For some, having negative thoughts or thoughts that bring you down on a daily basis are totally normal. For others, having positive thoughts or being mainly happy each day is the norm.

If the last sentence isn’t true for you, keep reading. Here are 5 ways to change your 
attitude because attitude is everything in life.

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