All you need to know about EMDR therapy
EMDR…Have you heard that acronym yet? Maybe a friend is using it with their therapist. Or maybe you have seen TV show therapists (Ever watch Grey’s Anatomy or Criminal Minds?!) talk about its use and perform EMDR – don’t forget, what you see on TV rarely is done in reality! For professionals in the counseling world, this tool is even more intriguing as our understanding of how neuroscience and psychology intersect and continues to become more comprehensive. Have I peaked your curiosity yet? Read on to learn more and see if EMDR could be for you.
Can EMDR help with my symptoms?
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapy tool developed in the last 30 years by Francine Shapiro, Ph.D. EMDR has quickly become the preferred treatment approach for individuals struggling with emotional health symptoms that stem from traumatic life events, and those who are diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. You need to have this diagnosis to benefit from EMDR however. The term ‘trauma’ is used, and there is a misunderstanding that has to mean something exceedingly terrible. We all experience life uniquely and a traumatic impact is something to be personally defined by the individual’s experience. What makes EMDR so beneficial for most individuals is that it focuses on the person’s individual experience, as this is how the brain assimilated that experience internally.
Because of this, EMDR is a exceptional tool for many issues beyond post traumatic symptoms. It has been used to support treatment of addictions, depressive disorders, anxiety and panic disorders, phobias, complex grief reactions, individuals with chronic physical health issues, and much more. EMDR can also be used in treating these same issues in children. All people can experience great gains from working with a therapist who uses EMDR!
Science behind EMDR
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy is an interactive psychotherapy technique. It is a very focused approach for treating trauma and other symptoms. EMDR reconnects the client in a safe and measured way to the images, self-thoughts, emotions, and body sensations associated with the trauma, and allows the natural healing powers of the brain to move toward adaptive resolution. It is based on the idea that traumatic experiences have overwhelmed the brain’s natural coping capacity, and that the healing process can be facilitated through eye movements, which your therapist will call bilateral stimulation. Bilateral stimulation helps the brain to reassimilate an understanding of those past events in the context of the present, safe environment of the therapist’s office (this is called dual awareness), simultaneously allowing the strengths the client now possesses to help support the mind’s understanding of the current stance of the self.
EMDR is often used in conjunction with typical talk therapy modalities, and so you will still have an opportunity to develop a relationship and explore additional aspects of your life as needed.
How will I benefit from EMDR?
Can this help me? Absolutely! EMDR has been the most studied psychological treatment tool in the last 30 years. Study after study show the majority of people who initially present with symptoms of depression or anxiety, PTSD symptoms, and dissociative issues all demonstrate improvement through their work using EMDR. For a comprehensive list of clinical trials and meta analysis studies on the efficacy of EMDR, follow this link. https://www.emdr.com/research-overview/
The length of time for an individual to experience positive results depends on the presenting issue and the complexity of the trauma. We can adapt treatment focus if it is necessary for you to keep your services brief, but for complex trauma issues this is not advisable and you may want to engage into a different therapeutic modality. It would be important for you to address this issue with your therapist. EMDR can still be used within the standard clinical hour.
Who can provide EMDR therapy?
Now that you know more, you might be intrigued enough to want to explore EMDR further with a therapist. Ensuring you are matching yourself with a therapist who has the training and experience in correctly using this modality is important. Here are a few things that you can ask to fully understand your therapist’s competence in providing EMDR therapy:
–What organization sponsored your training in EMDR?
*Those who received their education from EMDRIA have been taught comprehensively in how to use the EMDR protocol
–Are you certified in EMDR?
*Certified EMDR therapists have spent additional supervision hours post initial training under the consultation with a Certified Consultant to enhance their knowledge and skill base.
-How often and when do you use EMDR in your clinical practice?
*This will help you to inform you of their experience and application in using EMDR with clients.
There is much information to absorb here. Do you want to learn more? Take a moment and watch https://youtu.be/Pkfln-ZtWeY youtube video created by EMDRIA for additional information. Miracles Counseling Centers has therapists who are trained in EMDR and would be happy to help you in your journey towards wellness. We have multiple clinicians trained in this excellent treatment approach. Please visit our clinician’s page to find a provider that can serve you!Learn More
This month, Miracles Counseling Centers is joining the national movement to raise awareness about mental health. Millions of Americans are currently living with a mental illness, and this number is growing. The sad reality is that many of these individuals do not receive the support they need due to stigma or a lack of understanding surrounding mental health, the resources available to them, and the importance of seeking help. Mental health is a huge part of our overall health, so we must take care of it! This is why it is so important that we take time this month to engage in intentional conversations about mental health, fight against stigma, and show our support for those in our lives who are struggling. We want to start by sharing information on the mental health resources available to you! That’s why we’ve put together a list of some of the larger mental health advocacy groups out there and how they work to support mental health in our country.
Mental Health America (MHA)
Who They Are: Mental Health America is a national community-based nonprofit that is focused on promoting mental health as a critical part of overall wellness, including prevention services for all, early identification for those at risk, early identification & intervention for those at risk, and integrated care, services, and supports for those who need them, with recovery as the goal.
What They Do: MHA provides education and outreach to help Americans of all ages to better understand prevention, early identification, and intervention through access to online screening tools, information, and events. MHA collaborates with its over 200 affiliates in 41 states to bring information and referral, support groups, rehabilitation services, as well as socialization and housing services to those struggling with mental health issues and their loved ones in communities around the country. MHA also works with these affiliates to advance policy recommendations promoting mental health.
National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI)
Who They Are: The National Alliance on Mental Health is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. NAMI started as a group of families around a kitchen table in 1979 and is now an alliance of more than 600 local Affiliates and 48 State Organizations who work in our communities to raise awareness and provide support and education to those in need.
What They Do: NAMI offers educational classes, training, and presentations on various mental health topics. They advocate for public policy changes in favor of mental health. The toll-free NAMI HelpLine is available to anyone in need of emotional health support. NAMI leads public events and activities to fight mental health stigma in communities across the nation. Their website has lots of information on mental health conditions and their appropriate treatments, as well as blog posts that share personal stories.
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP)
Who They Are: The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is a voluntary health organization that seeks to provide a national community for those affected by suicide in an effort to empower and advocate for them. AFSP’s mission is to save lives and bring hope to those in our country who have been impacted by suicide.
What They Do: The AFSP funds scientific research and advocates for public policies in mental health and suicide prevention. They also engage in efforts to educate the public about mental health and suicide prevention and provide support groups for survivors of suicide loss and those affected by suicide. Their website has information for individuals having suicidal thoughts, for those who have lost or are worried about someone, and those who have survived a suicide attempt.
Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA)
Who They Are: The Anxiety and Depression Association of America strives to improve the quality of life for individuals who struggle with anxiety and depression.
What They Do: The ADAA works to find new treatments in hopes of one day preventing and curing anxiety, depressive, obsessive-compulsive, and trauma-related disorders. They offer education on these disorders, including articles, webinars, and other resources, to help individuals better understand anxiety and depression. The ADAA also offers training to help turn their research findings into practice.
Child Mind Institute
Who They Are: The Child Mind Institute is the leading independent nonprofit in children’s mental health. They are dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders by giving them the help that they need.
What They Do: The Child Mind Institute holds workshops, talks, and conversations for parents and families. They also have a Family Resource Center on their website, with parenting guides, a symptom checker tool to inform parents about possible diagnoses, a resource finder, and an option to submit questions.
Website: https://childmind.org/Learn More
Focus on Self-Love this Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day can bring up many different emotions for both singles and couples. However, regardless of relationship status, one thing we can all focus on this Valentine’s Day is self-love! Self-love involves showing yourself the same love and kindness that you’d show others and accepting yourself for who you are. It’s about putting some energy and effort into the relationship that you have with yourself. The concept may sound self-indulgent or narcissistic, but it is more about getting in touch with ourselves and our well-being, which can have great benefits for our mental health! So how can you love yourself this Valentine’s Day, no matter how much love you receive from others? Here are 10 tips for practicing self-love:
- Treat yourself like your best friend: This is a great rule of thumb. You deserve the same kindness and care that you’d give to a friend, so give that to yourself! Listen to your needs and desires by taking time to check in on yourself then following that lead on you need more of next.
- Challenge your inner critic: It’s easy to listen to your negative thoughts and become your own worst critic. Be mindful of the way you talk to yourself. When you start to feel self-criticism coming on, press pause, take a step back, ask yourself “Is this true?” and then consider what you’d tell a friend who was thinking that about themselves.
- Engage in positive self-talk: Once you recognize and challenge a negative thought, replace it with something more positive. Take time to consider your positive qualities and the things you love about yourself. Write them down when you think of them to have when you need them most.
- Celebrate your accomplishments: No matter how big or small of a win, celebrate them all! Allow yourself to take time after a victory to be proud of yourself and your accomplishment before moving on to your next goal or challenge. You absolutely have something to celebrate about yourself!
- Practice good self-care: Regular self-care is an act of self-love. Take care of your hygiene to let yourself know that you are worthy. Take care of your physical needs with a nourishing diet, exercise, and proper sleep. Practice self-care not because you have to, but because you care about you.
- Spend time doing things that bring you joy: Make time each day for something that makes you happy or makes you laugh. This will increase your self-esteem, mood, & energy, and give you a sense of purpose. Try not to put pressure on yourself to instantly feel better, but just be fully present in what you’re doing.
- Surround yourself with supportive people: Spend time with those that help you feel safe in being yourself and leave you feeling good. These people will help lift you up when you have self-doubts and encourage you to take chances in order to grow. Identify those in your life who are mostly negative and consider spending less time with them.
- Establish boundaries: Learn to say no. Before committing to anything, pause and check in with yourself. Think about the implications. Taking on something that you can’t follow through on or do to the best of your abilities can lower your self-esteem. Setting personal limits will help to prevent you from overcommitting to people and experiences that are not aligned with your values or interfere with your self-acceptance.
- Do something kind for someone else: Kindness releases serotonin (the “feel good” hormone). Though it might seem contradictory, engaging in acts of kindness or volunteering can actually boost your self-esteem and overall happiness, making it an act of self-love.
- Give yourself compassion & forgiveness: Don’t believe the lie that you must do everything right. Give yourself grace to make mistakes and move on from them. Dwelling on mistakes allows negative thoughts to build up and consume you. Normalizing struggles, missed opportunities as being human and authentic is the most healthy and truthful thing you can say to yourself.
However you might be feeling this Valentine’s Day, all of us at Miracles want you to know that you are special. There is no one else in this world like you. You deserve to be loved, not just by others, but by YOU! If you would like further guidance with self-love or self-acceptance, contact us about scheduling an appointment with one of our therapists.Learn More
Have you wondered what truly qualifies as having Obsessive Compulsive Disorder? We hear this phrase very commonly now, and many people like to make light of their selves or routines by saying “I’m OCD,” but are they actually? It’s important to clear up any misconceptions regarding this so you can know when you actually need to seek help. Early intervention is critical for your health and to live a full life. Read on below to fully understand what having OCD means.
What is OCD?
Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) is a common mental health condition characterized by repetitive, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and excessive urges to engage in behaviors related to these thoughts (compulsions). OCD affects both children and adults and is typically diagnosed by late adolescence or early adulthood. OCD can be a very life limiting disorder, but with proper treatment a health and fulfilling life can be achieved.
What are the Symptoms of OCD?
- Obsessions: These are unwanted, disturbing thoughts, images, or urges that won’t go away, despite causing severe distress or anxiety. Individuals with OCD know these thoughts are irrational, but feel like they have no control over them. Obsessions are typically accompanied by feelings of fear, disgust, or doubt.
- Compulsions: These are repetitive behaviors or rituals intended to counteract the obsessions or make them go away. Individuals with OCD know that these behaviors are not realistic, but they feel like they must do them to relieve the anxiety caused by obsessions or prevent something bad from happening. Compulsions do not bring pleasure and provide only temporary relief. They are time consuming and get in the way of daily activities.
How is OCD Diagnosed?
Although you may hear people say that they have OCD because they occasionally experience an impulsive thought or compulsive behavior, OCD is an ongoing cycle that severely interferes with normal, daily functioning. Lightly using the phrase “I have OCD” can bring misconceptions to the significant impact and struggles of what having Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is like. There are very specific criteria that must be met in order to receive an OCD diagnosis. To be diagnosed with OCD, you must have:
- Obsessions, compulsions, or both
- An inability to control your obsessions (thoughts) and compulsions (behaviors), even when you recognize that they are irrational
- Obsessions and compulsions that last at least an hour each day and cause significant problems with work, relationships, or other parts of life
- No gain of pleasure from compulsions aside from a brief relief from anxiety caused by the obsessions
What are the Subtypes of OCD?
Though there are many types of OCD, individuals’ obsessions and compulsions tend to fall into one of the following five main subtypes.
- Contamination Obsessions & Washing/Cleaning Compulsions- Individuals with this subtype fear discomfort related to dirt & contamination and will engage in excessive washing or cleaning to relieve their stress. (e.g. Washing your hands repeatedly for hours after touching a door knob)
- Harm Obsessions & Checking Compulsions- Individuals with this subtype worry about possible harm to themselves or others and engage in constant checking rituals to relieve their distress. (e.g. Worrying about your house burning down and repeatedly driving by your house to make sure there is no fire; Worrying that you are increasing the likelihood of something bad happening just by thinking about it)
- Symmetry Obsessions & Ordering/Arranging/Counting Compulsions- This subtype involves the urge to arrange and rearrange things to prevent feelings of discomfort from things not feeling “right” or symmetrical (e.g. Wanting to write the exact same number of words in each line on a page). Sometimes these compulsions are used to prevent potential harm or danger. (e.g. “Something bad will happen if the pillows on my bed are uneven.”)
- Hoarding- Individuals who hoard are unable to discard possessions with little value due to the fear of losing items that may be needed one day. This subtype is associated with higher depression and anxiety than other subtypes.
- Obsessions Without Visible Compulsions- Individuals with this subtype will ruminate over unwanted thoughts, particularly related to sexual, religious, or aggressive themes. Instead of engaging in compulsions, mental rituals may be used, like reciting words, counting in one’s head, or praying for relief. (e.g. Intrusive thoughts about attacking someone)
How is OCD Treated?
Treatment for OCD typically involves medication, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. Antidepressants are the most common medications used to treat OCD, and must be prescribed by a medical doctor or psychiatrist. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Exposure and Response Prevention Therapy (ERP) are also highly effective in treating OCD symptoms. CBT is focused on recognizing and changing negative thoughts that cause distress and lead to compulsive behaviors. ERP involves exposing individuals with OCD to the cause of their anxiety and prevents them from engaging in compulsions.
If some of the symptoms above sound similar to your life situation, it’s important to begin taking the steps to seek help for this. Symptoms can become worse over time and sometimes will evolve into other issues if left untreated. If you’re interested in psychotherapy for OCD, reach out to us!Learn More
Summer is a season that many love for its warm weather, long sunny days, slower pace, and relaxing vibes. However, the feelings of joy and carefreeness that summer brings are often also accompanied by feelings of anxiety, depressed mood, dread, self-criticism and shame over our body. Body image is the way we view our bodies, as well as how we perceive others to view our bodies. Summer is a trigger for anyone who struggles with body image, but it can be a challenging time for even those who are more confident about their bodies. This is partially due to an increase in body-focused headlines and advertisements during the summer season. These ads promote unrealistic and unhealthy standards for achieving the ‘perfect beach body’ that is tan, thin, and toned. Sometimes these messages come from family or friends who have their own dysmorphic ideas around healthy bodies. Because we hear these messages on repeat during the summer months, many people, regardless of age or gender, experience body dissatisfaction, which is one of the biggest risk factors for eating disorders. So how can we maintain a positive body image this summer when the negative thoughts begin to take over?
First, let’s identify some of the triggers for body dissatisfaction during the summer months:
Lack of structure– We often find ourselves with more free time during the summer, which can be nice and relaxing. However, the lack of structure can disrupt our routines, leading to an increase in emotional dysregulation and unhealthy behaviors. It is more common to skip meals or over exercise when you are not on your normal routine. More free time also gives us the opportunity to overthink how we look and get stuck in negative, spiraling thought patterns.
Greater social obligations– More free time allows for more social events and vacations with friends and family, which can increase stress. Stress can trigger negative thought patterns and unhealthy habits, especially for those who struggle with eating disorders and body image. We sometimes take stress out on our bodies.
You aren’t as covered- It’s harder to hide our bodies under lots of clothing during the hot summer months. Wearing shorts and bathing suits make many people feel vulnerable and insecure, especially when they can readily compare themselves to others around them also showing more skin.
Social media- When the weather is warm, we consistently see people in bathing suits or less clothing on our social media feeds. This is an instant invitation to start comparing and critiquing ourselves. We don’t stop to consider the fact that many of these posts are posed, edited, or filtered.
Here are some tips to help you maintain a positive body image:
Identify negative self talk- Body image is deeply ingrained in our minds from a young age, making it difficult to break free from distorted thoughts about ourselves. Try to pay attention to the comments you make about your body and how those make you feel. Challenge yourself to ban negative comments for a day or a week. Separate feeling bad from feeling unattractive. Sometimes, when we feel distressed, we allow it to take the form of negative thoughts about our bodies. This is often the beginning of anxious or depressed moods – our thoughts are within our control and we can stop this in its tracks by changing these negative thoughts.
Engage in body positive talk- Once you identify those negative statements, replace them with more realistic, positive ones. For example, turn the negative thought “Everyone will judge how I look in my swimsuit” into “People aren’t looking at me; they’re enjoying their own day.” Engaging in regular body positive talk will take time and practice. Consider writing out body positive statements and placing them around your home to serve as reminders.
Limit mirror time- Many of us repeatedly spend long periods of time in front of the mirror, focusing on the parts of ourselves that we don’t like and looking for evidence to confirm our negative thoughts about them. This only magnifies our flaws. Don’t avoid the mirror, but use it in a functional way, like to see if your clothes match. When looking in the mirror, focus on your body as a whole, instead of on the parts you don’t like.
Listen to your body- Shift your attention from the outside- how you look, to the inside- how you feel. Remember that your body is a living, breathing being that communicates with you. Practice intuitive eating and movement. Choose foods that feel good for your body without judgement and listen to the type of movement your body needs, rather than listening to what others say our bodies should be doing.
Practice self-compassion- Would you speak about a friend’s body the way you speak of yours? Be kind toward yourself. Engaging in self-care is a great practical way to do so. Working on self-acceptance and seeing ourselves on a journey through life, rather than as our anxious or depressed thoughts about one snapshot in time is very helpful.
Express gratitude toward your body- Focus on what your body can do, rather than how it looks. When we get caught up in what’s ‘wrong’ with our bodies, we take what they do for us on a daily basis for granted. Practice writing down things you are grateful to your body for in a journal and really feeling the appreciation.
Limit social media- As we mentioned earlier, social media is a trigger for body dissatisfaction. If you find that scrolling through social media tends to leave you with negative thoughts about yourself, set limits on your usage and take breaks.
Sometimes the societal messages we receive about body image, combined with our negative thoughts about ourselves can be too much, leading to body dysmorphic disorder or eating disorders. Eating disorders are more common than you might expect. Around 8 million people in the United States struggle with an eating disorder. The good news is that up to 80% of people who seek proper treatment will see significant improvement. Our therapist, Kathleen Fetter, LCMHC-S, specializes in the treatment of eating disorders. If you are struggling with body image issues and would like more individualized help, contact us or call us at 704-664-1009 to schedule with Kathleen! At Miracles, we want you to know that you have a beautiful body that was designed to carry you through life!Learn More
Without a doubt, we have seen an increase in the prevalence of depression since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some studies suggest that the rate of depression in the United States has tripled. With no definite end to the pandemic in sight, it is understandable that many Americans are experiencing feelings of hopelessness. So, what is the connection between COVID-19 and depression? How has depression been brought on by the pandemic? And how can you cope with these feelings, even as COVID-19 continues to affect us?
How has COVID-19 impacted our Depression Levels?
We have been facing extended periods of isolation: We are social creatures with a desire for human interaction! Not being able to spend time with friends or family members can leave us feeling isolated and lonely. These feelings can trigger depression.
Anxiety and Uncertainty is a daily experience: With so much uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, worry is a natural response. However, when we allow our worries to spiral, they can turn into anxiety. Anxiety can lead to depression when we feel like we’ve lost control of our thoughts, leaving us helpless.
Change in routine creates stress: When we experience major life changes, such as job loss, death of a loved one, financial difficulty, cancellation of big events, or even a shift in environment, we become stressed. Experiencing several of these major stressors at once can feel overwhelming, leaving us more susceptible to depression.
Unhealthy habits form in survival struggles: The ways in which we respond to major stressors can worsen depression. Some unhealthy strategies include substance abuse, overeating, self-medicating, and lack of sleep or physical activity.
The experience of being COVID-19 Positive: Having COVID-19 sometimes leads to feelings of guilt, shame, failure, or disappointment. The stigma of contracting the virus is isolating, as it can lead to self-blame and negative-self talk. These feelings and reactions can turn into depression. For those who experience a longer recovery period, or prolonged symptoms, such as loss of taste or smell, ongoing feelings of sadness or hopelessness are more likely to occur.
How Can You Cope as the Pandemic Continues On?
Maintain a routine & establish healthy daily habits: It can be hard to stay on a schedule after spending so much time at home for so long. Try to find some purpose in each day and create structure for yourself. This will help stabilize your depression by keeping your internal clock running smoothly. Avoid sleeping too much or too little and skipping meals or exercise. Regular exercise can be as effective as antidepressant medications and foods with omega-3 fatty acids can boost your mood! Keep up with your personal care routine, just as you would have before the pandemic, by showering and getting dressed each day.
Make time for things that bring you joy: Keep engaging in activities that enhance your mood daily, such as spending time with pets or outside, reading, cooking, crafting, or listening to music. These are your personal coping skills!
Practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques: Mindfulness will help you acknowledge your ongoing, pandemic-related feelings without judgement and respond to them with positive self-talk. Other relaxation techniques that will help you break away from your negative thoughts and relieve tension or anxiety include meditation, progressive muscle relaxation, and breathing exercises.
Stay connected with others: Over the past year, we have had to adapt and find new ways to engage with one another. It is important to stay in contact with those close to you in a manner that feels comfortable and safe, even when those depressive symptoms make it seem easier to stay isolated.
Limit news consumption: While it is important to stay informed about progressions with the pandemic, overconsuming news may be contributing to your feelings of sadness, hopelessness, or exhaustion, which will worsen your depression. Especially avoid news updates around bedtime.
Practice gratitude: As the pandemic continues to bring about feelings of hopelessness, try to find at least one thing you are grateful for each day, such as a beautiful sunset or a text from a friend. Consider writing these things down in a gratitude journal. Practicing gratitude may seem small, but it can provide relief from depressive symptoms and negative thoughts.
Help others or volunteer: Taking our minds off ourselves and our depression by offering to help others is a great way to decrease stress levels and increase feelings of happiness! The weight of our own issues becomes less heavy and we feel good inside.
See a therapist: There is no shame in seeking help! We have a wonderful team of licensed therapists who understand the impact of COVID-19 on depression and are here to help you develop coping skills and use your inner strengths to manage it. We are still offering both virtual and in-person appointments to meet your level of comfort with the pandemic.Learn More
January is Mental Wellness Month! Mental wellness is about how all aspects of our lives come together and influence our overall state of well-being. It is not just the absence of a mental illness. Mental wellness is something that we can all consistently strive for. At Miracles, we think mental wellness is important and are committed to helping you improve your well-being for a happier and healthier lifestyle.
Mental wellness affects all aspects of our lives and can determine how we act, feel, and think. Our mental wellness can also impact how we respond to stress, connect with others, and make decisions.
Because our mental wellness is determined by the ways in which different aspects of our lives come together, it is broken up into 8 dimensions. To gain a better understanding of your current state of well-being and how you can work to improve it, we will provide a breakdown of each dimension. You may realize that, while you have achieved wellness in some dimensions, other dimensions may be negatively affecting your overall wellness. These can be focus areas for personal improvement.
Emotional Wellness Our awareness, understanding, and acceptance of our emotions, as well as our ability to manage challenges and change. Being emotionally well allows us to identify and accept how we are feeling, then decide how we want to respond. We can express our feelings without any constraints, which leads to a happier life.
How to achieve it: Accept that emotions occur and allow them to be felt; Embrace a positive outlook; Practice mindfulness; Be grateful; Seek help from others when needed; Develop coping skills or ways to manage stress
Occupational Wellness Our ability to achieve a balance between work and leisure in a way that promotes enrichment and personal satisfaction. The way we feel about our work affects our overall well-being. When we do not feel a sense of enjoyment or fulfillment from our careers, we can become depressed. When we are content with our careers, we experience greater proficiency, productivity, commitment, energy, & enthusiasm.
How to achieve it: Set realistic goals and work toward them; Reflect on yourself and your needs; Seek motivating and interesting work; Practice open communication and conflict management with colleagues; Find ways to enjoy daily tasks; Focus on the positives in your job
Social Wellness How we interact with others. It is about how connected we feel to our community and our ability to maintain healthy relationships. It is important for us to have a supportive social network to rely on. The quality of our relationships affects our identity, self-esteem, & other dimensions of wellness. Strong social wellness also builds emotional resilience.
How to achieve it: Reflect on yourself and your social needs; Make connections; Stay in touch with supportive family and friends; Practice self-disclosure; Join a club or organization; Balance personal and social time; Create healthy boundaries.
Financial Wellness Our ability to understand and successfully mange financial expenses. Financial wellness involves being informed about financial concerns and prepared for financial changes. Finance is a common source of stress, anxiety, and fear. Financial wellness allows us to enjoy our lives, while living within our means. Investing in our financial wellness now can help us be prepared for future financial constraints and life’s challenges.
How to achieve it: Find your why- what motivates you financially?; Keep organized records of your finances; Plan ahead and set budget goals; Limit impulsive spending; Avoid multiple lines of credit; Don’t put it off- identify problems before they start!
Intellectual Wellness Engaging in a variety of mentally stimulating activities to help us organize our experiences, problem solve, think creatively and expand our knowledge. Intellectual wellness encourages learning, exploration, and curiosity. When we are curious, we are motivated to try new things, improve skill sets, challenge ourselves, and become more open-minded.
How to achieve it: Academic, cultural, and community involvement; Pick up a hobby; Travel; Explore new avenues of creativity and artistic expression; Practice critical thinking; Find practical applications for learning
Environmental Wellness Being aware of, caring about, and interacting with nature and your personal environment. When we are more environmentally aware, we understand how our daily habits affect the environment. Environmental wellness encourages us to respect our environment and practice healthy habits that promote a healthy environment. Feeling more in control of our environment can also reduce anxiety.
How to achieve it: Conserve energy; Recycle; Spend time outdoors; Clean up after yourself or pick up litter; Practice sustainability
Physical Wellness Taking care of our bodies for optimal health and functioning. Physical wellness involves taking responsibility for our own health, being more aware of our physical well-being, and establishing a routine of making healthy choices. When we are physically well, we can balance physical activity, nutrition, and our mental well-being, leading to greater energy & functioning, and a reduced risk for depression.
How to achieve it: Maintain a healthy & well-balanced diet; Visit a primary care physician for regular checkups; Maintain a regular sleep schedule; Avoid/reduce activities or substances that negatively impact your body; Exercise regularly; Learn your body’s warning signs when it starts to feel ill
Spiritual Wellness Exploring our personal values and beliefs and incorporating them into our daily lives. Spiritual wellness allows us to live with meaning and purpose, appreciate life experiences, and balance our inner self with the outside world. Being in tune with our spiritual selves can include believing in a religious faith, but it can also just mean learning about ourselves and how we see ourselves in the world.
How to achieve it: Explore your inner self- thoughts about who you are; Create a personal mission statement; Practice mindfulness, meditation, and/or prayer; Practice acceptance and compassion; Perform random acts of kindness, serve, or volunteer; Be curious; Look for a religious faith that you agree with
If you would like to work on a specific area in your life in order to improve your overall mental wellness, our therapists are here to help! We can help you identify the dimensions that you may be struggling with and work together to create a plan for how you can improve in these specific dimensions. We also understand that trying to balance wellness in all of these dimensions can be overwhelming and we are here to help you manage any anxiety that you may feel.
You can also follow along with us on Facebook for helpful videos and infographics related to mental wellness.Learn More
Greetings! These past few weeks have been extremely challenging for all of us and I know it is hard to think about how long this pandemic will impact our community. Miracles Counseling Centers wants to encourage each of you that we will continue to be support the emotional health needs that you will experience as we all continue to adjust to changes in our lives, supports, and resources.
Maintaining mental wellness can be a struggle right now. We may be rapidly trying to adjust our lifestyles, but in doing so we may ignore the emotional toll it is taking on us and our relationships. We are here for you and your families and are now offering Teletherapy sessions to meet you right where you are.
What is Teletherapy?
Teletherapy is a digital platform where you can securely and privately meet with your therapist while on a computer or smart phone. Teletherapy is much like talking with someone on Facetime or Zoom and can feel just as comfortable as meeting someone face to face. Our staff choose HIPAA compliant and secure platforms to meet with you so that your confidentiality remains protected.
Is it as effective as meeting with a therapist in the office?
Yes! Research has compared teletherapy with face to face therapy and has shown that teletherapy is just as effective.
What are the benefits of Teletherapy?
The #1 most obvious benefit of teletherapy is that it can be done anywhere your computer or smartphone is. It saves in gas money, travel time, and can give you access to specialists when you may not otherwise be able to leave your home…such as right now! Utilizing teletherapy can also help prevent other obstacles from interfering with your work on your goals – such as broken down vehicles or out of town business trips.
Does insurance cover Teletherapy?
YES! Due to statewide shutdowns and recommendations from the CDC for social distancing, most insurances are covering teletherapy services, and some are even waiving copays.
Is this even a good time to start therapy?
Therapy can be started easily through secure digital platforms and can give you the support and care you may need during this pandemic. Waiting until the pandemic is over may only further delay your future goals and further complicate the work you may need to do due to the strain you could be going through now.
Reach out to us to connect with therapist that will keep you moving in the right direction!Learn More