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Friday, June 26, 2020

Let Go & Let God

Friday, June 26, 2020 @ 2:35 AM

A Place 4 Me

We often hear people say, “You just need to ‘Let Go and Let God...’”

In our 4-Session Series, we want to Walk With You Through the PROCESS of letting go of baggage that has held you back and kept you from reaching your full potential.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we are offering this series (and our other classes & workshops) for only $49/each session.

These confidential sessions are offered online, at your convenience, by one of our licensed or trained staff.

Now is the time... This is YOUR YEAR to Let Go & Let God!!

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Grief During the Pandemic

Thursday, June 25, 2020 @ 7:18 PM

When people hear the word “grief,” most often their minds go to the loss of a loved one. But really, grieving happens anytime there is the loss of something, not just when there is the loss of someone.

Consider the COVID-19 pandemic. Since early this year people have entered in a “collective grieving” of sorts, due to the extreme changes in our daily routines. Many of us have lost even more than one thing during this time, such as:

• loss of a job
• loss of normalcy and routine
• loss of a sense of stability or safety
• loss of a graduation or celebration
• loss of a loved one

Grieving over any of these situations is real and completely valid, and yet the journey through grief is often messy with many twists and turns.

The Grieving Process

Elizabeth Kubler-Ross first articulated in her book “On Death and Dying” published in 1969, that there are five stages of grief, though other studies and researchers have added to the stages in the decades since her book was first published. Those original five stages are:

1. anger
2. denial
3. depression
4. bargaining
5. acceptance

It would be reassuring, in a strange way, if we could depend on our grief journey to take us through these stages in order, maybe only spending a day or week in each stage. But the thing about grief is that it is not linear and there is no set timetable. And grieving during a pandemic is no different.

In Dr. David Feldman’s article from Psychology Today, he shares this sentiment:

The unfortunate side effect of our society’s erroneous but firm belief in the five stages is that many people wind up criticizing themselves for “not doing grief right.” When people buy into the idea that there’s only one healthy way to grieve, then it’s easy for them to attack themselves when they naturally find that they're doing it differently. This kind of self-criticism never helps anyone.

I often have to remind clients of this truth. One might revisit certain stages more than once or skip some altogether. The important thing is to be patient with yourself, give yourself some grace, a truth even more important if you have had to endure grief and loss during a pandemic like COVID-19.

When it comes to the loss of a loved one this has also been a major change during this pandemic. Under normal circumstances, family and friends might have had an opportunity to say goodbye and support their loved one in their final days, sharing memories, hugs, and the simple ministry of presence. Not so with COVID-19. Only one or two family members may have been allowed to sit with their dying loved one and extreme cases, maybe no one was allowed in (I have heard of families sitting in their cars in hospital parking lots because it’s how they have felt closest to their loved one in the hospital). The usual support network to help with funeral decisions and tending to paperwork and belongings has shrunk as friends and family members may have restrictions on travel or their own health.

Countless families across the globe have come to realize that this difficult process has been made all the more difficult with the pandemic.

Ways to Remember a Loved One

If you have lost a loved one during this time, first let me say I am so sorry for your loss. I know it has not been easy. But even in the midst of quarantine, it is still important to set aside a time or way to remember them, even if you have to embrace non-traditional ways.

Gather some friends or family members and talk through how you can still remember and honor your loved one. The ideas below can be a starting point for you.

1. Set aside a specific time to remember them, even if it’s not a traditional funeral or graveside service.
2. Include others in the remembering. Even if in-person gatherings have to wait, it will be meaningful to include other family members or friends. Perhaps you can record or write down the funny stories or quotes that loved ones shared.
3. Allow yourself to enjoy the things they once did. Can you cook a favorite meal, read a treasured book or poem they loved, or set out quilts they made?
4. Use your creativity to fuel your remembering. Could you incorporate some pictures, a favorite quote, or some small keepsake into a collage or shadow box? Perhaps you could make a pillow out of an old shirt or quilt from their clothing or other linens.

Whatever you choose, these touchstones are helpful in expressing your loss, but also honoring the memory of your loved one, even during a pandemic.

I specialize in Grief Recovery, so if you are struggling to process a loss, please call me and let me walk this journey with you.
Written by Treneé Tunick, LCSW

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Mind, Medications & Mental Disorders: A Spiritual Approach

Wednesday, June 24, 2020 @ 1:51 PM

MedCentre PLLC

Mind, Medications & Mental Disorders: A Spiritual Approach

March 2010 Journal of Christian Nursing: A quarterly publication of Nurses Christian Fellowship 27(2):76-83; quiz 84-5

In mental illness, individuals may choose faith-based counseling as primary treatment, with medical care as a supportive adjunct. Biblical Framework Counseling (BFC) is based on belief of the Bible's sufficiency to address the root causes of mental disorders that are not otherwise physiologically caused. Clients address underlying spiritual issues while medical care and pharmacotherapy (ie. medications) adherence are encouraged to support symptom relief. Consultation between patient, BFC counselor and healthcare clinician is emphasized to optimize outcomes.

Retrieve from:

When all else fails and your own devices aren't sufficient to fill the emptiness reach out.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020 @ 11:11 AM

Evelyn Leite, MHRLPC has thirty plus years of experience working with chemical dependency and mental health. She is also a Spiritual Director, teacher and trainer for accredited college programs, formerly presenting classes for Oklahoma University in Norman, OK and Oglala Lakota College in Rapid City, SD. Also an adjunct counselor and consultant to an addictions and codependency treatment center in Port Hueneme CA. She worked for several years for Keystone Treatment Center in Sioux Falls, SD and is published by Hazelden Publications and Treatment Centers. She is the developer of several training programs in Codependency, Grief, Suicide Prevention, Conflict Resolution, PTSD and developed the well known Family Restoration Program. She offers nationwide workshops and spiritual strength in the face of crisis.
Everyone connected with an addicted family member or employee needs hope, help and encouragement. Life with an addict is an emotional rollercoaster when a debilitating addiction such as alcohol, drugs, gambling, eating or other is controlling the home or business. Conflicting feelings of confusion, guilt, shame, self-blame, fear, and anger are the rule and love does not conquer all. You want to help and you don’t know how so you try little bit of everything. Just when you think you are getting somewhere everything falls apart. Your frustration leads to debilitating stress that takes a toll on your health. Often addiction is accompanied by physical abuse, neglect of duties, and/or mental illness which makes the situation feel more impossible. Help is available and starts with the correct information.
Evelyn has been inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame.
Evelyn is currently enrolled in the John Maxwell Certification Program.
Evelyn has many award winning books:

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Adversity Is

Thursday, June 18, 2020 @ 7:30 PM

“Adversity is never pleasant, but sometimes it’s possible to learn from it that can be learned in no other way. In adversity, a man can become very well acquainted with himself because he is free from admirers.”
E. C. McKenzie

In 2 Corinthians 12:7, the Apostle Paul writes, “And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.” Paul understood the reason for the thorn in his flesh; in contrast, we often find ourselves going to extremes to understand our dilemmas, and not only to understand but to control. Let us be encouraged as we journey through unknown territory that this, too shall pass. From this day forward, we will experience a new life, a new normal, a new hope, and a new humanity.

Rev. Lewis Temple, III, M.Div,

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Changes That Lead And Grow

Thursday, June 11, 2020 @ 2:22 AM

Everyone of us comes to work with baggage and a need to grow and develop. We symbolically bring in our family of origin to the workplace. We’re human! Few of us have our act totally together when we start a new job. While work is not therapy and it should not be, it can be a powerful catalyst to help us develop in and out of our roles at the job. Many have read Changes That Heal by Henry Cloud, Ph.D. Here I look at the book as a leadership tool to help develop ourselves and our people and maybe give them an opportunity to make changes that heal and grow.

Time is what you need to wait for people to manifest the behavior of learning the job. An illustration of this is when a scientist teaches a lab animal a trick that they know it should be able to do, it is actually learning but maybe not showing its learning. The next morning they come in and run the experiment and the animal does it like it's known the behavior all its life. This is manifest learning as opposed to what was happening before which was latent learning which you can't see.

Grace is the second part of the equation where you allow people to make mistakes and give them grace as they need it to learn the new job or action. Handling this right helps them make good sense of their learning experiences.

Truth is where we begin to have a little bit more firmness in that we hold them accountable to certain standards that they need to perform the job well. We evaluate their performance (but not judge them as people) after raising expectations.

Next Henry talks about bonding and bonding is important in the workplace because it gives people a sense of belonging and connection as well as meaning. Without good bonding in a workplace people will not feel like they are part of a team or that they belong. Research indicates this bonding for staff is even more important than pay. Although good bonding needs to be established well outside the workplace, it is still important so that people learn to trust their leaders and fellow staff.

Next are boundaries which are very important to establish in leadership so that you can define roles and expectations. Henry has a whole book written about this subject called Boundaries And Leaders. Defining Vision, Mission and Goals are other parts a boundaries in leadership. While boundaries are not walls, they help our staff and ourselves define our responsibilities, what is and is not in our bailiwicks as well as keeping people challenged without overwhelming them.

The next part of the book talks about sorting out the bad and good in ourselves and others. We want to get away from black or white thinking. This is important in leadership because we want to be able discern between a bad action or attitude and the actual person. Judging a person from an all bad-all good perspective is counterproductive. The leader that sees a person as all good will be blind to their problem areas and not hold them accountable. The leader that sees a person as all bad will judge the person and not see their good parts or their talents or assets. It is also important to be careful of the ideal other or self as well as the despised other or self. These four positions can distort our thinking and lead us to expectations and or judgements that benefit no one.

Further on the book deals with maturing into adulthood. Within the rules and structure of the workplace, both the leaders and the staff must rise to the level of maturity and beyond to be able to be effective in their tasks and relationships. This on one hand requires respect and appropriate working together with leaders. On the other hand, it also means that we must not be in a complete one down one up relationship with our authorities or our staff at work. To put it simply, it means that we are to require respect from others as well as to make sure that we respect them.

It’s also important to learn to work from the spirit of the law (or rules) rather than the letter of the law. Understanding the principle or values behind the law allows leaders and staff to operate as adults and not of either compulsion or impulse.

Some leaders see themselves as one up and believe they have absolute authority over all things and that they don’t have to respect anybody. It is not uncommon for these leaders to be failing in some way. For other leaders they still feel like they are one down with people, even their own staff. This is where it is important to work on our personal bonding so we can grow up to a role that we are called to. Bonding gives us a “launching pad” with which we can form our boundaries.

As part of this growth and maturity it’s important that we disagree sometimes with the first leaders that we ever met (i.e. our parents). And likewise, it’s important that your staff and peers can appropriately disagree with you. It is also important to recognize and pursue our talents and abilities as well as our creative instincts so as to find the right role in our leadership and help others do the same. Maybe you're a creative boss or perhaps maybe you're a boss that's very good about sticking to facts and figures. So, it's important to expand these gifts while at the same time finding people who can help you with the areas you're not so strong in.

Changes That Heal For Leadership was not a book Henry necessarily intended but do understand that the real book originated as part of a project to stop burn out in a campus ministry. With that said it can do much to help us develop us as leaders and help us develop our staff. Reach out if you need help with these stages with yourself and or your team.