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Sunday, June 19, 2022

Father Wound, Father Blessing 1

Sunday, June 19, 2022 @ 3:02 AM

How does dad’s interaction with mom makes the difference?
We are born symbiotic with our mother. and at about two years old we learn the word no. This is our first attempt at individuation. Then around five years old dad is, hopefully, there to reach into our life and take us out of orbit around mom and bridge us into the world. He then puts the fire in our belly and or the lion in our heart. Dad also helps us learn to love two people at the same time. This process also helps us have boundaries, lead and not shrink back from challenges in the world. It helps us have appropriate aggression
Identity and self-esteem: how dad contributes to these important building blocks.
Our self-esteem comes from our opposite gender parent and our identity comes from our same gender parent. that self-esteem or identity is enhanced or shut down by what our parents say about each other and about themselves. this can happen either implicitly or explicitly.
Four Roles of fathers and how it relates to our developmental stages and can give us great blessings
Nurturer: This role is of primary importance to the child between birth and age five.
Law Giver: This role is of primary importance to the child between the ages of six and twelve.
Warrior/Protector: The role is of primary importance to the child between the ages of twelve and eighteen.
Spiritual Mentor: This role is of primary importance to the older child as he or she moves into adulthood.

See Making Peace With Your Father by David Stoop, Ph.D.



See Making Peace With Your Father by David Stoop, Ph.D.

Thursday, May 26, 2022

What is Christian Counselling?

Thursday, May 26, 2022 @ 11:59 PM

What is Christian Counselling?


You may have a faith background and are interested in understanding what Christian counselling is. This article introduces what Christian Counselling is and how it may be different from other aspects of your faith journey.


What is Christian Counselling?

Christian counselling, or faith-based counselling, supports you, the client, to better understand who you are, focusing more intently on the emotional/psychological part of your Christian transformation.

Typically, Christian counselling supports the client in working though some form of mental health struggle with a focus: 25 Signs You May Benefit From a ‘Mental Health Checkup’
It’s centred around Christ’s love for us
Christian counselling is Christ-focused. The counsellor looks to support you through the lens of Jesus’s love. Jesus was one of the greatest demonstrators of unconditional love and that is how our Christian Counsellors look to model their sessions and the discussions.

Christian Counselling focuses on the psychological/emotional aspects of who we are
Many times, our traditional Christian experience focuses solely on theological understanding and/or spiritual and faith development. This can, at times, leave us undeveloped in the area of psychological/ emotional maturity.

Imagine a body builder who only works out one arm or one leg and how lopsided they would look; That is a great analogy for those of us that overly prioritize theological/spiritual development over our psychological maturing. This can also lead to bad habits such as legalism and hyper-spiritualization.

Christian Counsellors/ Psychologists are professionally trained:

Just like how a doctor is trained to recognize concerns, then diagnose and then support; counsellors/psychologists are professionally trained and accredited to support your mental health journey in a similar fashion.

One of the greatest ways this is evident is how counsellors are trained to look past their own personal bias and feelings so they can have clear insight into a client’s situation. Additionally, they are trained in many proven psychological treatment systems to support psychological growth and healing.

It’s safe, loving and accepting:

Christian counselling is safe, loving and accepting! Christian counselling is a non-judgemental space where the individual can dig into deep, and sensitive topics that the individual, would otherwise not feel comfortable talking about.

It is not a bible study or church service:

Christian counselling is dynamically different from our typical Christian experience (bible studies, life groups, church services, bible school, summer camps, etc.):

The key difference, is that you, the client, are not a spectator, you are an active participant in the conversation. In fact, the person who will be chatting the most and expressing feelings is you, not the counsellor. The counsellor is there to help you explore your emotions and feelings, and support your journey to psychological wellness.

It’s Confidential:

Legally, ethically and practically, the counsellor is required to keep the contents of the conversation completely confidential*. This supports building safety and trust to know that, not only are you valued and supported, but your comments are kept safe and private.

*Legally, there are certain topics that will require the counsellor to notify some levels of local authorities. Please feel free to discuss this with your counsellor.

Take Action: Connect with a Christian Counsellor

Are you interested in connecting with a counsellor now? Check out our counsellors’ page to watch videos and read their bios.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

The Power of Hope

Saturday, May 21, 2022 @ 9:32 AM

Join Elisha's Space as we speak with mental health advocate and motivational speaker Chris Massey. He shares his story of how having hope helped him in a difficult time in his life.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

The Un-Mom Factor: For Moms And Other Executives

Tuesday, May 10, 2022 @ 11:21 PM

With Mother’s Day behind us, I thought this could help moms or other leaders in charge of an organization. Whether you are a domestic engineer (mom) or CEO of a corporation you can learn about leadership by flipping The Mom Factor on it’s head. This book by Henry Cloud and John Townsend listed six different areas that can be problematic for mothers. By looking at the opposite of these characteristics you can find good ways for moms and other leaders to act towards their charges that can really make a difference.

1 Be present but not intrusive,
2 Be stable and be able to take problems and crisis in stride.
3 Know where your staff (or kids) are developmentally (See Blanchard’s Situational Leadership)
4 Be able to lift up your staff and help them be the best employee that can be for them.
5 Realize when an person needs to have more independence from you.
6 Allow an individual under you to experience natural consequences of both their good and irresponsible behavior.

Need help making this happen? Reach out and get feed back about how you lead (or parent). We’re here to help.

Friday, May 6, 2022

The Thought

Friday, May 6, 2022 @ 12:37 PM

Dr Corey Boren

Have you ever said or heard the expression “Stop and think before you think” or tell your children who was in time out to “think” about what they did? Every day all day long. At some point in our busy day, we are thinking of something. Thinking of what we want to eat, what is for dinner, did you turn the coffee pot off when you left, so on and so forth. But what is a thought? A thought is developed from feelings. How we feel about someone, or something will govern how we think. Feelings are just that. Feeling, they are neither right nor wrong, they are personal. They can make us happy. sad, fearful, excited. Upset or even angry at someone or a situation that has happened. What ever or how ever we are feeling governs our thoughts. Our thoughts can be positive or negative, depending on how we are feeling in that moment. If we sit with our feelings just for a brief moment, we can recognize how we feel therefore we can change how we are thinking. We can change a negative thought into a positive thought. In doing so, when we change our thought, we can change our decisions and choices we make there for we can change our actions. We can turn something that is potentially negative and make it a positive action. All by simply being still for a brief moment to sit with how we feel so we can change our thoughts.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Understanding vs Excusing Behaviors in Relationships and Conflicts

Wednesday, April 20, 2022 @ 2:00 PM

I've worked in the field of Mental Health Counseling for over eleven years and here is some of what I've learned regarding how we handle conflicts: How well or appropriately we are able to respond to the behaviors of others, draw boundaries and practice self care says a lot about our Emotional Intelligence (EQ), self esteem, self worth, personal identity and overall interpersonal effectiveness.

All too often when interacting with others we may be quick to judge a behavior, or on the other end of the extreme, we may be quick to excuse it away. Both can be equally destructive responses to those with whom we come in contact with. We often land on either of these extremes based on our own emotional overload, unresolved issues, negative thinking, or cognitive distortions. This is why its dangerous to react to another's behavior before examining our own emotions, thoughts and potential biases about what's happening.

Admittedly, there are exceptions to this rule. One determining factor that I like to use is, Safety. Safety includes protecting oneself or others from life threatening circumstances. In these instances, we would be remised not to take swift actions, quickly judging a behavior, in order to react in a way that keeps us safe.

Of course in this day and age we must be careful when using safety to make this distinction. There are currently to many cases where this determiner has been used as well as misused by powerful external forces to exact broad over reaching control on, and over, large masses and populations of people. This has been done with the claims to be in the best interest of public health and safety while stealing and ridding individuals of their inalienable rights. The former would be referring to a macro misuse of how such forces have dealt with and approached what has been deemed as life threatening, dangerous or risky behaviors. For the sake of this article, I am referring to individuals who are affected on a micro level as in interpersonal relationships.

For us as individuals, (outside of safety concerns) before we can either judge or excuse a behavior we must seek to understand it. Once we have done an thorough assessment (both long-term self work as well as briefly in the moment) of our own internal world, we then will stand in a powerful position to seek to understand another's corresponding behavior.

Before we can understand their behavior we must first acknowledge it, describing it in an objective, calm. rational, balanced way. We may only embark on this endeavor once we have properly addressed our own emotions, thoughts and biases using our EQ Skills. By unemotionally observing, accurately describing and properly labeling what actions we see, we help defuse the emotional charge that is often misappropriated towards said behaviors.

Ultimately, its not about their behavior but our reaction to them that prevents this required, needed process. Unfortunately, we may miss our chance to objectively observe and describe, when we overcloud and over look their behaviors with our own gross over reactions which prevent it. When we aren't Emotionally Intelligent we deny the other party, as well as ourselves, the opportunity to learn and grow from these experiences.

It's also important and worth noting that we need to clearly decipher and differentiate between thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Seems simple enough, but try explaining the difference between concepts such as "anger" and "aggression," "crying" vs "sadness" or "happiness" vs "laughter." If you ever have or requested others too, you would understand the dilemma. However in order to proceed there can be no ambiguity in the matter. We must be clear that one category represents actions and the other feelings.

Once we accurately describe and label the observable behavior, we then have a few choices. We can either examine it on our own to better understand it. This may involve a type of grope in the dark of the "why's." We also on the other hand could examine it in a way that helps us determine our next steps. Our next steps may be to accept, overlook, ignore it or confront it with the party involved addressing it head on.

It should be noted that "overlooking," is often seen in many of those with "Self Sacrificing Schemas" described in the Other Directness category found in my Schema Therapy Course. It can also be identified in what's known as the Subjugation Schema. Either Schemas may result in deep seated anger, resentment and even health issues. No doubt the result of not confronting, identifying, expressing or addressing personal wants, needs, desires or feelings in emotionally healthy ways.

On the other hand we may choose to present (where safe to do so) our observations to the other party. Here, our decision would be to confront it, giving the other party the chance and opportunity to help us make sense of it. In this step of the process we may want to share (using "I" statements) how the behavior has affected us.

We could then decide if we need to draw a boundary around that behavior in order to stay safe or hold the person accountable. Drawing boundaries however isn't about controlling others. Boundaries are about loving, respecting, and honoring ourselves. Boundaries are about controlling ourselves, our own actions, our movements, and our willingness to receive or ingest what is being offered or submitted towards us, (including our emotions, mental cognitions/processes, energy, time, personal space, bodies, dwelling space, money, possessions or belongings). In fact, we must avoid all attempts at controlling the behaviors of others. We must understand that we only control ourselves. We must hold others accountable to control themselves.

In some instances (where its safe to do so), we can help and assist others in controlling their own behaviors by having open honest effective communications and dialogue as well as putting proper boundaries (in some instances consequences) in place. When doing so we must be absolutely sure to follow through on them.

However, because so many of us avoid, hate confrontation, or worse, its not safe, we often rob others and ourselves of the potential growth and development opportunities that could happen within us supportively challenging their negative behaviors. We also rob ourselves of potential valuable relationship strengthening, building and connection experiences when we work together to resolve impasses. At the very least or even best we may miss an opportunity to untangle and free ourselves, while escaping toxic situations.

Long story short, EQ and the related skills presented in my Emotional Intelligence Course will help and acts as a starting place to accomplish our Interpersonal Relationship Goals. If you are interested in learning more about how to successfully learn and practice these skills go to https://linktr.ee/epiphanytanya and click on courses.

Thank you for reading. Send me a message to share your thoughts. I look forward to hearing of and seeing your work in this area.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

It's a Virtual Women's Retreat!

Wednesday, April 13, 2022 @ 10:34 PM

Are you looking forward to being renewed? Are you seeking a life changing experience? Guess what?
You are invited!

It's a Virtual Women's Retreat: Renew You in 2022!

I hope to see you there!

Friday, April 8, 2022

Upcoming weekly podcasts

Friday, April 8, 2022 @ 7:44 AM

Stay tuned for upcoming podcasts concerning topics ranging from Mental Health to Parenting tips. Guest speakers will include therapists, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, and Pastors. Podcasts will be available on Facebook, Youtube, and http://RejuvenationHouse.com

Support Group: Women Surviving Toxic Mothers

Friday, April 8, 2022 @ 12:44 AM

This support Group is for Women Surviving toxic Mothers. This group will be a 6 week support group to teach skills on forgiveness, self-love, worth, value, and creating a space of healing. The foundation of this group is based on Christian and Biblical principles to guide each woman through their journey of healing.

There are 10 spots available. Register by April 30, 2022 by emailing contact@bitofhopehealing.com or by calling the practice at (770)765-5602

Monday, April 4, 2022

The Troubled Leader: Seven Keys To Leadership Renewal

Monday, April 4, 2022 @ 9:45 PM

You're burned out, mad, tired and thinking about becoming a short-order cook. Is this your life as a leader? Parents, pastors, and all leaders get frazzled at some point. Here's a way to find renewal. (Based on The Seven Keys To Spiritual Renewal)

The Troubled Leader: Seven Keys To Leadership Renewal
1. Surrender. Seek out God and safe others and surrender to them by being vulnerable about what you're struggling with as a leader.
2. Acceptance. See the truth about who you are and your difficulties as a leader and a person. Asking for honest feedback is an important part of this process.
3. Confession. Speaking the truth about what you're struggling with to trusted others and going to God and asking him to help make a fearless inventory is a key to finding healing and growth.
4. Ownership. Taking responsibility for your part in whatever trouble you're having is a leader is another key to turning things around. Not that you're responsible for people but you are responsible to people no matter what type of stakeholder they are.
5. Forgiveness. Forgiving others, forgiving yourself, grieving and letting go are important steps again for moving forward. Forgiving is merely cancelling debt and it does not mean trusting and it comes before the feeling of forgiveness.
6. Transformation. This is where we really start to work on ourselves and our character as a leader. Here we go to God and others and begin to look at how we can make real changes.
7. Preservation. Staying at it or persistence is key to this step. Preserving the new changes you've made by consistently practicing the other steps will keep you on the road to recovery. Remember that recovery is not a destination: it's a journey.

Friday, April 1, 2022

New Beginnings: Biblical Framework considerations for coping with Bipolar Disorder

Friday, April 1, 2022 @ 12:27 PM

MedCentre PLLC

Bipolar Disorder is the term for a set mental health conditions as defined in the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition).

Common bipolar symptoms, of which 3 or more are present representing a significant change from usual behavior in frequency and/or intensity, and impacting activities of daily living or relationships:
• Inflated self-esteem or grandiosity
• Decreased need for sleep
• Increased talkativeness
• Racing thoughts
• Distracted easily
• Increase in goal-directed activity or psychomotor agitation
• Engaging in activities that can result in detrimental outcomes (eg. shopping spree, promiscuity)


From a Biblical Framework standpoint, common bipolar symptoms as described by DSM-5 would be categorized as follows:
• Lack of Love (LOL) towards God and others (e.g. unloving attitudes, words and behaviors such as unforgiveness, irritability, hostile comments, anger, aggression or assaultiveness, unnecessary risk taking, recklessness, sexual immorality, unethical practices, etc.)
• Guilt (eg. insomnia or decreased need for sleep, fear of judgment, lack of peace, etc.)
• Apparently Uncaused (AU) Fear (e.g. anxiety, insomnia, racing thoughts, pressured speech, increased talkativeness, flight of ideas, lack of peace, psychomotor agitation, restlessness, etc.)
• AU Fleeing (e.g. inflated self-esteem or grandiose thoughts, reckless or excessive involvement in pleasurable activities, behaviors, substance use, extravagant purchases, distractibility, etc.)


Examples of Treatment options for Bipolar Disorder include:
• Lifestyle Interventions: Adequate Exercise, Nutrition (e.g. Mediterranean diet), Sleep, Stress Reduction
• Psychotherapy/Psycho-Educational Programs: (e.g. Individual or Group therapy, Counseling, etc.)
• Pharmacotherapy (Medications): Help to alleviate the bad feelings, provide symptom management. Some examples are Lithium, Valproate, Aripiprazole, Risperidone, Olanzapine, Ziprasidone, Olanzapine-Fluoxetine combination, Quetiapine, Lurasidone, etc… depending on whether one is treating an acute episode or follow-up maintenance, if the most recent episode being treated is described as acute manic, depressive, or mixed, as per expert consensus guidelines and health provider findings and impressions, among other considerations (e.g. additional symptom features, comorbid conditions, seasonal onset, pregnancy/immediate post-delivery onset, etc…).
• BFC (Biblical Framework Coaching/Counseling): Help to mature in Christ, grow in His Word, bathe the mind with the truth of the forgiveness one has in Jesus Christ, be continually filled with God’s spirit, become a channel of His love back to God and to others (Thomson, 2012).
• Bright-light Therapy
• ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy)
• Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS)


For more in-depth discussions on this topic, please schedule to join one of our:

“Beh-Best” Ladies Mental Health Peer Group 2-Day-2-Session “Deep Chat” groups of 10-12 ladies for an in-depth 90-minute chat session on each day. There is a modest cost that will reap great benefits if you or your loved ones have ever grappled with bipolar disorder, divorce, domestic abuse, or similar kinds of mood disorders and/or life traumas.

Contact me at medgal8@gmail.com or DM me at medgal, check out our FB group at bit.ly/behbest

Thursday, March 31, 2022

Conflict and Repair for Couples According to Star Trek

Thursday, March 31, 2022 @ 12:07 PM

All relationships, even the best ones, have conflict. Couples can be encouraged that it is not the absence of conflict which predicts a healthy relationship, but how that conflict is consistently managed that can indicate relationship longevity and mastery. When it comes to couples counselling, conflict provides helpful opportunities for growth and evaluation as you and your partner learn to manage conflict in a healthy way. If you feel like your relationship stumbles into problematic conflict on regular basis, this article will help you identify four unhelpful patterns of conflict and their cure utilizing imagery that will stick in your memory banks for when it matters most.

Dr. John Gottman coined four predictors of relational unhealth and poor relationship conflict as the Four Horsemen: criticism, contempt, defensiveness, and stonewalling (Lisitsa, 2013). The presence of one or more of these horsemen within conflict serve to gradually erode relationships that could be made stronger through meaningful conflict resolution and repair. So, how do we watch for these predictors and, more importantly, manage them when they arise? Think of Star Trek. Yes, Start Trek – it may provide a fun adaptation to these predictors and their solutions to help you move forward in successful conflict repair.

Deactivate Weapons:

Criticism is emotional weaponry and it signals that you are ready for a fight, and couples need to disarm to manage conflict. Coming into a difficult or emotionally charged conversation with an aggressive tone or statement is like locking your missiles on the target and being surprised when your partner fires back. Instead, by utilizing a soft start up and gentle tone invites your partner to match your tone when engaging in difficult conversations.

Peaceful Exploration ("I come in peace"):

Okay, this one is a bit of stretch, but consider the mission of the Starfleet exhibited in nearly every episode - exploration and discovery (“to boldly go where no man has gone before”). Admittedly, if you prefer lots of explosions and action sequences, Star Trek may not have been the show for you. However, having contempt (or a sense that your partner has nothing valuable to bring to the table) is among the highest predictors for divorce. Contempt shuts things down through mockery and a demeaning attitude towards one’s partner.

Contempt assumes the worst of one’s partner and tears down little by little, but an attitude of peaceful exploration helps promote respect and provide opportunities to express appreciation. Begin looking for the many and little ways you can express gratitude and appreciation to amass a bank account of respect for one-another instead of running into emotional overdraft brought about by contempt.

Shields Down:

In conflict, we can be quick to put our shields up. Any action of defensiveness means that we anticipate an attack and demonstrates an inability to take responsibility for one’s actions and conveys blame. Shields deflect and treat our partner’s well-meaning attempts of repair as unwelcome.

This posture, however, is understanding if one’s partner is being overly critical or attacking but, ultimately, supports a cycle of unhealthy conflict. In keeping with our analogy, it is understandable to have shields up when our partner enters a conflict with weapons locked and firing, but when this is not the case it is necessary to acknowledge there is no benefit to this posture in trying to promote healthy conflict. In keeping shields down, one is invited to accept responsibility for their words and behaviours and receive their partner’s perspective in a conflict.

Hailing frequencies open:

This refers to the open lines of communication between two groups – it serves as Star Trek’s equivalent of answering your phone. Stonewalling refers to an unwillingness to receive a partner’s influence. This is when someone shuts someone else out. It may mean that person is emotionally overwhelmed and needs to take a break. That’s okay but, eventually, lines of healthy communication need to reopen. When hailing frequencies are down, no messages are being received or responded to whatsoever.

This sort of behaviour conveys avoidance and may escalate conflict as well. We avoid when we want to escape an uncomfortable situation. So what do we do? The remedy is to engage in self-soothing, calming, exercises individually and re-open hailing frequencies for communication when you are ready. Take a break. Read a book or go for a walk. Breathe. Re-engage when you are calm and ready to implement the tools listed above.

Summary:

Conflict is an unavoidable part of relationships that provides opportunity for couples to grow closer together and promote understanding. If you are feeling stuck in some of these patterns of conflict in your relationship, it may be beneficial to meet with a counsellor Calgary to practice and enhance the skills needed to promote healthy conflict resolution in your relationship.

Lisistsa, E. (2013). The Four Horsemen: Criticism, Contempt, Defensiveness, and Stonewalling. The Gottman Institute. https://www.gottman.com/blog/the-four-horsemen-recognizing-criticism-contempt-defensiveness-and-stonewalling/

Renewing Your Mind: How to Break Through Cycles of Stress and Anxiety and Start Living The Life You Deserve

Thursday, March 31, 2022 @ 10:19 AM

Learn the tools and tips needed to renew your mind in Paulishia's best seller! Renewing Your Mind is dedicated to anyone who has struggled with feeling overwhelmed in their everyday life. Those who wake up every day with new challenges that never seem to end. These challenges include but are not limited to struggling with finances, parenting, marriage, family, or simply your next step in life.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Coping with Grief Through Christian Counseling

Wednesday, March 23, 2022 @ 2:15 PM

Anne Hedelius LCPC

Life often showers us with wonderful blessings in the form of family, good friends, and joyous fun! But at some point in our lives, most of us will also be affected by loss and grief. During these times, it can be immensely helpful to receive help and guidance from a trained and trusted therapist.

But there are many Christians who wonder and worry if working with a therapist will somehow go against their religious beliefs, or if the therapist will eschew those beliefs. This is never a concern when working with a Christian counselor.

Christian counselors understand firsthand that when dealing with the loss of a loved one, a job loss, divorce, or a health crisis, a strong and resilient faith is the VERY THING that can get you through the darkness and back into the light.

What is Christian Counseling Exactly?

Christian counseling combines an individual’s faith with the traditional principles of psychology, with the ultimate goal of improving the individual’s mental health and interpersonal relationships. Christian counselors often use scripture and biblical teachings to help their clients deal with the challenges they are facing.

What are the Main Differences Between Christian Counseling and Secular Counseling?

Perhaps one of the biggest differences between the two types of counseling is that Christian counselors, in addition to mainstream cognitive behavioral therapy techniques, use a wide variety of tools and resources such as prayer, bible study, and affirmations to help their clients deal with grief.

Christian counselors also take more of a holistic approach to mental health, understanding that your spiritual health is directly linked to your mental health and emotional well-being.

And, while secular therapy may focus on the “problem” you are facing, Christian counseling focuses on your relationship with God.

If you or someone you know is suffering from grief and would like to work with a Christian counselor, please be in touch with me.

SOURCES:

https://www.ccu.edu/blogs/cags/2010/11/christian-counseling-vs-secular-counseling/
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/in-therapy/201111/the-varieties-religious-therapy-christian-psychology

Monday, March 21, 2022

Sherri-wise Counseling

Monday, March 21, 2022 @ 10:51 PM

This My love Journey journal & planner; will keep you on your journey or path to wellness and wholeness.
This is a life-motivating tool for anyone to access. This planner & journal are real life-changing strategies.

Sunday, March 6, 2022

How Does Anxiety Affect Brain Fog?

Sunday, March 6, 2022 @ 9:19 PM

Are you forgetting tasks that you must complete?

Is it taking longer than usual for you to complete simple tasks?

Are you frequently distracted?

Are you feeling more tired than usual when working?

What Is Brain Fog?
Brain fog or mental fatigue is a term used when you may not be as mentally sharp as usual. Your thoughts and emotions may feel numb and everyday activities may seem to require more effort. Your thinking is slowed down and how you process information is not the same. You feel like you are not as sharp as you used to be or feel like you are off your game. You’re not sure how to correct it.

Brain fog happens when a person feels anxious and has difficulty concentrating or thinking clearly. It is normal to experience occasional brain fog and anxiety, especially during high times of stress.
The maze of various symptoms you may be experiencing can be different for someone else. This term can be used to describe a range of symptoms. Your symptoms of the brain can include:

• Feeling spacy or confused
• Low energy
• Thinking slower than usual
• Headaches
• You are having difficulty organizing your thoughts or activities
• Losing your train of thought
• Forgetting daily tasks
• Having difficulty finding the right words to put together in a sentence
• Difficulty concentrating
• Insomnia
• Emotional detachment

As a result of experiencing these various symptoms, you may feel like the circumstances and situations you are dealing with make you powerless, irritable, and downcast. These challenges can affect daily life.

What Conditions Causes Anxiety and Brain Fog?

Many conditions cause anxiety and brain fog. The effect of anxiety on various tasks and brain fog may depend on the specific task a person is doing. Anxiety may undermine a person’s thought process, intensifying brain fog. The tasks a person must perform may trigger further anxious thoughts. This can lead to depression, anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Without an outlet, wrestling with anxiety can be mentally exhausting and brain fog can accompany cognitive fatigue.
Stress can exhaust the brain, especially if it is prolonged stress. When your mind is tired, thinking, reasoning, and focusing becomes difficult. Chronic stress can increase blood pressure, weaken your immune system, encourage low-grade inflammation, and trigger depression.

Even the perception of having symptoms of mental fatigue can trigger symptoms of brain fog. Thus, making the struggle with anxiety and stress even more difficult. While there can be serious medical conditions that underlie brain fog, the effects of stress and sleeplessness can bring it on as well. If not reigned in, anxiety can take over the brain, bathing it in stress hormones and exhausting it.

How Can I Overcome This?

Get enough sleep. When we rest, the brain and body clear out the unhealthy toxins that can contribute to brain fog. When we don’t get enough sleep, a certain amount of toxins is left in the brain increasing our risk of brain fog.

Avoid multitasking. Trying to do more than one task at a time drains energy and decreases productivity.

Find the source of your anxiety. Identify and gain clarity as to what is causing the anxiety. Create a plan of what you can control and focus on those issues.

Have fun. Brain fog is a result of mental exhaustion. Doing something that you enjoy creates a mental result and can replenish you when feeling tired.

Talk to a counselor. Talking with a professional can help to give coping skills as well as strategies to assist you in living a calmer lifestyle.

Get help today. Call 443-860-6870 to schedule an appointment.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

10 Tips to Become a Great Active Listener

Tuesday, May 10, 2022 @ 8:45 AM

Have you ever been deeply engaged in conversation with someone, but fully lost the moment when the phone rang? Has an incoming text message pulled away your attention? Even worse, you remain undistracted, but manage to not hear, or even totally miss, what your spouse, boss, coworker, or friend said? We call that “passive” listening. Your ears may have registered the sounds and your mind processed the words as intelligible and distinguishable English words, but it barely impacted you.

Full participation in conversation requires patience and perseverance – not only to say what is right, but also to carefully listen, actively participate, and truly hear, and clearly understand what is being said. Whether a professional counselling situation, a business meeting, a job interview, or simply paying attention to your neighbor describing his weekend adventure, each requires careful, active listening. I practice the techniques of active listening daily in my professional life, my relationships, my work teams, or any context that benefits from better communication.

For those not familiar with active listening, let me offer a quick overview. Active listening is a core skill from the skill set of counsellors, psychologists, social workers, and others in the “helping” profession. The following insights provide a great resource for individuals wanting to carefully listen and understand others. It includes the following skills:

Tip 1: Mirroring
Do not just listen. Repeat back what has been said so you are sure you understood clearly. “Did I understand you to say...”

Tip 2: Summarizing
Repeat back the major points you just heard. “So, I think you just said these four points...”

Tip 3: Agreement
Offer back prompts that show you are listening. “Uh-huh... yeah...and then what happened next?” These comments are doubly effective when accompanied by nodding.

Tip 4: Interactive Feedback
Share your responses and evaluations. “Was that shocking for you when that happened?” “I don’t think that seems fair...”

Tip 5: Emotional Reflection
Help them communicate with you by putting feeling labels on what they are saying. “Did that make you feel happy? Energized? Fulfilled? It sounds like maybe that was offensive, hurtful, or bothersome to you? Did that anger you?”

Tip 6: Affirmation
Let the one communicating feel safe and validated in sharing their heart. “Thanks for sharing that with me. That was courageous of you to discuss that openly.”

Tip 7: Non-comparative Comments
Rather than rushing into your story by way of contrast or comparison, just keep listening and asking more questions. “Wow. Tell me more. Is there anything else about this?”

Tip 8: No Pat Answers
Your friends and family are not looking for a brush off or “quick fix” answer.

Avoid saying, “It’ll be alright, it’s all gonna work out, why stress? Don’t worry.” Cliché answers will not help.

Tip 9: Non-interruptive Dialogue
Your long pause tells the other person that you are interested, caring, and willing to hear more.

Tip 10: Non-verbal Listening Techniques
ƒ- Turn off, silence, or put away your phone
ƒ- Turn off the TV and minimize other background noise or distraction
- Literally, lean towards the one who is talking.
- ƒMake eye contact
ƒ- Let your face mirror what the person is saying (disgust, joy, disappointment)
- Nod in agreement when appropriate
- ƒAppropriate touching with family or dear friends can be thoughtful. For example, taking and holding their hand, patting, or holding the forearm, or shoulder shows tenderness for someone who is upset

Once you have actively listened, you will hear “highlighted” words or phrases that can be very significant to the conversation. Such words are emphasized, repeated, or they just stand out. When your friends and family members feel safe in talking to you because you genuinely listen and care, it is astounding what will come up to the surface – whether they are trying to share deep thoughts and ideas, or not. As you dig into the highlighted words, communication moves from shallow, passive interaction to deeper, more meaningful discussion.

(This excerpt is taken from "Could Questions Be the Answer?" - by Dr. Randy Johnson)

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

How to welcome God into your counselling experience

Tuesday, March 1, 2022 @ 5:08 PM

As faith individuals, we believe that God wants to play a key and tangible role in our counselling experience and emotional wellness journey Why? Because He loves us and wants to see us thrive and become all that he has destined for our us.

So understanding this, what are ways that we can intentionally involve God in our counselling experience?

#1: Create space for God

Many of us run at 1,000 miles an hour, not leaving anytime for our own thoughts, let alone giving space for the Lord to speak. It’s not in God’s nature to be abrupt, loud and competitve for our attention; he communicates typically in the still and quiet, when we create space for him (see 1 Kings 19:11-13).

So how can we do this?

Firstly, set aside time independent of distraction, noise and other sensory stimuli to reflect on what God has to say. This may take patience and require practice in hearing the voice of God. Ask God questions that may have been developed out of a recent counselling session:
* “In the last counselling session when we talked about a speicifc experience, what beliefs (or lies) did I believe about myself?”
* “God, what is the truth of the situation?”
* “God, where do I need to adjust my thinking? or where do I need to allow you to work in my heart”

Don’t be afraid if you don’t hear anything right away. Even simply just the act of giving space and asking these questions is going to help you become more self-aware of your thoughts and how you respond to these questions. This may lead to further discussion topics in future counselling sessions.

#2: Prayer

Prayer is a powerful tool for welcoming God into your counselling experience. Depending on your style of prayer, you may find that it stimulates and supports you identifying areas that you are stuggling with. Additionally, meditative, self-reflective styled prayer can create space for God to speak to you (as discussed in point #1).

Prayer is a powerful tool in breaking down mental barriers or blocks (sometimes referred to as strongholds). Try not to under-estimate the power of prayer, and consistent prayer for that matter.

#3: Review (or meditation) of scripture

Many times we are receiving counselling support because of belief systems or identities that we have accepted over ourselves (e.g. “I have no value”, and “as such I am depressed which is why I am in counselling”). Meditating on the Word of the Lord can help us to understand who we are in Christ and the true value that we hold. Doing this in parrallel to counselling is like a double-whammy to negative beliefs.

Summary

God wants to meet you where you are at and support your counselling experience to make it as effective and life-giving as possible. He wants you to live an abundant lifestyle set free from negative thinking and unhealthy emotional states.

So as you either look to start, or continue, counselling find ways to start practicing letting God into your circumstance and be prepared for the potential for incredible breakthroughs as a result.

Monday, February 28, 2022

Love & Leadership in the Month Of Love

Monday, February 28, 2022 @ 7:28 PM

In this month of love I thought it might be helpful to talk a little bit about leadership and love. Turning to Scripture, I thought a good trick would be to substitute the word "love" in 1 Corinthians 13 with the word "leadership". Love here is an act of the will or committment. This sort of compassion is needed in romantic relationships, relationships with your children and of course your relationships with your staff. Sit back and see if this makes a difference in how you view leadership.


" Leadership is patient, Leadership is kind, It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud, it does not dishonor others, it is not self seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs, leadership does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth, it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres."


When you read this what do you get? It seems to me at first glance this makes leadership very vulnerable and too trusting. But if we take the whole counsel of God's Word we know that things like truth, integrity, and congruency as well as boundaries are very important parts of God's ways, these balance out love and vulnerability. Read my version again and see how this compares to your leadership.

Friday, February 18, 2022

Book Club Discussion on Thursday, May 12th @ 7:30PM CST

Friday, February 18, 2022 @ 5:44 PM

MedCentre PLLC

Let’s take a Girls Trip to Healing…Join our Book Club chat covering Joyce Meyer’s NY Times Bestseller - Healing the Soul of a Woman

I have a longstanding passion for ladies’ empowerment, optimal mental health and wellness.

Join our “Beh Best” Ladies Behavioral Health FacebookTM Peer Group and walk alongside other fabulous ladies to do just that!!!

Check it out for:
• LADIES- TEENAGERS TO MIDDLE AGERS
• SHARE, CARE & HELP EMPOWER OTHERS
• FAITH-BASED, CUSTOMIZED, MENTAL HEALTH COACHING
• COMPREHENSIVE MEDICATION CONSULTS
• TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY – MENTAL HEALTH COPING
• TRAUMA RECOVERY
• LIFE EVENT & TRANSITION COACHING (E.G. DIVORCE & CHILD CUSTODY, CAREER, FINANCIAL)

For some, the road to wellness may take medication therapy or other common treatments. For others, complementary and alternatives, their faith traditions are significant to life and health and they welcome ways to incorporate this and kind of support and coping.

- Schedule individualized, faith-based coaching/consults, mental health prescription issues (sliding scale fees)
- Connect and enjoy our confidential High Value Interactive Ladies Peer Group VideoChat
- FREE informational materials
- Targeted topic discussions led by a host of speakers

Click here to join our FREE Facebook™ Group:
https://drmedgal or bit.ly/behbest

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

Restoration for Therapists and ALL Compassionate Care Providers

Tuesday, February 15, 2022 @ 1:18 PM

The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught. And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest awhile.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a desolate place by themselves (Mark 6:30-32).

After the apostles had been ministering, caregiving, discipling, teaching, praying, and healing, Jesus encourages them to come away and rest. Those of us who have been called into helping, teaching, caregiving roles often have no leisure. Yes, some take vacations and set aside one day of rest each week. Yet, our minds and hearts fight, without success, to surrender thoughts of the responsibilities we harbor.

I'd imagine the apostles struggled with the same inability to surrender. Picture Peter trying to rest on the Sabbath. He’s drifting near the shore in his boat. Peter leans back with his head resting on a rolled-up pile of net. In the distance he sees a blind man, begging on the shore. A burly, bully of a fisherman pushes the blind beggar around and calls him names. He takes the blind man’s walking stick and tosses it in the water. Peter groans and says to himself, “On the Sabbath? I’m not even supposed to row!” He looks toward shore and sees the man stomping on the beggar’s stomach. “HEY!” He calls out. “Leave that man alone!” The bully sneers and walks away. Peter leans toward shore and his boat obeys. He fishes the blind man’s walking stick out of the water and brings it to him. His touch on the man’s arm revives the man’s spirit. Peter helps the man stand and hands him his walking stick. He knows if he doesn’t heal the man, thoughts will plague him all day. “Lord, which more distracts me from devoting my day to you – the time it will take me to trust in you to heal this man through me, or the hours I will spend wondering and concerning myself over his fate?” After receiving his answer, Peter placed his thumbs on the man’s eyes, pressed gently, told him, “In Jesus’ name you now see.” The man praised Jesus and followed the apostles, learning about Jesus and serving others.

Rest for a Christian leader, caregiver, counselor, or minister proves difficult even today. We set aside a day, fully intending to surrender our burdens, and connect with the Lord. Our quiet place puts us to sleep due to mental and emotional exhaustion from failing to surrender the burdens of others. If we don’t find, don’t have, or avoid a quiet place, distractions pummel us until that day of rest becomes another day of work.

We can instead unburden or recharge by spending time with a trusted friend or friends to share our troubles by talking it out. This sounds nice, but most caregivers, counselors, and Christian leaders are talented listeners. We have very few balanced friendships where we are able to successfully unencumber ourselves by sharing our burdens without instead becoming dedicated listeners.

Jesus told the apostles to come away to a desolate place. I invite you to come away every other Tuesday evening at 6:30 p.m. for a Mountainside Restoration Experience via Zoom. Meet with other listeners -- Christian counselors, caregivers, ministers, and those called to compassionate caring. We will come alongside each other to listen, pray, share a Word, and be Restored through the Lord.
For more information or to sign up for the first meeting, follow this link:

Monday, February 14, 2022

Love is All We Need

Monday, February 14, 2022 @ 11:34 AM

As we approach Valentine’s day, it’s important for us to acknowledge the love in our lives, as well as self-love. “Belonging” is innate, or something that we’re born wanting and needing. Relationships and connections define us from the time we’re born until we take our last breath. It forms us as children and marks the path to who we are when we take our first steps toward independence from family and friends. The wrong connections can forever change our lives and this is why it’s so important to choose our interpersonal relationships wisely.

It's important to recognize that we teach people how to treat us. When you allow small acts of disrespect, it should come as no surprise that larger ones will follow. This can be a problem when a person comes from a dysfunctional or abusive childhood because this kind of environment can teach us that disrespect is normal. Often, my point in therapy is to realize that if this kind of emotional pain hurts as a child, it’s going to create the same harm as an adult. Such pain doesn’t change just because you’ve become an adult. This is why therapy is important.

A person once told me that if you want to change the people around you, you have to change the people around you. She was essentially saying that if you want change, start with who you have around you. However, this change starts with ‘self’. You have to be willing let people walk away and be okay with it. Think of it as choosing fruit in the grocery store. You don’t want the ones that are bruised, rotten, or wormy because you see signs that it may not be good for you. Well... This is easy in the grocery store because you don’t have an emotional connection to a piece of fruit.

Part of developing a good relationship is that it’s up to you to decide whether that person will be a part of your future. It’s emotional connections that cause a lot of people to stay in dysfunction. Some people think that a person won’t like them if they set interpersonal boundaries but finding that out is the whole point of respecting yourself and the person you’re in the relationship with. Boundaries and those tough discussions will provide signs as to whether you can both work through the tough moments life will present. These discussions contribute to the emotional foundation that form the rest of the relationship. Working through those moments will also show you “who” you’re going to have during tough times. That also goes both ways.

I say all of this to say that love is important. Love that’s good for you can make the sun seem brighter. It can make a headache go away. Good love can heal the body and the mind. Bad “love” can make nights seem deadly. It can contribute to bad physical health. It is the stress in the stroke just like it’s the worm in the apple. It’s not good for you and we shouldn’t ignore the warning signs.

I’m not saying don’t give people a chance but it’s like that Maya Angelou quote, “When people show you who they are, believe them the first time.” Once a person has gotten comfortable in a relationship, you really begin to see them for who they are and you get to decide how or if you move forward. That goes both ways.

So, for this upcoming Valentine’s Day, it may be time to start some heart-to-heart discussions, or it may be time to take a look at who’s in your network and work on setting up a good support system for yourself. Good change takes time and perhaps it’s time to address some of our physical health concerns with some therapeutic conversations.

Proverbs 19:8 says is whoever is sensible loves his own soul and in that understanding we will discover good. Lastly, in that good, let’s define the love we want and the love we give by 1 Corinthians (1 Corinthians 13:4-8), which leads such understanding to a good and perfect love for everyone involved.

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Anxiety is the roller-coaster ride you want to avoid

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 @ 12:58 PM

When The Roller Coaster Never Stops

There’s an old adage, “Worrying is like sitting in a rocking chair; you’re moving, but you’re not getting anywhere.” Comforting, maybe, but not very helpful when the sense of worry won’t go away, when you can’t get out of the chair. Even worse, anxiety is less like a rocking chair, and more like a Roller Coaster, terrifying and stressful, and to those that suffer from it, it never seems to stop.

Now, imagine trying to write a letter on a roller coaster. Or cook a meal. Or sleep.

Anxiety is much more common than you might think.

We all have stress, especially after the past couple of years living through a worldwide pandemic. Whenever we’re faced with stress, a challenge or a threat, our brains release the hormone cortisol, what we used to call adrenaline, which floods the nervous system with the chemical message “you’d better get ready to fight or run away.”

Read more by clicking on link below to learn how anxiety impacts your health, your mental health, and what the Bible says about ways to address anxiety.

New Year's isn't the only time to make resolutions or changes in your life!

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 @ 12:52 PM

Let’s talk about “New Year, New Day, New Change.”

We all know the drill by now…a New Year, New Resolutions.

If you’re older, especially, you may still feel the pressure to make a big, sweeping change in your life, to finally fix the ONE THING that’s been holding you back from success, or money, or love. Buuuuut, we’ve also done this before, where we set goals for ourselves and bail on them in a month or two. Too hard. Too painful. Too tiring. Too much rejection.

Now, there’s a whole philosophical debate about the cultural importance of the New Year, but we’re going to skip all of that today.

A New Year IS an opportunity, and we like to strike when the iron is hot! The New Year is as good a time as any to make a change in your life, and vice versa. We’ll have a little more on that later, but this is the important part; Don’t wait for an event to start changing; START NOW.

We are constantly making changes, whether we identify them as resolutions or not. Why not take today, this minute, this hour, to make positive changes intentionally that help you become a better person, have a happier life, and fulfill the purpose God has given to you?

Read more about tiny steps, done consistently, and how they are really the resolutions that make change!

Cabin Fever! (Dealing with isolation & big life structural changes)

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 @ 12:47 PM

How to hunker down and not lose your cool when the everyday routines in life change or are turned upside down!

It might be fun for a few days, almost like a mini-vacation, but when the isolation drags on and on, it quits being so much fun. When we are forced to spend time together, without our usual structure, or alone in isolation, it is easy to feel a little lost, become more irritable, and even feel overwhelmed.

Children accustomed to structured class time may have a hard time switching over to online learning or switching from being in school to being on summer break. It may even be taking the family on vacation, and even though it is fun and exciting, it can also be stressful.

We may want to ‘lay around’ and watch TV, play on our phones rather than interact with each other. Some have an extensive online social structure, while others are not really ‘connected’ in that manner.

The way we communicate with one another will be vital as we take on new roles.

During the pandemic, parents suddenly had to become teachers. Parents who are usually at work are now childcare providers, have unexpected interruptions (even while trying to do their former job from home), and may have little experience addressing daily issues unrelated to their work skillsets. They developed an appreciation for the skills teachers provide daily to students.

The power of Resilience! (It ain't over till it's over!)

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 @ 12:43 PM

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve certainly had to make adjustments. We lost our structures: We were suddenly forced to enter unfamiliar new roles, blend work and home in ways we couldn’t anticipate, find new methods to manage social interactions and friendships, fight boredom, and even change the context in which we spend time with those we love.

Most tragically, we suffered loss…the deaths of friends, family, coworkers, public figures we admired, and acquaintances. Over two years of isolation have stripped away the markers that we used to track the passage of time, the holidays, birthdays, and special events that we treasured. The hardest pill to swallow is that we’re not out of the woods yet. Another hard pill to swallow is the divisions this pandemic has caused in our nation, among fellow believers, neighbors, family, and friends. We have seen Satan's power in his lies, splitting efforts, and efforts to separate us from doing what is right and good, as Christ would have us to do.

I know you’re tired. We all are. We’ve been fighting the same struggle, missing our children's birthdays, celebrating Christmas over video calls, eating Thanksgiving alone. But we can do this.

This is the crucial part. There is good news, so listen up.

There is Hope! And even through difficult times, Christians can shine as 'lights to the world,' affirming that no matter what happens in this world, we can serve as His disciples by the good we do and show others, even during difficult times.

Read more by clicking on the link below...

Dealing with Grief (especially during the Holidays)

Tuesday, February 8, 2022 @ 12:34 PM

As the days shorten and the holidays draw to a close, we have the opportunity to take stock of our past and future, examine the events of the past year, and prepare for the new.

It is almost impossible not to collectively have the past few years right in our faces by the holidays.

During what is supposed to be a time of celebration, we feel pain and loss even more sharply, and the past year has had a lot of it. Old hurts compound with the new, and the heartache that we thought was behind us rises back to the surface. This is especially true as all the ‘norms’ suddenly are no longer norms...and even that unsettling realization increases our feelings of helplessness and grief.

But the Bible teaches us that there are ways, people, and beliefs that will help us address those griefs. No one has greater grief than another person, and we don't weigh the seriousness of grief felt, as each person feels their grief deeply.

Christ understood that, felt and suffered grief himself. God provides tools to help ourselves, and others, through the grief process.

Read more by clicking on the link below.

Saturday, February 5, 2022

Saving Your Marriage After Parenthood

Saturday, February 5, 2022 @ 3:39 PM

As beautiful as becoming a parent is, it can take a huge toll on the mental health of both mom and dad. That’s why it is so important to focus on how to support one another and build each other up through the perinatal period–the period of time beginning in pregnancy up until the baby is two years old, when both partners (but especially mom) are particularly vulnerable to mental health and mood disorders, such as postpartum depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress. So, what are some ways we can nurture our relationships after kids? Click link to read full blog

Monday, January 31, 2022

A New Mom's Journey

Monday, January 31, 2022 @ 3:12 PM

Meet Alyssa! She is a faith writer and is sharing with us her story of motherhood. She will be welcoming her 1st baby boy this month. Whether you identify as a woman of faith or not, her story has many common thoughts and feelings that many new moms don’t dare to share. This blog normalizes all of them and encourages new mothers to step fully into this journey! Analin F.

Read full blog here: https://www.florecerfamilycounseling.com/post/a-new-mom-s-journey

Embrace the Process of Change for Good!

Monday, January 31, 2022 @ 3:10 PM

We all go through many changes in our lives, some intentionally and some unintentionally. While a lot of changes are out of our control (such as a family member passing away or losing your job), there are some we can plan for. If you are planning a change in your life, whether it is getting rid of a bad habit, pursuing a dream or goal, or making a lifestyle change, it’s helpful to know what the process of change looks like so you can recognize where you are in the process and learn how to move forward well. Read full blog here: https://www.florecerfamilycounseling.com/post/the-process-of-change