Sometimes the challenges of life become overwhelming and too much to shoulder alone…
Feeling anxious and unable to manage stress? Stuck and don’t know where to turn? Grieving the loss of a special person or relationship?
Circumstances and change can be very difficult and sometimes we begin to believe that things will never get better. If you feel alone or uncertain about where to turn, please read on…
There is hope and help. Whether it is grief, anxiety, confusion, or the realization that some past hurt is hindering your happiness, it helps to have someone who can really listen and help you move through the pain or difficult circumstance. Even with the support of family or friends, sometimes we need an experienced person to talk with who can really listen and help us sort through the confusing feelings, uncertainty and pain.
An integrated approach to healing
Finding the right therapist is important. Integrative counseling is a whole person approach to wellbeing for both women and men that combines Western science with Eastern thought. Through practices that heighten one’s awareness of the interconnectedness of mind, body and spirit, integrative counseling goes beyond traditional talk therapy by including mindfulness, body awareness and other experiential practices when appropriate. The results may be a deeper level of insight, healing and growth for positive long-lasting change.
Mindfulness is one way to lessen anxiety and worry. Anxiety and worry can increase when we are reliving the past or worrying about the future. When practicing mindfulness, it becomes easier to be in the present moment. Being mindful can improve our sense of self, improve our ability to connect with others with compassion, and help us live more fully.
Here is a simple mindfulness practice you can try right now. Sit comfortable and allow your body to rest. Notice areas of your body that feel tight. Allow those areas to soften. Now notice what you are experiencing right now through three senses – sound, sight, touch.
Take a few slow breaths and ask yourself:
- What are three things I can hear? (a car going by, people talking nearby, dog barking)
- What are three things I can see? (that picture, that tree, that person walking by)
- What are three things I can feel? (the chair under me, the floor under my feet, where my arms are resting)
- Think of these answers to yourself slowly, one sense at a time. Now notice your breath again. It’s impossible to do this exercise and not be present and mindful!
Some of the benefits of mindfulness (supported by research) include improved focus and reduced emotional reactivity (anger, worry, anxiety). It helps with stress reduction, increases relationship satisfaction and improves insight. Therapy that includes mindfulness can be more effective than simply talk therapy alone. When mindfulness practices, body awareness, and other integrative practices are a part of the therapy process, you may experience deeper change, happiness and an overall improvement in life satisfaction and wellbeing.
You may have questions about this approach and wonder if it is right for you. Please use the Contact form or call me at 910-338-4024. I’ll be happy to address your questions. If you are ready to schedule your first appointment, you can access my online calendar here and complete the forms needed for your first appointment. I look forward to hearing from you.