Analyzing Shame Surrounding Mental Illness

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I once surveyed a group of my peers to ask how many people grew up with any sort of mental health awareness, education, or practice of healthy coping skills. I was not surprised that less than 20% answered “yes”. It is the reality of western culture to ignore and stigmatize mental illness within society, to the point that many people hide their mental health struggles from their friends, families, employers, and the greater community. The shame that society imposes on mental illnesses makes the likelihood of an individual developing unhealthy coping skills even greater.

In this piece, I will analyze…


You don’t need to have it all figured out at the beginning, you just need a direction in mind and these 5 steps

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Have you ever had one of those weeks where there were so many things going on that you felt immobilized? Not necessarily debilitated, but, significantly struggling? It’s times like these that you wish you were more coordinated. Wanting to balance on the ball of life, but just when you think you’ve found your positioning — just when you think you’re grounded — gravity happens.

There are a lot of variables that might tilt you in your choices — literally and figuratively — but at some point, you have to make it up as you go.

Step 1: Don’t be afraid to fall on your head

Instead, wear a helmet. Rather…


A Crash Course Into Buddhist Philosophy

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Happiness is a peculiar concept, and I think it is specific to the language you speak and the culture you inhabit. To say: “I am happy” always rings as a temporary statement to me. Happiness feels like something that happens to you, or happens upon you, at a moment's notice. I find this concept of “happiness” to be quite frustrating as a counselor, because it sets us up for disappointment. We should stop trying to manufacture happiness, and instead cultivate a feeling of content.

In my professional career and in my personal life, I have noticed a pattern amongst those…


A close up look at the philosophies of love

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There have been a few times in my life where I have found myself sitting around waiting for “that someone” to suddenly realize that I was “the one.”

I think we all fall prey to this disposition from time to time. We are — after all — squishy, hairless, and terrifying creatures that would rather play it cool than say what we feel. I think they call us humans? An odd name to arrive upon, but we’ll go with it because “they” don’t like to be questioned.

I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to want more in your…


Curiosity is the beginning of the solution

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If you’re in the business of cultivating relationships, whether with family, friends, a significant other, or simply with yourself then I’m sure the occasional conflict has arisen. Conflict can be difficult to manage, especially in new or unstable relationships. And internal conflict is the most difficult of all. We need to feel safe to get vulnerable, and usually at the heart of the conflict is an emotion that needs acknowledgment.

I am a counselor, and helping my clients to sort through conflict is a big part of the job. …


An Outline of Differing Parenting Styles

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I remember when I was a kid, I would hear people talking about “broken homes” and I would always visualize a literal house that had been torn right down the middle.

The image made me sad, and it always seemed as if the families that were being referenced were somehow irreparable. If you’ve ever felt this way, or if you’ve grown up in a “broken home” then this article is for you.

Broken homes have been studied and judged for centuries.


Analyzing Unknown Variables and Universal Truths

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There are beliefs and then there are facts, right? Or at least, that seems to be the obvious conclusion. I’d like to wager, though, that this is not the case at all. There are things that happen, and then there are the ways in which we communicate those things. It’s not always about whether or not the event occured, but it’s the implications and the communication following the event, that is disputable.

It is belief that spreads like wildfire.

The Difference Between An Opinion, A Belief, And A Fact:

  • Opinions are consciously formulated thoughts that may or may not be applicable to our lives. They are comparable to judgements.
  • Beliefs


If I am water than perhaps…

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I am the kind of water that splashes off the tips of waves. The kind of water that may decide to up and fly away. The mist that you feel lightly as it lands upon your skin — but only if I am the water that is perched beneath the wind.

Or maybe, I am the water that likes to intercede. Suspended in the whims of sound, with air and electricity. The friction in our chemistry is a certain kind of pain, so much so that on occasion, I cannot help but rain.

If I am like the water that…


Four Steps To Bring Yourself Back to the Present

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Everywhere I look, I’m reminded of the past. I think to myself:

“I’ve seen something like this before, but I’m not sure where.”

My mind is constantly trying to put the pieces of the past together in the hopes that it will mean something, but sometimes the pieces don’t fit — and you know what? We can’t force it.

I start to think:

“Maybe the pieces aren’t real.”

Maybe my mind is just playing tricks on me and I’m in this rabbit hole for hours until I end up back where I started: I’ve seen something like this before.

Anxiety…

Introspect

A counselor writing about the human condition.

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