p. e. r. s. p. e. c. t. i. v. e
Welcome to my website, and thank you for coming here to take a look at perspective. I’ll be exploring issues that I hope will be of interest to you, whether you're planning to have counselling or not: mindfulness, parenting, communication and conflict in relationships are some of the subjects that will come up. Not to mention how our childhoods impact on our adult lives and how we can help ourselves when we feel highly anxious etc.
How to cope with the challenging combination of depression and addiction
This article is from the Blurt Foundation, who provide lots of useful tips on how to cope with depression. They make the point that addictions aren't always about drugs or alcohol or gambling, but can include anything that we feel we're not in control of, and anything that impacts our mood and behaviour. Talking with a counsellor can help people to realise that there are pressures in their lives that they may be putting on themselves; once that awareness is found, they see how they can maybe reduce that pressure somewhat, and feel more in control. Blurt offers plenty of suggestions about how to recognise the high-risk situations that face us, and also seeing what we get out of the addictive behaviour - because the likelihood is that it does something for us, or at least we think it does. And then there are strategies for how to help ourselves once these elements have been identified. Read more by clicking here.
Raising a resilient child
It seems to me that there are a lot of pressures and expectations on parents these days. Everywhere you turn there is discussion about parenting, ranging from encouragement to guidelines to advice to cast-iron 'all good parents always do x for their children, and never do y'. Some of it will be helpful, solving a problem you were faced with; some of it will confirm your beliefs about how you want to bring up your child; some of it will scare you; some of it may cause you to pause, and consider making a change. I think this article is well worth a read. It's positive and accepting, doesn't set impossible goals, and makes some important points. The author, Dr Rangan Chatterjee, stresses that children 'need nurturing', and explains how even a busy parent can be there for their child in a 'good enough' way. I often talk with clients about their internal resources - what are they? How and when can they draw on them? Is there a robustness they can get in touch with when the chips are down? Often this is lacking, and we explore how they can create some solidity for themselves, on which they can rely when they're struggling. I think this is what Dr Chatterjee is talking about here, how we can help our children develop a resilience they can call upon in the future ...
I think there are a lot of preconceptions about mindfulness that can be a little unhelpful, and I often spend some time at the beginning of sessions finding out exactly what clients understand about this area. Turns out it's not about relaxation, or meditation, or controlling our thoughts, or thinking positively. I'm turning to the marvellous Dr Russ Harris, with whom I was lucky enough to do some of my training in ACT (Acceptance & Commitment Therapy), to explain more as he engages in some myth-busting about mindfulness. Click here to hear what he has to say, and do wait for the useful little video at the end.
And finally, if you have a moment or two, click here for a rather lovely little scene of mindfulness.