Child Therapy, Consulting, Counselling, Family Therapy, Hypersense Counselling & Consulting Services, Professional Development

Understanding your Anger

Anger is one of the most identifiable emotions people experience. But don’t let it overwhelm you.

Anger is a basic human emotion that signals a problem. Depicted here as stormy waters, anger is a range of negative feelings that builds over time and in certain situations. Infants communicate their needs for comfort, reassurance, and basic care through crying and anger. Similar to other emotions, anger may grow into a habitual response. In these situations, people begin to respond to almost every situation with negativity and anger. Everyone experiences anger. In general, it is unpleasant and hard to be around on a regular basis. It is often easier to identify anger in others than it is to identify it in ourselves. The clinical work involved in helping people to regulate their own anger and to co-regulate the anger of family members, children, and teens can be intense. Similar to other emotions, anger is contagious. It is common that one person’s angry feeling sets off similar reactions in people around them. An assertive response that helps to reduce anger in the moment is to gently label the feeling that you are sensing when with the angry person. For example, “it sounds like you are angry” or “it seems that something is making you angry”, or “are you feeling angry with me about something?”. Assertive statements are effective anger reducers that clearly draw a boundary around who the anger belongs to and where it might be coming from in session. Both research and practice experience shows that anger is likely to reduce through the mere act of talking about it. When we externalize angry feelings by labelling them as a stormy emotions or feelings for instance, people are able to immediately feel a sense of relief. Where trust grows in a caring climate over time, clients will freely discuss problems of anger with you without fear of reprisal or judgment. Anger in and of itself is not the problem. The real problem activates angry emotions and requires some work to uncover. Try externalizing your problems with anger today and think about what you learned from this exercise.

#socialwork #mentalhealth #angermangement #anger #coping #healthy #health #familywellbeing #wellness #wellbeing #care #fairness #gentle #counselling #assertive #assertivenessskills #trust #moods #wellbeing

Child Therapy, Consulting, Counselling, Family Therapy, Hypersense Counselling & Consulting Services, Professional Development

It’s all about balance

It’s easiest to understand notions of balance, regulation, and choice in relation to food.

Emotion regulation is a newer concept in clinical social work. Although the work builds on years of theory borrowed from Psychology, Psychiatry, and Medicine, the idea fits well within a bio-psycho-social framework of practice. Emotion regulation refers to the processes that people use to cope, manage, express, or deal with personal feelings to situations, events, other people, ideas, thoughts, or experiences. In clinical social work, the tasks of the therapist is to collaborate with people on identifying those aspects in their lives that trigger overwhelming emotions. Everyone regulates their personal feelings throughout the day. Most people are able to cope with the feelings they experience throughout the day and adjust their behaviours accordingly. So, if I am finding a particular way of driving to work stressful, I may opt to take a new road, or leave at a different time of day. It is only when people are restricted to adjust, accommodate, modify, or change behaviour in response to particularly triggering events that people grow increasingly stressed. Most times, we are in control of the changes required to manage and cope with our personal levels of stress. Other times, we are not, which may be the case in work or employment related problems. Similar to the food choices we make each day, emotional balance is also key. The human body is a carbon system that is prone to break down without significant periods of rest, relaxation, healthy nutrition, fresh air, and physical exercise. Chronic stress activates cortisol and other harmful hormones in the body, which may become your habitual response pattern to all life events regardless of the event itself. Where you have neglected your emotional diet and have failed to balance stress with rest, your ability to emotionally regulate in a healthy fashion may also be off kilter. Signs that you are not managing your personal feelings in a healthy manner usually involves mounting physical cues from your body such as heart palpitations, breathlessness, shallow breathing, increase in blood pressure, headaches, body aches, uncontrollable crying, or aggression. The people closest to you and who love you most will communicate honestly with you about the impact your stress level is having on them as well. Negative emotions are contagious and are difficult to live with, work with, or be with on a regular basis. As adults, we are all responsible for our own feelings. As parents, we are also responsible to teach, co-regulate, and support our children as they grow and learn to manage and balance the stresses in their own lives. How is your emotional diet today? Do you feel balanced and well?

#health #emotionregulation #mentalhealth #stress #stressmanagement #employmentstress #honesty #wellbeing #healthychildren #familytherapy #cortisol #toxicity #socialcontagion #emotionalbalance #harmony #wellness #personalfeelings #feelings #gratitude #safeschools #anxiety #aggression #adrenaline #anger #angermanagement #stressreducers #learningpeace #empathy #compassion #charitystartsathome #bewell

Child Therapy, Consulting, Counselling, Family Therapy, Hypersense Counselling & Consulting Services, Professional Development

Philosophy of Care

Sadness is part of everyone’s life. What is your care-work with people who express sadness?

From the very moment a person decides to explore a career in Social Work, the beginnings of a philosophy of care emerges. Similar to other health related fields, Social Workers aim to help people, communities, and institutions find ways, strategies, approaches, and solutions to problems they identify. At both clinical and policy levels, social work centralizes care for others in all aspects of practice. Developing an overarching perspective about your role as social worker in relation to care-work with other people is an important process. I liken this process to an ever-changing dynamic or philosophy that continues to blossom over time. For those of us who work principally as clinical practitioners, professional careers broaden in relation to personal growth, life experience, and self-reflection. Many social workers find their professional interests change over time and in relation to their own personal life stage. So for example, a person may start their career working with children and later find marital or couple work more fulfilling. This shift in professional interest is very common during the initial ten to fifteen years in the field. What is your philosophy of care?

#socialwork #healthy #health #emotionalhealth #clinicalsocialwork #efficacy #children’smentalhealth #childtherapy #childandfamilytherapy #familytherapy #moods #wellbeing #policy #determinantsofhealth

Child Therapy, Counselling, Family Therapy, Professional Development

CBT Informed Practices for the Modern Clinician

The simplest way to understand CBT- cognitive-behavioural-therapy informed interventions is in relation to eating a healthy diet and food selection.  The diet industry is in part based on strategies that help people decide what to eat and when.  For example, losing weight is often identified as one of the hardest habits to change even where negative health risks are confirmed by your doctor. Of course, the clinical application of CBT treatment is reserved for regulated mental health professionals such as psychologists, social workers, psychotherapists, medical doctors, and other certified counselling professionals. It is possible to become CBT certified through a formal course of training and supervision.  Using CBT strategies with children and youth has been shown to be one of the most effective ways to help people to think, behave, and feel differently about or in particular situations they identify as personally troubling. CBT-Informed strategies are used in most clinical activities designed for activity-based counselling interventions with people.  There are a range of activities used to help people to identify feelings and emotions, ways of thinking and behaving that are harmful, or self-destructive, or self-deprecating. Clinical activities may include play, arts, or literary based tasks that help everyone involved in the counselling process to talk about troubling emotions, thoughts, and/or feelings.  These tasks also provide opportunities for people to externalize problem thoughts, feelings, and behaviours decreasing anxiety that is naturally provoked when addressing personal problems.  CBT activities are especially useful in family therapy sessions where talking about any one particular member of the family may cause undue and irreparable harm to one or all members.  The modern social worker is aware, sensitive and to a certain degree accountable for managing and mediating  the oppressive experiences of vulnerable family members in a clinical counselling milieu.  It is in this intense or heavy space of clinical accountability and care that the modern social worker seeks formalized supervision on casework.  It is also in this intimate clinical space that theoretical questions of consent become real. 

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#socialwork, #parenting, #wellness, #health, #healthy, #family, #children, #developmental, #nurturing, #attachment, #consent, #CBT, #counselling #privatepractice