“Women who understand how powerful they are do not give into envy over meaningless things; instead they fight to maintain the beautiful bond of the sisterhood. These are the real women who know that we need each other’s love and support to survive in this world.”
I think that women are amazing creatures. We have the power to have babies, which just blows my mind. We can juggle a job, kids, homework, dinner, grocery shopping, etc. You name it and I think women can do it. But where is our our solidarity? We no longer build each other up, but have begun to focus on tearing each other down. “Did you hear about Linda? I heard she gives her boys french fries!”. “Well, I heard that Kelly didn’t even try to breastfeed and just gave her baby formula!” What is this all about? I truly think that this cutting each other down only perpetuates our own insecurities. When we find that people are talking negatively about a choice that we, ourselves make, we begin to question our own judgement. We are all doing the best with what we know. I encourage you to hold back the judgment that bubbles up when you see or hear about a woman making a choice that you might not make yourself. I encourage you to spend your energy, instead, on looking for ways to empower your fellow sisters.
5 strategies to begin building each other up
After we have accomplished our goals, we may not feel the happiness we had hoped for. We worked hard and did our best in our career, but it still feels like we aren’t good enough; like we are an imposter in our own life. We might feel like we do not deserve the life that we have. A relatively new phenomena floating around in mental health is “imposter syndrome”. Imposter syndrome is not actually a syndrome or an officially diagnosable disorder; it is a thought pattern in which a person constantly doubts their own accomplishments or fears that they will be exposed as a fraud. I think that many of us feel this way, maybe not to the degree that we worry someone with show up in our workplace and ask us to leave due to actual incompetence. But on a lesser scale in which we may not feel comfortable with our own success. Becoming accomplished in one’s field is not an overnight shift. It takes years to learn what works in our career and after a while we are an expert whether we realize it or not. If you have trained, studied and worked hard, you deserve to be right where you are. Here are some strategies that will give you permission to accept your success.
1. Talk about it. When we share our thoughts and feelings with others, we are often
surprised that our peers feel the same. When things are normalized, we feel better about
2. When are are feeling particularly insecure think about the facts. List out the steps you
took to get where you are. Think about performance evaluations, trainings, jobs that you’ve
3. We do not have to know everything about everything. You have a certain skills set.
Recognize your unique talents and accentuate the positive.
4. Create a new narrative. You are in charge of your own story. Instead of thinking “How
did I get here?”. Change your thinking to “I’ve worked hard to have this life. I’m right where
I need to be.”
5. Set new goals. Sign up for trainings, classes, work trips, etc. You can always learn
more and further your career.
The holiday season is a stressful time of year. It’s stressful financially as you run around playing Santa for everyone you know. It’s stressful on your time as you go from holiday concert to holiday pageant to family pictures. It’s stressful emotionally as the days are shorter and colder and although you’d rather hibernate, you have so much to accomplish before Christmas. You have been scouring Pinterest for holiday decorating ideas and outfits for your children so things will look just right. You are only adding stress if you are attempting to do it all while also wanting everything to be perfect. What about letting go of perfection this holiday season? So what if you miss taking the kids to see Santa at the mall! So what if you don’t send out Christmas cards! So what if you don’t have time to bake 10 dozen cookies for the neighbors, teachers or your coworkers! There is no such thing as perfect. Perfection is a myth. It’s all in your head. No one is really paying attention to you. They are too busy managing their own stress and just trying to survive. I despise the phrase “practice makes perfect”. Practice does not make perfect, it makes better. We can strive to be better. We can work to be a better spouse, parents, worker bee, etc. But striving to look a certain way or perform a certain way only adds to your stress and encourages you to head to a destination that is not on the map.
Perfectionism can be toxic. It only adds to your stress. It encourages you to compare yourself to others. Perfectionism discourages you to be your authentic self. Trying to live a perfect life is not sustainable and usually leads to an increase of anxiety and feelings of unhappiness. Perfectionism holds us back from living our best life.
One of the wonderful things about being human is that we are flawed. We are allowed to make mistakes. Mistakes teach us valuable lessons and lead to self-improvement. Think about a time when you made what seemed like a huge mistake at the time. I’m confident you learned something from that situation; a lesson that sticks with you to this day. Sometimes we are worried about appearing flawed because people will judge us harshly for it. To this I respond with a question “Who are you surrounded by that does not accept all of you?”. Does your support system include family and friends that accept you. I have enough to worry about rather than focus on judging whether or not my friend buys organic produce for her children. I’m not impacted in anyway if my neighbor’s house is dusty. If the people around you behave in a way that has you feeling less than, then it’s time to make some new connections. I encourage you to surround yourself with people who are comfortable in their own skin and as a result accept you, warts and all.
Focus on what makes you happy . If making the bed doesn’t give you joy; don’t make it! Let go of the things that you are doing because you think you “should”. Let go of the idea that there is one way of doing something. Let go of the idea that things have to look just right. If you are waiting for things to be just so before you dive in, you’ll probably be waiting forever. Dive in and join life.
Earlier this week I struggled with calming my mind and falling asleep. So I headed to the couch to watch a Hallmark Christmas movie, which, in the moment, felt like a luxurious way to spend my time. Needless to say, I was tired the next day. I had little if any patience with my children while getting everyone ready for school. By the afternoon, I was done. Unfortunately, I do not have a substitute mother that can be called in when I’m tired or don’t feel like adulting, so I had to make due while my energy tanks were empty. All of this could have been avoided if I just would have tried a little harder to calm my mind and get to bed at a more reasonable time than 1:30am. I know, I should know better. And you should, too. Here are some reminders on why sleep is so important and a few tips to improve your sleep.
Why sleep is important:
My practice specializes in helping people find time for self-care, discover balance and implement positive self talk. Many of my clients feel that they do not have enough time to get everything done. They also struggle to prioritize their health and most do not have a primary care provider and have not been to the doctor in years. In mental health after ensuring that our clients are safe, we rule out any medical issues that can be impacting mental health. It is difficult to find a primary care provider that accepts our insurance, has a good bedside manner and has openings in less that 4 months. But our health is incredibly important to all aspects of our lives and should be taken seriously. Here are a few tips for finding a provider that is a right fit for you.
When I was a child I was going to be a teacher and children’s book author. Then an author and illustrator. Then I just knew I was going to be an artist. But what ends up happening to most of us is that we get going on a life path and have little time to look around to see if we are have landed in a destination that we planned on. It’s easy to get sidetracked. Some of us have ended up in careers that we never thought about. Others are focused on the fact that they are not doing what they love. Now that you are at a point where you can breath and see a little more clearly, are you feeling fulfilled? Do you feel like you have purpose? A purpose gives us a goal. It gives us a reason to get up in the morning. Some people are fortunate in that they have found purpose with their career; however, many people are working to pay bills and do not think of their job as one that is meaningful or serves a purpose. Today, I offer you strategies to begin creating a more purposeful life.
Parents are often burdened with responsibilities spanning from work, social events and family responsibilities. Often times struggling to manage it all. When we are at work we want to be home with our families. When we are at home we find our mind swirling with to do lists and unfinished projects. If we finally get a chance to carve out time for ourself we often feel guilty about it. Mom guilt. Dad guilt. We worry that we don’t spend enough time with our children. We worry that we gave them fast food. We worry that we let them watch too much TV. I am here to tell you (in a loud and confident voice) that your kids will be fine. They will be happy and they will thrive.
Today, parenting is intense. There is research and advice floating all over the internet and social media. We are left confused as to what the right thing to do is. But there is no “right” way. It is not black and white. Parenting, as in most of life, is a gray territory. I encourage you to do what you think is best and let the rest go. Ensure that you are engaging in activities that you enjoy and lift your mood so that you can be a better person and better parent. Setting aside time for yourself sets a boundary. You are showing your children that you need alone time, which is important because so much of parenting is the behavior that you are modeling. The goal is not to model a perfect person and make all the right choices. The goal is to model that you are doing your best with what you have and if things go wrong then you troubleshoot and make the best of it. It can be a disservice to your children to pretend that you can manage it all without taking breaks or saying “no” every once in awhile.
I encourage you to enjoy the time you have with your children. Time flies by so fast. Soon your children will be leaving the nest and the best thing you can do is arm them with the knowledge that you love them unconditionally. The rest will work itself out. There is absolutely no reason to feel guilty about doing what you think is best.
As the weather gets colder and the days get shorter, it becomes harder and harder to keep a positive mood. It feels natural to want to snuggle under your covers and hibernate. You can keep your mood positive as stress and responsibilities increase during the holiday season it just might take more effort than usual.
5 Strategies To Reduce Grinchy Feelings:
You did what you thought you were supposed to do. You studied hard in school, got a job, bought a house, but instead of relishing in your accomplishments, you find that you are not happy. You may feel like you have not done enough or that you are not good enough, yet. There is a message out there that if you do everything right, then you can have it all. You can balance work, family, friends, life, hobbies and feel great. Can we have it all? What does that even mean?
We are all unique individuals and “having it all” looks different for all of us. It may mean being in a great relationship or having a great job. The more you add to your juggling act, the more difficult it is to manage each day. I discourage my clients to compare themselves and their successes with others. I believe it is more important to take the time to relish in your own accomplishments. Praise yourself for the progress that you have made. Then shift your focus to the present. Let go of yesterday and do not worry so much about tomorrow or next year. Try to live each day as it comes. As you do this you will find that you will not be so preoccupied whether or not you have accumulated “it all” or that you are successfully balancing everything. Focusing on each day allows us to be free of comparison.
Happiness comes from feeling good about yourself and your choices. I encourage you to continue to seek small bits of joy each day. This gives you focus and adds up to a happier life. Joy helps us through tough times and allows us to focus on the good. It helps boost our mood and gives us the energy we need to be there for the important people in our lives.
Children grow at different rates at different times. They, just like adults, come in all different shapes and sizes. What can parents do if they believe that their child’s weight is negatively impacting his or her health. First, don't blame the child and expect them to take full responsibility. Dr. Yoni Freedhoff is an obesity expert, author of The Diet Fix and video blogger of the YouTube channel The Diet Fix: Why Diets Fail and How to Make Yours Work, says that talking with your child about his or her weight is like “lecturing passengers about where a car is going”. Adults struggle with weight loss and it is unrealistic to expect a child to manage their own diet. Parents are the ones that are responsible and the ones that need to make the changes. A long term solution is for parents and families as a whole to live a healthy lifestyle.
I am a mental health therapist practicing in Henderson, NV. I have found that most of the people that I work with have lost themselves on the road to success. A key component of my treatment approach is assisting people in rediscovering their passions and restoring balance to their lives. This blog contains slivers of wisdom that I continue to discover while assisting people become mentally fit.