So often I find myself explaining to clients that the first step in overcoming their hurt or disappointment is accepting the situation, and their part in how they got there. And for many that is the hardest part of their transformation because self-acceptance requires you to recognize your imperfections and accept them for what they are. Rather than condemning yourself, blaming others or focusing on what they need to fix, a more effective strategy is adopting self-acceptance.
Without self-acceptance, it is very difficult to create lasting change or progress through your painful situation. Afterall you can only control yourself and your responses. Everything else is a lottery.
Reading this, you may be thinking of course I accept myself! It might all seem like a no-brainer to you. But what happens when you reflect on this question, "Do I accept myself?" it might feel odd, it may even not sit well with you as you hear yourself say it. After all, what does...
The holiday season is always a time of great excitement, thankfulness, and (hopefully) relaxation, but there are also a variety of reasons why the most wonderful time of the year may leave some feeling stressed out.
During the holidays, it’s important to monitor your stress levels and ensure that you’re having an enjoyable and restful time with your friends and family – not leaving yourself feeling frazzled! One in four (1:4) people report being stressed about the Christmas holidays and one in six (1:6) report this time of year as stressful as divorce, moving house and changing jobs.
To prepare yourself for the holidays, it’s important to familiarise yourself with the top 6 holiday stressors.
1 - Entertaining guests
2 - Living up to the hype
3 – Spending money
4 – Dealing with unpleasant family members
5 – Mental Health
6 – Physical Health
If you’ve ever wanted to sleep well but thought it was a pipedream, then you’ll want to read this blog article. In this article, I provide an overview of 5 potential solutions to your sleep problem.
After deciding to specialise in sleep counselling for professionals three years ago, I have learnt a thing or two about what works for adult sleep clients. Clients who come looking for solutions to get to sleep quicker and stay asleep have often read the top 5 sleep books and are still struggling to sleep well. They are also generous reviewers of retail products in the sleep market. I often receive unsolicited feedback about what they have tried and what helps them get to sleep and stay asleep.
As a psychotherapist and counsellor, I know that anxiety, even low levels, can affect sleep quality. However, I also recognise that falling sleep is the result of a combination of biology, mental and physical states coming together at the right time, in the...
It’s often easier said than done. Setting and maintaining boundaries can be hard when others are accustomed to you not having any. Whether we like to admit it or not, people take advantage of other people.
In my practice I have seen an increase in professionals seeking assistance for languishing and falling out of love with their work because they feel they have nothing left to give. Getting through the day without added tasks is a challenge for some. For others, it has already impacted significant relationships.
In project management terms it’s called ‘scope creep’ and it plays right into our need to belong and be of service. Depending on your experience it could also be playing into your need for financial security.
When others take advantage of our kindness, it leads to resentment...
As I write this, I am reminded of a well-known retreat leader who started a 7-day silent retreat with, “I have no plans of what to talk about this week, you each have needs and so I am going to use the emerging curriculum to guide our experience together.” Well, you can imagine the looks that were exchanged by the nearly 250 participants who had made special efforts to be there. They were incredulous that there was no set curriculum for the week, leaving them to wonder if they had done the right thing by being there. Of course, the retreat was a deeply moving experience for each and every one of us and I’m somehow reminded of this as Sydney enters it’s 8th week of lockdown.
The pandemic it seems has an emerging curriculum for each of us, and who knows what it is. What I do know is that we each have something to learn from this experience.
And like every crisis we have to go through it rather than around, so here are some ideas to increase your...
In one of the processes I take my clients through to uncover hidden values, I ask them about the last three times they got angry. Some clients can quickly identify those occasions, and some cannot. For those who can’t they share that they are rarely angry. They go on to disclose that they rarely yell, scream, hit or exhibit hostile behaviours towards others. Those are examples of aggression, not anger.
Anger is a normal human emotion that we all experience from time to time. And like other emotions it has a purpose, and as a result we can express it in a variety of different ways. Anger is an intense feeling of displeasure. It ranges from feeling annoyed about not being able to find your car keys when you are running late to feeling betrayed by someone you trusted. It is also an emotion you can feel when you observe an injustice or identify someone you love is being treated unfairly.
Like all emotions it is characterized by a suite of behaviours, somatic...
In my practice I get the privilege of working with smart people from a broad range of careers who mostly struggle with managing boundaries. I know growing up I was told ‘be polite’, ‘respect your elders’ and ‘don’t rock the boat,‘ and while they were well intended phrases from my parents, they became so ingrained that they became a hinderance to me in my career.
I was one of the lucky ones. I learned it early on in my career thanks to a wonderful manager who was highly effective at managing her own boundaries. She had kid gloves when she said ‘No’ in her oh so many ways. What many people don’t realize is that when we say ‘yes’ to something we are also saying ‘no’ at the same time to something else. You may be guilty of this without even knowing it!
In order to be successful, others need to know who you are, and they can’t work it out if you are saying...
In March 2020, Australia closed its borders and so our love-hate relationship with ‘Lockdown’ began. I remember in the early stages people were happy to be working from home. There seemed to be extra energy in the air. It meant being able to put on a load of washing before the 10am video-conference call, spending more time with family, getting more sleep due to decreased commute times and feeling a little bit ‘naughty’ wearing comfortable clothes rather than the 'corporate outfit' while negotiating a million-dollar deal. Now nine months on, many are keen to get back to their office, sit at their desk and chat to colleagues in the corridor. Sadly many are being told this won't be possible until mid-2021. Others are quite content to be working from home indefinitely.
Whatever your situation, it is more important than ever that we recognise nobody is immune from burnout and that we are vigilant around the signs of burnout for ourselves,...
Traditionally people do seek out counsellors when they're experiencing emotional pain, or feeling stuck and don't know what to do next. However proactive people also choose to see a counsellor when they're looking to for an unbiased perspective or want to cultivate and grow the positive aspects already present in their lives.
Here are the top nine excuses I hear when a client first finds me and starts to explain why they hadn't come to see me sooner.
It’s a common belief that people can only see counsellors when something is amiss or wrong. Far from it. Many people enlist the support of a counsellor to continue building positive habits, just like hiring a personal trainer at the gym. With their specialist skills in human behaviour and non-judgemental approach clients can accelerate their transformation and embed the desired habits quicker. There is only so much you can achieve without external support.