Anxiety can make you see life worse than it really is and can prevent you from being able to do everyday tasks and even wanting to go out of your house. While stress may come and go, anxiety is usually the effect of underlying issues. When we experience stress our 'fight or flight' system turns on, it's like an internal brain-warning alert that is made to protect us from harm in the wild.
You can recognise this as 'butterflies in the stomach' when you feel nervous. You may however feel this during normal non-threatening situations. While feeling anxious is a natural response, having long term anxiety can be very disturbing.
You may want to talk about your anxiety and see if I can help. Counselling is effective in many ways, including helping you understand what may be causing your anxiety, and teaching you coping techniques. We would work together to help you become aware of your thoughts and behaviours and help you break down problems so that they become more manageable.
Is there something continually affecting your daily life? If so depression may be affecting
you, unlike moments of feeling sad which arise and go away, depression can make it
hard for you to find enjoyment in ordinary activities. Some days you may find it very hard
to get out of bed, while other days you may feel more able to go about your normal
Living with depression can be incredibly difficult, for both those suffering and those
surrounding them. Due to the nature of the mind, however, seeking help can often
For some, an obstacle to them seeking help is understanding whether or not they
actually stuck in what is known as 'depression'. If you are struggling with your emotions
and feel unable to cope - it could be worth seeking help. You are worthy of support,
no matter how minor you may perceive your problems to be.
How does it feel?
If you have depression, you are likely to have at least five of the following depressive
experiences, you may feel:
constantly anxious, tearful and worried
like life isn’t worth living
irritable and intolerant of others
like you can’t concentrate
you are not getting enough enjoyment out of life
you have a lack of self-esteem
you have excessive and inappropriate guilt
you have no motivation or interest in things you used to enjoy
If you experience depressive symptoms for most of the day, every day, for more than two weeks, you should seek help from your GP and consider counselling. If your feelings start affecting many aspects of your life, this is a sign you may need professional support.
The parts of your life that depression can have a negative impact on include, but are not limited to:
overall sense of happiness and enjoyment
Thoughts of suicide and self-harm are also warning signs that your condition is getting worse. If you experience these, you need to be thinking about seeking professional support.
Image - Kristography
Relationships are the heart and soul of our lives. They can bring us great happiness, especially when we have strong connections with our family members, friends and work colleagues, as this can help us maintain health, well-being and bring meaning into our life.
While for many people these relationships bring an important source of love, support and advice, for others, it may not come so easily. Happy, strong relationships need time and effort. But sometimes these connections break down, leaving a person feeling lonely, sad and lost.
There are many conditions that act as contributing factors to the break down of a relationship. In today’s society, people often face a variety of personal and social difficulties. When our life's problems get in the way, communication can break down, and our health can deteriorate, this is often when conflicts may arise.
The breakdown of important relationships can have long lasting effects on our physical and mental health. Together with me you will explore the factors that may lead to relationship problems and look at ways to create happier, stronger relationships.
Relationship Issues cover areas such as Family Issues, Single Parent Families, Children and Adoption, Seperation and Divorce, and Domestic Abuse.
Who am I, really?
In my search to answer this question, I realized that one level of authentic engagement is to develop the practice of listening, in the moment, to what is going on inside of me -- my thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, memories, and dreams.
For inward searching to be truly effective and life changing, we must listen to what is going on inside of ourselves while maintaining an expectation of inward discovery. This goes against the cultural tendency to identify with what we already know about ourselves and stop the exploration there. When we have an expectation of self-discovery, we will surprise ourselves with what we uncover.
The effect of this subtle and intentional type of listening is that we will peel back the layers of our defense mechanisms just like peeling away the layers of an onion. In that process, we discover more truly who we are. It’s opening up to what is not conscious and bringing it into our consciousness. This allows us to realise who we are in the moment, and in turn, allows us to live our life more fully because we can now make conscious choices based upon who we really are.
To experience this practice of self-discovery, have a friend or therapsit ask you the question, Who are you? Then, answer with the first thing that comes to your mind. Your friend then asks Who are you? again. You again answer with the first thing that comes to your mind. Continue the process of asking and responding for about five minutes. What you will uncover may surprise you as you delve into deeper levels of knowing who you are. You may start out by answering with the roles you have assumed in your life (I’m a mum, a wife, a therapist, a yoga practitioner, etc.) then as the exercise continues you may realize who you want to be but haven’t yet become (an author, a singer, a gardener). You may then move into thoughts and feelings you were not completely aware of (a vulnerability or confidence you didn’t know you had). The point is you will get in touch with the depth of who you are as a human being. These self-discoveries can lead to feelings of excitement, as you realize you can always open up to more of who you are. We are never static human beings. The process of learning who we are never ends. What a dynamic way to live.
Having a traumatic experience or witnessing some traumatic event can create a huge effect on your emotional well-being. Psychological trauma is normally occurs after a one traumatic event or many events that happen over time. Not everyone will react in the same way it depends on your emotional experience of the event. For some this can leave them feeling totally overwhelmed and unable to cope. Reactions like this are normal though even if they seem unusual.
There are different levels of trauma, some of the symptoms may arise and go away easily, some are a little more severe and will need psychological therapy, with trauma, the sooner you seek help the better.
Causes of trauma
Below are some of the events that may cause psychological trauma.
Abuse, this can refer to physical, emotional, sexual or verbal abuse.
Accidents, being involved in an accident can lead to a traumatic response.
Brain tumour and brain injury.
Catastrophic events, natural disasters or man made events such as war.
Bereavement or terminal illness.
Violence, whether you have experienced violence, been threatened with violence
or witnessed it.
The longer your trauma symptoms go untreated, the more psychological damage
they could cause. Therefore, it’s important to know when to seek professional help.
Image - Kristography
If you have just experienced a death of someone close to you, you may be finding the changes to your life difficult to adjust to right now. To accept to a reality without your loved one can be very hard. Many find grief to be painful and our losses can effect all dimensions of our life.
People react in different ways to loss. Anxiety and helplessness often come first.
Anger is also common, including feeling angry at someone who's died for "leaving you behind". Sadness often comes later. Feelings like these are a natural part of the grieving process. Knowing that they're common may help them seem more normal. It's also important to know they'll pass.
Bereavement counselling can provide support during these very difficult times. Together through counselling we can work on helping you cope with grief, and adjust to life without your loved one.
Talking about the loss often allows a person to adjust to their new life with all its changes - good and bad. By Keeping things bottled up or denying the sadness you can prolong the pain. Our losses have to be brought into full awareness and acknowledged for us to move forward. The bereavement counselling I offer will try to help you find a place for your loss so you can carry on with life and eventually find acceptance and peace.