Christmas Memories

Joyful experiences are forever dear.

Most people have good memories about Christmas. Despite the stress of shopping, and entertaining with family and friends, people make a concerted effort to spread the peace and joy of the season. There is no doubt that children benefit from the loving and thoughtful efforts parents, friends, and extended family put into making Christmas magic.

Memorable Christmas gifts are NOT always the ones that cost the most money. In fact, people remember thoughtful presents, crafts, ornaments, meals, or baked goods. Families fortunate enough to celebrate years of Christmas traditions together create meaningful memories for everyone.

Looking back on happy memories ensures that people have a wellspring of joy to draw upon whenever health, travel, or unexpected circumstances disrupt opportunities to be together with the ones we love.

Of course, all families have memories of tense Christmas memories as well. It is common for people to experience intense emotions, like sadness, and anxiety during the holidays as well. Everyone copes differently.

Some people argue and fight when they are stressed and anxious while others grow quiet and withdrawn. Indeed, there is a small group of people who dislike all the fuss of the Christmas Season – the crowds, expenses, and indulgences.

For those of us who love the Christmas Season, treasured time with friends and family is precious and coveted. Homemade decorations, photographs and recipes are kept for years and years, and in some cases for generations.

Christmas is a time for family and friends to celebrate together, establishing traditions of your own. Raising children in homes where traditions of togetherness and care is a priority transcends class, time, and culture. Spending quality family time celebrating traditions is as important as ever.

Happy family memories last a lifetime. Make this Christmas a beautiful one. Celebrating with all the people in your life makes your world a happy, safe, and healthy one.

#memories #emotions #happy #joy #yum #good #wellness

Values-based problem solving & next steps

Choosing next steps is akin to a chess move

When you have been in the field as long as I have, it is plain to see that people need time, support, and kindness when deciding next steps on matters of most importance.

Saying “yes” or “no” to a person’s overtures for romance, friendship, or companionship requires a lot of steps. Some of the ways you land on a decision are clear to you, and other factors may be less so.

Deciding to move on with your career, earn another diploma or certificate, or gain a new skill also involves conscious and unconscious problem solving steps.

Easy factors to understand major life moves are usually practical and include reasons like an increase in salary, gaining new skills, meeting new people, and professional growth and advancement.

More deeply held reasons for making decisions are values-based. Your values do shape the ways you make decisions even where these values are hidden from view.

What is a value and how does it impact your problem solving may require some time to re-surface. Values are core principles that provide you with your own guide for healthy living. Your personal values are usually formed in your early years and reflect your ancestry, culture, and traditions.

When you are immersed in situations, relationships, workplaces, or perspectives that are fundamentally contrary to your value-systems, your health may suffer.

Counselling often reveals the ways your core perspectives have been compromised, misused, or undervalued. It is only when you take the time to deeply think about your next steps in relation to your personal values that solutions to problems reveal themselves.

Life is like a game of chess. People however are not pawns to be played with in a game of life. Instead, every person has a right to speak up when personal values are infringed upon and to act in your own best interests when your values are not shared or honoured.

Health and wellness happens when you live in congruence with your deeply held values of honesty, loyalty, hospitality, respect, equity, justice, and charity. What will your next move entail and why is it important for you to make this decision ?

#wellness #health #counselling

Talk Therapy & Healing Words

Expressing differences requires attentive listening

One the key elements of counselling is the transformational power of words used to describe events, feelings, and memories. The role of your therapist is to be keenly aware of the details you share about the problem you are experiencing.

Where you opt to engage in couples counselling, this listening role of your therapist intensifies. The ways you speak about your problems constitutes the “evidentiary support” for mood, poor health, or generalised unhappiness and problem resolution.

Healing begins as soon as you speak, write, or share your views about the problem you are experiencing. The process of articulating a problem for another person to understand also helps you to further process and understand the problem for yourself. In this way, talking about your problem develops a framework for understanding it.

Therapeutic or counselling conversations are different from causal discussions with friends or family. A third party listener who is dispassionate that is, uninvested in your problem offers a neutral listening ground for the articulation of your problem-based perspective to take place. This is often an important first step, although not really needed to heal. Solution-Focused Therapy SFT begins by exploring times when the problem is different, less intense, or absent and never really enters the problem per se.

Once stated or articulated, your problem may be viewed, analysed, explored, and investigated by your therapist and yourself.

Of course, conversations are dynamic and transactional, such that your therapist contributes words or perspectives during the initial sharing of your problem. Some therapists and models only listen during this initial session. Others trained in single session or solution focused models, use even this first session to enter or join in the ways you tell your story, so to offer plausible words or perspectives for understanding your problem.

You will decide which models of therapy work best for you by how you feel at the end of your session and over the first couple of weeks of treatment.

Understanding other points of view is important to getting better

You will also begin to feel better as the words and perspectives used to describe your problem change. As your heart heals, your words and perspectives do as well. Remaining open to the views of your therapist and those involved in counselling with you guarantees improvement.

#wellness #SFT #couplescounselling #healingwords