How To Lessen Your Teen’s Back-to-School Stress

September 10, 2017

It’s almost fall, which means store shelves are stocked with low-priced notebooks and markers and glue, et al. Soon the familiar brake hiss of school buses will be heard in neighborhoods across the country as kids head back to school. While some kids begrudge alarm clocks and mountains of homework, they still look forward to […]

How To Lessen Your Teen’s Back-to-School Stress

It’s almost fall, which means store shelves are stocked with low-priced notebooks and markers and glue, et al. Soon the familiar brake hiss of school buses will be heard in neighborhoods across the country as kids head back to school.

While some kids begrudge alarm clocks and mountains of homework, they still look forward to school; to enjoying friendships and new activities. Some children, however, have a real fear of going back to school. They worry about potential bullying or even violence at school. Some have trouble coping with social pressure, while others feel overwhelmed at what they will be expected to learn.

If your child is feeling stressed at the thought of going back to school, here are some ways you can help:

Ask Them What’s on Their Mind

Some kids might voluntarily share any worries they have about going back to school, but many won’t. If your child is keeping mum, ask them how they’re feeling about school starting up again.

Older kids and teenagers often shut down when questioned about, well, anything really. So try to make a leading statement like, “Seeing your friends every day will be cool. But I’m guessing there is stuff that you might not be looking forward to…” Then wait for a response.

If they don’t respond, try again the next day. Eventually, they will open up to you, and when they do, the important thing is not to say the exact right thing but to simply listen, show interest and concern, and never judge.

Get Them Involved

To some children, summer means a taste of freedom, of making choices for themselves, while school means little or no autonomy. To help counter this feeling, get your kids involved in decision-making at the very beginning.

Hold a “going back to school” family meeting, and make sure there are no media distractions like smartphones or TV on in the background. Discuss the year ahead, plan and set schedules for meals, homework, sports, school activities, and bedtime. Write these plans down and stick a copy on the fridge.

Talk About Bullying

Kids of all ages worry about bullying, so it’s important to bring up the topic. You could make a simple statement, something like, “Bullying is really common and it’s never OK, nor is it the victim’s fault when it happens. If anything happens to you or you see it happen to someone you know, I want you to tell me about it. We can make a plan together of how to handle it.”

Then there are those children who worry about starting school because they have issues with anxiety and depression. These children need help from a professional therapist who can uncover where the issues are coming from and offer tools and resources for coping in the real world.

If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

8 Techniques to help Kids with Separation and School Anxiety (3 Minute read)

September 1, 2017

Anxiety over school and separation from parents is very normal for children. But sometimes normal becomes abnormal when children’s anxiety affects their emotional functioning at school, home or day care. Kids can get anxious over getting up early, what dress to wear, fear of being in a new school setting, doing homework after school, and […]

8 Techniques to help Kids with Separation and School Anxiety (3 Minute read)

Anxiety over school and separation from parents is very normal for children. But sometimes normal becomes abnormal when children’s anxiety affects their emotional functioning at school, home or day care. Kids can get anxious over getting up early, what dress to wear, fear of being in a new school setting, doing homework after school, and separation from parents. Some common symptoms your child may be expressing are

  • Sleepless nights
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Stomachaches
  • Throwing tantrums

As a parent, these may trigger some of your feelings too. You might feel confused, fearful, angry, and other inexpressible feelings. Most parents think, “What can I do to fix this?”.

Some people don’t believe in Back to School Blues but it does exist. Back-to-school blues can stem from many different fears. It’s usually

  • the fear of the unknown (e.g. not knowing what teacher you’ll have or what kids will be in your class) or
  • the fear of the known (e.g. knowing that it’s going to be a hard year or knowing that the expectations are higher).

The following 8 simple techniques will help your kid overcome these struggles.

  1. Connect with your kids. Help children explain their feelings of fears and validate them by acknowledging and embracing your child’s feelings. Once you’ve listened, reflect this back to them so that they feel heard and connected.
  2. Encourage your child to share his/her fears.  Ask your child what is making him/her worried. Tell your child that it is normal to have concerns. Before or/and during the first few weeks of school, set up a regular time and place to talk. Some children feel most comfortable in a private space with your undivided attention (e.g. in bed). Other children, welcome some sort of distraction to cut through the tension of their worries and feelings (e.g. a ride in the car).
  3. Create a predictable routine. Plan a routine for the kids like a consistent waking up time, what clothing to wear, breakfast time and consistent night time routine for the kids every day. Include the kids in this planning, so they take ownership of their actions and their anxiety over the unpredictability will be reduced.
  4. Do an orientation for the kids before school starts. Taking the kids to school, introducing him or her to the class teacher, show her desk and reviewing the class schedules ahead might help the child reduce the fear of the unknown.
  5. Reduce anxiety due to last school year struggles. If last year wasn’t a good year for your child, try to think what went wrong so that you can help your child improve this year. Some examples to consider as improvements this year are (a) Have a relaxed schedule (b) Coaching her on social skills to make new friends, (c) Plan of how to respond when being bullied, (d) Structuring a homework time to reduce homework stress.
  6. Create a goodbye ritual or give a transition object. To ease the child with transition consider creating a consistent goodbye ritual like a hug, a kiss, a comforting phrase, or consider giving them a transition object that is private to both of you. I highly recommend the “The kissing Hand” book for kids who struggle with Separation anxiety.
  7. Focus on the Positives. Focusing on the positives of the school can ease the anxiety and uplift mood. Some suggestions are (a) meeting new friends, (b) having new school supplies, (c) validating their courage over their efforts of going to school despite their anxiety.
  8. Parents, leave some “Self – Care” time for you (even if it’s only a few minutes). Dealing with your child’s anxiety can be overwhelming and helpless. Take a break, it doesn’t have to be long – go outside, talk to a loved one about your day, listen to music, read a few chapters in a book, eat a snack; do anything to help you calm down and balanced to help your child cope with his/her anxiety.

If these techniques do not reduce the anxiety for your child don’t wait to talk to a counselor or a trained professional. As a trained mental health professional in child psychotherapy, I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

How to Begin Healing After Personal Trauma

August 23, 2017

No one is ever prepared for a tragedy. In fact, most of us go through our lives believing that tragedies happen to other people. When people do experience a distressing or life-threatening event, such as a car accident, natural disaster, or terrorist attack, they often develop extreme anxiety or PTSD. Many develop ongoing problems with their personal relationships and their […]

How to Begin Healing After Personal Trauma

No one is ever prepared for a tragedy. In fact, most of us go through our lives believing that tragedies happen to other people.

When people do experience a distressing or life-threatening event, such as a car accident, natural disaster, or terrorist attack, they often develop extreme anxiety or PTSD. Many develop ongoing problems with their personal relationships and their own self-esteem.

Everyone deals with trauma in their own way. There is no “right” or “wrong” way to respond to a tragic or terrifying event. Don’t let anyone, not even yourself, tell you that you should respond in a certain way.

Having said that, there are steps you can take to begin to heal and regain control of your life.

Accept Your Feelings

Ignoring your feelings of fear, shock, rage, terror, confusion, or guilt will only slow your recovery. In the moment, you may feel you must avoid your emotions. But, whether you accept or push them away, your feelings are real, and feeling them is necessary for healing. The good news is, even intense feelings will pass if you simply allow yourself to feel them.

Reframe Your Identity

After experiencing a traumatic event, it is common to feel helpless and out of control. To fully recover from the event, it is important that you eventually reframe your identity and challenge your feelings of helplessness. You can do this by taking action. Being proactive – even in small ways – will help you overcome feelings of fear and helplessness.

Consider volunteering for a cause that’s important to you. If that is too much of a time commitment, you could simply focus on helping a friend or neighbor. This will help you feel more powerful and in control of your environment.

Reach Out to Others

It is common for people to want to withdraw from loved ones and social activities following a tragic event, but connecting with others is necessary for recovery. Though you may not feel up to taking part in huge gatherings like you once did, a simple face to face conversation with a close friend or relative can trigger hormones that relieve stress.

You needn’t talk about the event with your loved ones, just simply spending time with them will help you feel more “normal.” Of course, if you feel like you need to talk about your feelings, reach out to those you know love and support you. You may also want to look into support groups in your local area so you can be around others who know what you are going through.

And finally, you may want to consider seeking guidance from a professional therapist who is trained in helping people who have experienced a traumatic event. They can help you navigate your emotions as well as give you tools to get back on your feet.

If you have experienced a traumatic event and feel you could use some guidance on your journey back toward peace and joy, please get in touch with me. You don’t have to suffer with your burden alone.

Why Timing is Everything When it Comes to Marriage Counseling

August 2, 2017

Seeking help from a marriage counselor is not unlike seeking help from a mechanic. It makes little sense to take your car into the shop a month after it started making a horrific noise. By that time, too much damage may have been done and your engine may be beyond repair. By the same token, the effectiveness […]

Why Timing is Everything When it Comes to Marriage Counseling

Seeking help from a marriage counselor is not unlike seeking help from a mechanic. It makes little sense to take your car into the shop a month after it started making a horrific noise. By that time, too much damage may have been done and your engine may be beyond repair.

By the same token, the effectiveness of marriage counseling is directly related not only to the willingness and motivation of both parties to put in the effort, but also to the timing. The time to consider marriage counseling is not when one (or both) people have already thrown in the towel.

For instance, in some relationships, when one or both partners have already decided to end the marriage, they may use counseling as a “safe space” to drop the news on their spouse. This is obviously not the best timing to attempt counseling.

Sometimes issues are too ingrained and longstanding for counseling to be truly effective. If a couple has been building up resentment toward one another for five or more years before seeking help, it may be too late. While counseling is a wonderful way to help couples reconnect and heal, it is not a miracle cure.

When and How Marriage Counseling Can Help

It’s important that both individuals truly want the relationship to work. When both parties are willing to invest time and energy, marriage counseling can be the catalyst for real and lasting change.

It is also important that couples choose a therapist who’s a good fit. Both spouses must feel comfortable with the therapist for any progress to be made.

So, how exactly can marriage counseling help? In a number of ways:

  • Counselors help couples identify toxic behavioral patterns and give them tools to make adjustments.
  • Each partner can gain new insights and perspective into the relationship.
  • Tools help couples resolve conflicts with grace and respect so escalation can be avoided.
  • Partners can begin to build trust and improve communication.

If you and your spouse decide to try marriage counseling, here are some tips for success:

  • Take it seriously. Commit to the work and do it.
  • Be open. If you’ve chosen the right therapist, you should feel free and safe to discuss your true feelings and needs. Don’t hold back. In order for therapy to work, both people have to have the courage to be vulnerable.
  • Avoid the blame game. Each person must take responsibility for their part.
  • Be realistic about how long it will take before real change begins. While you can begin using tools immediately, healing won’t happen overnight.


If you and your partner are experiencing marital problems, don’t wait to get help. The sooner you do, the more likely your issues can be resolved. If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

5 Amazing Outcomes that Can Come from Family Therapy

July 15, 2017

Many people wish they could belong to a family that resembles the Brady Bunch. But the truth is, most of us belong to families that are not nearly as perfect or copacetic. Families are as complicated as the individuals who make them up. Though each family is entirely unique, all can benefit from family therapy. […]

5 Amazing Outcomes that Can Come from Family Therapy

Many people wish they could belong to a family that resembles the Brady Bunch. But the truth is, most of us belong to families that are not nearly as perfect or copacetic.

Families are as complicated as the individuals who make them up. Though each family is entirely unique, all can benefit from family therapy. Counseling can help family members improve communication and resolve conflicts.

Here are 5 amazing outcomes that can come from family therapy.

1. Surviving Those Teenage Years

It has been said that parents face the most challenges during the toddler and teenage years. That’s probably because teenagers often act like toddlers. While teenage angst is common and normal, many teenagers struggle with anxiety, huge mood swings, and other mental health issues. Family therapy helps parents and children not feel alone and assists them in communicating feelings and expectations.

With this in mind, it’s a great idea to connect with a good therapist during the pre-teen years so a relationship can be built and nurtured. That way as difficult situations arise in later years, you have someone you know and trust who can help you.

2. Gain Important Skills and Tools

It would be so much easier to be a parent if the job came with some kind of training manual. Since it doesn’t, many parents, who perhaps didn’t have the best examples given to them by their own parents, struggle to raise their children the right way.

Parenting can be much less daunting and more fun when you have the right skills and tools at your disposal. For instance, learning positive ways to communicate with your child, constructive ways to discipline, and how to avoid power struggles.

While it can be helpful to speak with supportive friends and look for advice within the pages of books and magazines, there is something uniquely beneficial to family therapy.

3. All Families Can Benefit

Many people assume they have to be in a full-blown crisis before they should seek counseling, but this is simply not true. All families can benefit from family therapy. This is because in therapy, everyone gets a chance to be heard. And any problems, whether big or small, can be dealt with in a productive way.

Family therapy offers tremendous benefits, including:

  1. Better understanding of healthy boundaries, family patterns and dynamics
  2. Enhanced communication
  3. Improved problem solving
  4. Deeper empathy
  5. Reduced conflict and better anger management skills

4. Cultivate Self-Worth


Very often it is our own lack of self-worth that causes us to treat the people we love badly. Family counseling cultivates self-worth for all members of the family and, as a result, intimacy and compassion are cultivated as well.

5. You Learn How to Deal with Anger

Very few people know how to deal with their anger and temper, and as a result, we lash out at our family members and sometimes say things we can never take back. Therapy allows for calm and guided discussion where feelings of anger can be explored in healthy ways.

A family that is in constant conflict is unhealthy and needs help. If you are aware of a potential problem in your family, or are simply looking for a way to communicate and connect, family therapy may be an excellent option to consider.

If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

3 Emotional Challenges of Being a Stay-at-Home Mom — And How to Overcome Them!

July 5, 2017

Being a stay-at-home mom can be very rewarding, but also incredibly challenging. There’s the guilt about not bringing home a paycheck combined with, at times, significant loneliness. If you’ve ever felt joy when a salesman shows up unannounced at your front door, you know what I’m talking about! OMG! An adult to talk to during […]

3 Emotional Challenges of Being a Stay-at-Home Mom — And How to Overcome Them!

Being a stay-at-home mom can be very rewarding, but also incredibly challenging. There’s the guilt about not bringing home a paycheck combined with, at times, significant loneliness. If you’ve ever felt joy when a salesman shows up unannounced at your front door, you know what I’m talking about! OMG! An adult to talk to during the day! (Right? lol).

Here are three emotional challenges that come along with being a stay-at-home mom and how you can overcome them.

  1. The Frustration of Not Finishing What You Start

Before you became a mom, you were always on top of things. Not only did you work full time, you also managed to keep the house clean and have the laundry done as well.

Now it seems like you can’t finish one project.

There are always dirty dishes in the sink, laundry is clean but sitting in the drier becoming more and more wrinkled, cheerios adorn every flat surface of your once pristine car, and your family is subsisting on frozen pizzas because grocery shopping is often too much to handle.

It’s perfectly normal for mothers, especially new mothers, to constantly need to shift the hierarchy of their priority list.

Consider working with friends on larger projects you could use help with. If you need to completely clean out and reorganize the garage before summer, when bikes and kayaks and other sporting equipment must be accessible, call up a friend or two for help. You’ll get the job done faster and have some much-needed adult time.

Also, see if a friend or family member can watch the kids while you spend an hour or two a week grocery shopping. This will help you stock up on the supplies you need for the week, and also give you some time to be all by yourself!

And finally, see if you can get up before your children. Even an extra half hour in the morning will help you accomplish one extra task a day, and that will make you feel great (A lot easier said than done, though, especially if you have a newborn).

  1. Isolation and Boredom

You were once surrounded by people in your office, cracking jokes and giving presentations in a plush conference room. Now you spend most days looking for socks and having full-on conversations with yourself. Out loud.

Being a stay-at-home mom can be incredibly isolating. And, though raising children is, on one hand, very rewarding, if we’re going to be honest, there are plenty of days when the boredom is mind-numbing.

Though it isn’t always easy finding time to nurture your social needs, it’s important that you make socializing a priority. Plan regular grown-up gatherings. Take a class once a week, or even a couple of times a month. Walk around the neighborhood every night with a friend. It’s great to get together with other stay-at-home moms. Not only can you have fun, but you can support each other as well.

  1. Questioning Your Parenting Skills

Stay-at-home moms eat, sleep, and breathe being a parent. There is almost no break from it, which makes it very easy to become somewhat obsessed and begin to question every parenting decision you make.

Connecting with other stay-at-home moms, whether in person or in a chat room, will help you gain perspective on your situation. Also, when you begin to worry and obsess over a recent decision you’ve made, step back and look at the bigger picture. Instead of always asking, “Did I do this or that right,” begin asking, “Is my family happy and healthy?” If you can answer yes to those second questions, then you KNOW you’re doing plenty right!

Sometimes, talking with a neutral third party, like a family therapist, can help you gain perspective on your life and how being a stay-at-home mom is affecting you on a day-to-day basis. If you’re interested in talking with someone, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

3 Tips to Get You on the Right Side of Calm

June 15, 2017

They say you can wake up on the wrong side of the bed. But many days it feels like you woke up on the wrong side of calm. And who can blame you? Life seems to have gotten more complicated, stressful and chaotic, making it more difficult to feel peaceful and calm. But there are things […]

3 Tips to Get You on the Right Side of Calm

They say you can wake up on the wrong side of the bed. But many days it feels like you woke up on the wrong side of calm. And who can blame you? Life seems to have gotten more complicated, stressful and chaotic, making it more difficult to feel peaceful and calm.

But there are things you can do each day to get yourself on the right side of calm. Here are 3 of them:

1. Breathe Deeply

Many people are shallow breathers, meaning they take small, short breaths. But did you know shallow breathing is actually part of the “fight or flight” response?  It’s an evolutionary adaptation designed to keep us safe from danger, like that angry sabretooth tiger chasing us. When faced with danger, our heartbeat speeds up and we breathe faster in order to get more oxygen for fighting or fleeing.

Our bodies don’t recognize real danger (that tiger) from modern day danger (that stack of bills). And so we spend most days breathing like our life depends on it.

One of the quickest ways to calm yourself is to slow down your breathing. Many people scoff at the idea that breathing deeply and slowly will do much of anything. Those that try it know deep breaths have an incredible calming affect.

2. Get Familiar with Your Acupressure Points

There are key acupressure points located on your hands, face, and head. These points are near bundles of nerves that, when massaged or tapped, can help relax your entire nervous system.  This is why we instinctively rub our forehead and temples when we’re feeling stressed. You can subtly apply pressure to the meaty part of the hand between the thumb and forefinger when in a stressful meeting, at the airport, or any public setting when you need to calm down but don’t want to call much attention to yourself.

3. Focus on the Positive Things in Your Life

Every night before you fall asleep, think about three things that happened that day you are grateful for. They can be small, like that parking spot in front of the always-busy post office you got this morning, or big, like your son’s ankle was sprained not broken.

Feeling happy and grateful will naturally calm you down and give you a different perspective on things. And, doing this exercise night after night will train your brain to be more positive.

Have you tried these tips in the past but are still dealing with persistent anxiety and worry? Therapy can help you uncover the root cause of your anxiety and provide tools for coping.

If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

Low Self-Esteem: What is it? What to Do About it

June 1, 2017

Self-esteem is an opinion we have of ourselves; a way of placing value on ourselves as people. While we may voice characteristics such as “I’m American” or “I have brown eyes,” these are facts that don’t carry a negative or positive connotation. A low self-esteem suggests we carry a negative opinion of ourselves. For example, […]

Low Self-Esteem: What is it? What to Do About it

Self-esteem is an opinion we have of ourselves; a way of placing value on ourselves as people. While we may voice characteristics such as “I’m American” or “I have brown eyes,” these are facts that don’t carry a negative or positive connotation.

A low self-esteem suggests we carry a negative opinion of ourselves. For example, “I’m unattractive” or “I’m not good enough.” Most of us have mixed opinions of ourselves, but if your overall opinion is that you are an inferior or inadequate in some way, if you feel you have little worth and are not entitled to experiencing good things in life, your self-esteem is low. Having a low self-esteem can damper the great joys in life and have a negative impact on your relationships in general.

People with healthy self-esteems feel good about and value themselves. They also take pride in their abilities and accomplishments and enjoy sharing their talents with others. And perhaps most importantly, those with healthy self-esteems acknowledge their imperfections but do not feel they play a large part in their own self-image. In other words, they don’t put too much emphasis on their faults and limitations.

How to Create a Healthy Self-Esteem

The good news is a low self-esteem is not a life sentence. Since your low self-esteem developed over time (no one is born with low self-esteem), you can trade it in for a higher one. Here are a few ways to do it:

1. Forget Perfection – Focus on Accomplishments

Perfection only happens in Hollywood (and even there it gets a lot of help from Beverly Hills plastic surgeons and airbrushes!). The truth is, you will never have the perfect body, the perfect house, the perfect kids, or the perfect relationships. Perfection simply doesn’t exist in human nature.

Better to focus your attention and efforts on your accomplishments. And, when you achieve them, don’t de-value them by saying something like, “Oh, anyone could have done that.” Maybe, but then again, maybe not. The point is, you set a goal for yourself and you reached it. Celebrate your achievements and keep track of them in a journal so you can always refer to it and see how accomplished you are.

2. Set Realistic Expectations

Of course, when you’re setting goals, make sure they’re realistic. Having unrealistic expectations of yourself or how the world works in general is a surefire way to kill your self-esteem.

For example, setting a goal like, “I will have enough money to retire by the time I’m 35,” may not be realistic. Then what happens? Your 35th birthday comes along and you are nowhere near retirement and you feel like a failure. What happened? You didn’t take into account that life throws you curveballs and that owning a home and having kids requires liquid capital (there goes the savings account!).

Don’t set yourself up for failure by having unrealistic expectations.

3. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Nothing hurts self-esteem quicker than unfair comparisons. Others may make more money than you, have more Facebook followers or six-pack abs, but they don’t have your mind and experiences. Though it’s a tough habit to break, it’s important to stop comparing yourself to others and, instead, celebrate how unique you are.

If you’ve tried these tips in the past but are still struggling with a low self-esteem, speaking with a counselor can help. If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

What is Play Therapy?

May 19, 2017

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than a year of conversation” – Plato What is Play Therapy? For a child, play is a safe medium for expressing feelings, exploring relationships, describing experiences, disclosing wishes, and self-fulfillment. Children’s language development lags behind their cognitive development, so they feel safe to […]

What is Play Therapy?

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than a year of conversation” – Plato

What is Play Therapy?

For a child, play is a safe medium for expressing feelings, exploring relationships, describing experiences, disclosing wishes, and self-fulfillment. Children’s language development lags behind their cognitive development, so they feel safe to communicate their awareness of what is happening in their world through their play. In play therapy toys are viewed as the child’s words and play as the child’s language–a language of activity. Play therapy to children is similar to counseling or psychotherapy to adults. In play therapy, the symbolic function of play is what is so important, providing children with a means of expressing their inner world. Emotionally significant experiences from a child’s inner world can be expressed more comfortably and safely through the symbolic representation the toys provide. Using this, counselors can experience the inner thought of the child.

Who can Benefit from Play Therapy?

Ages 3 – 12yrs benefit from Play therapy. All children go through stages of emotional distress. But some children can have serious problems, often caused by:

  • Loss of loved one
  • Family Conflict
  • Neglect
  • Family Violence
  • Abuse (Sexual, Emotional and Physical)
  • Divorce and Separation
  • Moving to a New School/Place
  • Bullying
  • Hospitalization
  • Learning Disabilities and Mental Challenges
  • Autism and ADHD
  • Chronic Illness
  • Deaf and other Physical Challenges
  • Burn Victims
  • Disassociation and Schizophrenia

Often the child needing help present the following traits or behaviors

  • Poor Academic Performance
  • Speech difficulties like Selective Mutism
  • Elimination disorders – E.g. Bedwetting after toilet training age
  • Sleep Issues – Bed time Anxiety, Nightmares
  • Fear of school
  • Test Anxiety
  • Excessive worry and sadness
  • Anger outbursts
  • Phobias
  • Anxiety when separation from caregivers
  • Relational conflict with parents, peers or siblings
  • Attachment Difficulties

How does it work?

Each play therapy session lasts 45-50 minutes and is usually held weekly. Studies have shown the average length of time for a child to receive play therapy is 20 weeks, although some children need fewer or additional sessions.

Benefits of Play Therapy

  • Children learn to accept ownership of their actions and responsibility for behaviors
  • Establish creative problem solving skills,
  • Acceptance of self and others
  • Identify and Express emotions in a healthy age appropriate way.
  • Self-regulation when in distress
  • cultivate relational skills with family,
  • Increase in Self Esteem

Reference: Adopted from Association of Play Therapy and American Counseling Association

If you want to explore Play Therapy for your child, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.

Do You Suffer from Anxiety? Yoga Can Help!

May 17, 2017

Life is full of moments that cause us to feel stressed or nervous. Getting up and speaking in front of a large group of people, starting a new school, and trying to ace that important job interview – all of these scenarios can make us fearful, resulting in sleepless nights and performance jitters. The problem […]

Do You Suffer from Anxiety? Yoga Can Help!

Life is full of moments that cause us to feel stressed or nervous. Getting up and speaking in front of a large group of people, starting a new school, and trying to ace that important job interview – all of these scenarios can make us fearful, resulting in sleepless nights and performance jitters.

The problem starts when this fear becomes persistent and overwhelming and interferes with everyday life. At this point “normal fear” becomes a full-blown anxiety disorder.

While a certified therapist should be consulted to develop a plan for treating your anxiety disorder, yoga is an effective and natural way to get some relief from symptoms like trouble sleeping, muscle tensions, and chronic digestive upset.

Yoga, it turns out, can help control anxiety in a few different ways:

1. Yoga Builds Confidence

Anxiety can result from a lack of confidence in our ability to handle negative situations, either real or theoretical, that may arise. We are not so much fearful of public speaking as we are fearful that we are somehow going to “screw up.”

Yoga is a major confidence-builder because it works to strengthen the body and mind at the same time. The practice includes body postures and breathing techniques, along with ancient meditation approaches, and combined, these can help a person feel calm, centered, and able to handle any situation that crops up in their life.

2. Yoga Distracts Your Mind from the Negative Loop

What can you do when your mind seems to be stuck on an endless loop of negative and worrisome thoughts? Distract with other thoughts.

Yoga trains a person to focus their thoughts on the moment, specifically by thinking only of their rhythmic breath. As soon as the mind wanders to its typical negative thinking, the practitioner simply guides it back to the breath without anger or judgement. Feelings of calmness and acceptance naturally follow intense breath work.

3. Yoga is like Your Inner Therapist

Yoga is a wonderful compliment to therapy because, like your therapist, yoga helps you to observe how your mind works. And, also like your therapist, there is no judgement involved. Mediation is simply about paying attention to the thoughts you are having, keeping the thoughts that are helpful and releasing those that are harmful.

Yoga and meditation will also help you to train your mind to focus on the positive aspects of your life. When you surround yourself with positivity, the fear of negativity subsides.

If you or a loved one is interested in exploring treatment for your anxiety disorder, please contact me today. I would be happy to speak with you about how I may be able to help.