3 Ways Therapy Will Help Your Mental Health

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Therapy. Commonly stigmatized, commonly ridiculed. I’m writing today in an attempt to undo this stigma.

Before we begin, it’s important to define all aspects of this conversation. Therapy is defined as treatment intended to relieve or heal extraneous circumstances. Our circumstances all vary: this meaning we don’t all attend therapy for the same reason or situation. Regardless, communicating with a professional therapist on a consistent basis has been proven to promote healing and emotional recovery. Let’s dive in:

  1. Dealing with your past: Therapy is a great way to uncover some of the emotional turmoil you might not be aware of. As you devote your thoughts to a session, the brain allows your body to feel emotions, both positive and negative ones. The emotionally centered feeling that you experience amidst a therapy session is indicative that the work is helping. If you experienced any relational trauma in your past, therapy is a sure-fire way to relieve and heal your wounds.
  2. Peace of mind: After a therapy session, it’s common to feel an overwhelming sense of peace. Following an emotional revisit to the issues of your past, you may achieve a sense of purpose and fulfillment knowing that you’re actively finding a solution to your problems. This will help you in the future when dealing with similar issues as you become increasingly equipped with the according tools.
  3. Forgiveness: Not only is therapy a great way to mend relationships with others, it can open your mind to forgiveness with those you no longer have contact with. Generally speaking, those who forgive and choose to accept the past as it occurred experience a healthier and happier life. Forgiveness is often overlooked but nonetheless an extremely beneficial byproduct of therapy.

We highly encourage you to get involved in therapy or a talk group. This article will serve to fulfill its purpose if even one person devotes an hour a week to therapy. We strive to instill positive change and improve your quality of life. Please consider.

Mindfulness: Liberating your Mind

Breathing is often the most overlooked thing humans do. It occurs naturally, and we hardly have to think about it, so why should we?

Self-induced therapy is the action of bringing oneself to a state of emotional tranquility without outside intervention. Often times when we need therapy or a helping hand, we’re alone: in bed, in a car driving, etc. There’s not much in the way of an on-hand therapist. Thus, it is necessary to become equipped with coping mechanisms in order to avoid an extreme, personal crisis.

One coping mechanism that has resided well with me is mindfulness breathing, hence the title. This exercise can be completed anywhere and anytime, preferably with a sense of privacy. Let’s begin.

For starters, find an area in which you feel exclusively comfortable: free from judgment, free from sound, free from distractions. Once you’ve arrived, find a comfortable spot to sit and take a minute to prepare your mind, whatever this means for you.

Next, assume a proper sitting position with both feet flat on the ground, shoulder width apart. Relax your neck and shoulders and begin to think of your favorite sound found in nature, whether that be a river flowing, the crickets chirping or the sound of horse’s hooves against hard-packed dirt.

Finally, breathe. Breathe deeply and focus completely on each breath. My favorite count to breathe to is in for 5 and out for 4, meaning counting to 5 as I breathe in and counting to 4 as I breathe out. Continue this process for 3-5 minutes, or longer if you need.

Come out of your meditation by opening your eyes and shaking out your arms and stretching. Feel better? More relaxed?

This type of meditation has provided me with extensive relief from day-to-day stressors, and I fall back on this exercise multiple times a day. It doesn’t need to be perfect, or even the same every time! Modify the exercise and add your own variations which help you relax the most.

Did you enjoy this exercise? Let us know by sending us an e-mail at collin.ullrich@stayforyourself.com, and we’ll be sure to respond within a day’s time. Breathe on 🙂

Fear of the Unknown

The unknown is a scary place: it provides a dark shell of fear for the visitor and wheel-barrows full of uncertainty. This stress eventually becomes so astounding it develops into anxiety, which can control our daily lives.

However, it doesn’t have to. Your life is in your hands, and you have the ability to define it. With proper coping mechanisms, therapy and perhaps some medication, anxiety will quickly become a thing of the past.

So, the question lingers, what is the purpose of anxiety? Many people, including myself, deal with anxiety and its symptoms on a regular basis: difficulty breathing, shaking legs, uncontrollable speech, racing thoughts, etc. It comes, and it goes. So, why? Why is this something we deal with?

To put it simply, anxiety is simply a survival mechanism that had a little too much caffeine. As you may know, the term “fight or flight” coins the idea that in order to survive, one must defend their ground or escape the situation as quickly as possible. Now, imagine a car horn that honks on its own, with little regard to the driver’s notion. Sound annoying? Anxiety is similar.

These symptoms can arise on moment’s notice and have very little empathy for those who are under it’s spell. It certainly can be triggered and induced by outside events, but it doesn’t always have to be. Symptoms of anxiety don’t need causation, and they certainly don’t ask for permission.

Now that you have a taste of anxiety and it’s power, I want to hear from you. How do you deal with your anxiety or stressful situations? What do you do to control your symptoms when you’re in public? In private? Let us know at collin.ullrich@stayforyourself.com. Strike up a conversation, and we’ll be sure to respond with in a day’s time.

Stay tuned for coping techniques that will change your anxiety before you know it!

Morning Mental Wellness

I’ll kick this blog off by giving you some mental wellness activities that have profoundly improved by mental stability – and frankly my life.

Each day, I dread getting out of bed. I wake up with a mask of fatigue and can’t summon the energy to desire the day. However, this activity has become increasingly addictive and has reserved a permanent spot in my morning routine.

I start this activity by grabbing a small sheet of paper, two highlighters and a pencil. I write down every single stressor or potential stressor that the day offers: being judged at the gym, losing a game of 8-ball, etc. It’s a pretty wide range.

Once I have all of them jotted down, I assign one highlighter to be my “in my control” color and the other to be my “out of my control” color. I highlight each stressor accordingly and take a look at my sheet once completed.

Unsurprisingly, most of the stressors are completely out of my control and the page is predominantly filled with the “out of my control” color. Wow, what a concept!

I quickly realize that much of what I worry about is ultimately out of my control and realize that there’s not much I can do without seeming intruding in my personal situations.

I encourage you guys to try this activity yourself and see just how many of your stressors are in your control!