On January 25, 2017 – Let’s Talk

Let’s Talk Day for this year is on January 25. This is a Bell initiative to raise awareness about mental health.

All too often people dealing with personal issues tend to handle it on their own. When clients come to see me they have usually contemplated a long time before reaching out for help. Sometimes they feel like their problem is too overwhelming that nobody can possibly help or understand them. Or they think that it is just something they should be able to overcome on their own. I have found that even a couple of sessions can go a long way in providing support, hope and healing.

I support and admire Bell’s initiative to break down the stigma around seeking out help because we all need it at some point in our life.

http://letstalk.bell.ca/en/

Dealing with Nightmares

I have found some easy and direct strategies that parents can use to help their child work through recurring nightmares. This short video addresses some simple ways that parents can help their child work through a nightmare. The key is to help your child create a sense of empowerment towards the nightmare and not be overtaken by it. This can usually be done through various methods like the re-telling of the nightmare in a way that the child in a position of empowerment.

Sometimes, there are also everyday issues that the child is dealing with (e.g., conflict at home or school, feeling rushed or overly tired, feeling alone) that needs to also be addressed.

Talking to Kids: Dealing with Aggressive Behaviours

It is not always easy to deal with the strong emotions of a child, especially if they are emotions of anger. In my work with parents, I address specific ways that parents can address such emotions depending on the needs and developmental stage of their child. The way such emotions are manifested and addressed with a preschooler or adolescent can be different. With tailored techniques to put into application, parents feel more equipped and less frustrated.

In this short video, I discuss one technique — the importance of holding the space for your child’s anger. Although this might feel counterintuitive, if done the right way and with the right intention, it can be very productive.

On January 27, 2016 – Let’s Talk Day

Let’s Talk Day for this year is on January 27. This is a Bell initiative to raise awareness about mental health.

All too often people dealing with personal issues tend to handle it on their own. When clients come to see me they have usually contemplated a long time before reaching out for help. Sometimes they feel like their problem is too overwhelming that nobody can possibly help or understand them. Or they think that it is just something they should be able to overcome on their own. I have found that even a couple of sessions can go a long way in providing support, hope and healing.

http://letstalk.bell.ca/en/

 

Calgary Floods Counselling

On June 21, 2013 our city was hit by the biggest flood in its history. Some have been affected more than others but the impact of the flood will be imprinted on all of us for many years to come.

I stepped out of my home the next day and was deeply touched by the impact of the flood. I was driving in one of the worst traffic jam I have ever been in on Deerfoot Trail but yet it felt really calm. People were not trying to pass, drive faster, constantly change lanes or getting frustrated behind the wheel. Instead people were looking around and trying to absorb the impact. Drivers were yielding to others and moving along in an orderly manner. It was peace amongst the chaos. For a moment, everyone had put their personal priorities and destinations to the side and surrendered to the greater need of the community. It is great to see how Calgarians have risen to the occasion to support each other.

We truly live in a wonderful city.

Living in the present

Living in the present is such a healing and lighter way of living your life. But what does it actually mean to live in the present? My clients sometimes ask: “does it mean that I cannot think about the past or the future?” Not at all. That is impossible. We live in a society where we need to think in the future in order to plan the next day, week or month. We also think about the past when we remember something we might have done yesterday or the week before.

Thinking about the past or present, in itself, is not the problem. It becomes a problem when we let the past and future dictate the present moment. I can say, for example, I did not feel good yesterday, so I find it hard to feel good today; or tomorrow I will be giving a presentation at work so I am nervous about it all day today. It is absolutely normal for our past and future to affect us but if it is affecting every single moment of the present, we are missing on what the present can offer.

Allowing the past or future to constantly dictate the present can be heavy and exhausting. The goal is to be aware of the past or the future, to simply note it, without letting it guide this very moment. I realize this is easier said than done. The first step to change though is awareness. You can start by noticing how often in your day you are living in retrospect or in anticipation of what is to come. Is it more than you would like to? Is it becoming exhausting? Do you find yourself thinking so much about the past and future that you are missing this very moment? Perhaps you are forgetful, absent-minded or feel anxious all the time. Such a way of living can create a lot of stress and anxiety for you and those around you. Various methods of mindfulness and meditation can be useful in helping you live more in the present.

Let’s Talk on Feb. 12

This initiative by Bell was started to raise awareness about mental health.

All too often people dealing with personal issues tend to handle it on their own. When clients come to see me they have usually contemplated a long time before reaching out for help. Sometimes they feel like their problem is too overwhelming that nobody can possibly help or understand them. Or they think that it is just something they should be able to overcome on their own. I have found that even a couple of sessions can go a long way in providing support, hope and healing.

Welcome

I am a psychologist practicing in Calgary, Alberta. I feel fortunate to do what I do. I decided to start this blog as a creative and light hearted way to briefly share information about counselling and the work I do. I will also share my thoughts about the latest research and news that have caught my attention; books, movies and quotes that have touched me; or simply about everyday life.

I hope this blog is informative and insightful. Enjoy!

Feel free to contact me or leave a comment or two.

Warmly,
Verlyne