Have you ever felt like you were trapped in your own mind? Do you struggle with mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, or ADHD? If your answer is yes, then you’re certainly not alone. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, approximately one in five adults in the United States experiences mental illness each year. However, did you know that your body language could have an enormous impact on your mental health? A recent New York Times article titled “Want to Fix Your Mind? Let Your Body Talk” details the various ways in which we can use our bodies to improve our mental health. At PPG, the integration of somatic approaches is key to our approach to mental health particularly in the treatment of trauma and anxiety. Give us a call to find out how this approach might be able to help you.
Loneliness is a problem that is all too common in the modern world. According to a recent article in the New York Times, Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy has written a new report about the health risks of loneliness and strategies to feel less lonely.
The Health Risks of Loneliness
Contrary to popular belief, loneliness is not just a mental health issue, it can also have physical consequences. According to the Surgeon General’s report, loneliness is associated with a higher risk of:
Depression and anxiety
Strategies to Combat Loneliness
The good news is that there are many strategies that can help combat loneliness. Here are some of the recommendations from the Surgeon General’s report:
Strengthen existing relationships
One way to feel less lonely is to strengthen your existing relationships. This might mean spending more time with friends and family, or reaching out to people you have lost touch with.
Join groups and organizations
Joining groups and organizations is another way to combat loneliness. This might mean joining a club based on your interests, volunteering, or attending religious services.
Practicing mindfulness can help you feel more present and connected. This might mean meditating, breathing exercises, or simply taking time to focus on your thoughts and feelings.
Seek professional help
If you are struggling with loneliness, it may be helpful to seek professional help. A therapist or counselor can provide guidance and support as you work through your feelings.
Loneliness is a problem that affects millions of people, but there are actions that can be taken to combat it. As the Surgeon General’s report shows, strengthening relationships, joining groups, practicing mindfulness, and seeking professional help are all effective strategies to feel less lonely and improve overall health and well-being. So, if you’re feeling lonely, don’t hesitate to try these recommendations and seek support.
Neurologist, Dr. Lisa Shulman, describes the impact of grief and trauma on the brain in this article in Live Science. Through repeated stimulation of the limbic system, the seat of the body’s fight-or-flight response, we can become hypervigilant and highly sensitized to perceived threat. The good news is that therapy can help to calm these stress responses and “rewire” limbic reactivity to appropriate levels.
This is a question we get asked a lot. As any parent knows, it’s a complicated question with no simple answer. Here with some ideas on the subject is ADDitude, a go-to resource for parents of neurodivergent kids. The key takeaways here are that for neurodivergent and typical kids alike content and context matter. This article identifies warning signs and encourages engagement and dialogue to better understand how your teen is using the platforms and what is the impact.
In this Psychology Today piece, Dr. Alex Wills is making one of our favorite points that negative emotions get a bad rap. Instead of trying to fix or dismiss difficult feelings, naming them and learning to tolerate them can provide the validation that actually helps us to move on sooner.
We are excited to announce that due to our continued local growth and expansion, we will be welcoming clients at 400 King Street in Chappaqua on February 1st. The new location features more dedicated treatment space for children as well as adults and couples and allows us to expand our increasing array of psychological services. Located at the crossroads of Pleasantville and Chappaqua and with a private parking lot for easy access, you’ll have no trouble finding us. We can’t wait to see you there!
This article in Psychology Today called “’I’m Normal’ and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves” points out that, while we feel normal to ourselves, we often project what it’s like to be us onto other people. It’s an interesting read with relevance in today’s social backdrop, and we recommend you check it out.
Key takeaways include:
- Averages lie. Even when looking to data to see what is ‘normal’, psychologists often find themselves with flawed statistics that don’t really represent anyone’s experience.
- There is no “normal” in mental disorders either. For example, there are more than 1,000 different symptom patterns found in people with depression alone.
Normal is not the goal. Healthy is the goal and it’s customizable.
This Psychology Today article is called “How to Ease Back Into Social Contact” and we think it may be helpful for, well, all of us. Most of our interaction this past year has been over zoom, and aside from the occasional bubble, we’ve all had very little contact with other people.
Some key takeaways and tips include:
- “Addressing the awkwardness.” People respond well to the authenticity, and if you address the elephant in the room, chances are the people around you were feeling the same thing and will appreciate your candor.
- “Go at your own pace.” This is a good tidbit for any type of social anxiety, but it’s a also a good reminder that you don’t have to attend every work function or office get together.
- “Visualizing a positive interaction.” When it comes to socializing, what you bring to the table can have a big influence on how something turns out. Even something as simple as picturing yourself talking to someone with ease can yield good results.
This Psychology Today article is called “Getting Out of Your Own Way: Bias and Self Defeating Actions.” Research shows the self-criticism is rarely, if ever, an effective way to change behavior. What’s a good alternative then for when you fall short of your goals and standards? This article would argue self-compassion.
Key takeaways include:
- Understanding the difference between ‘self compassion’ and ‘self pity’.
- Strategies to make self-compassion a habit. It’s one thing to be nice to yourself in times of hardship. It can be a challenge to do it consistently but well worth the effort.
Foster self-compassion by checking out our individual therapy services
This Psychology Today article is called “Painfully Self-Critical? Try These 3 Self-Compassion Tips.” Self-compassion, or positive affirming self-talk to use we fall short of our goals, is an incredibly therapeutic tool to have in our repertory. Still, it’s one thing to want to be self-compassionate, it’s another to build it into practice. This article goes over some strategies for being self-compassionate in our day-to-day lives. It’s a good read and we recommend you check it out. Take a look at our individual therapy services to help get you started on the road to greater self-compassion.