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How to Decide Which Kind of Therapy Is the Best Option for You

Wednesday, October 11, 2017


If you picture therapy as laying on a couch talking about your feelings, then you need to read up on some of new therapeutic approaches available.What do you envision when you think of going to therapy? Do you picture someone lying on a couch while a psychologist sits next to him with a notepad and pencil in hand? While some approaches do utilize this method, there are numerous types of therapy that can be used to help you overcome challenges. In all cases, the goal of therapy is to provide an environment that allows the client and therapist to work together openly and honestly toward a mutually agreed upon set of goals.

If you are considering starting therapy, know that there are many different types of therapy you can utilize. The success of any therapeutic approach depends on the needs of you as an individual. For this reason, many therapists use elements of several approaches. Your therapy should feel comfortable to you even as it challenges you to progress and develop.

Understanding how different therapies work and operate will help you determine whether your needs are being met, or what type of therapy might give you better results. Here are a few of the many types of therapy available to you that I have found to be particularly effective for many clients:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy – This type of therapy addresses the way people think. The techniques are designed to change faulty, irrational thinking into more constructive, solution-oriented thinking.

Often people are stuck because they have a belief from childhood that keeps them from living the way they wished they could. During Cognitive Behavioral Therapy you are confronted with these beliefs and offered a new way of thinking about them. For example, just because your parents were divorced, does not mean you are incapable of learning the tools necessary for maintaining a satisfying relationship.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is usually considered short-term therapy. The reason for this is that the therapist is focusing on a specific problem. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy has been used successfully with a variety of issues from depression, to low self-esteem, to relationship dysfunction, to phobias, and anxiety. Once that problem is resolved, the therapy is complete unless there are other issues you with to work on.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) – This is a complex model of human communication. Essentially, there is a formula regarding how persons take in sensory impressions, organizes their impressions through memory and decision-making, and then translates those impressions into a response. NLP utilizes specific interventions and communications to change those responses to be more positive.

This system of therapy that enables people to reach more success in their chosen endeavors.  Goal-setting, negotiating, problem-solving, and creating become more streamlined and successful when you are equipped with a structure and formula to follow.

NeuroEmotionalTechnique (NET) – This type of therapy treats behavioral and physical conditions through identifying and removing the neurological imbalances related to the physiology of unresolved stress. Normally we process stress and let it go. Sometimes, however, a disruption and imbalance occurs.

For example, you drive in rush hour traffic daily, automatically taking evasive action or jamming on the brakes when necessary. Your hands may sweat, your heart pumps faster, adrenaline rushes through your body. Your body engages its “fight or flight” response. But after the event ends, you calm down and forget it.

However, when something disrupts this natural letting-go process, your body may produce that same stress reaction when it's triggered by a memory. Often you'll be unaware of the connection. This unresolved stress can cause physiological problems such as pain, allergies, and headaches. It may also cause psychological problems such as anxiety and depression.

A NET practitioner can pinpoint your very real physiological response (such as a racing heart and profuse sweating) to a stimulus (a situation that brings up the unresolved stress reaction memory). Once the system is brought back into balance, your mind and body can heal, relieving you of the symptoms caused by your unresolved stress.

Clinical hypnosis – This is a process used for treating psychological and physical problems. Through hypnosis a person achieves a relaxed state in which their conscious and unconscious mind become focused and ready to receive therapeutic suggestions. When used professionally, hypnosis is safe, relaxing, and refreshing.

Hypnosis can be used to assist you in resolving smoking and weight control, fears, depression, anxiety, stress, sexual problems, alcoholism, pain control, confidence building, memory and concentration, retrieving repressed memories, even to facilitate physical healing.


The first step is to get in contact with a trained therapist who can help you set goals, pinpoint what you want to work on, and formulate a treatment plan just for you. Please contact my office to set up an appointment. I have an office in Jantzen Beach where we could talk in person. Or take advantage of my online therapy option if that is a better fit for you. I can tailor therapy to your individual needs and goals to help you reach your full potential.

Women Entrepreneurs – Are You Afraid of Tooting Your Own Horn?

Monday, July 24, 2017


Business woman at meetingLook! The incredible invisible woman! She runs a successful company, has great friends and a loving family, but no one really hears about it. In spite of her accomplishments, she fades into the background by never taking true ownership of all the amazing things she has done.
 
Does that sound familiar? Do you find yourself deflecting attention, downplaying your accomplishments, or not taking full credit for your ideas?
 
I’ll give you an example of what I’m talking about. I was speaking with a married couple who ran a business together. I asked them to tell me their official business titles. Although the wife had started the business five years before the husband joined her, she told me she was a “Sales Associate.” The husband’s answer? He called himself the “Vice President.”
 
There was nothing wrong with what the wife said. She was an associate in the business, and she sold the product. But she did not own the fact that she ran a successful business.
 
Why don’t women give themselves the credit they deserve? A number of factors contribute to this tendency. From childhood girls are taught to work together, to build a community, to support others, all without being taught how to communicate about their accomplishments. Boys are usually encouraged to talk about personal goals and achievements, but that lesson often gets forgotten when raising girls.
 
Women also tend to fear being known as “not nice.” They avoid saying or doing things that could be viewed as aggressive or selfish. Unfortunately, when a woman touts her successes, it is often seen as bragging. So they put their ideas and victories in the background, not talking about them or even acknowledging them. When they do talk about their accomplishments, it is generally framed as a group achievement rather than an individual achievement.
 
Why should you learn to more effectively communicate about your accomplishments? Here are four reasons:

  1. Your business will grow. Leveraging your success and accomplishments is one of the best ways to continue to build your business. 
  2. Your relationships with your employees will improve. Resentment develops when you feel you are not being recognized. This resentment does not go unnoticed, and can lead to strained relationships with those around you. When you allow yourself to be recognized and appreciated, your relationships will benefi
  3. Other people will benefit. Did you ever think that concealing your true self deprives other people of your talents? It does! When others see who you really are and what you have and can accomplish, they can truly appreciate you and benefit by your talents. It also gives people a chance to rejoice with you in your success. Let others be happy for you – it will bring them joy, too.
  4. You invest in yourself. By expressing your accomplishments, you remind yourself and others of your worth. You will surround yourself with people who appreciate you instead of people who need you to appreciate them. This creates an energizing flow between people, just as wealth invested creates more wealth.

Don’t be afraid to talk about the amazing things you have done. The world needs what you have to offer, so learn to communicate about you effectively! If you could use some help getting past social barriers to promote yourself in the best way possible, please contact my office. I have an office in Jantzen Beach, and I also offer online therapy if that works best for your busy schedule.

Don’t Be Afraid to Seek Solitude to Refresh Yourself

Monday, May 01, 2017


Don’t be afraid to be alone with your thoughts, because only through productive solitude and introspection can you know yourself and find peace.Do you make time to be alone with your thoughts? Many people are actually afraid to allow such solitude. Any lull in a conversation and they have to jump in and say something. And when they’re alone, they’re always plugged in…to their phone, to music, to noise in the background. Quiet makes them nervous.

The Altlantic ran a recent article that said that embracing solitude can have huge psychological benefits as it helps you confront who you are and how you can “out-maneuver some of the toxicity surrounding you”. Yet it also reported on a study that a quarter of the woman participants and two-thirds of the men chose experiencing electric shock over being alone with their thoughts. That’s severe!

Clearly, many people are suppressing unresolved issues rather than facing them. While it can be uncomfortable or even painful to confront these issues, in the long run, your mental and physical health will improve if you allow yourself the time to process them. Many people find that enlisting the help of a trained mental health professional gives them the support they need to effectively resolve these stresses. (I’ve had wonderful success using NET – Neuro Emotional Technique to help my clients let go and move on.)

While it’s true that solitary confinement has been used as a punishment that can drive some people crazy, intentionally seeking solitude can be a rejuvenating experience if you know how to regulate your emotions effectively. Productive introspection let’s you get acquainted with yourself, one of the most important relationships you can have. Without such times of solitude you can develop a group mentality. Instead of thinking for yourself, you may let the group define who you are more than you think possible.

How can you find solitude in your busy life?

  • Rise before others and go for a walk outside as the sun rises.
  • Leave the radio off when you drive.
  • Start a practice of meditation.
  • Take solitary walks at lunchtime.
  • Make a day trip by yourself to wander around a contemplative place like the Portland Japanese Garden.
  • Turn off devices and journal about your thoughts in the evening.

The more you seek times of productive solitude the more pleasurable it will become. Some of the long-lasting benefits are that you’ll gain clarity on your priorities, desires, and needs. You’ll know who you are and what you stand for. You’ll reinforce your convictions and beliefs.

If the silence is too painful because you’re plagued by something that you can’t resolve, please seek the help of a trained professional. You deserve to enjoy life more fully. If you live near Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA please contact my office and schedule an appointment. Or if you’re an American living in a foreign land, please feel free to request remote counseling.

How to Be a Fearless Woman Business Owner

Tuesday, April 25, 2017


Woman standing in business suitAre you a woman business owner? You’re not alone. According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, in 2015, “More than 9.4 million firms are owned by women, employing nearly 7.9 million people, and generating $1.5 trillion in sales as of 2015.” That’s pretty impressive! Yet I find that so many successful businesswomen still feel inadequate at times.

Of course we all have different life experiences, and come from varied backgrounds and circumstances but there are certain fears that women frequently face as they run their business. What are they? And how can you conquer these fears so you think and act like a truly fearless leader?

Let’s examine three common fears and how to get past them:

1. Fear of not being viewed as “nice”. Women tend to avoid saying or doing things that could be viewed as aggressive or selfish. So they put their needs and desires in the background, not talking about them or even acknowledging them. Have you ever caught yourself doing this?

The problem is, when you don’t feel heard or recognized, resentment usually follows. Resentment grows quickly, and it doesn’t go unnoticed by those around you. When they feel the tension, but you’re not communicating what the problem is, it causes more tension and everyone just ends up feeling like they’re walking on eggshells around you – definitely not a pleasant, productive work environment.

The best gift you can give people you work with is to be clear with them about your goals and desires. Even if they don't agree with you they know where you stand. Nothing is hidden.

2. Fear of confrontation. This is closely tied in with the fear of being perceived as “not nice”. Women often will try to bury conflicts instead of actively resolving them. Perhaps you’ve done this before. You walk around as if everything is fine, when you are really upset. Maybe someone isn’t fulfilling their job duties, or you have an employee who is ten minutes late every day. It is an issue that needs addressing, but you just can’t bring yourself to do it.

Avoiding conflict can lead to serious problems. Issues can fester, and progress isn’t made. What began as a minor issue or annoyance will grow into a huge problem if it isn’t addressed quickly.

To move forward, you must firmly, but respectfully, confront the issue at hand. Acknowledge that there may be differing opinions, but insist that things get talked out. Keep talking until you reach a resolution. It may be that your difference of opinion is just what the system needs to be more profitable and productive.

3. Fear of failure. The idea of failure gives everyone some level of anxiety. As a woman, you feel failure differently. You fear failure in your business venture, but also worry about failing at your marriage or as a mother. Women place a high value on work-life balance, and a perceived loss of that balance can cause a woman to feel like a failure.

This particular fear can be paralyzing. It can prevent you from taking chances or growing your business. It keeps you from reaching out or taking on more responsibility. It holds you back from growing personally and professionally.

The next time the “what-if’s?” start taking over, take a minute for yourself. Be still, quiet, and let yourself feel the fear and anxiety. Then, once the emotions have settled, move forward and take action. Without risk and investment, there is no return. Without putting in a good deal of time and money, you wouldn’t have your company. Without your hard work at your company, your children would not have the future you want for them. Without putting your heart on the line, you wouldn’t have close relationships with your loved ones. Remind yourself of the good results of your past decisions. Have confidence that you can move forward to experience more positive results.

There are many other challenges that you as a woman business owner face, and other fears as well. If you know you could use someone to hold you accountable and help you push beyond your self-imposed boundaries I would love to work with you. If you live in the Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA area, please contact my office to set up an appointment.

How Negative Thinking Fans the Flames of Anxiety

Wednesday, October 19, 2016


Negative thoughts fuel the feelings of fear and anxiety, so when you suffer from OCD or panic, change your thought patterns and you change the way you feel.Negative thoughts are like pouring gasoline on a smoldering fire. Normally, anxiety, like the smoldering fire, will die down as you complete the letting go process. However, people who have developed anxiety disorders, such as panic attacks, phobias, or obsessive compulsions, have trouble processing things. In fact, their negative thoughts add fuel to their anxiety as they tend to jump to wrong conclusions or predict the worst case scenario.

However, if you suffer from an anxiety disorder, be assured you can identify and correct these negative thoughts and beliefs. You can change the way you think, thereby changing the way you feel. You’ll finally be able to douse and extinguish the fear and anxiety you feel.

How can you stop negative thoughts?

Identify negative thoughts. Do you perceive situations as more dangerous than they really are? It may not be so easy to see negative patterns in yourself, so one strategy is to ask yourself what you’re thinking when you start feeling anxious. Often it helps to have a mental health professional assist you in identifying your specific anxieties and negative thought patterns.

Challenge negative thoughts
. Evaluate these anxiety-provoking thoughts by asking yourself: Is there real evidence for your frightening thoughts and predictions? Are they founded in unhelpful beliefs? What are the pros and cons of worrying or avoiding the thing I fear?

Replace negative thoughts with realistic thoughts. Once you’ve identified the irrational or negative distortions in your anxious thoughts, replace them with new thoughts that are more realistic and positive, which is easier said than done. Often, negative thoughts are part of a lifelong pattern of thinking. It takes time and practice to break these habits. So don’t expect instant results, but be kind and patient with yourself.

Anxiety disorders are not all treated the same, and it’s important to determine the specific problem before embarking on a course of treatment. Your doctor will conduct a careful diagnostic evaluation to determine whether your symptoms are due to an anxiety disorder, which anxiety disorder(s) you may have, and what coexisting conditions, perhaps alcoholism, may be present. The coexisting condition will need to be treated at the same time or before treating the anxiety disorder. If you live near Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA please contact my office and schedule an appointment.

Read more on my website: Coping with Anxiety Disorders.
 

Exposure Therapy vs. NET – Which Produces Better Results for Anxiety?

Monday, October 17, 2016


Exposure Therapy vs. NET – Which Produces Better Results for Anxiety?Recently I mentioned exposure therapy as a treatment for PTSD, and some of you have been wondering what exposure therapy is and how it works. Here’s a summary of how exposure therapy works, plus an explanation of why I prefer NET (neuro emotional technique).

Fear and anxiety are debilitating states of mind. It causes a person to react in ways that they don’t want to. Often it causes the sufferers to avoid situations, even important events, if they know it will trigger these strong reactions. The problem with avoiding your fears is that you won’t have the opportunity to overcome them. To the contrary, it often makes them stronger.

Exposure therapy makes you confront the situations or objects you fear. A mental health professional will either ask you to imagine a situation that causes you anxiety, or you may literally confront it in real life. Of course, facing your biggest fear right away would only add to your trauma, so exposure therapy starts with a situation that’s only mildly threatening and works up from there. This step-by-step approach is called systematic desensitization. The idea is that through repeated exposures, you’ll gradually challenge your fears, build your confidence, and learn how to control the panic and anxiety.

NET has longer lasting benefits and is a much gentler approach.

First, it’s important to understand how your body reacts to stress. When something disrupts the natural letting go process, the mind and body holds onto this unresolved stress and continues to reproduce the same stress reaction when it's triggered by a stimulus or memory. Then the person experiences real physiological problems such as chronic pain, organ dysfunctions, neurological problems, musculoskeletal and immunological conditions, allergies, and headaches. It may also cause psychological problems such as phobias, depression, anxieties, ADD / ADHD, nightmares, disruptive behavior, fear of public speaking and more.

A NET practitioner treats the disruption with a homeopathic remedy that uses the verified law of pharmacology Law of Similars – or like cures like. For example, a large dose of ipecac will induce vomiting. However, minute particles in a homeopathic remedy will stop vomiting. Once the system is brought back into balance, your body and mind can heal itself relieving you of the headaches, chronic pain, phobia or whatever symptom is caused by this unresolved stress.

NET helps you re-engage the physiological response and complete the unresolved mind/body pattern of stress and extinguish it. Rather than making you relive the experience, N.E.T utilizing Manual Muscle Testing, which pinpoints your very real physiological response (such as a racing heart and profuse sweating) to a stimulus (a situation that brings up the unresolved stress reaction memory). This accesses how emotions affect the way your body works and helps identify the best way to resolve the issue.

In order to help my clients obtain lasting relief, I’ve trained to be a Level 2 Certified NET Practitioner. If you’re ready to get your life back, please seriously consider NET as a highly effective alternative treatment for PTSD and anxiety. And if you live near Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA please feel free to contact my office and schedule an appointment.

Read more on my website: Coping with Anxiety Disorders.

Is a Fear of Flying Keeping You from Living Life Fully?

Friday, June 24, 2016


If you fear flying and it’s keeping you away from visiting loved ones, attending important events, or career obligations, then it’s time to conquer the fearRecently, one of my readers shared a valuable resource with us, and we’d like to share it with you. It’s an article entitled: The Psychology of the Fear of Flying and How to Overcome It.

Many people refuse to board a plane. They would rather not go to an important event rather than confront their fear of flying. Or they opt for the more inconvenient or time-consuming means of travel such as automobile or train.

In their article, you’ll see whether fear of flying is a phobia or a rational fear. You’ll also discover a number of triggers and how the psychology of a fear of flying works. It also discusses ways to overcome the fear of flying. Here are a few highlights:

  • Curb your imagination.
  • Think about the destination, not the journey.
  • Meditate to calm yourself.
  • Challenge negative thoughts.
  • Drink plenty of water and limit alcohol and caffeine.
  • Accept that you cannot control everything.
  • Maintain a positive attitude.
  • Talk to the cabin crew.
  • Learn about what is triggering your anxiety.
  • Study positive information about flying and the fear of flying.
  • Talk to someone about the problem.

I also appreciated the information for helping children overcome their fear of flying so that it doesn’t become a phobia. Here are a few highlights:

  • The most important thing to do is to talk to your child and to slowly introduce them to the thought of flying.
  • Explain what turbulence is, fog and other things which might affect the flight.
  • Take them to the airport to watch real planes take off and land.
  • Let them bring a comfort item, books and toys for distraction.

Miami Helicopter also shares a vast amount of sources, so you can learn more. I encourage you to read their article. I can’t imagine the richness of life I would miss if I refused to fly. Fears and phobias can be overcome. If this is something you struggle with and you live near Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA please feel free to contact my office and schedule an appointment.

Read more on my website: Conquering Fears and Phobias.

Discover Neuro Emotional Technique to Make Emotional and Even Physical Healing Possible

Wednesday, February 03, 2016


Discover Neuro Emotional Technique to Make Emotional and Even Physical Healing PossibleIt’s said that we all carry scars – scars from past emotional and physical wounds that shape who we are today. How you remember a past, painful occurrence will determine your present ability to experience emotional health.

If you’ve properly processed the negative past and extinguished it, it won’t present itself as a problem for you now. Oftentimes, however, if the original conditioning event is not processed correctly, you’ll experience a physiological response each time you experience that event.

For example, physiologist Pavlov conditioned dogs to associate the sound of a bell with the sight and smell of meat. So each time the dogs heard the bell, they would salivate. They were conditioned to respond in that specific way because of their memory of what the bell represented.

When clients are asked to re-experience a past emotion, such as anger or fear, they’re being asked to go back and relive a memory. By reliving that memory, they produce a feeling. And that feeling can be used by a NET Practioner to help a client overcome a phobia, resolve life-altering stresses, and heal mental disorders.

Scientific research is connecting the dots between painful events, stress, and the physiological changes to the brain. As the Dec 2015 study “Could Stress Contribute to Pain-Related Fear in Chronic Pain” stated:

“A difference between acute and chronic stress is supported by data outside of the pain field: Early adversity as well as chronic stress has been linked to structural alterations in the brain causing a hyperactive amygdala and impaired prefrontal inhibition. These alterations could underlie the extinction impairments observed in several mental disorders, which is interesting in the context of chronic pain given the high comorbidity between chronic pain and affective disorders. Finally, effects of acute stress on pain-related memory retrieval may be fundamentally different in normals and patients with chronic pain. While stress-induced effects in normals are adaptive, they may be altered and in fact maladaptive and in patients with chronic pain. For example in patients with PTSD, cortisol enhanced rather than impaired memory retrieval.”

Paradoxically, we can use the power of past, negative events to help us heal our present. The job of a NET practitioner is to gently help a client go to that place of unresolved negativity so he or she can complete a process that allows them to move forward from that painful place.

If you live near Portland, OR/Vancouver, WA please contact my office and schedule an appointment. As a NET practitioner, I will help you remove the block, so your body can repair itself naturally.

Read more on my website: Releasing Unresolved Stress.


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