These small snippets will give you a taster of some areas of therapy and mental health issues and here I share letters G – M.
Grief is a natural response to loss. It’s the emotional suffering you feel when something or someone you love is taken away, it can be experienced by the loss of anything including loss of a job, illness or disability leading to a loss of who you once were, the loss of a relationship breakdown and loss of dignity. You may experience all kinds of difficult and unexpected emotions, from shock or anger to disbelief, guilt, and profound sadness.
There are five stages of grief that were first proposed by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her 1969 book On Death and Dying. They are: Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression and Acceptance. Not everybody will experience these stages or will experience the five stages in order and this is perfectly ok and normal, no two people are the same and everybody grieves differently. You might only need a few weeks or take years to process your emotions.
Coping with loss is ultimately a deeply personal experience and while nobody can help you go through it more easily or understand all the emotions that you’re going through, it is important that you seek help and support from a counsellor who can sit with you and help you through this difficult and emotional time.
Our conscious mind is our present awareness. It is the part of our mind that makes decisions, the place of temporary memory, the memory we use every day to function. The subconscious mind however, stores all of our previous life experiences, memories and skills. It is responsible for the feelings and emotions that we suddenly feel when faced with a new situation such as anxiety and fear. It is our auto-pilot that enables us to carry out our daily tasks and everyday lives, freeing our conscious mind, and so enabling us to progress further and learn new skills.
Through hypnosis it is possible to put the conscious mind to sleep for a while and place new information directly into the subconscious. It is used to treat a wide range of conditions, issues, and unwanted/unhealthy behaviors, such as:
- Sleep Disorders
- Cessation of Smoking
- Weight Loss
If you would like to learn more about hypnosis and how it might help you, then contact me for a free 30 minute consultation.
The initial consultation is a time for the therapist to learn as much about your needs and expectations as possible, for you to decide if therapy is right for you and whether or not you want to proceed. You may be feeling nervous and stressed but please remember that the therapist is there to provide a relationship of warmth, trust and mutual regard and giving them as much details as possible, will help them to provide the best treatment for you.
I offer a free 30 minute consultation in which we will go through your history and the issues that have bought you to therapy. It will also be a chance to ask me any questions and for you to find out all about me and how I work.
Carl Jung founded analytical psychology, advancing the idea of introvert and extrovert personalities, archetypes and the power of the unconscious. He believed that the human psyche had three parts: the ego, personal unconscious and collective unconscious, a second, deeper layer of our experiences as a species, a kind of knowledge we are all born with but can never be directly conscious of. This is the uncontrollable, inherited part of the human psyche which is made up of patterns (archetypes) common to all humanity.
In Jungian therapy, these patterns can explain why we have habits we cannot break, such as addictions, depression and anxiety. Through the process of self-awareness, transformation and actualisation, Jungian therapy can help individuals see what is out of balance in their psyche and empower them to consciously make changes that will help them to become more balanced and whole
A key aspect of Jungian psychotherapy is understanding the relationship between the individual and their psyche, by bringing elements of it into consciousness. Jung asserted that the unconscious is expressed via archetypes – innate projections that are cross-cultural and universally recognised and understood. These organise how human beings experience certain things and are evidenced through symbols found in our dreams, religion and art.
Although Jung believed that there was no limit to the number of archetypes that may exist, he did identify four major ones within all humans.
1. The self
The self represents the unification of the unconscious and conscious parts of the mind. It is thought to be the central governing archetype of the human psyche.
The creation of self is to live to the fullness of our being – something that is typically achieved in our lifetime.
2. The persona
The persona refers to how we present ourselves to the outside world. It is not our real self and instead tends to be the good impression we want to put across to others. Alternatively, it may be a false impression – a version of ourselves that we use to manipulate people’s opinions and behaviours.
3. The Anima/Animus
These are the second most prevalent archetypes. Whilst the anima represents the ‘feminine’ qualities of the male psyche, the animus represents the ‘masculine’ qualities in women. Jungian analysis assumes that all men have feminine components in their psyche and vice versa. It is also believed that these archetypes are representations of our true selves – the route to our souls – and the source of all our creativity.
4. The shadow
This archetype reflects deeper, darker elements of our psyche – our repressed ideas, instincts, weaknesses, shortcomings and desires. Jung believed these latent dispositions are found in all human beings and will appear in our dreams or visions, taking a variety of forms (i.e. appearing as a specific animal or event). These experiences will often reveal deeper thoughts and fears.
Jungian therapy is a talking therapy, but there are various methods of exploration used throughout the process and if you would like to find out more about this specific approach please contact me.
Kindness is defined as the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate. Affection, gentleness, warmth, concern, and care are words that are associated with kindness and while kindness has a connotation of meaning someone is naive or weak, that is not the case.
Kindness is being generous with others, giving your time, money, and talent to support those who are in need.
Kindness is being compassionate, which means to really be there for someone, listening intently to their suffering or just sitting with them and silently supporting them.
Kindness is also being nurturing and caring to others — to enjoy doing favours for them, to take care of them, and to perform good deeds.
When we’re kind, our brains release opiates, serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin – the source of that warm, fuzzy glow of kindness or “helpers’ high.” Peering into a kind brain, we see activation in the same brain regions that light up when we receive a gift. When we give, we feel like we’re getting a reward.
Kindness is treating yourself as you would anyone else you care about. We usually talk about and hear about kindness in relation other people, but kindness towards yourself is just as important. How often you treat yourself kindly and say kind things to yourself?
Kindness to yourself is perhaps the most important form of kindness, it makes us calmer and happier, and it’s from this positive attitude toward the self that we can turn toward others and be kind to them as well.
What’s the most recent kind thing you did? The most recent kind thing someone did for you? Share them with me on my Facebook page: www.facebook.com/alisonisaacstherapy
Low self-esteem is characterized by a lack of confidence and feeling badly about oneself. People with low self-esteem often feel unlovable, awkward, or incompetent and have a fragile sense of self that can easily be wounded by others.
Some causes of low self-esteem may include: Unhappy childhood where parents (or other significant people such as teachers) were extremely critical. Poor academic performance in school resulting in a lack of confidence. Ongoing stressful life event such as relationship breakdown or financial trouble. The signs of low self-esteem to keep an eye out for are: Difficulty speaking up and prioritizing your own needs, wants, and feelings, Saying “I’m sorry” and/or feeling guilty for everyday actions, Not “rocking the boat”, Not feeling deserving of, or capable of, having “more” and Difficulty making your own choices.
If you have low self-esteem for a long time, you may find it affects your mental health. It can lead to conditions such as depression, anxiety, self-harm and eating disorders. Some of the signs of low self-esteem, like feeling worthless and blaming yourself can also be symptoms of these conditions.
You may find low self-esteem makes it difficult to socialise which can lead to isolation. Feeling isolated and lonely can make you feel worse mentally. Some people will turn to unhelpful habits and behaviours to try and cope with low self-esteem, including drinking too much alcohol and abusing drugs.
Building self-esteem and navigating the mental health implications can be difficult to do alone. Working with a trained professional such as a counsellor can help you understand where your opinion of yourself stems from and how to challenge limiting beliefs. Developing more awareness of your personal history and how this impacts who you are today can be eye opening
If you are struggling with low self-esteem and confidence at the moment and think you could benefit from some support, please contact me to arrange a consultation.
Mindfulness practices are not new and have origins in the contemplative traditions of Asia, especially Buddhism, it can be described as the practice of paying attention in the present moment and is intentional and non-judgmental.
Mindfulness is a type of meditation in which you focus on being intensely aware of what you’re sensing and feeling in the moment. Practicing mindfulness involves breathing methods, guided imagery, and other practices to relax the body and mind and help reduce stress. Research has shown that mindfulness helps us reduce anxiety and depression. By teaching awareness for our physical and mental state in the moment, mindfulness allows for more adaptive reactions to difficult situations.
Mindfulness works through a number of ways and encourages us to open up and accept our emotions.
Counselling with me can help you understand how to introduce mindfulness into your life to help you cope better.
Look out for my next instalment soon and if you want to continue to learn more about counselling, hypnotherapy and how I can help you please follow me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/alisonisaacstherapy/
Alison Isaacs is an NCS accredited counsellor and clinical hypnotherapist working from her therapy room in Basingstoke. At Alison Isaacs Therapy I offer short term and open ended counselling for most difficulties but really enjoy working with anxiety, stress, depression and low self-esteem.