Each of the tabs below walks you through the different modules I use with clients in the first 12 weeks of counseling.
- Understanding Symptoms
- Mind-Body Connection
- Emotion Regulation
- Distress Tolerance
- Addressing Unhelpful Thoughts
- Acceptance, Commitment and Purposeful Action
- Goal Setting
- Behavior Modification
- Interpersonal Effectiveness
- Relapse Prevention
Assessment activities will help you identify all of the things which may contribute to your current issue, but also what things you have done in the past which have helped. This section ends by compiling what you learn into an initial action plan to get you feeling better fast.
As you learned in the assessment module, there are several symptoms that are common to anxiety, anger, depression and addiction. In this module, you will take a closer look at what might cause each symptom, so you can start identifying which "threads" you want to start pulling to unravel your unhappiness.
The Mind-Body Connection module will help you learn more about how your mood impacts your health, energy, pain levels, and sleep, and how all of those things impact your mood.
Vulnerabilities are situations like pain, illness, poor nutrition, lack of sleep and chronic stress which make you more vulnerable, or likely, to react strongly to stressors. To be happy, you need to prevent vulnerabilities when possible, but also know how to adjust when you are vulnerable to prevent further distress.
Mindfulness is simply taking yourself off autopilot so you are aware of your thoughts, needs and feelings in the present moment. You will gain an awareness of how you impact your environment and other people and how they impact you. You will also reduce how much energy you spend worrying about the future and fretting about the past.
Emotion regulation puts together mindfulness and your awareness of vulnerabilities to help you develop a plan to prevent emotional upheaval whenever possible and deal with unpleasant physical and emotional feelings when they do occur.
As you learned in prior modules, distress is sometimes inevitable. Distress Tolerance skills helps you endure or cope with emotional or physical distress without having to act impulsively. Distress tolerance skills teach you that, while the current moment may be painful, it will change and you can survive it.
Unhelpful thoughts are at the root of many people's unhappiness. In this module, you will examine some common thinking errors and ways to combat them. Your thought have a direct impact on your feelings, and your feelings validate your thoughts. Think about seeing a snake. If you think the snake is dangerous, you will feel scared. This will encourage you to remember all the dangerous things about snakes which will make you more scared. However if you believe the snake is harmless, you will feel relaxed (or maybe even curious) which will encourage your thoughts about how helpful snakes are.
This module will assist you in putting together everything you have learned at this point to help you deal with situations when they arise. You will learn how to use mindfulness to be aware of your thoughts, needs and feelings in the present moment. You will use distress tolerance to deal with the initial rush of emotion until you can clear your head and make an informed choice. Then you will use your knowledge of preventing and addressing vulnerabilities, addressing unhelpful thoughts,and adding helpful thoughts in order to help you get closer to your ultimate goals and be true to your values.
The matrix is a tool that will help you make practical decisions about how to handle situations based upon your goals and values. LEARN MORE HERE
Goal setting involves clarifying what your goals are and effectively breaking them down into manageable steps. Using what you learned about motivation , it is then important to make sure you have sufficient rewards to continue achieving your goals.
Many goals you set involve changing a behavior or a behavioral reaction. This module will present a very basic introduction to increasing positive behaviors, reducing negative behaviors and maintaining motivation through reinforcement.
No change occurs unless you are motivated. However, even once you are motivated, that motivation can wane. This module helps you understand the 5 types of motivation, and how to increase and maintain it in order to keep moving toward your goals.
Interpersonal Effectiveness encompasses a variety of topics that will help you identify what you need, develop skills to communicate what you need and learn how to solve problems in the most effective way to help you meet your goals.
can help you figure out how to deal with whatever life throws at you. One of the keys is to alwayshave clarity about your ultimate destination and continually ask yourself, "How can I resolve this problem or how I feel about this problem in a way that will keep me moving toward my goals?" LEARN MORE HERE
Relapse Prevention Tools will help you identify triggers and cravings and take everything you have learned about yourself to this point and develop a plan to prevent returning to old behaviors and feelings.
This section compliments the above basic resources. A new section is created (or filled out) with each podcast. The video and worksheets corresponding to each podcast will be uploaded the same day the podcast is released.