How Do You Manage Stress?

Image

Do you retreat into your shell and shut yourself off leaving you no access to the outside world? Or do you reach out to find social support?

While it may seem appealing to crawl into a corner and shut the world out when stressed, it is actually less beneficial to your physical and mental well-being. Retreating when stressed may increase your chances of weight gain or loss, high blood pressure, depression, and anxiety.

On the flip side, reaching out to friends and family for social support is highly beneficial for both your physical and mental well-being. Pursuing social interaction when stressed decreases illnesses, depression, and anxiety. In addition, the larger and more diverse your circle of friends, the better it is for your overall health.

Counseling is an option that allows you to “socialize” by talking to someone and venting about your stress. Not to mention it is very favorable for your mental health. By seeking counseling for stress, you may learn new techniques to incorporate into your everyday life, and reduce the negative results of stress.

Get help now! Visit our website today: http://www.starpointcounselingbrandon.com, or http://www.starpointcounselingtampa.com

Or call now to schedule an appointment with one of our skilled counselors: (813) 244-1251

Advertisements

Just Laugh

Image

Shame is a universal emotion. We all experience it at some time or another. Sometimes shame causes people to react in anger or aggression. Other times people become embarrassed and try to hide their shame. These ways of dealing with shame are not healthy. In fact, hidden shame can be damaging and can cause serious struggles for an individual as well as for groups; struggles that are behind many of the behaviors currently occurring in our society. 

Shame can affect a person’s self-worth. Being told ‘shame on you,’ for example, can destroy an individual’s sense of value. “Emotions are like breathing and cause trouble when obstructed,” says Thomas Scheff, professor emeritus of sociology at University of California, Santa Barbara. 

Scheff examined the ubiquity of hidden shame in an article published in the journal of Cultural Sociology. He suggests it may be one of the keys to understanding contemporary society. According to Scheff a society that fosters individualism (like ours) provides a ripe breeding ground for the emotion of shame because people are encouraged to “go it alone, no matter the cost to relationships,” he said.

In exploring the connection between shame and aggression, Scheff cites research conducted by sociologist Neil Websdale, author of Familicidal Hearts: The Emotional Styles of 211 Killers. “Familicide, the act of one spouse killing the other as well as their children and often himself or herself, stems from unacknowledged shame,” Scheff said.

What is even more interesting about the study, is the finding that there is a minority group of non-angry people. These people lose their job and feel humiliated, then pretend as though they are continuing to go to work every day, but they are actually planning the killing. They are known as the ‘civic respectable.’

On the contrary, shame is actually a very useful emotion and is in fact the basis of morality. Shame provides a weight for morality. Ever heard the phrase “listen to your conscience?” When you make a decision based on your conscience it is usually backed up by shame.

Instead of allowing yourself to succumb to shame, give yourself permission to laugh. Laugh at yourself often. Laugh at the universe. Laugh at your circumstance. As long as you are not laughing at others you cannot go wrong. Laughter is good for your health. It relaxes the body, boosts your immune system, triggers the release of endorphins, and protects the heart.

 

To learn more about the study, click this link: http://psychcentral.com/news/2014/03/17/resolve-hidden-shame-with-humor/67210.html

For more information on Mental Health Counseling, visit our website: http://www.starpointcounselingbrandon.com, or http://www.starpointcounselingtampa.com

Teen Pregnancy & Mental Health

Image

Low self-esteem, early use of alcohol and drugs, and living in a home with frequent family conflict are some of the risk factors that increase the likelihood of teen pregnancy. Additionally, adolescent girls with a major mental health disorder are three times more likely to get pregnant than those without a mental illness. According to a study published in the journal Pediatrics, pregnancy rates among girls with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or major depression were not only three times higher, but they also have been declining at a far slower pace than those for adolescent females without a mental health diagnosis. 

“Although we do know some of the risk factors behind why girls with mental health illness may be at increased risk of becoming pregnant, pregnancy-prevention programs in most developed countries have not traditionally considered mental health issues,” said lead author of the study Dr. Simone Vigod, a psychiatrist at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto.

“Girls with major mental health problems are more likely to have social problems and drug and alcohol problems — problems with impulsivity, feeling badly about themselves,” she said. For example, a teen suffering from depression may find it difficult to protect herself from pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections with a boyfriend because of low self-esteem. The problem here is the teen girl is experiencing negative feelings about herself to the point that she is unable to assertively advocate the use of condoms or abstinence.

Interventions such as targeted school-based sex-education programs, and greater integration of reproductive care into adolescent mental health care programs are highly recommended. Seeking mental health counseling for your teen, and utilizing these programs will help to reduce teenage pregnancy.

You can read the entire article here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/teens-with-mental-health-issues-have-higher-risk-of-pregnancy-study-1.2530354

For more information on Mental Health Counseling, visit our website: http://www.starpointcounselingbrandon.com, or http://www.starpointcounselingtampa.com

Fighting Big = Big Resolution

Image

Some say that having a screaming match with their partner is effective, because it shows that there is passion in the relationship. But can having big fights with your partner end in big resolutions?

Disagreements are normal and can even strengthen relationships, if resolved in a healthy manner. In close relationships, feeling frustrated, misunderstood, or having differences in opinion is natural. Therefore, it is expected that there may be an emotional combustion. By fighting big (i.e. arguing), this allows for stressors to be released, and in turn, leads to a solution. Boundaries can be established as a result of these differences, and partners can establish their own fighting style to effectively approach these conflicts.

According to a recent study published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, couples in satisfying relationships who have negative communication, are more likely to have bigger conflicts, but this is usually followed by bigger resolutions by both partners. An internet questionnaire was given to couples in a satisfying relationship, and to couples in an unhappy relationship. The self-reported data from the questionnaire relayed how the couples felt during the conflict and how they currently feel about it. This was used as a measure of the progress the participants made toward progress.

Results revealed that the presence of negative communication in satisfying relationships was associated with bigger conflicts, but that these conflicts were generally followed by big resolutions. However, the presence of negative communication in unhappy relationships was associated with big conflicts, as well as trouble finding a resolution, regardless of the type of communication they used. These findings highlight how a couple can have a big fight, feel upset, reach an argument, and then feel happy with one another again. A much stronger predictor of progress toward conflict resolution is a person’s level of relationship satisfaction. Conclusively, keeping a feeling of satisfaction alive in a relationship is more important than the type of communication used to resolve conflicts.

You can read the entire article from Medical Daily here: http://www.medicaldaily.com/relationship-issues-why-happy-couples-who-have-big-fights-also-have-big-resolutions-269239

For more information on Couples Counseling, visit our website at http://www.starpointcounselingbrandon.com, or http://www.starpointcounselingtampa.com