Parenting Tip: Body Positivity

Parenting is about being mindful about what we say and do. Being mindful isn’t always easy though because we are human too. Even if we are mindful, sometimes things slip out leading body positivity heading out the door. Parents of girls really need to be cautious about how they talk about weight, bodies, and diet, whether about themselves or someone else.

Girls are listening to you even when you think they aren’t. Even girls as young as 5! You are their primary role model around many aspects of their life, especially around body image, self esteem, and health. They are getting fed a ton of messages each day that is unconsciously and consciously shaping their beliefs and attitudes. Let the messages you are giving them be ones of empowerment, self love, unconditional love for them, self acceptance, and the ability to make healthy changes. Model these messages everyday. And when you mess up, make some repair.

Want some local resources on how to help support your girl in being body positive? Remember, parenting is no easy task, and we can use professional help to get your girl all the support and info she needs to help her in feeling good about who she is, inside and out!

The Private Practice Fundamentals Group Starting This March!

A Group by sierra dator

Anxiety and Depression

black and white of man standing in front of a large windowDepression and anxiety are like brother and sister. For many folks, it seems like you cannot have one without the other. It is often hard to distinguish what came first.

So often, people want their symptoms to just go away. NO MORE ANXIETY. But the reality is, certain levels of anxiety are normal and serve a purpose. Anxiety serves us well when we are going out to our parked car and decide to wait for a friend to walk out with us. Anxiety can actually help keep us safe in a lot of instances and inform us of what we need to pay attention to.

When anxiety doesn’t serve us well is when it impacts our daily life to the point where we cannot go out to the car, go out at night, go to work, go to school, be with friends, and so on. When it gets in the way of things we really want to do, anxiety is a problem.

Depression follows suit. When it gets in the way of doing the things we want to do and people we want to be with, it is a problem. When we can’t get out of bed, can’t put food in our stomach, feel like we are so agitated we want to rip someone’s face off, that can be seen as a problem.

Some people are so anxious they start to feel depressed, while others feel so depressed they start to become anxious.  When getting in the way of life, it is important to talk with someone about their symptoms and come up with a plan when someone is ready for change.

We cannot change someone unless they want it, but it doesn’t mean therapy cannot be advantageous if someone is stuck in their ways. Therapy can help clarify with someone what stage they are in the change process, give a different perspective, and help motivate someone.

The great thing about anxiety and depression is they are both highly treatable using a variety of methods. I’m a little partial to therapy, not only because I am a therapist but because I have seen it be very effective in treating these issues.

It is important if someone is experiencing anxiety and/or depression to get a medical evaluation from their doctor to rule out any medical conditions. Certain conditions can be masked with anxiety and depression so it is very important to start with a check-up.

Like most brothers and sisters, they go their separate ways as life progresses. Wouldn’t it be nice to have depression and anxiety get old and move on? I thought so.

Handling Summer Overload

Congratulations parents!  You have made it through another school year.  Summer is here and it is time to relax…..or is it?

Summer camps, sleepovers, pool time, staying up late, sweet treats.  While summer is supposed to be a time of leisure days, it can also be a time of stress for some families.

Kids can get overloaded from doing fun things just as much as they can get overloaded from too much work and activities during the school year.  Not only can does ice cream melt on hot day days but children can melt down as well!

Here are some ideas on how to keep kids and parents from avoiding the meltdown and creating a summer of fun.

1. Keep bedtime on a regular schedule-most of the time. Kids need lots of sleep to function.  You know how it feels when you are sleep deprived. Kids fare worse. Certainly there will be nights you have fun things planned so try to get them back on schedule as soon as possible.

2. Plan fun time and downtime. Kids need time to unwind. If you have a really busy day, plan a little less the next. If you are on vacation, plan some quiet time allowing for kids to rest and rejuvenate.

3. Transitions for some children are really tough. If this is the case, it may good to make a loose schedule for your child, meaning keeping a morning routine and a bedtime routine when possible. Some children benefit from having it written out or pictures to represent what is happening that day.

4. Eat well. Summer time can create a time for sweets overload. Ice cream, popsicles, candy, chips, cookies, you name it. Be mindful of what your children are eating throughout the day and balance it with healthy options.

5. Remember, parenting needs to be kid focused. I know we have get togethers with our friends where we want to stay up late and enjoy “our” time. This is all good but be mindful of what your children are needing.

6. Take some adult time. We end up being better parents when we take some time away to connect with other adults.

May time move slow in the moments I want to hold onto.