Posts Tagged "counseling"

Resolving the Traumas of Life

Posted by on Feb 6, 2014 in PathwaysVoice - Blog | 0 comments

Original article by Stephanie Levitt, MA, LPC, NCC [Published in AZ Net News Oct/Nov 2013 and online at  Natural Healing News] Trauma is everywhere.  We bear witness to it on our TV screens as we see the aftermath of a horrendous school shooting and worry about the safety of our own children. We hear stories about wars, people being killed, raped, and tortured. We have friends or family who are in abusive relationships. Then there is the trauma that we may have endured in our childhood or past. Most of us have experienced it in some form, whether we identify it as such or not. Some people have had “big” traumas in their lives that continue to affect them. Others have experienced trauma that flies under the radar so to speak, because it consists of a seemingly minute event, such as the time no one wanted to be your friend in third grade. Most likely, the small traumas that happened in our lives continues to affect us, but those effects are just less obvious. Our past experiences shape many of our present day behaviors, beliefs, and feelings. Therefore, if we have unresolved trauma from our past, it may continue to affect us negatively in our lives today. Depression, anxiety, unhealthy addictive behaviors and eating disorders are among the many symptoms of unresolved trauma. Upon further examination, such life struggles often began in the aftermath of a traumatic event. Trauma all too often goes unidentified and undetected. People do not realize the extent and severity of their trauma or that they have even been a victim of it, either by having personally experienced it or vicariously witnessed it. Thus, their lives may bear the earmark of trauma, and the unwanted feelings and behaviors taking over. Without identifying the underlying trauma, the undesirable cycle continues. Fortunately, there is help for people who have experienced all levels of trauma. After becoming aware of the problematic behaviors in your life and identifying the underlying trauma, it is possible to work through it and ultimately change these behaviors and the way you feel. One such method, developed by psychologist Dr. Francine Shapiro, is extremely effective in helping people reprocess traumatic images and memories. It is called Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). When performed by a trained therapist or clinician, EMDR has been thought to be one of the most effective and thoroughly researched methods ever used in treating trauma. Within three to four sessions, most people that have been treated for a traumatic incident find relief from post-traumatic emotional symptoms. EMDR is different from traditional talk therapy, and many will feel positive results in as little as one session. It is believed that EMDR works by permitting the patient to access traumatic memories and then process them both emotionally and cognitively, which allows for their resolution. The trained therapist may utilize a variety of rhythmic stimulation and/or facilitate eye movements in the person during the treatment. It is believed that when traumatic memories are accessed in a safe environment, the processing of such memories is heightened and new links are made between the traumatic memories and more adaptive information. As a result, new information is processed, leading to the reduction and/or elimination of current problematic behaviors and feelings, while new insights about the memories are developed. With such an effective treatment available for the reduction of traumatic memories and the aftereffects, it is imperative that people know about EMDR. The elimination of anxiety, depression, addiction, and other such destructive behaviors and negative feelings is possible. Suffering does not need to be a lifelong process.   Bio:  Stephanie Levitt, MA, LPC, NCC is the clinical director and owner of Pathways Counseling Services, PLLC in Scottsdale, AZ. Stephanie has undergone advanced training in EMDR and utilizes it in combination with various other treatment modalities. For a free phone consultation or to schedule an appointment, call...

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Benefits of Counseling

Posted by on Dec 5, 2013 in PathwaysVoice - Blog | 0 comments

For those who are suffering from anxiety, depression or from a host of other issues that are negatively affecting their emotional or physical well being, counseling has been a tried and true part of treatment for many years. The effects of counseling are more than just listening and providing advice. In many ways, it is like an educational experience. The goal is to provide a person with the tools necessary to help identify and cope with the thoughts and feelings that they are experiencing. In essence, it is helping a person to learn more about themselves, providing the skills needed to properly cope with their problems. Counseling helps people learn proper coping skills which can go well beyond the immediate treatment that they have sought. The objective is for the client to have the ability to cope and eventually handle their own issues as life struggles arise. How Counseling Improves the Mind and Body Individual, family, and couples counseling can bring about many positive effects which can help open up effective communication lines, develop coping skills, and create a better perspective for those in need of help. Some of the benefits of counseling include the following; –       Improved communication and interpersonal skills Here, a person learns how to understand and communicate their real feelings in a more effective, healthier, and accurate manner. This can help avoid confusion and misunderstandings which can in turn create more tension and conflict. –       Identify and correct self-defeating habits or behaviors Without the outside perspective that counseling offers, it can be quite difficult for someone to correctly identify the behaviors or habits that are self destructive. –       Improve self esteem, confidence and decision-making Strong self esteem is vital towards handing the many issues that life brings about. Counseling helps people improve their self esteem so that they can better deal with these situations. Naturally, the improvement to self esteem can also positively affect the confidence and decision-making ability of the person as well. This creates a healthier environment for dealing with life’s issues. –       Anger management & emotional control Emotions often mask the true nature of the issues that people must face. Understanding how to better express emotions that are being felt, like anger, can offer new avenues to better identify the real problems. –       Greater stress management Stress has a physical as well as an emotional effect. Effective counseling can provide methods for greatly reducing stress and putting it into proper perspective. Effective counseling provides improved ways to handle problems and resolve conflicts. These skills can be effective in helping people get to the root of problems quickly and take the necessary steps to insure that they are solved in a manner that settles the issues rather than prolongs them. Counseling can be helpful for many people, even those who may not be fully aware that they are facing issues which prevent them from fully enjoying life. For those who are experiencing anxiety, depression, and a multitude of other problematic feelings or behaviors counseling is one of the most effective and long-lasting remedies that they can utilize in order to create a healthier outlook on...

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