In the age of technology, more and more people, especially children, are used to occupying their minds constantly, whether it’s with video games, scrolling through social media, surfing the internet, or watching TV. Although these things aren’t bad in moderation, there’s something to be said for sitting with a quiet mind, playing, creating, and using […]
In the age of technology, more and more people, especially children, are used to occupying their minds constantly, whether it’s with video games, scrolling through social media, surfing the internet, or watching TV. Although these things aren’t bad in moderation, there’s something to be said for sitting with a quiet mind, playing, creating, and using your imagination, which are vital to the healthy development of any child.
However, there’s no getting around the fact that sometimes communication can be tough, so if you’re having issues with your child refusing to stop playing video games or hounding you about being bored, family therapy is an option that can help.
Boredom is good for kids (and adults!). It spurs the imagination and forces them to engage with themselves, which allows creativity and self-reflection to flourish in a positive way. When you provide an endless supply of attention, you’re actually keeping your children from developing important skills that will benefit them throughout their lives. Imagination and creativity lead to innovation and better problem-solving skills.
Allowing your child to be bored also helps them realize spending time alone and getting to know yourself isn’t a bad thing. Although social contact is a vital part of the human experience, so is learning to be comfortable with yourself. Children need “me” time, too. Letting them spend time using their own skills and ideas to self-regulate is a gift you can give them that will help them become well-rounded adults. Family therapy can also give your child the tools they need to help build self-confidence and be comfortable in their own skin.
If your child comes to you and says they’re bored, they may just want to spend some time with you. If you’re doing chores like folding laundry, ask them to help. If you have the time, read a book together, play outside, go swimming, or visit a museum.
Although it’s great to engage with your kids, it’s also important to remember you’re not there to entertain them 24/7. Making sure they have plenty of art supplies, costumes for dress-up and creative play, and anything else they may be interested in. Signing them up for activities like music lessons or sports can also be helpful, but be careful you’re not filling their days up too much.
Sometimes, when kids say they’re bored, they’re really looking for stimulation and challenges. Make sure they have toys, puzzles and books and they’re getting enough exercise. If they’re old enough, send them outside to play and explore.
Family therapy can help you understand the importance of letting your child be who they are and bring you closer together. It will give you the tools to effectively communicate with your children and spur them to be resourceful and self-sufficient. Contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule a session today.
Summer depression is a very real thing that affects people all around the globe. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is typically associated with winter depression, often accompanying less daylight and cold weather. Summer can be a tough time for some as well. Depending on your specific situation, therapy, lifestyle changes and medication can help you get through […]
Summer depression is a very real thing that affects people all around the globe. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is typically associated with winter depression, often accompanying less daylight and cold weather. Summer can be a tough time for some as well. Depending on your specific situation, therapy, lifestyle changes and medication can help you get through it and come out feeling stronger and healthier in the long run. Keeping these five things in mind can help you find the skills you need to cope with your depression and allow yourself to have some summer fun.
1. Acknowledge It.
Depression often occurs in cycles — if you notice you often get depressed in the summer, acknowledging that it could be a seasonal thing can help you better deal with the symptoms. It may be a good idea to go to therapy more often and talk with your counselor about the best ways to address your depression.
2. Avoid Putting Pressure on Yourself.
It’s easy to idealize and put pressure on yourself to live up to the expectation of what summer should be. If your perfect summer involves sitting inside watching Netflix, working on a crafting project or curling up with a good book, do it. Although these things may be comforting, it’s also important to get some exercise. Put on a yoga video or take a walk in the morning to beat the heat, and keep your body moving. Also, remember to take social media with a grain of salt — it is NOT real life. For all you know, people posting “best summer ever” photos could also be suffering from depression.
3. Stay Cool.
For some people, being too hot can affect their mental state and leave them feeling lethargic, depressed, irritable, and agitated. When the days get longer, it can also be harder to sleep, which can have an impact on your mental health as well. Keep cool by turning on the A/C, sitting in front of a fan or catching a movie in a nice, air-conditioned movie theater.
4. Avoid Isolating Yourself.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to friends and family you trust to let them know what’s going on. If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of attending a large family gathering, take some one-on-one time with loved ones instead. Knowing people care and spending quality time with them can often be the best therapy.
5. Seek Help
Although meditation, exercise, medication, and behavior modification can help ease the symptoms of depression, if you’re still feeling down, it may be time to seek therapy. If depression is keeping you from doing the things that make you feel better, seeking treatment can help you navigate depression and allow you to develop the coping skills you need to live a more joyful life. Contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule an appointment today.
Therapy may seem daunting to many people, especially if it’s with a partner. Knowing what to expect from couples therapy can make it less unnerving and help you and your partner get the most out of sessions with your counselor. Here are some points to demystify the concept of therapy for couples. Reasons for Going to […]
Therapy may seem daunting to many people, especially if it’s with a partner. Knowing what to expect from couples therapy can make it less unnerving and help you and your partner get the most out of sessions with your counselor. Here are some points to demystify the concept of therapy for couples.
Reasons for Going to Couples Therapy
Although any couple can benefit from a “relationship tune-up,” most people seek out couples therapy because of problems in their relationships. Often, there are no easy answers when it comes to issues surrounding communication, parenting, finances, and physical and emotional intimacy. Whether you find yourself getting easily angry about little things or you and your partner have grown apart, a therapist at Kayenta can help you sort out your feelings and help you learn the skills you need to improve your relationship.
Goals of Couples Therapy
It’s important to keep in mind the aim of couples therapy is to expand your knowledge about yourself, your partner and the patterns that may be negatively impacting your relationship or keeping you stuck. It’s important both of you agree therapy is something you want to devote your time and energy to. Therapists often recommend that you explore individual therapy as well if you feel that you really need to get to the root of your own issues.
As you learn more about yourself and your partner and how to apply the knowledge you’ve gained, it can become easier to break old patterns and develop new, more positive ones. Some questions you may want to ask yourself before starting therapy include:
Keep an Open Mind
Once you’ve done your research and have chosen a therapist with your partner, make sure to give it your all. To maximize the time you spend with your therapist, be proactive and think about what you’d like to discuss before your appointment. Try to avoid taking a combative approach. Your therapist is not there to referee fights, they are there to facilitate communication and help you learn the skills you need to have honest conversations and successfully solve problems on your own. Give it a few sessions, and if you feel like your therapist isn’t a good fit, talk with your partner about finding someone who might be.
Couples therapy can rekindle the spark of your relationship and help you get more joy out of the time you spend together. Contact one of the therapists at Kayenta Therapy directly to schedule a session with a relationship counselor today.
Many people consider marriage counseling to improve or save their relationship, but a common question many therapists encounter is, “Does marriage counseling work?” Each relationship is unique, and there are many complex factors involved when it comes to relationships. Relationship counseling takes dedication and hard work. Here are some important points to consider when beginning […]
Many people consider marriage counseling to improve or save their relationship, but a common question many therapists encounter is, “Does marriage counseling work?” Each relationship is unique, and there are many complex factors involved when it comes to relationships. Relationship counseling takes dedication and hard work. Here are some important points to consider when beginning marriage counseling:
1. Timing is everything. Couples who seek therapy proactively or as soon as issues arise have a greater chance of success. When toxic patterns can be identified and worked on early, change can begin.
Many couples ignore problems and let resentment build, which can make it much more difficult to repair a marriage. Couples counseling is a valuable tool that can even be explored before marriage, so you’re both on the same page when it comes to communication about serious issues. Ongoing periodic check-ins and “relationship tune ups” can help you grow both individually and as a couple and keep your connection strong.
2. Motivation matters. The success of marriage counseling is directly related to the motivation level of those involved. Both people need to make a commitment to facing and resolving issues that are hindering the health and growth of their relationship. Relationship counseling can be challenging, but it’s definitely worth it to learn how to improve your relationship.
3. Conflict is a normal part of any committed relationship. All relationships have their ups and downs. Conflict can be very difficult to deal with for those who fear it will lead to losing their partner. However, ignoring problems to avoid conflict can actually destroy your relationship. Negative thoughts, irritation, anger, and frustration are all a part of being human. What matters is how you choose to deal with these thoughts and feelings.
Your partner is unlikely to change a behavior that upsets you if you don’t let them know it does. It’s important to pick your battles wisely. Ignore the petty issues that get on your nerves, but make sure to address the big ones in a respectful manner. If you have a hard time doing this or tend to fly off the handle, couples therapy can help you be less reactive and learn positive communication skills.
If serious issues or communication breakdowns are plaguing your relationship, marriage counseling at Kayenta Therapy can help you learn tools to improve your relationship and strengthen your connection with your partner. Contact a therapist at Kayenta directly to schedule a session today.
Many people go to couples therapy to work through challenges in their relationships. Although therapy is a valuable tool that can bring you closer together, many couples often wait until they’re in crisis to seek individual or relationship counseling. Being proactive about maintaining your relationship by giving it a “tune-up” every so often can help you […]
Many people go to couples therapy to work through challenges in their relationships. Although therapy is a valuable tool that can bring you closer together, many couples often wait until they’re in crisis to seek individual or relationship counseling. Being proactive about maintaining your relationship by giving it a “tune-up” every so often can help you better understand one another, improve communication and help you avoid arguments.
Consistency is vital to maintaining a good relationship. Think of your partnership as a car – you need to get periodic oil changes, tune-ups and other maintenance to keep your vehicle in good working order. The same concept applies to your relationship. Couples therapy helps it thrive and survive for the long haul because it helps you to consciously work on issues, which is an ongoing process that enables you to grow and learn more about yourself and others.
When you address small issues before they become big problems, it’s easier to prevent your relationship from crashing and burning when things get out of control. Human emotions are complex. If you’re not paying attention, it’s easy to miss red flags that lead to conflict, anger and arguments down the road. Even when things are going well, couples therapy provides an opportunity to express your feelings, fears and hopes for the future in a safe, neutral space. Preventative care of your partnership can keep it strong; it is an investment in your relationship’s continued success.
It’s easy to get distracted and neglect your relationship when you’re parenting, working and taking care of daily responsibilities, but setting aside time to connect with your partner is vital. Some people don’t want to spend the money or view therapy as a sign that something is wrong with them. However, skipping regular relationship “tune-ups” can inevitably lead to more emotionally costly repairs. Getting ahead of issues and spending some time with a couples therapist on a regular basis can help you and your partner achieve long-term success and avoid major blow-ups. Attending individual therapy as well is always a good idea to explore your own issues and discover how they may affect you and your partner.
Both individual and couples therapy can help put you find a deeper connection and more joy in your daily life. To learn more about how it can help strengthen your relationship, contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule an appointment.
During the school year, divorced parents usually have a schedule in place with set parenting times and days. With vacations, summer camps and other activities, summer can be a more challenging time to navigate as a co-parent. Before the school year ends, it’s a good idea to review your parenting plan with your children’s co-parent […]
During the school year, divorced parents usually have a schedule in place with set parenting times and days. With vacations, summer camps and other activities, summer can be a more challenging time to navigate as a co-parent. Before the school year ends, it’s a good idea to review your parenting plan with your children’s co-parent and communicate about summer plans. One effective way to cut down on conflict is to discuss these issues in family therapy. A therapist can help you come up with an equitable plan that will benefit you and your children while keeping stress to a minimum.
Start planning for the summer as early as possible. If you plan your summer schedule in January, discuss it with your co-parent to avoid conflict over vacations, graduations, family reunions, and summer holidays. It’s also important to agree on how you’re going to split day-to-day parenting time. Always put your children’s needs first when creating a custody schedule and deciding on summer plans. Summer is an exciting time of year for kids and an opportunity to make memories with both parents and explore new experiences.
Many co-parents take the “two weeks on, two weeks off” approach, as it gives some continuity to the time they spend with their kids. If you live close by and normally share custody on different days of the week, this can work too with little disruption to your children’s schedules. Once you have your parenting schedule set, keep in mind that it’s still beneficial to be flexible with summer plans to ensure a fun, relaxing time for you and your kids.
Children need to be heard when making summer plans, so you’re both aware of their needs and the things they’d like to do. It’s particularly important to talk with your older children about their wishes. A family therapy session where everyone is included and has a chance to express their desires can make the summer much more pleasant for everyone.
Coordinating schedules, daycare, vacations, and other activities is just part of the bigger picture when creating a summer co-parenting plan. Kids often feel guilty for leaving one parent alone and may be hesitant to go on a trip if they think one of their parents is going to feel bad. Encourage your children to have fun with their other parent and build a strong relationship. Refraining from negative talk and being considerate and respectful of each other’s feelings will show your children that you have their best interests in mind.
Family therapy can help you create a summer co-parenting schedule that allows you and your kids to better enjoy your time together. To learn more, contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule an appointment.
Everyone needs a vacation sometimes, and therapists are no exception. If you’ve been in therapy for a while and are apprehensive about what to do when your therapist goes away, these pointers can help you feel more confident in your ability to cope on your own. 1. Use the Coping Skills You’ve Learned The lack […]
Everyone needs a vacation sometimes, and therapists are no exception. If you’ve been in therapy for a while and are apprehensive about what to do when your therapist goes away, these pointers can help you feel more confident in your ability to cope on your own.
1. Use the Coping Skills You’ve Learned
The lack of therapy for a week or two is a great opportunity to practice coping with issues on your own. When you feel stressed, practice deep breathing techniques or meditation, take a walk, draw yourself a bath, or do any other positive activity that promotes calmness and self-love. This will help you stay clear-headed when you encounter stressful situations. Dealing with problems both big and small can help you discover the areas in which you have made progress and determine where your biggest challenges still lie.
2. Focus on What’s Working for You
It’s easy to focus on what’s going wrong in your life, but it’s important to take a good look at your strengths, skills and what’s been going right. If it all feels overwhelming, journal about your feelings, and write down your concerns and questions for your therapist when they return.
3. Reach Out to Your Support System
If you know your therapist is going to be out of town, make sure to utilize other resources you have for support. Family, friends, support groups, other mental health professionals, and even pets can offer comfort and encouragement and can give you a fresh perspective while your therapist is away.
4. Try Self-therapy
At your regular therapy time, schedule a self-therapy session. Reflect on how things have been going since your last session with your therapist and write down the recent issues you’ve been exploring. Go through your list, and think of one skill you could apply to help with each problem and things your therapist has said in the past to help you recognize and develop those skills. Write everything down, and bring it along to your next appointment.
5. If You’re in Crisis, Seek Help
If a crisis occurs while your therapist is away, seek help as soon as possible. If they are part of a larger practice, call and ask to speak with or see someone there. If this isn’t an option, call or walk in to your nearest emergency mental health center or hospital, or call your doctor. In an emergency, call 911 or the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
The skills and self-discovery you attain through therapy can change your life and put you on the road to health and happiness. To learn more, contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule an appointment.
There comes a time when you need to take a step back from life and self-evaluate. It is healthy to do this, as it allows you to take stock of what is going on in your life and whether you are where you want to be (and if not, what you can do to change […]
There comes a time when you need to take a step back from life and self-evaluate. It is healthy to do this, as it allows you to take stock of what is going on in your life and whether you are where you want to be (and if not, what you can do to change that). To help you accurately gauge how you’re doing, here are questions you can ask yourself:
How Is Your Daily Mood?
Things happen that can throw your mood off from time to time. But beyond these things, how do you feel on a daily basis? When you wake up in the morning, are you happy? How would you rate your average mood? This is the first indication of how you’re doing in life.
Would You Be Happy with an Average Day?
Think of the movie Groundhog Day. In it, the main character relives the same day over and over and over again. What if this happened to you? If you lived your same, average day, over and over again, would you be happy? Chances are, the answer to the first question will impact how you answer this.
Do You Have Intimate Relationships?
This means you have a relationship with someone who you feel comfortable opening up to – someone you trust and can tell everything to. Having at least one intimate relationship is critical in your life, as it gives you a positive outlet to express yourself and prevents you from having to keep everything inside.
Is Happiness Spread Around?
Your relationships, your work, your family, and your personal self-esteem are all important factors. Is your happiness solely dependent on one area of your life? Or, have you spread your happiness around? If you’re only happy doing one thing but not the others, there may be other issues hindering your full happiness.
Only you can truly answer these questions. If you need help sifting through your thoughts and identifying ways to create a healthier mindset, counseling could be a beneficial recourse. Contact a therapist at Kayenta Therapy to book a session.
It can be tough to change poor habits when it comes to eating, exercise, work, drinking, and other behaviors. Therapy and behavior modification can be valuable tools when it comes to dropping habits that don’t serve you well and adopting new ones. Understanding the reasons for certain behaviors can make change easier and help you […]
It can be tough to change poor habits when it comes to eating, exercise, work, drinking, and other behaviors. Therapy and behavior modification can be valuable tools when it comes to dropping habits that don’t serve you well and adopting new ones. Understanding the reasons for certain behaviors can make change easier and help you live a happier, healthier life.
Both good and bad habits form when you think, feel and act in a certain way over a length of time. The habits you develop aren’t just due to behavioral and environmental factors; they can have a basis in neuroscience as well.
Many decades of research have helped doctors and mental health providers determine three primary types of learned behavior. With classical conditioning, two stimuli are linked together to produce a learned response by association.
Operant conditioning shapes behavior with either positive or negative reinforcement. Developed by psychologist B.F. Skinner, it is the process of encouraging or discouraging behaviors with either reward or punishment.
Observational learning, a social learning theory developed by psychologist Albert Bandura, portends people learn behaviors by observing and modeling others’ attitudes, emotions and behavior. In his research, he found babies and young children imitated the behavior of those around them. This is also true of some adults.
Scientific research has shown when neurons fire at the beginning and end of a specific behavior in the brain region, it becomes a habit. Over time, patterns form – both in behavior and in the brain – which can make it extremely difficult to break bad habits. The positive part of this is it also helps you develop good automatic habits like brushing your teeth or combing your hair.
A key to start changing a habit is to do it before it hits a problematic tipping point. If you learn to regulate your behavior before it spirals and you feel like you’re out of control, it’s easier to not only survive, but thrive. Seeking therapy is just one piece of the puzzle that can help you better understand and change bad habits.
Accountability can be another valuable tool in breaking bad habits. Studies have shown if you are held accountable to someone else for meeting a goal, your chance of success increases dramatically. For example, if you want to improve your diet and lose weight, having someone you trust as an accountability partner can make you more likely to succeed and achieve your goals. Positive reinforcement can also work well — if you’re trying to lose weight and give yourself a healthy reward, like a new outfit when you reach a goal, it can motivate you to keep going.
Therapy is another great resource that will equip you with the tools you need to stay committed to changing your lifestyle and adopting better habits. Ready to learn how to break habits that may be holding you back? Contact a therapist at Kayenta to schedule an appointment.
When someone meets you for the first time, one of the first questions they usually ask is “what do you do?” It’s a simple ice-breaker question, and yet in recent years it has come to mean so much more. It is common for people to feel like their social status is determined by what they […]
When someone meets you for the first time, one of the first questions they usually ask is “what do you do?” It’s a simple ice-breaker question, and yet in recent years it has come to mean so much more. It is common for people to feel like their social status is determined by what they do for a living. However, your job title does not define you.
Whether stocking shelves at the local grocery store or returning emails for business accounts, these are just tasks. And these tasks have very little to do with your personality, interests, goals, etc. There is a danger in believing your self-worth is based on your job.
Applying mental standards or labels to yourself because of your job can lead to added pressure and stress. Although it can be difficult to look past the emphasis society places on job title and status, it is better to focus on being content and happy with what you do and where you’re at.
Even if you’re not where you ultimately want to be, are you living a fulfilled life? Do you do things that bring joy and happiness? Does your work give you a sense of accomplishment at the end of each day? Are there people in your life who bring out the best in your and contribute positivity?
Learning to focus on these factors will lead to increased happiness and peace. When you are living an enriched life, other people’s opinion will have less of an impact because you are content with who you are and where you’re at. This will allow you to become a better, happier you.
To help work through the mental barrier of a job title and to truly discover your true self-worth, it can be beneficial to speak with a therapist. The Kayenta Legacy Program is an affordable, low-cost therapy service provided by our graduate student therapists. Contact them directly to book a session.