mindset

Getting Through Any Obstacle in Life

Life can feel a little uncertain at times. None of us can see the future, which can be scary or overwhelming. 

We may not be able to completely get over the fear of uncertainty.

But we can do what we can to accept and embrace how we feel. 

Accepting and embracing our feelings can help them feel less scary.

If you don’t know where to begin, there is no need to worry. You can teach yourself to adapt to situations and step outside your comfort zone.

The very first step is to understand and accept that change and fear are part of life.

No matter what we say or do, our daily routine, job, home, friendships, and hobbies will change eventually.

Some of these changes may be for the better, and some may be for the worse.

At the end of the day, all you can do is adjust your mindset accordingly and maintain an open mind, 

You can either look at scary lifestyle changes as a setback or an opportunity to grow and thrive as a person.

For example, at some point, your job may require you to travel regularly, even though you’re afraid of travel.

You can either look at the event as something scary. 

Or, you can look at the event as an opportunity to face your fear. 

You have what it takes to change your mindset. You have what it takes to turn negative emotions into positive ones.

Thoughts are just thoughts and aren’t necessarily true!

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Executive Order Response to Decision That Overturned Roe v. Wade

By Tanya Kramer, LPC

On July 8th, 2022, President Biden signed an Executive Order to put some protections in place following the decision by the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. 

Roe v. Wade had protected women’s reproductive health care decisions for nearly 50 years.  The Executive Order recognized the impact this decision will have on an individual’s “privacy, autonomy, freedom, and equality”. 

It also recognized the disproportional effect on “women of color, low-income women, and rural women”.

This Executive Order covers five topic areas with specific actions under each category. 

This list captures a brief description of what is addressed in this Executive Order:

Safeguarding Access to Reproductive Health Care

  • Protect Access to Medication Abortion
  • Ensure Emergency Medical Care
  • Protect Access to Contraception
  • Launch Outreach and Public Education Efforts
  • Convene Volunteer Lawyers

Protecting Patient Privacy and Access to Accurate Information

  • Protect Consumers from Privacy Violations and Fraudulent and Deceptive Practices
  • Protect Sensitive Health Information

Promoting Safety and Security

  • Protect Patients, Providers, and Clinics

Coordinating Implementation Efforts

  • Establish an Interagency Task Force

Executive Order Builds on Administration’s Actions to Protect Access to Reproductive Health Care

  • Supporting Providers and Clinics
  • Promoting Access to Accurate Information
  • Providing Leave for Federal Workers Traveling for Medical Care
  • Protecting Access to Reproductive Health Care Services For Service members, DoD Civilians, and Military Families

This Executive order notes that there may be future Executive Orders established, and you can stay up to date on information regarding your right to access reproductive health care by visiting  https://reproductiverights.gov/.

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Diversity Month

Did you know that April is a time to celebrate Diversity Month? This day was officially created in 2004 and is intended to help people gain a deeper understanding of our differences. 

We can acknowledge and value the diversity in our world by fostering inclusion. As a society, coming together to celebrate diverse cultures and beliefs allows us to be open to others’ perspectives. 

By appreciating the diversity in our own communities and making connections with others, we can strive for a more inclusive society. 

We can recognize this month by planning an international movie night, visiting a museum dedicated to other cultures, or reading about stories from another culture. 

It’s a great way to expand our knowledge of the world and try to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. 

For more resources, check out the links below.

10 Resources for your Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Efforts

What Should Inclusion Really Look Like In The Workplace?

15 Best Diversity and Inclusion Books for 2022

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Stress Awareness Month

The month of April is a time for Stress Awareness Month. Stress can play a role in our daily lives. With the stress of the pandemic and the war in Ukraine, we may feel stress creep in more than ever.

Stress is a normal reaction that everyone experiences at times. We are built to experience stress as your stress response helps keep you alert and ready to avoid danger. But stress becomes a problem when stressors continue without relief.  This can lead to negative physical and emotional consequences including:

  • Aches and pains.
  • Chest pain or a feeling like your heart is racing.
  • Exhaustion or trouble sleeping.
  • Headaches, dizziness or shaking.
  • High blood pressure
  • Stomach or digestive problems.
  • Anxiety or irritability
  • Depression
  • Panic attacks

Sometimes the stress we experience is outside of our control. There are still some things to try to cope with these challenging situations.

  • Recognize when you do not have control over the situation
  • Work on your reactions to the stressor instead of trying to change it  
  • Try to focus on something that makes you feel calm

Here are some ways you can cope with stress in your everyday life:

  • Carve out time for hobbies.
  • Practice meditation or yoga.
  • Get enough sleep each night.
  • Make time for movement and exercise.
  • Eat a healthy diet
  • Reach out to your support system.

Having a conversation with those around you about stress can help you or someone you know get the support needed. When we feel overwhelmed and stressed, it’s healthy to have an outlet to let out these emotions. Talking about it not only raises awareness of this topic but can validate the experiences of others. 

Check out the additional resources below:

The American Institute Of Stress

10 Free Resources to Help You Better Manage Stress

Stress Management Tools And Resources

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Setting Stronger Boundaries

Setting boundaries is so important – but more often than not is easier said than done.

Saying yes can open the door to new opportunities.

But saying no can help you establish a healthy relationship with yourself which in turn can help you maintain an appropriate work-life balance. 

There will be times when you may not know if you should say yes or no to something. 

Often our emotional response can help lead the way. 

If a specific request makes you feel tense, frustrated or uncomfortable, that is a common sign that a boundary is needed.

Keep on reading for a deeper dive into those emotions.

Tension

Some of us perform better under a little bit of pressure or tension – but too much of anything is not good.

Unresolved and/or intense tension can make it very difficult to relax, recharge and be productive throughout the way.

The next time you catch yourself experiencing tension, take some time to reflect and ask yourself if any event or person may be triggering that feeling.

If you can list one or more, that may be your body’s way of telling you something needs to change. 

Frustration

We all feel frustrated from time to time – whether it be at ourselves, someone else or an event.

Some examples include being stuck in traffic, having a disagreement with a friend or being unable to find a solution to a problem.

Feelings of frustration can sometimes be a sign that your current game plan may need some adjustments.

We may not be able to control everything.

But, we can often control more than we give ourselves credit for.

You can control how you approach things. 

You can control what you say yes to. 

And you can control your thoughts and behaviors. 

Discomfort

Feelings of discomfort are often followed by our gut communicating to us that something isn’t right.

Mild discomfort can be a positive thing and push us to step outside our comfort zone and persevere.

But moderate-severe discomfort can be exhausting and help us realize that a certain situation may be making us unhappy.

Final Thoughts

Our mind and body and very powerful and often have their own uniques ways of communication with us.

Deep down, if something doesn’t feel right to you, you have the power to flip the switch.

You can create new rules that can help protect both your emotional and mental energy.

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Dry January

After the rush of the holidays, some want a change from the sweet drinks and the bubbly. You do not need to have a problem with alcohol to be able to gain benefits from taking a break from it.

This is where Dry January comes in. It’s a time where many people choose to avoid alcohol for the entirety of the month. 

For some, they believe it is a chance for them to start the year off fresh. Others might like to try something different.  And it is a chance for anyone to make a positive impact on their health. 

Here are some ways drinking less alcohol can be beneficial for our overall well being:

  • When we drink alcohol it can decrease our restorative REM sleep. Giving it up for a month may improve our sleep and give us more energy. 
  • We can boost our moods with less alcohol as excessive alcohol consumption has been shown to impact the chemistry of the brain by decreasing the brain chemicals that are linked to energy levels and good mood. 
  • It can also affect our long-term health. Cutting out alcohol can lower our blood sugar, reduce cholesterol, and decrease headaches or heartburn. 
  • Cutting back can also improve the skin’s appearance as alcohol causes dehydration of your skin as well as puffiness and acne.
  • Decreasing alcohol use can help us maintain a healthy weight. Alcohol is empty calories on top of gaining VIP status in your body’s processing of calories for energy.  So it jumps the line ahead of other food items that may offer more nutritional benefits.

Cutting back can also help us save more money. We may not even be aware of how much it costs to purchase drinks but it can add up. With Dry January, we can give our wallets and our bodies a healthy break.

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International Day Of Persons With Disabilities

Nearly 15 percent of the world’s population has some kind of disability according to the World Health Organization. And yet, this population is underrepresented in the media and in our communities.  

December 3, is an annual day of observance started in 1992 by the United Nations General Assembly to “promote the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities in all spheres of society.” 

The United Nations indicates that “Even under normal circumstances, persons with disabilities are less likely to access health care, education, employment and to participate in the community. An integrated approach is required to ensure that persons with disabilities are not left behind.”

Here are some ways for us all to help recognize this day and work towards inclusion for people of all abilities:

  • Only boost disabled creators content on social media platforms like TikTok, 
  • Educate yourself on our history and civil rights movements in regards to people with disabilities
  • Think about the ways in which the things you do can be more inclusive and accessible to people with disabilities, at work, in your personal life, and online.

You can learn more with the resources below:

International Day Of Persons With Disabilities 

How We Can All Celebrate The International Day Of Persons With Disabilities

Stories | International Day Of People With Disability 

See The Ability In Disability | YouTube

15 Best Books About Disability To Add To Your TBR List

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Spreading Awareness This September

The month of September is dedicated to Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and National Recovery Month. This time is meant to reflect and spread hope for those struggling with suicidal thoughts and addiction.

Suicide Prevention Awareness Month is about having open communication with your peers and checking in on your loved ones. The key message of the campaign is to show that you are not alone. It is also a time to recognize the lives that have been lost to suicide. 

Bringing awareness to the topics is a way to stop the stigma and ensure that people know how important it is to prioritize mental health care. 

National Recovery Month is also held every September to call positive attention to the importance of treatment and recovery, especially for those dealing with mental or substance use disorders. 

Celebrate and recognize the strides made by those who live full and meaningful lives while on medication or in recovery. Remember that you are resilient and recovery in all forms is possible.

This month is a time where the community comes together. It’s important to reach out or listen to mental health advocates, survivors, and allies to continue to educate yourself.

For more information, you can check out the following resources:

Suicide Prevention Awareness Month Information | NAMI

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Suicide Prevention Crisis Text Line

Navigating a Mental Health Crisis

National Recovery Month Information

National Recovery Month 2021 Events

The History of NAADAC and the Addiction Profession | YouTube

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Yes – Self Doubt Can Actually Be Helpful At Times

You know that little cloud of confusion that can sometimes block you from making decisions? That little cloud is called self-doubt, and if you let it, it can take over quickly. 

Now, self-doubt isn’t a bad thing. You just have to learn how to balance it.

That feeling of doubt can give you some time to think a decision through and see if it’s wise. 

However, too much of it can keep you jogging on the spot for far too long. 

See The Upside

Sometimes doubt can play a part in making a big decision. Seeing the silver lining and using your doubt-powers for good takes some practice, but it is attainable. 

When it comes to the big life choices, some doubt can help you evaluate them deeper. 

But don’t let it be the final decider. All you have to do is trust your gut. 

Challenge Your Fears

Call your self-doubt out and ask yourself why these feelings are flooding in. 

Is it because you don’t think you’re good enough? Or that you just have a bad feeling? Whatever the reason, challenge these fears.

Putting a name to the feelings that swirl around you will become more manageable in time. 

“If you don’t have some self-doubts and fears when you pursue a dream, then you haven’t dreamed big enough.” – Joe Vitale

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