8 12, 2017

When Holiday Stress Gets You Down, Turn It Around

By | 2017-12-08T10:56:46+00:00 December 8th, 2017|Categories: Blog, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

Sometimes the most wonderful time of the year is anything but. Today, writer Jennifer Scott shares a guest post on how to get through holiday stress and avoid feeling overwhelmed.

Ah, the holidays. That delightful time of year when we all put aside our differences and peace on Earth prevails. Or not. While the time between New Year’s day and Halloween is fairly uneventful, we’re expected to put on a happy face from the stroke of midnight on the 305th day of the year until the week after Santa’s annual appearance. But when you have a mental health condition, such as anxiety, depression, or PTSD, that’s not always possible.

when holiday stress gets you down

Here are a few tips on how to keep holiday stress at bay:

Stop […]

26 05, 2017

Living a Life Consistent with Your Values (What ARE My Values Again?)

By | 2017-06-27T21:17:05+00:00 May 26th, 2017|Categories: Blog, Giveaways/Free Resources, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , |0 Comments

I just finished recording an episode of the Messy Middle Podcast with Maring Higa. Update: the podcast is up now –> find it here.

Our conversation got me thinking about values. She asked questions like how do you manage social comparison? How do you find self-worth? How do you find your course while in transition? For many of these questions, I thought the Values Card Sort exercise could be helpful.

Values Based Life

Another update! Maringa illustrated this beautiful depiction as an answer to our conversation and this post!

The “Personal Values Card Sort” was created by Miller, one of the founders of Motivational Interviewing, along with his colleagues (W.R. Miller, J. C’de Baca, D.B. Matthews, P.L. Wilbourne, University of New Mexico, […]

11 04, 2017

Afraid You’re Doing the Parenting Thing All Wrong? Watch This.

By | 2017-04-24T09:21:08+00:00 April 11th, 2017|Categories: Blog, Giveaways/Free Resources, Maternal Mental Health, Parenting|Tags: , , , , , , , |0 Comments

My friend and colleague, Pediatric Physical Therapist Wendi McKenna, is offering More Than Milestones: Understand Your Baby, Nurture Development Confidently, and Raise a Thriving, Happy, Healthy Child … with a Village of Support, a complimentary online training and video summit that brings together more than 20 child development, maternal, and family health experts, including me, to share our advice for parenting with confidence.

Link to register for the video series here.

My episode on “Mothering the Mother” airs April 28th and will be free for just a few days.

More Than Milestones Video Summit

Hear more from Wendi:

When it comes to parenting, do you ever feel frazzled in the everyday chaos of having a baby, toddler, or preschooler? Maybe you’re afraid you aren’t doing anything right … that you’ll end up “messing […]

23 06, 2016

Paternal Postpartum Depression [Video Clip – News]

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00 June 23rd, 2016|Categories: Blog, Featured, Maternal Mental Health, Mental Wellness, Parenting|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |1 Comment

Yesterday Fox 5 San Diego brought me back for a third time to talk about Depression. This time they wanted to hear more about Paternal Postpartum Depression. They were surprised to know that dads and partners are at risk for PPD, too. Many thanks to co-anchor Shally Zomorodi for helping raise awareness. You can watch the clip below:

Thinking About Getting Help for Paternal Postpartum Depression but Not Sure if You Have the Time?

One thing that I did not get a chance to say was that many parents think it is selfish or self-indulgent to spend time and money on themselves. But numerous studies have shown that fathers’ and mothers’ mental health greatly impact a child’s well-being. In fact parental depression affects emotional and intellectual development and has a lasting […]

28 08, 2015

What is Adolescent Therapy?

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00 August 28th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Child and Adolescent Therapy, Mental Wellness, Parenting|Tags: , , , , |0 Comments

Yesterday we shared about play therapy and how it can help children. Today’s post introduces adolescent therapy.  No matter what your teen’s behavior looks like, there maybe times when, as a parent, you become concerned and want to seek out help for your child. One of the best ways to do that is through therapy.

What is adolescent therapy?

If you are considering taking your teen to therapy or have wondered what exactly adolescent therapy looks like, here is a quick overview that may help guide you in your decision making.

ADOLESCENT THERAPY (ages 13-18)

How does adolescent therapy differ from adult therapy?

  • Adolescents/teens are not independent. They are usually brought in by parents or guardians and are not there by choice which creates resistance
  • They […]
25 07, 2015

4 Ways to Help Kids Understand Emotions with “Inside Out” (Disney/Pixar)

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:41+00:00 July 25th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Giveaways/Free Resources, Mental Wellness, Parenting|Tags: , , , , , , |3 Comments

My recent “Inside Out” Study Guide for helping teens and adults understand emotions has been getting positive feedback on Pinterest. Today I’m sharing some ideas for helping younger kids and tweens (grades K-8) use the Disney/Pixar movie to better understand their feelings.

Helping Kids Understand Emotions with Inside Out

1. An emotion pie chart

To be honest, I can’t take full credit. One of my young clients* came up with this idea on his own. He had the brilliant idea of turning his face into a pie chart and using the five colored emotions from Disney/Pixar’s “Inside Out” to represent the mix of his feelings. He then drew a key identifying the significance of each color.

You can use this idea even if you or […]

20 02, 2015

Sharing, Mindful Kids through Sportscasting

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:42+00:00 February 20th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Mental Wellness, Parenting|Tags: , , , |2 Comments

sharing mindful kids sportscasting

I took my youngest (now 16 months) to a playdate at a park the other day, which she doesn’t get to do nearly as much as my first baby did. She loved playing with other babies and toddlers and I got to chat with other moms. Sharing toys is always a topic with little ones, and one mom introduced me to the idea of “sportscasting” what is happening versus stepping in and making a child share. She said it comes from “RIE parenting,” an approach I immediately researched upon coming home.

Sportscasting describes what is happening without assigning blame. We don’t tell the child what to do, but let him or her try things out. This experimenting is how a child […]

19 01, 2015

How to Make SMART Goals (and How They Differ From Resolutions)

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:42+00:00 January 19th, 2015|Categories: Blog, Mental Wellness|Tags: , , , |1 Comment

Has anyone broken a New Year’s Resolution yet? I shared recently why I believe New Year’s Resolutions don’t work. I also promised to write about SMART goals. What are SMART goals? Like self-care GRAPES, SMART is an acronym.

SMART goals (acronym)

S = Specific

How many people choose broad goals that aren’t specific at all? If you are serious about manifesting change, take the time to picture what specifically it would look like. The more detail the better. Are your goals straightforward? Specifics help us focus our efforts and clearly define what we are going to do. WHAT are you going to do? WHY is […]

31 10, 2014

Older First Time Moms at Increased Risk of Depression

By | 2016-11-01T21:48:42+00:00 October 31st, 2014|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health|Tags: , , , , , , |0 Comments

A recent study showed an increased risk of postpartum depression in women of advanced maternal age. Specifically, first time moms between the ages of 40-44 had statistically higher rates of depression than women ages 30-35.

older mom and baby from freedigitalphotos.net and hyena reality

The MGH Center for Women’s Mental Health reported on the article, which was published last month in a Canadian journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. The researchers did not uncover WHY older mothers are at an increased risk for postpartum depression, but they did have two theories. One, they believe it is possible that first time moms over 40 may have more difficultly during pregnancy and a more difficult adjustment to motherhood. Another possibility is that older moms may feel less peer support if they […]

15 10, 2014

Culture and Language in Therapy with New and Expecting Parents

By | 2017-02-04T23:06:45+00:00 October 15th, 2014|Categories: Blog, Maternal Mental Health, Postpartum Health Alliance|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |6 Comments

Recently I attended a lecture sponsored by the Postpartum Health Alliance on “Cultural Considerations when Working with Expecting and New Parents.” The lecturer happened to be an old friend of mine, Dr. Mariela Shibley, Psy.D. She shared with a group of maternal mental health practitioners, First Five home visitors, and other professionals interested in helping pregnant and postpartum women. As I focus on helping women of childbearing years in my psychotherapy private practice in San Diego, I always look forward to learning more and connecting with other practitioners at the PHA lectures. You can see more posts inspired by the PHA lectures here: Postpartum Couples and the NICU Experience.

Mariela shared some of […]