Top Tips for Self-Care Recommended by Therapists

Top Tips for Self-Care Recommended by Therapists

Top Tips for Self-Care Recommended by Therapists

If you have seen a therapist recently, chances are that they have recommended using self-care in your life.  Self-care is a hot topic now-a-days because we live in a society that sometimes forgets to take time to nurture ourselves.  There are many professions that are prone to burnout, including teachers, medical professions, therapists, police officers and those in the service and retail industry.  Adopting a healthy regimen of self-care techniques can help anyone reduce stress and burnout.   

This month, our team of experts share their top tip for self-care.  You can try any or all of the recommendations.  The best self-care technique is the one that you are willing and able to practice on a regular basis.  


# 1 Amanda Landry, LMHC, CAP, NCC

Many of my clients come in for feelings of depression and anxiety and I ask them about their physical health and many of them report not having a physical within the past year.  My first recommendation to my clients and to you is to get a physical, with blood work.  If you are having any feelings of depression, anxiety or any other mental health issue, you want to be able to rule-out any medical issues. Women deficient in Vitamin D can present as being depressed; however with appropriate levels of Vitamin D those symptoms may vanish.  Having a thorough examination and blood work can help rule-out any initial medical issues that may be keeping you from feeling your optimal self.  If you haven’t had a physical within the past year, it’s time to call your primary care doctor and schedule one today.  Once you are medically cleared by your doctor, make sure to follow their recommendations.  If they recommend taking a multivitamin, then by all means take one.  If they want you to follow-up with a dermatologist for the mysterious discoloration on your arm, make the appointment.  When we take care of our physical health, we pave the way to take care of our emotional health.  Remember mind, body and spirit are connected and when one is out of whack it will impact the other two parts.


Amanda Landry, LMHC, CAP decided to become a therapist while attending Nova Southeastern University. She saw the need to help people achieve the life they wanted to live, while creating a life of her own. She completed her master’s in Mental Health Counseling and started a career in the juvenile justice arena. Since then, she has started a private practice in Pembroke Pines, Florida, specializing in depression, anxiety relationship issues, and substance abuse. Amanda is a believer in holistic treatment and she practices veganism, meditation and yoga in her life. Find out more about her practice here. For a free 15-minute consultation, call or text Amanda at 954-378-5381 or email her at amanda@amandapattersonlmhc.com.



# 2 John Davis, LMHC

My Number One Self Care Hack: Mind-LESS-ness

A Break for My Brain

I’m often surprised at the level of self-care and re-nourishment I’ve come to need.  A heavy patient load and a great family (Thank You God) are more than enough some days to wring me out like a rag if I’m not careful.  So here’s a long time habit I’ve relied on.  Mind-LESS-ness. I know that “mind-FULL-ness” is all the rage.  Right up there with meditation and yoga.  But this practice, while based on those ancient traditions, is far simpler.

Effortless

It’s so simple, you’ll be amazed.  You don’t have to go to the gym. It’s restful beyond belief.  Requires no tools, special equipment nor expensive courses or training.  Can be done anywhere, anytime.  And recent research, for example at UMASS on Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, suggests practicing like this improves both our mental and physical health.  You be the judge.

Where is Anywhere

My favorite way to accomplish mind-LESS-ness is by darkening my office, setting my iphone timer for 20 minutes and turning on the ceiling fan.  I then kick all the way back in my chair (yes, it’s a recliner) and allow my thoughts to vanish.  And when they do, my body finds the deepest, most restful places I’ve ever experienced.  I sometimes fall asleep.  I usually fall into the “twilight” of a kind of “self-hypnosis”.  I always recover “ultra-refreshed”.

Starting out takes a little practice.  Shutting down our thoughts, even briefly, is something of a “counter-intuitive” move, as our busy, multi-tasking lifestyles are highly rewarded.  Our minds are quite turbulent, mostly looking ahead or behind us.  Rarely fully present.

Be Sensible

Here’s a key from the ancient Hindus:  Come to Your Senses.  Literally.  The secret is allow our bodies to relax enough to begin re-focusing our mind onto “present centered modalities”.  Starting with our breath, we can practice bringing ourselves fully into the present moment without judgment.  I love the relief that comes from closing my eyes and leaving the lighted world behind.  I become aware of my breathing.  I sense the cool fabric supporting me.  I hear gentle sounds of fans stirring the air.  I smell the rich leather beneath me.  In my experience, it only takes focusing on two of these “present sense modalities” at once to completely shut down one’s thinking.  And then “sail away”.


John Davis, LMHC is a licensed psychotherapist in private practice in Downtown Delray Beach. He is an Executive Coach and a Florida Licensed Mental Health Counselor.  His action oriented approach is geared to help clients succeed at home and in business.  John specializes in problem solving for individuals and families as well as executive officers and their teams. For a consultation, call 561-213-8030, or visit the website at http://johndaviscounseling.com/



#3 Joy R. Robinson, MS

Regardless of how well any of us have mastered the art of keeping peace within ourselves or honing in on intentional joy, we still experience lulls in our mood. Anxiety and depression are real things and can pop up on us at various levels. The first thing I do when I’m experiencing a feeling of being stuck in the down mode, is recognize I am human and this is a normal occurrence in response to situations and related thoughts. Next, I pull on my “super human” alter ego and take charge of the change I want to see in my mood or circumstance, because the one thing I keep in mind is that “this too shall pass,” as transition is inevitable. Once you give yourself just a little push, you can take the reigns and use one of my tried and true self-care tips, which is to create something! 

Are We Talking Arts and Crafts Here???

Honestly, it doesn’t’ matter what you decide to create, just get your hands, your heart and your mind in there. Some examples, outside of making clay ashtrays or a lanyard are:

-Writing a song
-Cooking a meal you’ve never made before 
-Redecorate your living room
-Plant in your garden
-Write a concept for a new business idea

Not only does focusing your energy in creation take you away from mulling over ongoing nagging thoughts, but if you notice, these creative tasks have something in common. They can all be shared and enjoyed by someone else. As a professional who works closely around relationship issues and needs, I whole heartedly believe much of our healing is born from the connection we have with others, close or acquaintance. 

So your solo project is multi-faceted: You are kept busy, you are made keenly aware of your ability to be productive with purpose and you are able to contribute to someone else’s joy. All of these things aid in boosting one’s confidence as you’ve added to your sense of self and empowerment. So the next time you are experiencing overwhelm from one of many emotions and need to reboot, remember this “The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul”. Dieter F. Uchtdorf.


Joy R. Robinson, MS earned a Masters degree from Barry University in 2015, with dual specialties in marriage, family and couples therapy and mental health counseling. I am currently a Registered Marriage and Family Therapist Intern, registered with the Florida Board of Marriage and Family Therapy, a Nationally Certified Counselor (NCC) and a Certified Clinical Mental Health Counselor (CCMHC). Beyond my traditional educational background, I am also a life coach and was trained with the Coaching and Positive Psychology Institute (CaPP Institute).  When working with couples I come from an experiential theory and enjoy Emotion Focused Therapy, which gets to the heart of couples desire for real connection with their partners. My time with individuals is focused on a humanistic and strength-based foundation to allow for clients self-discovery and healing. It is through my commitment to education and ongoing exploration of effective and empowering methods of working with individuals and couples, that I am able to give clients the most impactful gains from my experience and share in life changing transitions.



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One thought on “Top Tips for Self-Care Recommended by Therapists”

  1. Excellent post! Self care activities are often ones that our clients just do as a part do their routine everyday. But once special emphasis is placed on improving the self, these typical activities become nourishing!

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