I have been continuing the Counselling Alphabet on my social media.
In my last blog I gave you letters A-F. Today I give you letters G-M.
G is for GRIEF
An emotion that can be extremely difficult to manage.
The dictionary describes GRIEF as intense sorrow, caused by someone’s death. But GRIEF is so much more than this. GRIEF can be experienced by the loss of anything. The loss from a relationship breakdown, loss of a job, illness or disability leading to loss of who you once were, loss of dignity.
Grief is a natural response to loss but is experienced differently by different people and the length of time to recover from grief varies.
In 1969 Psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, in her book ‘On Death and Dying’ suggested we go through 5 stages of grief.
1. Denial 2. Anger 3. Bargaining 4. Depression 5. Acceptance
Not everyone experiences all these stages and not everyone goes through the stages in this order. The stages may last different lengths of time for different people.
The key to understanding grief is realizing that no one experiences the same thing. Grief is very personal, and you may feel something different every time. You may need several weeks, or grief may be years long.
If your emotions from GRIEF are so intense you feel you can’t go on, or if you can’t cope with your day-to-day life it is important to get support and a
H is for HELP.
So many of the clients who come to me tell me how difficult it was to seek HELP and yet,once they did, were so pleased they had taken the step.
Why is asking for HELP such a difficult thing to do? Many look at it as a sign of weakness
*You may be too embarrassed *You may be scared *You may not want people to know the mask you have been wearing *You don’t know how to ask for help *You don’t want to burden others with your problems *You worry about what others will think of you
HELP can come in so many different ways, but asking for help is not a sign of weakness, it can actually be the strongest thing you do.
Confident people often ask others for help, not only because they’re secure enough to let it be known they need help but they know that trying to do everything themselves can leave them feeling overwhelmed and stressed and then they can’t do things properly. Asking ‘Can you help me?’ shows respect for the other person’s knowledge and abilities.
Asking for HELP means you're strong enough to admit you don't have all the answers. And that's a real sign of strength. It means you're trying to deal with uncomfortable emotions, like humility, fear, and embarrassment, head-on. It also means you're willing to be vulnerable.
Many of my clients tell me they have been struggling with their problems on their own for so long that they have become overwhelmed with them. Finally asking for help feels like a weight has been lifted and they can start to see things more clearly. Sharing a burden lessens the impact it has on you.
I is for INSECURITY.
INSECURITY is something we all feel at certain times in our life, public speaking, dating, a new job, can potentially give us all feelings of INSECURITY
But what if that feeling of insecurity is with you constantly, living with fear and having no confidence in yourself or your abilities.
This can be crippling and prevent you from being able to enjoy life to its fullest.
Feeling insecure, consistently, has an effect on your self-confidence and your self-esteem leading to feelings of ‘not good enough’ and worthlessness.
A recent survey found that 60 percent of women experience hurtful, self-critical thoughts on a weekly basis. * You’ll never accomplish anything. * What’s the point in even trying?
Life events can lead to this feeling of INSECURITY, and if this feeling is short term it may be manageable, but if this feeling won’t go away then counselling can help you look at things from a different perspective.
You can gain a better understanding of your inner critical voice that contributes to this feeling and find ways to increase your self-confidence, your self-esteem and self-belief
J for JEALOUSY. Jealousy is a complex emotion, it is often a combination of emotions, anger, frustration, sadness. JEALOUSY is usually aroused when you perceive a threat to a valued relationship.
JEALOUSY will always involve a third person, this is different to envy which only occurs between 2 people. Envy is wanting something someone else has, jealousy is a fear of losing something valuable to someone else.
JEALOUSY is a very common emotion, we will all experience it at some time. It can bring out the worst in us. However if it consumes you and creeps into every aspect of your life then you may want to seek help.
There are many different types of jealousy
*Romantic Jealousy- this is probably the most frequently experienced type of normal jealousy
*Work or Power Jealousy- ie missed promotions, salary levels etc
* Friend Jealousy-the fear of losing a friend, often seen in adolescence
*Family Jealousy- sibling rivalry is typical of this
However there can be *Abnormal Jealousy This can be described as morbid, psychotic, pathological, delusional, or anxious jealousy and can be as a result of extreme insecurity or mental illness.
Experiencing jealous feelings occasionally is part of human nature. However it can be possible to control jealousy through honesty, trust, talking through your emotions and being more aware of your negative thoughts so they do not unnecessarily build up to overwhelming jealousy.
If you feel you are experiencing abnormal jealousy and jealousy consumes you constantly then seeking help could be useful to you.
K is for KINDNESS
Simply put, KINDNESS is being nice to others and to yourself.
*KINDNESS is being generous with others, giving your time, money, and talent to support those who are in need. *KINDNESS is being compassionate, which means to really be there for someone, listening intently to their suffering or just sitting with them and silently supporting them. *KINDNESS is also being nurturing and caring to others — to enjoy doing favors for them, to take care of them, and to perform good deeds. *KINDNESS includes being kind to yourself. Do you treat yourself kindly? Do you speak gently and kindly to yourself and take good care of yourself?
Kind individuals believe that others are worthy of attention and affirmation for their own sake as human beings, not out of a sense of duty or principle.
It is said that KINDNESS has many benefits including increased happiness and a healthy heart. It slows down the aging process and improves relationships and connections, which indirectly boosts your health.
The Science of Kindness from Random Acts of Kindness Rowland and Curry (2018) found that
*After seven days of performing kind acts, happiness increases And *There’s a positive relationship between the number of kind acts and the level of happiness someone feels
The way you think about and treat others is often the way you think about and treat yourself. So choose to be kinder towards others to, over time, become kinder andmore understanding of yourself.
L for LONELINESS
As social beings the need for rewarding social contact and relationships is important. When our need for this type of contact is not met we can experience feelings of isolation and LONELINESS
You don’t need to be physically alone or cut off to feel lonely.
Being alone is not the same as feeling lonely. Choosing to be alone can be restorative.
The feeling of loneliness isn’t a choice. It comes from a feeling of being disconnected
The latest official government figures suggest that just under half of adults in England experience loneliness occasionally or more often.
Perhaps surprisingly despite the growth of social media and the wide circle of connection via social media by young people, data suggests that younger people are more likely to report feeling frequently lonely.
Long-term loneliness can lead to a number of mental health problems, and increase the risk of developing certain health conditions.
Some people experience deep and constant feelings of loneliness that come from within and do not disappear regardless of their social situation or how many friends they have.
There are many reasons people experience this kind of loneliness.
* The feeling of being unable to like yourself or to be liked by others.
* A lack self confidence which may come from having been unloved as a child so that, as an adult, you continue to feel unlovable in all relationships.
* A conscious or unconscious isolation within relationships because you are afraid of being hurt.
If LONELINESS is a new feeling, perhaps due to a change in circumstances, talking about your loneliness can help.
If your feelings of LONELINESS are with you constantly despite your connections with others counselling may be able to help you explore this.
M is for MINDFULNESS
Mindfulness practices are not new and have origins in the contemplative traditions of Asia, especially Buddhism.
Mindfulness is the ability to be fully present, aware of where you are and what you are doing, and not get overwhelmed by what’s going on around you, being free from distraction or judgment.
Mindfulness practice involves developing the skill of bringing your attention to whatever is happening in the present moment and having an awareness of your thoughts, feelings and sensations Gradually you can train yourself to notice when your thoughts are taking over, and realise that thoughts are simply 'mental events' that do not have to control you. Most of us have issues we find hard to let go of and mindfulness can help us deal with them more productively
Research suggests people who incorporate mindfulness into their lives often report heightened levels of happiness, patience, acceptance, and compassion, as well as lower levels of stress, frustration, and sadness.
Counselling can help you understand how to introduce mindfulness into your life to help you cope better.
Look out for my next Blog with letters N-T. Or visit my social media sites to read more.
Laura Knight Dip Couns, MBACP is a qualified and expereinced counsellor based in Poole Dorset, Her private practice Seeclear Counselling offers affordable, professional counselling when you need it most.
At Seeclear Counselling I offer evening and weekend appointments from my comfortable therapy room in Parkstone, Poole and would be happy to talk to you about how we can work together to manage your symptoms and help you back to full mental health, whether you have suffered a knock back, or feel you may have been struggling for a while.
I specialise in working with anxiety and trauma.
Please call, text or E-mail me to book an appointment 07975 733029 email@example.com