Prozac?

The other day I found an interesting article on the legacy of Prozac by the BBC. It underlines the fact that talking therapies are just as good as anti-depressants for treating depression, and have fewer unwanted side-effects.

I am posting the article here for you to take a look at, to see what you think:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22040733

I feel that mild to moderate cases of depression can be best treated by working through and addressing the issues that are causing the individual distress within a safe and supportive counselling environment. Sometimes a combination of medication and counselling can work for a particular Client.

Life is full of ups and downs and when you are feeling down and depressed counselling can help build resilience, and coping strategies to get you through the tough times life inevitably throws at us. Depression can be a normal reaction to an unusual or shocking occurance in our life that is hard to deal with, it is NOT a sign of weakness.

For more information about depression check out this informative article from the Counselling Directory:

http://www.counselling-directory.org.uk/depression.html

If you would like to find out more about counselling to help with your depression please get in touch on 01442 825334 or e-mail me at charlotte@idcounsellingservices.co.uk for a chat.

All the best

Charlotte

The importance of listening.

Ever feel like you just want to be heard? That when you talk to people they don’t seem to understand or you say something and it’s meaning is misinterpreted?

It happens to all of us, but when you are feeling vulnerable because something has happened to you, when you are feeling down, anxious or confused it can add to the worry you are already experiencing.

Communicating is difficult, you need common reference points to explain ideas and feelings, that are often abstract. It is even harder when in arguments with your partner or child, words can get twisted in the heat of the moment.

Money issues can bring difficulties and worry, especially in these economic times; it can be hard to say to family and friends that you don’t have enough to give at times like birthdays and anniversaries. Counselling can offer you a private, confidential, non-judgemental space in which you can explore your relationships, how they impact on you and how you can communicate more effectively.

Here are my Top Tips for communicating more effectively:

Think about what you want to say before you say it. If it’s a difficult subject it is easy to get confused, if necessary write a few bullet points on a piece of paper to help you remember what you want to say.

Listen to what the other person is trying to say. Are you really hearing what they are trying to say? Could you ask a question to clarify what they mean? Are you giving them space to finish what they are saying or are you talking over them?

Take turns. If you find things are getting heated and no-one is really listening to each other, think about how you can take things down a notch. Could you have some time apart (say for a cup of tea) and than come back to the discussion.

Be fair. Especially when dealing with teenagers it can be easy to threaten to ground them until they are 18. Is this realistic or fair? It is much better to use sanctions that you can follow through with, that are proportionate to the incident that has occurred. The same goes for partners and other family members. Try not to keep bringing up incidents that have already been dealt with, unless you feel there is something that is unresolved.

Try not to take on too much. Share out chores where possible, find ways to manage or delegate some of your workload and limit yourself to how much you take on, it will help you be less stressed and worried.

Be honest with yourself and others. Particularly when it comes to money, over-stretching your finances now can lead to more worry later. Be realistic about what you can afford, budget and look around for bargains. If finances are tight consider only buying gifts for the immediate family. Honesty is the foundation for trust in many relationships, are you being honest with yourself about your relationships and feelings?

Until next time

Charlotte.

This is not how the story is going to end

I saw this image on Facebook a few days ago and it got me thinking.

http://www.juxtapost.com/site/permlink/cdc33a40-7188-11e1-a3f7-4f6be680005a/post/at_any_given_moment_you_have_the_power_to_say_this_is_not_how_the_story_is_going_to_end_/

The text ‘At any given moment you have the power to say this is not how the story is going to end.’ really brought home to me why I chose to be a counsellor and I would like to share those thoughts with you today.

Counselling is often seen as a ‘helping profession’ getting people to feel better, however in my experience I don’t help people, I empower them to help themselves. By listening to what they are saying, hearing their fears about loss and change and empowering them to take control and become the author of their own lives instead of being pushed and pulled by the turbulent waters of life.

Coming to counselling is a big decision, it can be life changing.  The ability to decide comes from the power we all have, the power the quote describes, to say enough is enough and I want something different. Some people want to improve their self-esteem, find their confidence, to move past the trauma or hurt they’ve experienced to become not just victims, but survivors and thrivers.

This all takes time and patience; both with yourself and the counselling process. Often it can take years before you face your issues and it can take a while to come out of the other side.  Counselling allows you to take that journey with an experienced counsellor who can help you to listen to yourself, your needs and help you figure out what this all means for you.

I have often said looking around my website is the first step of the counselling journey, realising you want help and looking for it. The second step is deciding the time is now, and realising you have the power to say ‘this is not how my story is going to end’.

Best Wishes

Charlotte