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Eating Disorder Recovery Mindset

“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.”

– Abraham Maslow

Eating Disorder Recovery has a lot to do with change of body, mind and spirit. Which is why I find this quote to be relevant and had me thinking about whats important, and how we tend to make decisions. We make decisions based on what we know, what we feel comfortable with, and what we expect the outcome to be. By making decisions based on these factors over and over again, there is very little progress. We all need to get uncomfortable emotionally if we want to take a step forward into growth.

Risks to take in life, involve trusting in yourself and trusting in the universe. Decisions we make are dependent on our subconscious mindset, so creating a mindset of abundance, hope and gratefulness can really allow us to trust more.  The number one thing that helps change this is: Engage in positive self-talk!

The way that you talk to yourself is your reality.  Thus, your results in the world all start and end with your thinking! So start to change this up with your internal dialogue. Encourage yourself. Compliment yourself. Reward yourself. But also make sure to stay realistic and grounded. It’ll help you stay focused on your journey and realistic about what you can achieve and how soon.

Teaching Adolescents About Healthy Relationships

How many times did you hear this as a kid? (To be clear "boy" can be easily swapped out for the correct gender pronoun)

"The boys on the playground are mean to you because they secretly like you?" OR "All boys want is to get in your pants."

I heard them several times each, and looking back these comments helped establish an unhealthy outlook on what relationships look like. I believed that if a guy is mean to me, that must mean he wants me to try to attach more, or tolerate the jerky comments in order to obtain his affection. Then later I began to believe that boys were to be avoided at all costs because they just want to use me... Wow, how confusing? 

I've put some thought into it, and perhaps these revised statements may help send a healthier message:

"If the boys on the playground are mean, what away because you don't deserve that" AND "If a boy likes you, he will respect you and respect your boundaries." 

These statements can teach children and teens that respect, self-love, and having personal boundaries are key components to having healthy relationships. 

4 Types of Bullying and A Way to Stop it

Type of Bullying #1: Verbal Bullying

Verbal bullying can include teasing, inappropriate comments, name calling, threats and even offensive hand gestures. Any of these acts in written form also constitute verbal bullying.

Such bullying can lead to psychological harm for students, such as lower self-esteem, anxiety or depression.

Type of Bullying #2: Social Bullying

Social bullying can include intentionally leaving someone out of activities, excluding them from lunch tables or other groups, telling other children not to be friends with someone, embarrassing someone in public and rumor-spreading.

This type of bullying can have the same psychological effects as verbal bullying but is more likely to lead to isolation and other anti-social behavior. Parents.com says this type of bullying is more common among female students.

Type of Bullying #3: Physical Bullying

Physical bullying includes hitting, kicking, spitting, pushing and stealing or breaking someone’s belongings.

Victims of this bullying may have cuts, bruises, damaged belongings or clothes, headaches or stomach aches.

Type of Bullying #4: Cyber bullying

This emerging form of bullying includes many of the same behaviors as social and verbal bullying, only they take place online. There are countless ways that students can communicate these days, but social media has made it easier to target individuals and publish threatening, hurtful or offensive information about someone.

Victims of cyber bullying will exhibit similar behaviors to victims of social or verbal bullying, but it may be joined by a dramatic change in their use of social media and other online channels.

Ways to Combat All Types of Bullying

Authority figures, including parents and teachers, can encourage students to report bullying whenever they see it, whether its directed at them or another person. Anonymous tip lines can be a great way to encourage reporting, without your child feeling as though they will be more harshly persecuted by the bully.

Giving students anti-bullying training is also a good way to stop bullying. I offer a talk that I can come to your child's school to address bullying. Its been researched and found that students given anti-bullying training make a bigger different curbing bullying than teachers or school staff members.

Adults should never tell a student to simply ignore bullying or to fight back. Even though this feels like sound advice, often times the situation can get worse if this is the action the child/student takes. Similarly, if an authority figure speaks to a bully once and forgets the matter it will likely do little to solve the problem. Consistent intervention and support is best when trying to handle matters such as chronic bullying. 

If you have concerns that need to be addressed with the school, advocate for your child/student, if you need outside support in this ask for a student advocate, call a therapist, or programs like ARC that are in the community.