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Overcoming initial reluctance when seeing a clinician for the first time

Overcoming initial reluctance when seeing a clinician for the first time

It’s common to experience fear when you decide to begin therapy sessions. At first, you may feel uncomfortable speaking about personal issues with someone you don’t know. While fear is a natural emotion, it can be confronted by reframing your anxious thoughts. Below, we offer a few tips on how to overcome your doubts about speaking with a professional clinician.

Decide what you’d like from your clinician.

From the get-go, be open and honest with your clinician about what you need from the session. Do you want someone who will offer advice? Listen silently? Would you like the conversation to be casual or feel more like you’re speaking with an expert? If you express your needs from the beginning, the clinician can then guide the session accordingly. Clinicians will work with you to better understand your needs and help you through life’s struggles.

You don’t have to go into it alone.

If speaking to a professional in a one-on-one setting scares you, you might find comfort in group therapy. In this environment, it’s up to you if you want to share your feelings or just simply listen to others, all of whom are working to navigate similar challenges. Depending on the goals and objectives of the group, the purpose of a group therapy session is to share experiences, address symptoms and discuss treatment goals. You might find that group sessions will help boost your confidence when it comes to discussing your personal challenges, making it easier for you to ultimately try one-on-one sessions with a clinician.

Know that each session doesn’t have to include a “big conversation.”

Sometimes, small struggles carry just as much weight in our minds as the bigger ones do. Don’t be embarrassed to spend time in your session discussing the smaller challenges in your life. No struggle you face will be seen as insignificant. After all, discussions about small issues could lead to bigger revelations during your session. Knowing that treatment pace is based on your vision can help alleviate the pressure.

If you’re ready to begin your journey to recovery, we encourage you to contact us today. South Bay Community Services strives to provide the proper programs, certified staff members and clinicians for the perfect combination of professional therapy and guidance. At South Bay, you will find the support and guidance you need.

For more information, contact us at 508-521-2200 or click here.

Post-grad depression: How to deal with it

Post-grad depression: How to deal with it

From kindergarten through college, school is one of the main constants in a young adult’s life. Even though exams, projects and homework can be overwhelming and stressful for students, attending school provides a structure and potential support system that some people may not realize they depend on. And once graduation time hits, it can be intimidating to enter the “real world.” With stressors such as debt, job searching and social media expectations surrounding post-graduation, the transition can be challenging and can lead to feelings of anxiety and depression. Fortunately, every step along the way can be taken in stride – if equipped with the correct mindset.

Below are a few tips and words of encouragement to help conquer the battle that post-grad depression brings.

Recognize the risks of social media

Social media creates the facade that everyone is living the perfect life, which produces feelings of envy and anxiety in most young adults. Comparing yourself to others online can be damaging to your mental health. Know that social media only shows the highlight reels, and the hard times simply aren’t shared. Try giving your friends on social media a call instead. You may learn that they are experiencing similar problems, and you can confide in each other.

Follow your own path

Your journey might be different from others around you – and that’s ok. Start by coming to terms with the fact that life after college might be difficult and start preparing for the stressors of debt, loneliness, etc. This doesn’t make your outlook on life negative – it makes it realistic. Know that everyone goes through scary transitions at some point and that you aren’t alone.

Know your worth

Don’t be ashamed if things don’t go how you imagined them. You conquered an incredible feat – graduating college! You have a bright future ahead of you, and you are worthy of finding a job, meeting new friends and more. Accepting this will help push you through this temporary situation. To start the process, begin integrating stress-management activities into your daily routine. Make a point to involve yourself in activities you enjoy – no matter how big or small! Take up journaling, painting or even a new language. Anything that challenges you to stay motivated can help you in your transition.

If you identify with the emotions discussed in this blog post or recognize some of the above characteristics in a friend or loved one, know that help is out there. South Bay Community Services strives to provide the proper programs, certified staff members and clinicians for the perfect combination of professional therapy and guidance. At South Bay, clients can find the support and guidance they need the most.

For more information, contact us at 508-521-2200 or click here.

Tactile learning: the importance of hands-on activities for children

Tactile learning: the importance of hands-on activities for children

Did you know that the first three years of a child’s life are the most impressionable? From ages zero to three, children begin to develop their own personalities and socialization skills and conquer some of the most important physiological milestones. These skills expand throughout childhood, which is why it’s important to leverage a system of teaching that aids learning through the senses, particularly through the sense of touch. Below, we explain the importance of tactile learning in helping promote strong, positive mental wellness in your child.

Helps children with learning disabilities

Since cognitive learning and physical activity are parallel and essentially reinforce one another, tactile learning methods can help improve a child’s concentration and learning capacity and increase self-confidence. A play-based learning technique allows children who struggle to maintain focus and learn in a traditional setting to succeed. This type of learning allows children to become engaged through intentional play tactics that help build the foundation for future education.

Promotes positive growth

Consistent, positive interactions with adults and other children their age allow a child to develop a positive, more relevant perception of the world around them. With instructors and parents engaging in play, whole parts of the child’s brain are engaged, which helps develop crucial connections that lead to positive development and growth. Tactile environments allow children to be free to experience learning through the senses.

Endorses learning through play

Children thrive when surrounded by supportive, interactive programs that focus on their mental and physical development. Not only is hands-on learning an excellent way to help children develop better social and motor skills, it’s also easy to get them involved. Since the activities use colorful toys for demonstration, children are more willing to play along and gain a better understanding of the subject.

At South Bay, we offer Early Childhood Services and Early Intervention programs that help families ensure growth, stability and well-being. Our approach is to help them identify their own strengths so they are empowered to foster their children’s growth and development. If you would like to learn more about how our programs can help you and your child, contact South Bay Community Services at 508-521-2200 or click here.

How to cope with things that are out of your control

How to cope with things that are out of your control

It’s not easy knowing there are some aspects of life where we have limited or no control. And, learning how to accept life’s curveballs can be extremely difficult. Just know – feeling overwhelmed by these circumstances is completely understandable, and finding ways to help manage how you cope with these situations can lead you to live a happier, healthier life. Below are steps you can take to cope with things beyond your control.

Determine what you are able to control

When something happens that’s out of your control and it makes you uncomfortable, shift your focus to what you can control – your perception. A new, fresh perspective on various aspects of life can jolt us into a better mindset. You might not be in charge of a situation, but you can certainly dictate your own attitude, reaction and plan of action moving forward. A great way to start is by adopting positive behavioral habits, such as writing your feelings down on paper.

Focus on the present

Most anxieties come from things we can’t change (the past) or things we can’t predict (the future). Try to shift your mindset to focus on the present. Overthinking can be debilitating – use that mental energy to work on solutions. You’re in control, so ask yourself what went wrong and what actions you can take to help get you through future, similar situations.

Find ways to manage stress

It’s essential to practice healthy habits. In these situations, they can help you cope. A key step in managing stress is to never go through it alone. Get the right support. Talk to someone who has a fresh perspective on your situation. This might be a support group, a new friend or a clinician.

If you or someone you know struggles with stress and could benefit from learning how to cope with things out of their control, we encourage you to contact South Bay Community Services. We strive to provide the proper programs, certified staff members and clinicians for the perfect combination of professional therapy and guidance.

For more information, contact us at 508-521-2200 or click here.

Mental health in the workplace

Mental health in the workplace

The fast-paced work environments employees often experience can lead to stress, burnout and, more importantly, challenges with managing mental health. Mental well-being among employees should be a top priority within the ranks of company leadership, as addressing mental health in the workplace is crucial for a company’s stability, productivity and employee retention and satisfaction. Below, we outline ways leaders can establish programs or initiatives that promote positive mental health in the workplace.

Talk about it

Create a culture that embraces openness and understanding when it comes to mental health. If employees feel comfortable in their environment, they are more likely to be open about any issues that arise. Leadership teams should reserve regular opportunities for one-on-one conversations with employees and communicate to them that they’re free to be open and honest about issues at work – without fear of being judged. At South Bay, we encourage our employees to take time to care for themselves so they are able to provide their best level of care to others. During employee supervisory sessions, for example, we talk one-on-one with our clinicians about the importance of self-care and offer them encouragement and support.

Promote employee strengths

Take pride in your employees! Let them know that you recognize their hard work and applaud them for it. By engaging with employees and understanding their strengths and weaknesses, leaders can ease the pressure that so often contributes to mental health challenges. At South Bay, we regularly spotlight our clinicians when they’re excelling in their work.

Create memorable moments

Plan events and activities that promote and foster a productive work culture. While employees may be committed to their jobs, it’s an added bonus to have a little fun at the same time! Make an effort to host activities throughout the year so your team always has something to look forward to. Having the opportunity to share fond times and memories is a great way to boost employee morale, as well as create a close-knit team.

At South Bay, our clinicians are more than employees – they are members of our team and our family. If you or someone you know could benefit from our counseling services or Mental Health program, contact South Bay Community Services. We offer several programs catering to a wide range of mental health issues.