COUNSELLING BLOG

Posts tagged self help

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Overcoming Feelings of Hopelessness

1. Questions your feelings of hopelessness: If you simply accept your thoughts of hopelessness then they’ll end up becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. So, start by accepting your assumptions could be wrong … then use that to experiment with acting differently – as if things might work out, or things might actually go well. For example, go out with your friends even if you’re feeling down and are tempted to just stay at home on your own. It may feel like a battle – but it’s worth a try as you may find you feel better for challenging your thinking.
2. Try something new: Although you might feel you’ve tried everything you can (counselling, therapy, different kinds of medication) it’s likely that there’s something you could still give a try. For example, there are different types of therapy – so try a different one. Have you combined medication with counselling? Have you changed your thought patterns for a period of a month? Have you joined a self help group to increase your support?
3. Identify the things that aren’t totally hopeless: Don’t get stuck by fixating on the things that you can’t change. Start to focus instead on things that you can change. For example, if you’re ex has dumped you and is now with someone else, think about the other things you can now do with your time, and the steps you can take to meet someone completely new. Don’t bang your head against a wall – look for a door that’s swinging open.
4. Realize that no one thing is necessary to be happy: If you find yourself thinking “I can’t live without him” or “if I can’t have x then there’s no point going on”. That clearly not the case as there once was a time in life when you managed pretty well without that person or thing. You can live without them now – and work on having a great life!
5. Learn to appreciate the present: The past has gone and the future isn’t here. So focus on your attention on the present, and this moment. Feel the air touching your body; smell the fragrance in the garden; notice the pattern of your breathing; hear the sounds in the room. Really live this moment … don’t try and rush ahead … and you may also find that the hopelessness subsides.

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7 Insights for your Life

1. Make peace with your past so it doesn’t wreck your future. You are not who you were, or what happened to you.
2. What other people think is irrelevant to you. Don’t give them a thought. Go ahead and live your life.
3. Things will look different in a month or two from now. Just give it time, and be patient with yourself.
4. Don’t allow others to determine your worth. Believe in, and love, and respect yourself.
5. Don’t compare your journey with the journey of others. We start from different places, and everyone’s unique.
6. Try not to overthink things. It only keeps you stuck.
7.Smile, enjoy the moment, and live life to the full..

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The thing about life is that you must survive. Life is going to be difficult, and dreadful things will happen. What you do is move along, get on with it, and be tough. Not in the sense of being mean to others, but being tough with yourself and making a deadly effort not to be defeated.
Katherine Hepburn

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Some Interesting Facts on Personality

We each have our own personality – that unique part of us that makes us who we are. It affects every aspect of our lives - from who we date, to what we study, to what we like to do. So what do we know about personality?

1. Birth order can affect our personality: We discussed this a bit in a previous post. There are traits we associate with being a first born (being bossy, motivated, high achievers or more driven); with being a middle born (being friendly, people pleasers, and quite skilled negotiators); and being a last-born (being amusing, more laid back, and also less responsible). Empirical research supports these norms and trends.

2. There are Five Core Personality Traits: These are measures of extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism and openness.

3. Personality remains stable through life: The research findings are less conclusive here. It may be that some core traits are less susceptible to change. However, traits which seem less fixed and less stable over time include anxiety levels, friendliness and eagerness for novel experiences.

4. Certain personalities are more prone to disease: There appears to be a link between one of the “big 5 traits” (neuroticism) and proneness to developing headaches, asthma, arthritis, peptic ulcers and heart disease. There is also a link between having a Type A personality (and, in particular, scoring high on the hostility levels) and developing cancer and heart disease.

5. Our personality affects our personal preferences: The impact here is surprisingly far reaching. It includes: our choice of friends and partner, our taste in music, our political preferences, our career choices, our preferred holiday destinations and so on.

6. People can tell your personality from your facebook profile: Interestingly, although you might expect people to project an ideal online identity, research indicates that facebook profiles actually tend to convey our real personality. Sam Gosling, a key psychologist and author, has explained this in the following way: “I think that being able to express personality accurately contributes to the popularity of online social networks in two ways …First, it allows profile owners to let others know who they are and, in doing so, satisfies a basic need to be known by others. Second, it means that profile viewers feel they can trust the information they glean from online social network profiles, building their confidence in the system as a whole.”

7. There are a number of factors that contribute to personality disorders: An estimated 10 to 15% of adults are diagnosed with at least one personality disorder in their lifetime. Factors contributing to the onset of these include: Genetics, relationships with family and peers, inheriting high levels of sensitivity, childhood abuse and experiencing a trauma.

8. Your pet may reveal your personality: Many people consider themselves to be either a “dog person” or a “cat person”? Research into pet preference and personality indicates that dog lovers tend to be more extroverted and greater people pleasers, whereas cat lovers tend to be more introverted and curious.

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