Saturday, September 29, 2012

Distract yourself by counting...

Counting is a simple skill that can keep your mind busy and help you focus on something other than a negative emotion or thought.  The following are some examples:

Count your breaths. Sit in a comfortable chair in a relaxing stance.  Place one hand on your belly and take long, slow breaths.  Imagine breathing into your stomach and filling your stomach up like a balloon.  Start counting your breaths.  If you start to think about what ever is causing you discomfort, simply return your focus to counting.

Count anything else. If you are too distracted by your emotions, simply count the sounds you're hearing, the things you are seeing, the sensations you are feeling, or anything else you can put a number on. This takes the attention to something else other than you and your emotion.

Count of subtract increments by seven. For example, start with one hundred and subtract seven.  Take that answer and subtract seven more.  This activity requires extra attention and concentration and will really distract you from your emotions. 

These are only a few examples of coping skills that can be used to distract yourself from a negative emotion or thought.  If you feel that you need help in this area of your life, please give us a call. We would be happy to help you create a distraction plan to manage your thoughts.  Our number is 954-800-0108.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


Want to boost your mood immediately? Here are some things you can do right now. Don't wait!

1. Practice a monster smile.
2. Ask a friend for a hug.
3. Stand up and stretch.
4. Say something nice to someone.
5. Take a walk.
6. Say hello to a stranger.
7. Take time to smell a flower.
8. Remember that stress is an attitude.
9. Pet a friendly animal.
10. Visualize yourself winning.

There are many more skills that you can utilize.  These are just a few to get you started. Remember to relax and take each day at a time. You have the rest of your life to live. Need more coping skills, give us a call at 954-800-0108. Our counselors are always willing to listen. :)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

S.M.A.R.T. Goals.

A "good"goal has five distinct elements:

Specific: What do you want to achieve? How will you achieve it? Why is it important to you?
Clearly define the goal.

Measurable: Outline the steps needed to achieve the goal.  Break into small steps to make it more manageable and visualize the progress. 

Achievable: Your goals should push you a little bit past your comfort zone. But, you still should be able to achieve them with commitment and effort.

Realistic: Your goals should be important and significant to you.  The outcome should impact your life.

Timely: Your goals should have a time element established.  This way you are more likely to push yourself to achieve this goal.

Below is an example of an exercise associated with goal setting.

Imagine your life just the way you want it, write down everything you have or have achieved in terms of health (fitness level, weight, strength, appearance, diet sports, performance, energy.

Rank those goals in level of importance as A-an absolute must, B-would love to do/have it, C-it's nice, but I can live without it.

Give each goal a time frame: 6 months, 1 year, 2 years, 5 years, 10 years.

You are able to substitute health with other life areas such as fiances, relationships, stress, and self-esteem.

If you feel that you are having difficulties with establishing goals and sticking with them. Contact our office today, our counselors would love to help you see progress with the goals in your life.  Our number is 954-800-0108.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Weclome Back School, Welcome Back Stress

As the school year is in full swing, many parents face stressors associated with balancing house hold responsibilities, managing work, and the needs of their children. While parents attempt to manage their own stressors, sometimes the stressors of their children get overlooked.
Here a few stressful situations a child could face: worrying about academic performance, peer pressure, social interactions, drugs and alcohol, parental pressure to perform academically or athletically, or bullying. 
Children can easily adapt to change and cope.  The following are some helpful tips to mange your child's stressors: 1. Get into an organized routine. 2. Talk with your child. 3.  Empathize with your child. 4. Get to know your community members and teachers.  If the stressors of school are too intense for the family, please contact one of our mental health professionals at Provide 4. 

To view the full length version of this article, please go to the tab "Articles" at and find the title 'Welcome Back School, Welcome Back Stress." Also, look for the article in the local Coral Ridge Newsletter.