Author: Tammy Perez

Breaking a Bad Habit

Habits are patterns of repetitive actions we do without thinking. Some habits are good like brushing our teeth every day or turning off the lights before we leave a room. Some habits can be bad such as smoking cigarettes or eating unhealthy snacks for convenience. Have you ever tried to break a bad habit? If so, you will quickly find that breaking a bad habit is a lot harder than it sounds. To do this requires planning, focus, commitment and a great deal of patience. This is a challenge for us because we become comfortable and complacent in our...

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Everyone Can Benefit from Seeing a Therapist

As we all know, life is not easy. Sometimes we experience issues that are difficult to resolve on our own. In these situations, overwhelming thoughts and emotions may cause us to react in unpleasant ways. Bad relationships can weaken our judgement and impair our ability to function effectively in life. When we are sick, we quickly seek the professional help of a doctor to help us physically feel better. However, when we are mentally ill, our rapid response to seek assistance vanishes. Why? The most common response from clients was that they did not want to be viewed as being weak by others. They ask themselves, “What will people think of me?” A therapist can help with a variety of problems including depression, anxiety, stress, trauma, communication, low self-esteem, negative thoughts, and relationship issues just to name a few. Have you ever heard of “Talk-therapy”? This concept is developed around building a trusting and confidential relationship with a professional counselor who allows you to express your feelings and concerns without judgement. He or she will help guide you into gaining insight and meaning to difficult situations you have experienced in life. This process is not quick or easy. Effective therapy requires clients to be honest with themselves. Clients must admit their problems, accept what they can’t change, and commit to change and goal setting in order to become a...

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Losing Your Identity in a Relationship

Having a healthy relationship is a goal that most couples aim for. We all want to find that special someone who shares our interests, teaches us new things and motivates us to be a better version of ourselves. What happens when we start changing our true authentic selves to accommodate our partner’s needs? Being in a relationship should not change who you are, right? I’ve had the opportunity to work with many couples. All of them have had one thing in common. They start their relationships playing a “role”, assuming that is what their partner wants in the relationship. Confused? Let me explain. At the beginning of every relationship, we are “lost in love”. Spending time with our new partner gets priority over everything else in our lives, the key here is balance. Never forget that you were someone before your new love came into your life. You should never lose yourself in a relationship. In fact, a strong partnership should add to your identity, strengthening parts of your personality that you never knew you had and introducing you to things you never knew you would like. So, let’s go back to playing a role. When you start a relationship, it is common to want to satisfy and please your partner, but while compromise is necessary to a successful relationship, you should never feel like you have to surrender...

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Effective Family Communication

Effective communication within the family involves empathetic listening. All members should be allowed to express both positive and negative feelings to each other, without feeling judged or blamed for their thoughts and opinions. Active listening and better communication within a family starts at the parent or caregiver level. This relationship affects a family’s dynamic tremendously. There are a few things to take into consideration when establishing effective family communication. Think before you speak or react. Consider how your message will be interpreted. What is your current mood? If you are angry, you may project your anger out on others around you and say something you will regret. If you are stressed or anxious, you make react with strong emotions. Being angry, stressed or anxious does not justify your negative behavior towards others in your family. Children are very observant when their parents don’t follow through with their demands or consequences. When parents are not consistent, children may become confused and their behaviors will reflect these uncertainties. Parents and caregivers need to have realistic expectations that they regularly model. Is it fair to expect your children to behave in a way that you don’t? Taking a child’s current age and developmental level into consideration is important when it comes to expectations and discipline. When addressing an issue with a child, be clear, specific and avoid sarcasm, which can have a...

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Computer and Internet Addiction is a Real Thing

Are you dependent on technology to bring you satisfaction in life? Dependency can be playing video games to escape reality, posting to social media to get attention or validation, compulsive online spending when anxious or bored, or visiting dating sites with the hopes of meeting the love of your life. Are there noticeable negative patterns surrounding your computer or internet activities? Are they causing problems in your relationships or affecting your work performance? Most of the time, these addictions are just distractions to real issues that people are not yet ready to face. They may feel anxious, impulsive or unfulfilled in life. These activities produce a “high”, filling a void and bringing pleasure that lasts momentarily. Overtime, these addictions have negative consequences that outweigh the positive feelings experienced. They can also have long-term negative effects on many areas of our lives. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) research has shown that certain people are more susceptible to computer or internet addiction. These individuals include; those who have had prior addictions to other behaviors or substances; a history of depression or anxiety; attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; or Low self-esteem. Recovering computer addicts reported feelings of euphoria when using the computer and feelings of depression, unfulfillment and irritability when not using it. They also described feeling withdrawn or neglected by family and friends as well as experiencing many of the...

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