Depressive disorders are among the most common mental health disorders that people seek treatment for every year.
Common symptoms of depression can include depressed mood, diminished interest in pleasurable activities, weight loss/gain, sleep changes, fatigue, loss of energy, feelings of worthlessness, excessive guilt, cognitive changes, and suicidal ideation. The number of symptoms, duration & timing, as well as the impact on an individual's ability to function, must be taken into consideration to determine the appropriate diagnosis. If you or anyone you know is experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to be properly evaluated by a mental health professional.
So, what causes depression? Research suggests that a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors play a role in the development of depression. Some risk factors that can increase the likelihood of developing depression include a person's temperament, environmental factors such as adverse childhood experiences or life stressors, and genetics.
The good news is that depression can be treated. Treatment is available and is quite effective! It can include psychotherapy ("talk therapy"), medication, or both.
Anxiety and fear are commonly experienced by everyone from time to time. To start off, let's differentiate between fear and anxiety. Fear is a reaction to a real or perceived threat. Anxiety is the anticipation of something that may happen in the future.
So what makes day to day worrying different from an anxiety disorder? Worrying and fears that become persistent, excessive, difficult to control, and last for a longer duration, are often affiliated with anxiety disorders. These feelings may interfere with daily functioning, cause significant distress, and can lead to avoidance behaviors.
Symptoms of anxiety can include excessive worrying/nervousness, restlessness, fatigue, sweaty palms, racing heart, difficulty concentrating, irritability, sleep changes, and muscle tension. Anxiety disorders are multifactorial and can be caused by a combination of genetic, environmental, and physiological factors.
Keep in mind that anxiety and fear are not always a bad thing. They serve their purpose. These uncomfortable emotions activate our fight and flight response which is important for survival. Fear of failure helps motivate us. Overcoming a fear is quite empowering and promotes self-growth.
However, when fear gets to the point where it feels like it's "too much" or is interfering with your work, relationships, social plans, or other aspects of your life, it's time to contact a mental health professional for an evaluation. Help is available to those who suffer from an anxiety disorder. Treatment can include psychotherapy ("talk therapy"), medication, or both.
What is self-esteem? Simply, self-esteem refers to the way you feel about yourself. It can influence academic performance, relationship satisfaction, occupational achievement, and overall happiness.
Individuals with a healthy level of self-esteem feel well liked and accepted by others. They are proud of their accomplishments, feel good about themselves, and are not scared to speak up when necessary. They often trust their judgment, tolerate failure, and problem solve. On the other hand, people with low self-esteem tend to be harder on themselves and often struggle with "not being good enough." They may perceive the world as a negative place, struggle with decision making, have perfectionistic standards, and can be less tolerant of failure or setbacks.
Self-esteem can be influenced by many factors, some of which include, who you surround yourself with (e.g., parents, friends, significant others, etc.), traumatic experiences, negative life events, physical appearance, unhealthy relationships, genetics, and faulty beliefs about oneself. Your internal dialogue (how you talk to yourself) also plays a significant role in how you treat yourself & interact with others. Do you criticize yourself often? Are you hard on yourself when you make a mistake?
The good news about self-esteem is that it's a subjective evaluation of your own worth. That's right. It's subjective- meaning it can be changed since it's not based on facts but rather personal feelings.
There are many healthy lifestyle changes that you could make to feel better about yourself. Being mindful of your negative self-talk is a good start to improving your self-worth. Using helpful statements that are encouraging and demonstrate self-compassion can play a pivotal role in your happiness. Surround yourself with people that treat you well, respect you, and value you. Treat others with kindness + respect. Acknowledge your strengths & achievements. Set healthy boundaries. Eat well, exercise regularly, & get good sleep. Improve your living space to ensure that it is clean + comfortable. Don't hesitate to do things you enjoy. Tackle some of those tasks that you have been procrastinating on- even if it's only 5 minutes a day. Accept things you cannot change. Set achievable goals & work towards them- regardless of how big or small they are. Try something new like that yoga class you've been wanting to try. Improve coping skills + build resilience.
If you are looking to improve your self-esteem so you can enjoy life to the fullest, give us a call. We can help you get there by using compassion, insight, expertise, and providing you with regular accountability! Why wait? Be empowered.
The need for connection is innate. Almost of all of us are looking to foster deep, rewarding, and healthy relationships with those around us. The question is - How do we navigate these various types of relationships in our lives? Simply put, these skills need to be learned. Most of us have to put effort into mastering the tools that lead to successful relationships. Strong relationships are nurtured on a regular basis.
Since no two relationships are the same, there are various ways to interact with the different people in our lives. Some very basic building blocks that healthy relationships are built upon include: 1.) respect 2.) emotional support 3.) kindness 4.) good communication 5.) honesty.
Relationships are dynamic, and they can be quite complicated. It is no surprise that most of us struggle with aspects of the relationship process at different times. Therapy can help you make the distinction between a "good" and "bad" relationship & identify unhealthy patterns. In addition, you'll learn various tools to improve the quality of your interactions with others and uncover more about yourself in the process. Our goal is to help deepen and strengthen your connection with the people you value in your life.
Disclaimer: The information on this website is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, or replace an evaluation from a licensed mental health professional.