Whoooaaa! I’M BACK! In this episode I discuss the following:
-My random hiatus (lol)
-The realizations that brought me to two life changes (one of which being a big milestone)
-My thoughts of building the life you desire
-What’s to come for this podcast
Hi! In this episode I had the privilege of interviewing my dear friend, Erika Cadenas, licensed marriage and family therapist. She brings us 7 self-care tips to help us boost and maintain a balanced mind, body and soul as we continue to navigate through these difficult times during the pandemic. This episode covers the following:
-Creating structure and a routine
-Getting plenty of sleep
-Staying connected to sources of support
-Disengaging from social media
-Practicing positive affirmations
-Practicing empathy and kindness with self
Erika Cadenas can be reached via erikacadenaslmft.com and through IG @erikacadenaslmft. Please feel free to reach out to her or myself with any questions. And we are both accepting new therapy clients! 🙂
In this episode I discuss the following:
-A brief description on what Imposter Syndrome is
-My perspective on this syndrome from a cognitive behavioral and schema therapy framework
-Educational information on ways to move THROUGH the thoughts and feelings associated with imposter syndrome
-How to “build the faith” in your capabilities, competencies, skills and overall worth
For anyone who listens to this, know that I appreciate you SO much.
Expressing gratitude or having gratitude themed thoughts is one of the fastest ways to shift your mood, raise your vibrations and revamp your experiences. Take less than 10 minutes of your day to lay down, get cozy, and lift your mood with this guided meditation.
If you struggle with feeling fearful, anxious or nervous, this episode is for you. This is a short, to-the-point guide on how to ground yourself, shift your mind and what to do with the uncomfortable energy fear creates. More specifically, this episode covers the following:
-My clinical/professional perspective on what FEAR is
-How fear becomes ANXIETY
-How to quickly ground yourself and gently move to a “REST” state
-How to reframe the thoughts which fuel FEAR ENERGY
-How to burn and MOVE fear energy
Let me know what you found helpful from the episode on my IG or FB @drcecilialopez, and please share!
This episode covers the following:
-The difference between stress and anxiety
-Controlling responses to stressors with mindfulness
-Controlling responses to stressors with thought reframing
-Examples of acceptance versus thought reframing and why these are helpful
This is a bonus episode that is unlike my other episodes, in that I am not providing much info on a topic, and instead I am guiding you through a paired progressive muscle relaxation.
To skip the intro, fast forward to 5:25.
You may do this exercise when feeling anxious, panicked, angry, irritable, agitated, overwhelmed, stressed, tense, or are struggling with an overactive mind or falling asleep
This exercise focuses on reducing cortisol (our stress hormone) and activating the parasympathetic system (our “rest and digest” state).
In this episode you will learn what the symptoms of general anxiety are according to the DSM-5, and hear my insights on each criterion. This episode also provides tips on grounding your mind to the present moment and other suggestions for starting or continuing your anxiety management journey.
In this first episode you will meet Dr. Cecilia Lopez and learn what this show is all about, as well as her take on mindful living.
What exactly is a crisis?
According to the awesome Dr. Marsha Linehan, creator of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), a crisis is considered a highly stressful, short-term (meaning it isn’t going to last forever) situation that causes a sense of pressure to resolve the crisis immediately. A crisis situation is subjective, as not everyone views every situation the same. For example, giving a presentation in front of your boss and the team while you’re also afraid of public speaking may seem like a crisis to one person, but not another. Realizing you can’t pay your rent this month may seem like a crisis to one person, but not another. You get my point. During a crisis, we can use distress tolerance tools when we feel intense emotional discomfort (anxiety, panic, anger) which also can lead to discomfort in the body (e.g. rapid heartbeat, hyperventilating, dizziness, tunnel vision). We should especially use tools when we feel like this and still need to GET. STUFF. DONE (e.g. take your kids to school, work, attend class). Dr. Marsha Linehan calls tools to help these types of situations “Crisis Survival Skills.” One acronym she created is TIP, which stands for Tip the Temperature, Intense Exercise, Paced Breathing and Paired Muscle relaxation.
One way to sort of “shock your system” out of a fight-flight response is to use cold water with the Tip the Temperature technique. It is suggested to hold your breath and dunk your face in a bowl of cold water, but I also think putting hands or feet in cold water or taking a cold shower is effective. From my knowledge, I know that shocking yourself with cold water immediately stops whatever thought process you’re having that is contributing to interpreting your situation as a crisis (how very CBT of me lol), which can help slow down or stop the fight-flight response. It also increases alertness and helps you focus if you’re starting to panic or experience intense emotions to the point of feeling overwhelmed.
In regard to Intense Exercise, when we are in a fight-flight response (experiencing anxiety, panic, and even anger) we need to do something with all those chemicals our body is releasing to keep us safe from danger (our body is trying to do us a favor, but little does it know that giving a presentation is not an immediate life-or-death situation). Use that energy to avoid that shaky, dizzy, lightheaded feeling we can get when feeling overwhelmed. Go for a brisk walk, do pushups, jumping jacks, jog, shake about like a little kid who has heard music for the first time. Sometimes I stand on my tippy toes and pulse over and over as a way to burn off excess adrenaline. Try it. 😉
With Paced Breathing, in a nutshell you need to breathe DEEP, SLOW, FULLY, and WITH YOUR BELLY. Push your belly out as you inhale and keep going (slowly) until your lungs fill up fully, then exhale (slowly) with your mouth the size of a Cheerio until all the air is gone, and repeat. A trick is to breathe in 4 seconds every round, and breathe out longer than you breathe in (so breathing out 5, 6 or 7 seconds, every round). You will notice I state this breathing method A LOT in my posts. It activates your parasympathetic system which is key to calming down in a crisis situation.
Regarding the Paired Muscle Relaxation, the DBT technique indicates you tense your body muscles while breathing IN with your belly, and releasing your muscles as you exhale. If you want a different method of relaxing muscles, I suggest actually clenching various parts of your body (feet, calves, gluteus [yep, your butt], stomach, back, raise your shoulders up toward your ears, make fists with your hands, and scrunch of your face TIGHT), and hold for 15 seconds, then release. Aaaaahhhh…feels good.
I obviously added my own spin on some of these as this is all a collaborative effort. I want you all to have as much control over yourself as possible, and when faced with a crisis it is imperative to ground your body so you can GET. STUFF. DONE.
You are all amazing. Don’t forget.