0 comments on “Understanding Trauma”

Understanding Trauma

Hong Kong counselling therapist services

Trauma occurs when an accident, abuse, loss or something unpredictable causes us to feel emotions such as intense fear, shock, denial and distress. For the most part, people might have trauma reactions such as nightmares, hypervigilance or physical symptoms after a tragic or dangerous event that heals by itself after a short period. However, depending on the intensity and duration of the trauma, people might need to reach out to a trained mental health professional to recover and get back on track. Here are some concepts to help you understand trauma for yourself and your loved ones.

  1. The mind-body connection: Our mind is connected to our body, and there is a constant feedback loop between the two. During an accident or traumatic event, our system goes into fight or flight for protection. If our body is in fight or flight for too long, our mind becomes distressed and hypervigilant. Our immune system and nervous system might also be affected, and we might experience physical symptoms. After a trauma, it is essential to find ways to relax so that our mind and our body can get back to normal. If you are having a difficult time sleeping or focusing at work, a mental health professional can help you.
  2. Avoidance or seeking: Often after a trauma, we want to avoid the person, place or situation that caused the trauma. This may or may not be in your favour. Reflect on the situation and ask yourself if avoiding will raise or lower your quality of life. If avoiding will reduce your quality of life, but you can’t go back to the situation, seek a professional. Those who do not avoid might tend to seek out the situation, person or place that caused the trauma to relive and figure out the situation. Just like avoiding, this can be dangerous or helpful. If seeking out the situation is dangerous, and you find yourself doing it, reach out and seek help.
  3. Not everyone wants to talk about it: Everyone copes with trauma and loss differently. If someone is not ready to talk about it or seek help, do not push them. This might be doing more harm than good because it might interfere with the person’s natural coping system.
  4. Withdrawing: You might want to withdraw from your partner, friends, and from social events.  This is to help you to find the stability you perceived lost.  This might affect your relationships in a negative way if you do not communicate what you need and what you are feeling.
  5. Express and release: Express and release the trauma through art, music, dancing, sports or writing. This can help to release the trauma’s powerful hold on you.  A professional can also help by listening with empathy and no judgement.
  6. When to seek help: You can seek help at any point after a trauma. However, if you’re relationships or quality of life is suffering, reach out as soon as possible. Some symptoms to pay special attention to are constant agitation, hypervigilance, strained relationships, flashbacks, nightmares and physical symptoms such as tension, a pressure in the chest, chronic pain, stomach and headaches.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US trained Clinical Psychologist who specialises in loss and attachment.  Get in touch with Dr. Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “Why am I so angry?”

Why am I so angry?

Hong Kong psychological services

Humans have emotions for a reason.  Some emotions keep us safe, social and on a certain life path.  Anger is an emotion that tells others, “don’t mess with me,” or “I want to feel in control.” Anger helps us to feel powerful and it can motivate us.  Anger is not a problem, but how we react to it can be.

1. Change the psychological meaning from anger to disappointment.  Dissapointment is a healthier way to acknowledge that something did not turn out the way you expected or desired.  When we are disappointed it is easier to respond instead of react.  When we can respond in an objective manner we have more control over a situation.

2. Where and when do you feel out of control?  When we acknowledge and accept the situations where we feel out of control, we can respond to them better.  We might feel out of control if we can’t have the partner, job or social status we desire.  We can understand that our feelings of anger can be used in a positive way to motivate us to attend to our goals.  Anger becomes destructive when we become aggressive and sabotage our relationships and career opportunities.

3. Your focus is on external validation.  When we are constantly seeking the validation of others, we might be more sensitive to rejection.  The feeling of rejection might anger us and cause conflict in our relationships.  Focus on your goals and needs and how you can reach internal validation and confidence.

4. You have been abused.  People who have been abused might unconsciously feel that they need to be aggressive towards others before someone hurts them first.  Anger and violence is a way to feel in control and to control the other person.  Anger can even be directed towards yourself and self-loathing can take place.  Be aware of who is safe and unsafe in your environment.  Work on creating a safe space for yourself both physically and psychologically.  When this becomes overwhelming or difficult, a professional can walk you through this process.

5. De-stress.  Sometimes we feel agitated and angry when our stress levels are too high and we are out of balance.  Focus on taking some stress out of your life by going into nature, meditating, playing sports or by spending time with friends.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist

Reach out to Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “How placing judgement hurts you”

How placing judgement hurts you

Hong Kong psychological services

Human minds organize things and people to process information quicker. The downside to this is categorizing people leads to stereotyping. The key is to be aware of your own stereotypes so that you don’t overlook other valuable information. The more often we judge others, the more often we judge ourself. This can lead to social anxiety and self-consciousness. Here is how you can help yourself.

1. Be aware of your judgements. Are you judging because:

A. Something about the other person represents a part of yourself that you don’t like?

B. The other person reminds you of someone who hurt your you?

C. The other person represents something that you want to be?

2. Speak kindly to yourself and others.

3. Is the judgement destructive or constructive. Destructive judgement is harmful and says that you or the other person are not good enough. Constructive judgement helps you or the other person grow and become better.

4. Reframe destructive judgement. Everyone is a product of their genes and their environment. People act and react to you based on how they perceive you and their own past experiences. Having this in mind helps you to view others objectively rather than critically.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist who specialises in loss and attachment.  Get in touch with Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “Why am I so angry?”

Why am I so angry?

Hong Kong psychological services

Humans have emotions for a reason.  Some emotions keep us safe, social and on a certain life path.  Anger is an emotion that tells others, “don’t mess with me,” or “I want to feel in control.” Anger helps us to feel powerful and it can motivate us.  Anger is not a problem, but how we react to it can be.

1. Change the psychological meaning from anger to disappointment.  Dissapointment is a healthier way to acknowledge that something did not turn out the way you expected or desired.  When we are disappointed it is easier to respond instead of react.  When we can respond in an objective manner we have more control over a situation.

2. Where and when do you feel out of control?  When we acknowledge and accept the situations where we feel out of control, we can respond to them better.  We might feel out of control if we can’t have the partner, job or social status we desire.  We can understand that our feelings of anger can be used in a positive way to motivate us to attend to our goals.  Anger becomes destructive when we become aggressive and sabotage our relationships and career opportunities.

3. Your focus is on external validation.  When we are constantly seeking the validation of others, we might be more sensitive to rejection.  The feeling of rejection might anger us and cause conflict in our relationships.  Focus on your goals and needs and how you can reach internal validation and confidence.

4. You have been abused.  People who have been abused might unconsciously feel that they need to be aggressive towards others before someone hurts them first.  Anger and violence is a way to feel in control and to control the other person.  Anger can even be directed towards yourself and self-loathing can take place.  Be aware of who is safe and unsafe in your environment.  Work on creating a safe space for yourself both physically and psychologically.  When this becomes overwhelming or difficult, a professional can walk you through this process.

5. De-stress.  Sometimes we feel agitated and angry when our stress levels are too high and we are out of balance.  Focus on taking some stress out of your life by going into nature, meditating, playing sports or by spending time with friends.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist

Reach out to Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “Easing Academic Stress in the Home.”

Easing Academic Stress in the Home.

Hong Kong counselling therapist services-child therapy

Academic pressure is a major source of anxiety and stress for many children and teens.  As a parent, you want what is best for your child.  Here are a few pointers to help you ease the academic pressure your child might be feeling.

  1. 1. Have a stress free homework routine.  After school allow your child or teen to have a snack.  Food will help them to be in a better mood and help their brain concentrate better.  It is difficult to think when you are hungry.  Set a regular routine where after they eat, do homework, and then they can be rewarded with play or exercise.
  2. Allow your child breaks.  The brain can only focus for certain amounts of time.  Children have a shorter attention span than adults.  If your child is having a difficult time sitting still, make a game out of the homework.  Say, “If you can focus and do this worksheet properly, you can have two minutes to play, or do whatever you like.  When I count to ten, we resume the homework again.”
  3. Take the pressure out of the home.  Everyone has strengths and weaknesses.  If your child is struggling in math, do not add more pressure by shouting or punishing them.  Sit down next to them and patiently explain it to them. If you are unable to be patient with them, hire a patient tutor.  Speak kindly to your child.  When your child is calm, they can think better.
  4. Allow play and exercise for added focus and brain power. Your child or teen needs to play and exercise in order to sit through school.  Exercise increases blood flow to the brain making it easier to focus and learn.  Children need to play to reduce stress.
  5. Stress reduction.  Anxiety and stress hinder learning because the fight or flight system is activated.  Anxiety and stress make it difficult to focus and learn.  Stress and anxiety can be reduced in different ways, such as play, art, exercise and breathing techniques.  Allow your child to open up to you and express how they are feeling without judgement and punishment.
  6. Sleep. Make sure your child or teenager is getting enough sleep at night.  Lack of sleep makes it difficult to learn.
  7. Proper nutrition.  Too much sugar will create fatigue and shorten attention span.  Proper nutrition and diet lead to a healthy body and brain.
  8. Remain calm.  The calmer you are, the calmer your child will be.  This enables a better learning environment in and outside of the home.
  9. Decrease screen time. Overstimulation from the iPad, television, computer, video games and phone decrease attention. Limit the amount your teen or child is allowed to use these electronic devices.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US trained Clinical Psychologist Get in touch with Dr. Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com for an individual or Skype session.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “Why am I so angry?”

Why am I so angry?

Hong Kong psychological services

Humans have emotions for a reason.  Some emotions keep us safe, social and on a certain life path.  Anger is an emotion that tells others, “don’t mess with me,” or “I want to feel in control.” Anger helps us to feel powerful and it can motivate us.  Anger is not a problem, but how we react to it can be.

1. Change the psychological meaning from anger to disappointment.  Dissapointment is a healthier way to acknowledge that something did not turn out the way you expected or desired.  When we are disappointed it is easier to respond instead of react.  When we can respond in an objective manner we have more control over a situation.

2. Where and when do you feel out of control?  When we acknowledge and accept the situations where we feel out of control, we can respond to them better.  We might feel out of control if we can’t have the partner, job or social status we desire.  We can understand that our feelings of anger can be used in a positive way to motivate us to attend to our goals.  Anger becomes destructive when we become aggressive and sabotage our relationships and career opportunities.

3. Your focus is on external validation.  When we are constantly seeking the validation of others, we might be more sensitive to rejection.  The feeling of rejection might anger us and cause conflict in our relationships.  Focus on your goals and needs and how you can reach internal validation and confidence.

4. You have been abused.  People who have been abused might unconsciously feel that they need to be aggressive towards others before someone hurts them first.  Anger and violence is a way to feel in control and to control the other person.  Anger can even be directed towards yourself and self-loathing can take place.  Be aware of who is safe and unsafe in your environment.  Work on creating a safe space for yourself both physically and psychologically.  When this becomes overwhelming or difficult, a professional can walk you through this process.

5. De-stress.  Sometimes we feel agitated and angry when our stress levels are too high and we are out of balance.  Focus on taking some stress out of your life by going into nature, meditating, playing sports or by spending time with friends.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist

Reach out to Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “How placing judgement hurts you”

How placing judgement hurts you

Hong Kong psychological services

Human minds organize things and people to process information quicker. The downside to this is categorizing people leads to stereotyping. The key is to be aware of your own stereotypes so that you don’t overlook other valuable information. The more often we judge others, the more often we judge ourself. This can lead to social anxiety and self-consciousness. Here is how you can help yourself.

1. Be aware of your judgements. Are you judging because:

A. Something about the other person represents a part of yourself that you don’t like?

B. The other person reminds you of someone who hurt your you?

C. The other person represents something that you want to be?

2. Speak kindly to yourself and others.

3. Is the judgement destructive or constructive. Destructive judgement is harmful and says that you or the other person are not good enough. Constructive judgement helps you or the other person grow and become better.

4. Reframe destructive judgement. Everyone is a product of their genes and their environment. People act and react to you based on how they perceive you and their own past experiences. Having this in mind helps you to view others objectively rather than critically.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist who specialises in loss and attachment.  Get in touch with Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “Understanding Trauma”

Understanding Trauma

Hong Kong counselling therapist services

Trauma occurs when an accident, abuse, loss or something unpredictable causes us to feel emotions such as intense fear, shock, denial and distress. For the most part, people might have trauma reactions such as nightmares, hypervigilance or physical symptoms after a tragic or dangerous event that heals by itself after a short period. However, depending on the intensity and duration of the trauma, people might need to reach out to a trained mental health professional to recover and get back on track. Here are some concepts to help you understand trauma for yourself and your loved ones.

  1. The mind-body connection: Our mind is connected to our body, and there is a constant feedback loop between the two. During an accident or traumatic event, our system goes into fight or flight for protection. If our body is in fight or flight for too long, our mind becomes distressed and hypervigilant. Our immune system and nervous system might also be affected, and we might experience physical symptoms. After a trauma, it is essential to find ways to relax so that our mind and our body can get back to normal. If you are having a difficult time sleeping or focusing at work, a mental health professional can help you.
  2. Avoidance or seeking: Often after a trauma, we want to avoid the person, place or situation that caused the trauma. This may or may not be in your favour. Reflect on the situation and ask yourself if avoiding will raise or lower your quality of life. If avoiding will reduce your quality of life, but you can’t go back to the situation, seek a professional. Those who do not avoid might tend to seek out the situation, person or place that caused the trauma to relive and figure out the situation. Just like avoiding, this can be dangerous or helpful. If seeking out the situation is dangerous, and you find yourself doing it, reach out and seek help.
  3. Not everyone wants to talk about it: Everyone copes with trauma and loss differently. If someone is not ready to talk about it or seek help, do not push them. This might be doing more harm than good because it might interfere with the person’s natural coping system.
  4. Withdrawing: You might want to withdraw from your partner, friends, and from social events.  This is to help you to find the stability you perceived lost.  This might affect your relationships in a negative way if you do not communicate what you need and what you are feeling.
  5. Express and release: Express and release the trauma through art, music, dancing, sports or writing. This can help to release the trauma’s powerful hold on you.  A professional can also help by listening with empathy and no judgement.
  6. When to seek help: You can seek help at any point after a trauma. However, if you’re relationships or quality of life is suffering, reach out as soon as possible. Some symptoms to pay special attention to are constant agitation, hypervigilance, strained relationships, flashbacks, nightmares and physical symptoms such as tension, a pressure in the chest, chronic pain, stomach and headaches.

Dr Monica Borschel is a US trained Clinical Psychologist who specialises in loss and attachment.  Get in touch with Dr. Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “How can I express how I really feel?”

How can I express how I really feel?

Hong Kong counseling and therapy services with Dr. Monica Borschel

Sometimes we might have a difficult time expressing how we feel because we are afraid of how others will react or what they might think of us. We might have a hard time expressing how we feel because we are not sure what it is we are feeling. Emotions can be complex. Part of it might be because we tell ourselves that how we feel doesn’t matter. Here are some simple guidelines to understand and express how you feel.

1. Your emotions matter: Emotions give us information about our environment and our choices. If we feel threatened or out of control we might feel angry or anxious. If we have lost or fear losing someone or something, we might grieve or feel sad. When things are going the way that we want them too, we feel happy or excited.

2. Emotions are in your body: One of the keys to understanding how you feel is to pay attention to sensations in your body. Is your heart racing or is your stomach tight? When we learn how to identify where we feel emotions in our body we can learn to speak about how we feel.

3. How are you perceiving the emotion? Our body gives us a signal about threats in our environment and our heart races. We can tell ourself that we are afraid, or we can tell ourself that we are excited. Be curious about the story that you are telling yourself about your bodies response to the environment.

4. Heathy responses: Healthy responses to emotion include talking, crying or calming down. Talking about how you feel helps to minimize conflict and misunderstanding. Crying helps to relieve pressure and stress and calming down prevents you from yelling or becoming aggressive.

4. Accept your emotions, don’t avoid them: Avoiding your emotions or distracting yourself from your emotions will not help you to understand or learn from them. Often when we feel heartache we tend to avoid it. Negative emotions help us to grow and understand ourselves better. Broken hearts help us to understand love, appreciation and compassion. We also learn from our mistakes by paying attention to the feelings we don’t like.

5. Write it out: It might be easier for some people to write their emotions out before they are able to speak about them. Writing your feelings on a piece of paper might help to clarify any confusion you have to what you are feeling.

6. Practice, practice, practice: If you are not used to speaking about your feelings, it will be quite challenging in the beginning. Don’t give up, try again. Every time that you try, it will become easier. There might be people in your life who are unable to cope with your emotions or anyone else’s for that matter. Practice with people are are open to hearing how you feel.


Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist

Reach out to Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com for an individual or skype session.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel

0 comments on “How to better manage your days when you are depressed.”

How to better manage your days when you are depressed.

Hong Kong counselling and therapist services

Depression is a liar. It tells us that we are fundamentally flawed and that we should hide. Depression is exhausting. It’s difficult to reach out for help because we don’t want to burden anyone. Sometimes when you are depressed you need to do opposite of what you feel.

1. Reach out for professional help. You might feel like you don’t deserve it or that you don’t need help. You need to push through those thoughts and emotions so that you can get better. If you are too tired to get out of bed, arrange for a Skype consultation. If this seems overwhelming, ask a friend to make the appointment for you.

2. Organize your schedule and stick to a routine. If you can, organize your day hour by hour and develop a daily routine. This will help you to get things done because you will be less confused about what you should be doing.

 

3. Write your thoughts and emotions. Writing out your emotions can help you release some stress. Negative thoughts that are helpless or hopeless should be reframed into positive action.

4. Exercise. Exercise releases endorphins which helps us to feel happier and more motivated.

5. Social support: This one is difficult when you want to hide at home. Mentally prepare yourself to set up a time to meet people who care about you and can help you relax.

6. Laugh: comedy and laughter increase our positive emotions.

7. Go out into nature.

 

Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist who specialises in loss and attachment.  Get in touch with Dr Borschel: m.borschel@mindnlife.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drmonicaborschel