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Feels like an emergency, urgent or not feeling safe? Or you just need support. Click here.

If you or someone is having an EMERGENCY or are in DANGER, call 9-1-1 and request a crisis trained officer or go to your nearest emergency room or crisis center.

If not an emergency but URGENTTEXT  741741 OR CALL 1-800-273-8255 for a crisis counselor

If you just need SUPPORT but it is not an emergency or urgent, feel free to contact me to set up an appointment or get a referral. I will get back to you by the next business day (Mon.- Fri. 9 am – 5 pm). TEXT 804-310-4618 OR CALL 804-409-0268 or fill out a contact form.

Quick Helpful Tips for Individuals and Couples

Stop, drop, & breathe.

“Stop!”  “Drop!”  &   “Breathe.”  This is a spin off the old, “Stop, drop, and roll,” if you catch on fire. This is to help with unhelpful emotional reactions.

“STOP” put the breaks on whatever is happening – stop arguing with partner or child. Take a break with a complicated situation at work. You can only control yourself.

“DROP ” drop your agenda, the point you are trying to make with partner, the power struggle you are in with your child.  Ask for a moment if you are really stressed out or upset and let partner or child know you will be back in five to ten minutes. (It actually takes only 90 seconds to decrease stress response but give yourself more time.)

Go outside or to another room for a moment with a window. Look out at sky or tree and ground yourself in the sense of sight. If you caught the fire early, you can do the next step while with other people. If taking a break from work, your work can wait for two to ten minutes.

“BREATHE”   take three to ten deep breathes. Oxygen dampens the stress hormones that developed in the stressful moment you had. This will give you a chance to go back to using your prefrontal cortex or thinking and loving brain instead of using mostly the survival parts of brain.

Survival brain may lead you to believe someone is trying to hurt or disrespect you and you must fight or shut down. Or with work, the use of the survival brain may lead you to believe that you are overwhelmed and drowning and you must either stress out, numb out, or fight your way through completing your work.

Getting to the thinking and loving brain will help you find a more effective response to a person or situation and see them as a loved one who has their own perspective and experience and a right to it just as much as you have the right to yours. The thinking and loving brain helps see situation for what it truly is and takes into account your needs and the other person’s needs or helps you let go of the point that is not worth the fight. At work, with only a few deep breaths and a Stop Drop Breathe break, you can put the work in perspective and see more clearly or break the task you need to complete into parts. Either at work or with loved ones, you may find that you just need help, a kind gesture, or some reassurance. Ask for what you need or find from within the self compassion, loving self talk, and reassurance that is one calm and loving thought away.

Next time you are on fire, remember, “Stop, drop, and breathe.” Please don’t roll though. Someone may think you have completely lost it. ; )

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