Being an attorney can be an extremely demanding job at times and can easily cause strain on your relationships with partners, families, or friends. Continue reading for some tips on how to foster those relationships.
By: Bridget Eickhoff
Anxiety, worry, and panic are felt by many of us at some point in our lives. After attending a training by David Carbonell, Ph.D. on chronic anxiety, I picked up some helpful tools that I would like to share.
The more you oppose unwanted thoughts, feelings, and sensations the worse they can become
A big reason behind anxiety symptoms is self-protection. People often interpreted anxiety as a signal for danger, meaning fight, flight, or freeze; but what if that was a false signal. What if this feeling is intense discomfort that will eventually pass if it is not forced to be silence. Next time you are experiencing anxiety check-in with yourself and if you indeed are in danger or is this discomfort? If it turns out to be discomfort allow yourself 5-10 minutes to worry, you may be surprised how different it feels to allow the worry to have its time rather than continue to suppress it.
The Rule of Opposites
Think of yourself swimming and trying to avoid a large wave coming your way. You may ask yourself “what is the best way for me to avoid this wave?” Your instincts may say to swim away from the wave and hope you can be faster, but in reality the easiest way to avoid the wave is to swim under it. The same can apply to feelings of anxiety and worry. During a panic attack your gut may tell you to hold your breath or take in more breaths at a time, when what is shown to help is taking deep belly breaths. Next time you find yourself beginning to feel anxiety or panic, try to recognize how your gut tells you to react and think about what the opposite might be.
The next time you are experiencing high anxiety or a panic attack be AWARE
Acknowledge and accept the feelings
Wait and Watch – recognize what the sensations in your body and your thoughts (this could be a good time to try doing the opposite of your usual)
Action – make yourself comfortable while waiting for it too pass
Repeat – go through steps a-c and try to think to yourself it will end no matter what I do
End of intense anxiety or panic attack
Our therapists at CARE Counseling are trained and competent in working with those experiencing symptoms of anxiety. Your counselor will be able to help explore with you common patterns of negative thinking, help you develop successful coping skills, and teach calming strategies.
For more helpful information on anxiety click here
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By: Bridget Eickhoff, MA, Alison Dolan, Psy.D., LP, and Andrea Hutchinson, Psy.D., LP
Being a therapist can be a fulfilling and rewarding career. However, it can be hard to remember that therapists are humans who also experience anxiety, stress, and burnout. We took a survey of 30 clinicians at CARE Counseling asking what makes them feel successful and balanced at work. Here are the main points our amazing clinicians found that help them find balance when working with a full caseload.
- Create Boundaries and Stick to Them
- Let your clients know your boundaries for cancellations and follow through with the boundaries you’ve set or are set by your agency. Therapy should be a flexible time for the client to address topics that are important to them; however, aspects of structure are important in therapy to keep both your clients and yourself accountable.
- Start and end sessions on time so that you have time to complete documentation, grab something to eat or drink, use the restroom, consult with a colleague, and/or take a moment to regroup.
- Manage your Schedule Proactively
- Make your life easier by scheduling clients as recurring appointments and practice confirming the next appointment at the end of the session.
- You probably enjoy seeing clients and it can be heartbreaking to refer them out. However, back to that accountability point, close your clients who are not following the attendance policy (or use supervision and consultation if you need guidance) and give them referrals to help with barriers (e.g., closer to home, different hours, attending to a different piece of their difficulties, etc).
- Proactively reach out and ask for more clients if you start to notice your caseload looking low or you have inconsistent clients.
- Keep in mind, being proactive will help keep the number of intakes in the same week lower and documentation will likely feel more manageable.
- Take advantage of cancellations and catch up on documentation or check-in with a co-worker. If you are finding yourself racing towards burnout remember:
- You can use PTO and take a day or more to feel grounded again
- Ask if you can have a temporary block off time in your schedule to help you gain some extra time to feel like things are more manageable again
- Talk to management to see if there are ways to contribute to the team without as many client appointments.
- Try to NOT Take this Very Personal Job, Personally (easier said than done)
- For both you and your clients, use your intuition for goodness of fit. As you know, a healthy therapeutic alliance is a key factor for the overall success of therapy. At times, especially as a new clinician, it can be difficult to decipher between your intuition and anxiety. Clinicians should utilize supervision and consultation to explore types of clients who are and are not a good fit. Supervision and consultation are also helpful when you feel stuck.
- Sometimes, it can feel pretty personal when a client cancels often or ghosts us. Keep in mind, clients will cancel appointments for a multitude of reasons ranging from weather, illness, moving, and symptoms and this happens to the best of us.
- You’re Not Alone
- Consult with your peers and use supervision to feel balanced and confident with your caseload.
- While you are likely a compassionate person, remember you too may have times when you need to check-in on your own mental health. Remember everyone can benefit from therapy!
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