Theme: Inner Strength

Kid /Teen strategy of the week:

Inner Strengths and Qualities: Supporting kids and teens as they explore positive qualities about themselves can help them develop a sense of inner strength. The following activity helps kids and teens identify their strengths by exploring things they’re good at, challenges they’ve overcome, things that make them unique, and more.

Source: https://www.therapistaid.com/therapy-worksheet/my-strengths-and-qualities
Sample Progress Note: The focus of the session was (tailored based on the treatment plan). The therapist engaged the client in an activity of identifying strengths and positive qualities. The client responded to the activity by (fill in the blank).

Relationship Strategy of the week:

Building a Strong Relationship House: Relationships, like houses, are built from the ground up. Now may be a good time for couples to get a Relationship House inspection and see which areas are really strong and which may need some extra support. Levels at the bottom are needed to support the levels above them.
Source: https://www.gottman.com/blog/what-is-the-sound-relationship-house/

Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist supported the client in exploring ways they strengthen their relationship using the Sound Relationship House. The client reported that it was (helpful/not helpful/etc) to understand how to strengthen their relationship through the Sound Relationship House framework and was able to identify (one/a couple/several) ways to strengthen the relationship.

Adult strategy of the week:

Identifying and Utilizing Strengths: When people know their strengths, it is easier for them to find ways to overcome challenges, feel confident in their abilities, and seek out experiences that align with their strengths. In this activity, first identify your top five strengths. Then take some time to explore how your strengths have helped you in your relationships, professionally and personally. Last, think of ways that you can incorporate your strengths into each of these areas of your life.

Source: https://www.therapistaid.com/therapy-worksheet/strengths-exploration

Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist supported the client in identifying their strengths and exploring how they have used their strengths in the past and how they can use their strengths in the future. The client reported that was (helpful/not helpful/painful/etc) to further understand their strengths and how to use them.

Mindfulness/Meditation of the week:

Be the Mountain: During times of stress and unpredictability, finding stillness and stability within yourself can help you feel more grounded. The following meditation helps you do this through guided imagery of a mountain.

Source: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/my-brothers-keeper/201709/be-the-mountain-guided-meditation

Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist led Ct. in a mindfulness activity to cultivate inner strength and stability. Ct. (engaged/did not engage in the activity), and they reported that the meditation was (helpful/difficult/not helpful).

Continue to breathe deeply.

Bring your awareness to the sensations of your breath, and the gentle rhythm it is creating within you. “Letting it be, just as it is.” Each inhale and exhale announcing the next.

Expand your awareness to the sensations of your body. Sitting upright and with dignity — bring your attention to the surface beneath you and the support it provides. Root your body into its strength and become aware of your connection to it — complete, whole, and in this moment, you are grounded by its unwavering resolve.

As you sit there, visualize a grand mountain, whose peaks pierce smoky clouds and continue upward where the air is clear and the view is endless. A mountain with slopes that are both jagged and gentle; supported by a vast foundation, rooted deep in the bedrock of the earth. This mountain is a monument to all that is solid, grand, unmoving, and beautiful.

Are there trees? Does snow blanket it lofty heights? Perhaps waterfalls cascading as mist into an open sky?

However it is — let it be as it is: a perfect of creation.

Be this mountain, and share in its stillness.

Grounded in your posture, your head its skyward peak, supported by the rest of your form, granting you an awe-inspiring perspective of the landscape before you, behind you, and about you, which flows from your center into the distance horizon.

Be this mountain.

And take on its stability as your own. From the top of your crown, down your neck, and into the balance of your shoulders, like cliffs, descending into your arms and forearms, and coming to rest in the valley of your hands.

Be the mountain.

Your feet, legs, and hips its base — solid and rooted beneath you — a foundation, extending up your spine and abdomen: A core of stability.

The rhythm of your breath is all that moves you. A living mountain: alive and aware, “yet unwavering in inner stillness. Completely what you are, beyond words and thought: a centered, grounded, unmovable presence.”

A mountain, which witnesses the sun travel across the sky, casting light and shadows and colors across its consistent composure. Moment by moment, in the mountain’s stillness, the surface teems with life and activity: Snows melt, streams run down its face, trees and flowers bloom and die and bloom again as the wildlife returns and departs with the seasons.

Be the mountain, who will be called beautiful and inspiring, and dark and ominous, and knows that it is all of those things and less.

Be the mountain — which sits and sees how night follows day and back again. Which knows the sun by the warmth it brings on rising, and the stars by the way they show in a darkened sky.

Through it all, the mountain sits. Aware of the changes that each moment brings, around it and to it. Yet it remains itself. Still, as the seasons flow one into the other, and the air swirls from hot and cold, and the weather turns from tame to turbulent. Some so treacherous as to tear at its surface.

Still — none of this concerns the mountain, whose serenity is housed within, and cannot disturbed by fleeting furor.

In the same way, as you sit in meditation, you can learn to experience the mountain as a means to embody the same centered, unwavering stillness and groundedness in the face of all that changes in your life — over seconds, and hours, and years.

Like the mountain you will experience the changing nature of your mind and body, and of the world around you. You will have periods varying in intensity — of darkness and light, of activity and inactively, and moments that fill your life with color.

Through it all, be the mountain, and call on its patient strength and stability within you. Let it empower you to encounter each moment with mindful composure and compassionate clarity.

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