Note: One page in the book references religious language about a relative being in heaven. If this is not a part of your client’s spiritual beliefs, skip over that part in the video.
Using this link (https://patricekarst.com/activity-kit/) help your client complete the “Where Does Your String Go” activity. Your client may need a caregiver to help them, print and cut out the worksheet, or they can make their own hearts out of construction paper at home. Talk about your client’s support network using the story of the Invisible String.
Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist engaged the Ct in an art therapy activity focused on their social connections and social support system. The Ct (was/was not) able to identify several people in their support network and ways to feel connected to them.
Couple strategy of the week:
Building Future “Moments:” A social support system can include our partners. The purpose of this exercise is to do more of what feels good so that the relationship can be a place that feels safe and supportive. First, identify moments (e.g., discussions, activities, interactions) with your partner that felt good. Next, discuss specific aspects of those moments that made them feel good. What was meaningful about them? Did a particular gesture or statement make you feel safe? How can you incorporate more of these aspects into your lives in the future?
Sample Progress Note: The focus of this session was… The therapist helped the couple identify positive aspects of past experiences and discuss ways to incorporate those positive aspects into their future interactions. The couple reported that identifying positive experiences was (fun/helpful/challenging), and they were able to identify (one/several/few) ways that they can incorporate aspects of their positive experiences into their future interactions.
Adult strategy of the week:
Taking Inventory of You Support Network: During the pandemic, a lot of us aren’t seeing as many people as we used to, and sometimes we can forget who we can reach out to. Take some time to make a list of people you can include in your social support network. Once you have your list of potential people, try to reach out to at least one person. Think about:
Who are your friends, family, and colleagues? List anyone you enjoy talking to, even if you haven’t talked in a while.
Who do you laugh with?
Who makes you feel understood?
Who do you trust?
Who are people in your life you’ve been meaning to reach out to?
Some ways to build a support network during the pandemic include (but are not limited to):
Virtual happy hours
Even just texting and sharing fun pictures!
Sample progress note: The focus of this session was… The therapist helped ct. take inventory of the supportive people in their life and make a plan to reach out to at least one person. Ct. reported that listing the supportive people in their life was (e.g., nice/difficult/sad/etc.), and they discussed (ways they can reach out/barriers to reaching out).
Sample progress note: The focus of this session was… The therapist led a meditation activity (i.e., Web of Life Meditation). Ct. (engaged/did not engage in the activity), and they reported that the activity was (helpful/difficult/not helpful).
Begin by checking in. Begin by taking a few moments to arrive and settle in by bringing your awareness into your mind and body. Acknowledge how you are feeling and let it be.
Gently shift to mindful breathing, being aware of breathing in and out. There’s need to manipulate the breath in any way—just breathing in and out, normally and naturally.
Shift attention to where you’re seated. Begin to feel the connection of your body on the chair, cushion, bed, or mat, and feel its connection to the floor. Reflect on the connection of the floor to the building you are in and its connection to the earth farther below.
Let your awareness expand to include the earth below you. Feel that sense of being held by the earth below you, and just allow yourself to be held by the earth. You are in a safe space and you can breathe in and out with ease in your body and mind.
Feel how the earth rises up to hold and embrace you. There is nothing more you need to do, nowhere you have to go, and no one you have to be. Just being held in the heart of kindness and letting be.
Bring to mind someone you would hold this way. Reflect on your loved ones being held in the same way—with safety and ease of body and mind. Reflect on how the earth holds all beings, whether they are acquaintances, strangers, or difficult ones—with no bias, no discrimination, no separation.
Reflect on how this earth holds all beings, forsaking none—whether they be small or large. Reflect on how this earth does not exist in a vacuum, that it is connected to a solar system and vast universe. We all are interconnected. Our bodies and the earth, the sun and the stars, are composed of the same matter—the same basic particles, joined in different ways. Feeling into that sense of connection and interconnection that we are all made of stardust. Feeling that sense of being home within your body and mind with a true sense of belonging and connection.
Return your attention to the breath. Just breathing in and out, feeling the grace of this universe—no isolation nor separation, feeling that sense of connection and interconnection and being at home in your being. Nothing more you need to do, go, get, or push away. Imperfectly perfect as you are, resting in the heart of this universe.
Let well-wishes form. May all beings here and everywhere dwell with peace.
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