The Importance of making your own choices

The Importance of making your own Choices/Decisions- Bath Avenue Counselling

As an experienced therapist, I have noticed how vital independent decision making is to self-esteem, self-development and successfully achieving life goals. For those first attending therapy, decision making may not be foremost on their mind. The process of making our own decisions allows for a broader view of ourselves and our capacity to take charge of our lives. By highlighting its importance and supporting a person towards making their own choices, self-belief and confidence implicitly grows. With this growth, there is movement and a person can suddenly find themselves ‘moving on’.

In many ways, seeing what decisions have to be made is a way of acknowledging and accepting our reality. Setting out our needs and learning how they can be met through informed and achievable decision making is part of this process. The therapist facilitates this task by simply offering reflection for the client. I regularly witness the transformation in a client when a greater sense of their decisions has been developed. A new sense of resilience takes hold.  Resolute and strong, what were previously perceived as problems, no longer feature so negatively. Be it depression, anxiety or stress related issues, a sense of freedom and autonomy now prevails. Making your own decisions allows for an unconscious process to simultaneously take place which in turn allows depression and anxiety to dissipate.

Furthermore, the assurance we gain through being strong in our choices can actually help our relationships. By valuing our individual needs, we can decide what relationships are working for us and what relationships need work. The broader benefits of this awareness is felt by our partners, friends and family. Fully accepting the need to make our own choices and asserting ourselves in the face of external control evokes a clearer sense of the self. In essence, when we control our own behaviours and choices, it leads to positive mental health and subsequently more happiness.

In conclusion, by encouraging a client to make their own choices, the presenting riddle can be solved. By this I mean the labels of depression, anxiety, low self-esteem/confidence become less defining and instead represent a non-active position in decision making. By coming to this new understanding, the therapist witnesses a person no longer burdened or overwhelmed by their problems. The riddle can quickly become a broad base of achievements in the client’s life. Built on these achievements is a new sense of personal happiness and fulfilment.

Raymond Walsh.

Depression

Depression - Bath Avenue Counselling

The causes, The symptoms and Tips to manage Depression

Depression can make the simplest of tasks seem like a huge mountain to climb. We don’t enjoy the things we used to. We feel lonely among friends and in turn isolate ourselves more.

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9 Tips for maintaining a healthy work-life balance

Bath Avenue Counselling - Work-Life balance.

Time management

Prioritise your time. If you have a to-do list that is just getting too out of hand, split them into groups.

Start with what is crucial and important. Then move onto what’s important but not crucial and so on. Slowly but surely you will chip away at your tasks and won’t feel so overwhelmed by everything you need to get done.

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Adoption Series

Adoption Series – When a female adoptee becomes a parent

When a female adoptee becomes a parent

Most of the attention surrounding adoption is given to the adoption triad: the adopted children, adoptive mothers and the birth mothers. Less attention is given to female adoptees that go on to have their own children in time. For some of these women, having their own biological child is the first time they recognise something of themselves in someone else and can help solidify their identity.

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Art Psychotherapy

Art Psychotherapy bath avenue counselling

Art Psychotherapy

Art Psychotherapy is a relatively recent development. Here at Bath Avenue, we are delighted to be able to offer it as a service. The therapeutic effects of making art have long been known. Recently, it is being used by qualified psychotherapists to help individuals with the issues that they are facing in their lives. Read more

Self Esteem – Part 2

Self-Esteem Bath Avenue Counselling

Self-Esteem – Part 2

Identity and Belonging

In the last blog (Self-Esteem) we looked at what self-esteem is and how to recognise it in yourself and those around you. Today in Self-Esteem – Part 2, we begin to look at nurturing a healthy self-esteem in yourself and your children. Read more

Self Esteem

Self-Esteem Bath Avenue Counselling

Self-Esteem

Signs of healthy and unhealthy Self-Esteem

A person who doubts himself is like a man who would enlist in the ranks of his enemies and bear arms against himself – Alexandre Dumas

This is the first post in a series looking at healthy and unhealthy self-esteem. This time, we are considering what self-esteem is and searching for what signs to look out for in someone that may have low self-esteem. Read more

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Back to School

Back To School

Back to school

One of the busiest times of the year for parents in Ireland is in full swing now, getting the kids back to school. The holiday in Spain seems like a distant memory, and the evenings are starting to close in. Our thoughts have turned to traffic jams, school uniforms, the book-list handed out by the schools and what to put in the kids’ lunch box. For many, this is one of the most stressful times of the year. Read more

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Stopping negative thoughts in their tracks

stopping negative thoughts

Stopping Negative Thoughts in their Tracks

 

Negative thoughts can contribute to anxiety, stress and depression as well as a host of other issues. If not dealt with, they can fester in the mind and exacerbate the various difficulties in our daily lives. The vast majority of us have had them at some stage. They hold us back from achieving our full potential.

It is important to realise that we are able to stop these negative thoughts in their tracks, that we can take control and dictate our own thought patterns. To do this, we can implement a basic strategy called the Five Rs: Recognise, Refuse, Relax, Reframe and Resume.

The first part is to recognize that you are having a negative thought. Ideally we can see the thought forming and recognize what it is before it fully forms and begins to affect us. This first step will allow us to take control of the thought and deal with it as we see fit. Read more

Living with O.C.D.

Living with O.C.D.

These past few days and living with O.C.D., I have taken to counting anything that is static that I happened to pass by mostly as I walked and often as I drove in my car. These past few days, I have had my senses drawn to check patterns and these past few days I have felt comfort around anything with the colour blue imbedded in it. These past few days I have had intrusive and unwanted thoughts, images and urges that would have once caused me distress and anxiety. These past few days have also left me feeling drained and a little stressed. Today, I intend to reset and take control.

In 2008 at the age of 37 I was clinically diagnosed with a severe condition of Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD).  What I have experienced these past few days living with O.C.D. affects millions of people from all walks of life.  I am not alone and neither are you. Compulsions are behaviours that the person feels compelled to perform in order to ease their distress or anxiety or suppress the thoughts. Some of my behaviours are visible actions like counting on my fingers or a repetitive clicking sound that comes from my vocal cords, almost as if I am humming out loud. Read more