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Spring – A Time for Rebirth with Mainstream Therapy

Written as a Life Lesson by Angel Powers

As winter comes to an end and the temperature is warm, the ice melts, and buds begin to grow on trees; our earth is telling us it’s time for a new rebirth.

Many people look at spring as the “New year”; winter being the time for hibernation.

As the bear prepares food for winter and sleeps for the winter time it hibernates to rest and restore its body, its mind, and its soul.

When spring arrives it’s time for a rebirth, and new beginnings.

Is There Something that Needs to be Reborn Within You?

Perhaps with the nicer weather you’ve started moving your body more; I know I have after this long dreadful winter. I’ve been walking three days a week; up bright and early at 6 AM.

There are many times I’m just too tired and my scheduled day ahead seems too much, but I know if I get out and even move my body for a half an hour I will feel better.

Perhaps it’s time to clean your closet, or that bathroom sink that just tends to pile with stuff.

We live in a culture of instant gratification, and with this mindset also come an unhelpful thinking style called “all or nothing thinking“.

When we fall into these thinking traps, we cut ourselves off from achieving something before we even start.

We have the mindset of “Oh well, why bother!”  

“If I work out for a month and only lose 1 pound I think, its hopeless why should I even try.”

Learning From Nature!

We could learn this teaching from the earth itself; when the snow melts it doesn’t melt in one day.  You see when earth is changing seasons, if all the snow were to be melted in one day we’d be at risk of a flood. 

 When was the last time earth skipped winter?

The bird teaches us to look at things from the bigger picture. The turtle teaches us to assimilate to our surroundings, in the water it is fast and agile; on land agility is slow and steady.

When I’m too busy running around in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, I miss these moments, these teachings that are available to me in abundance if I would just tune in.

Tips to use your environment and Body as a Vessel of Information

  1. Slow down simply by activating your breath. Start with your hand below your navel; while you inhale bring your hand up slowly to the top of your nose. As you exhale press your hand in a downward motion stopping when your arm reaches a full extension. Do this 7-10 times to activate a sense of calm.
  2. In our chaotic world, calm sometimes brings anxiety. Be present. Look around you. Notice your immediate environment. The walls, the floor, the temperature, what you’re wearing, who is there, the time of day, the day of the week, the day of the month and so on…. in this moment, there is nothing to fear, or to be nervous about.
  3. Say out loud or in your head (out loud is better if you can) a.) allow me to set aside everything I think I know to see a different perspective. b.) If my environment was trying to communicate something to me in this very moment what is it trying to teach me? c.) What can I learn from…. name your surroundings i.e. the brides, my kids, the dog, traffics, the song on the radio.

Recognize the Message

The truth is, our environment is constantly communicating with us, nudging us and teaching us what we need to know. The trick is to slow down long enough and to be open to the message we are receiving.

When we receive mail it is our job to open the envelope and read what’s inside. If you receive mail and stick it in a corner or throw it in the garbage and choose not to open it, you are choosing not to read the message that has been delivered to you. So, if you are the kind of person that opens your mail when it is delivered, could you choose to open the deliveries that are in constant supply to you everywhere you are?

MAINSTREAM THERAPY

Written by: Angel Powers/Jane Laker

Photo Credits: Stephen Elliott

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PROS AND CONS OF NEW YEAR’S RESOUTIONS

PROS AND CONS OF NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS

MAINSTREAM THERAPY OFFERS SELF HELP IN SETTING GOALS!

The history of starting a fresh slate for the New Year dates back to Roman times.  We’ve changed the vision slightly by creating uniquely personal goal resolutions.  Now, however, it seems to be a habit – not necessarily followed.  In doing some research we noticed repeatedly that only 8% of those who make resolutions actually follow through.  We’re not sure where the numbers come from – but we read it so it must be true. (LOL)

WHEN WORKS BEST FOR YOU?

Angel Powers of Mainstream Therapy feels that making resolutions is ultimately a very personal choice. First of all, Angel believes that we’ve been cognitively wired for the start of a new year to be September.  This has a lot to do with the unwinding of summer and the new school year for our youth.  Many of us make real plans for starting new things once children are back in classes.  So take a look and you might notice that you’ve already started to implement different organizational things in your life that you weren’t doing.  All of this relates to the Sept.- June conditioning. This can make it doubly difficult to “re-start” once again in January.   The fresh slate of a brand new year can be very alluring, but take care to look at it with gratitude.  Each new day is a gift – one to be welcomed and cherished.

There are certainly both pros and cons when deciding on making your resolution list.  Mainstream Therapy thinks that for some, we’re best when we set resolutions on an ongoing basis.  We could try to use “SMART” goals. (Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic, Timebound).  Angel finds that this formula works best for many of us.

THOUGHTS ON PROS:

  1. Some people need time to prepare themselves in order to attain goals.
  2. There may be some financial incentives starting in January (ie. Special pricing on gym memberships)
  3. Self awareness – Reflecting on what we’ve accomplished over the past year, allows us to be able to set specific goals.
  4. January/September are fresh starts to a new year with new beginnings. This feeling of a fresh slate can be very liberating.
  5. The empowerment we feel when we can control our own goal-setting is amazing.

THOUGHTS ON CONS:

  1. It can be overwhelming to set out realistic goals.
  2. Maybe the start of a New Year or winter months doesn’t motivate you, and September works better.
  3. Possibly we make unrealistic goals without an effective plan in place.
  4. Deadlines may create procrastination. You’ve given yourself a whole year, haven’t you?

Many of us see new goals as exciting or many of us can experience the “daunting” effect.  By making micro changes, it can help our bodies adapt to synchronistic changes that become regular.  For example, kicking up a workout routine…I think we’ve all been there.  Start kickboxing every day and our bodies hurt.  Some of us need slower changes/small increments which ties into your S.M.A.R.T. goals.

We think that we should take the time to reflect on our accomplishments and continue to motivate our selves, whether we’re setting resolutions or not.

“Happy New Year from everyone at Mainstream Therapy!”

(705) 717 2107

Are you a Barrie based business looking to expand your digital footprint?  Let us know!  We can get you Uncovered!

CHRISTMAS, COVID & KIDS

CHRISTMAS, COVID & KIDS

‘Tis soon the season to celebrate Christmas, but COVID is changing many of our traditions this year.  When it comes to family time, it may be best to preplan the holidays a bit more this time around.  As adults, there’s a very strong desire to fight change, and the kids in our lives feel our anxieties.

I spoke to Angel Powers of Mainstream Therapy today about how we can create a different yet meaningful Christmas this year.(https://mainstreamtherapy.com)  Angel is a clinical social worker/therapist who has been in the trenches helping so many work through the changes that COVID has been creating.

The first advice Angel gives is to turn negative thoughts into positive ones.  We can only think one way at a time and should always work at keeping everyone on the right track.  In Angel’s words; “Where focus goes – energy flows…if we’re constantly focusing on what’s missing and how disconnected we are, we’ll amplify those feelings.  Instead, if we focus on reframing the way we look at connectedness, we can turn a negative into a positive.  For instance, if I close my eyes and imagine I’m walking to the fridge to get a lemon, imagine that I’m cutting and smelling the lemon, even biting into it I will always salivate.  The reality is that our brains don’t know if we’re imaging the lemon or actually eating it…perhaps this could be a key component to helping fill the void of disconnectedness.”

She asks everyone to create new family traditions that can replace not being able to gather in our larger family groups this year.  Keeping close to home there are still wonderful activities to do as a family.  Angel has given us a few ideas, but we’d love to hear from you as well.  Share your ideas in the comment section…your thoughts may help someone in a difficult time!

Ideas from Angel

  1.  Take a walk through some of Barrie’s beautiful trails – taking pictures.  We are blessed with a wide variety of trails limiting no one.
  2. Take a drive as a family to check out the Christmas Lights. (Maybe even open your windows and sing carols as you go…could be fun!)
  3. On the East Coast, they call this “Mummering” – visiting neighbours to sing, play music or act silly – only because of COVID you’ll need to stay outside.
  4. Set up a “minute to win it” afternoon or evening.  The short games can be hilariously funny with little to no cost.  If you’re not sure of the games, search online, there are great ideas to be found.
  5. Start a Christmas movie tradition during the holidays.  The memories made watching movies as a family can last a lifetime.
  6. Create stories and relive funny Christmas memories.  We all have one or two of those.  You might be tickled pink at what wee ones come up with!
  7. Put away the electronics for an evening and drag out the board games -Who remembers the last time you played Risk?
  8. At the times you would have been together with other family and friends, arrange to get together via Face time or Zoom.  The seniors in your life may really appreciate that.

Most of all remember, Love has no bounds – focus on that.”  Keeping your thoughts on togetherness and closeness will help everyone to make this a Christmas to remember in a great way!

MAINSTREAM THERAPY

"When we hold ourselves back, we deprive the world of the gift that is you.
-Angel Powers

FrontLine Workers

Today I had the opportunity to speak with Therapist Angel Powers about the increasing need for seeking therapy during this Pandemic.  We discussed the shifts happening in mental health with various populations in the City.  According to Angel, our front line workers are starting to understand more than ever that therapy is a very important part of their personal health care regime.  The fear of many is that when the Pandemic is finally under control we’ll see many more front line workers breaking down once their “fight or flight” mode ceases to be necessary.  Angel firmly believes that everyone needs to be proactive and wise enough to start self-nuturing… front line workers most of all.

Our Youth

The next concern is for the youth of today.  During the summer Angel was able to hold youth circles outside with great success.  She now has set two platforms for youth circles via Zoom; children ages 9-12 and 13-16 years old.  She finds that there is a distinct increase of anxiety in our youth today.  Most noticed is that there is much more impulsive behavior and a lack of connection with their community.  This often ends up in our youth feeling harassed by adults over choices being made.  Angel understands the need for physical outlets so well that she’ll meet her clients at the batting cages, on the track or even hiking.  For this age group – that’s a definite plus!

Couples Therapy

Mainstream Therapy offers Couples Therapy as well, but notice that women in general recognize the need for therapy sooner.  They seem to understand when they are in an identity crisis and emotionally bankrupt.  Angel and her staff work diligently in de-stigmatizing the therapy process.  The therapists use Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focus Therapy as well as Energy Work, including Reiki, Intuitive Training Therapy and Timeline Therapy.

Angel's Story

Angel’s own life story has compelled her to become a therapist, having been born into addiction and domestic violence.  By 8 years of age, Mom, Angel and her brother were in hiding in a women’s shelter, landing later in Vancouver where their names were changed.  During a freaky moment they were discovered in Vancouver causing them to flee with new names once again, to the East Coast this time.  Returning to Vancouver later, the family underwent intense therapy.  To make matters even more difficult Angel suffered a very nasty dog attack causing years of PTSD.  She attests to the value of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy helping her to overcome her fears.

By 2012 Angel had started her career as a therapist, finally opening Mainstream Therapy in 2019.  She aspires to be Canada’s #1 Hub for Mental Health, Personal Development and Spiritual Growth.  During the Pandemic their business has moved online through Zoom, Facetime or over the phone.  As one client said, “The very fact that kept me from therapy was face to face.  The fact that it’s over the phone – that’s what I like the best.”

 5 STEPS TO SELF – HEALTH 

  1. Talk about your concerns with a professional if possible.  They are unbiased and can be openly honest.
  2. Monitor your “Check-outs”.  How often are you using alcohol, drugs, social media, t.v. or shopping to escape your reality?
  3. Take care of your body – it’s the only one you have.  Sleep, nutrition an exercise are vital.
  4. You are the average of the 5 people who surround you – connect with people who nurture you.
  5. Love yourself first – you’re better for everyone else when you do.

In closing, Angel tells me that at Mainstream Therapy it’s always about the client and navigating change.  It’s people helping people as we’re in this journey of human life together.  Make a choice and call Angel at (705) 717-2107.

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