Teenagers Mental Wellness 101. Walk it out.

I get it. Trust me. I am a working Mom that helps individuals improve their mental health all day. I pull in the driveway after a long day and my darling teens are battling it out over something, anything you name it.

The barrage of questions of things that I have to do, haven’t done, should have done, need to do.

“Mom, I can’t do track tomorrow without my runners rub, and I need the “Toasty Chez It” to pack for snack!

“What’s for dinner?” I am starving and you have not been to the grocery store in weeks!”

“Mom, did you order my romper off Amazon?” I need it tomorrow. I also need my new reading book for school. I finished Harry Potter yesterday!”

Then per usual everyone is complaining and I have only walked through the door 10 minutes ago.

I fix whatever I pre planned for dinner. This is almost always going to make someone really mad because “Someone in the house hates it when I make this!”

We Sit for dinner. Say our blessings. Disgruntled eaters begin to commensurate.

After dinner is when the girls really start to eye roll each other… “she’s in my room!”

“Mother, she kicked me!!!”

Cue the tears..

Life with teens: Is really hard!

This is my favorite “mean mom” trick. We are going to walk for our Mental Well-being.

Yep. That means that my exhausting day is going to keep on walking with two disgruntled teenage girls.

We walk out the door kicking and screaming some of the time but it is for our well being…..

We walk until we are all walking together….

We never start out this way…but we walk till we do.

Believe me or not but walking it out works. You may be exhausted take your glass of wine with you but keep on walking.

Walk with your kids.

Here is a great tip: If your teen has done something that results in punishment; deliver the punishment while you walk.

This is a loving way to establish a positive parenting role while explaining the consequences of their actions that leads to their punishment.

Hang in their parents. Teenage years are the last 5 miles of your parenting marathon.

You can not quit before the finish line.

If your struggling with your teen I can help.

Call us at The CLR Counseling Group. We can help!

Illegally Blonde: The Not So Great Approach To Stop Heroin Overdose.

I am about to be on the bad side of a whole lot of people.

I will most likely spend a lot of money on Starbucks gift cards to personally smooth things over with my Community leaders if they read this blog..

But the truth is that..

I CAN NOT go to another City Town Hall meeting and discuss the Emerging Heroin Epidemic In Our “Backyard” anymore!

And this is why…

The community discussion starts with lovely powerpoints and solid statistics of heroin deaths for about 5 minutes….

Then on que..The PTA Mom aka City Counsel Members stand up and remind everyone in attendance that we…MUST…wait for it..here it comes..

“Begin open discussions on how to talk to our kids about bullying, alcohol, and marijuana. We need to have the grandparents more involved and have Saturday safe parties at our high schools…”

 [big sigh]

This type of discussion goes on for  the next hour with virtually no mention of Heroin. Just discussing the real evils of “gateway drugs.”

This is how you DONT Reduce The Heroin Epidemic.


It’s at this point during the town hall discussion that I am having sorority chapter flashbacks and thinking…

Are they going to suggest we clean the stream this week in the name of Heroin..

Why the hell was I invited to discuss Heroin Abuse and the rise of Heroin in our Community?

I love my City. I love my Community. They truly do want to make a difference.

But they have no clue what they are talking about.

 Reduction or abstence of alcohol and marijuana has zero direct correlation with the current heroin epidemic.

Reducing alcohol and marijuana would be awesome! Less domestic abuse, child abuse, neglect, pedifiles, murderers, rapist..you name it..but that’s not reality.

Snowflake parents this is pure idelogy!

Stop it with the Michael Jackson ” We Are The World” mentality. It is counterproductive at best.

I know I sound really bitter and snarky. But this is not working people.

 Every kid over 10 yrs old knows exactly how a gun can shoot your arm straight off your body.

It’s time we start teaching our kids about drugs like we do guns. Know what your doing before you pull the trigger. One wrong mistake and you could lose your life.

We have got to stay focused on the real reasons behind heroin addiction.

We are losing this war because of the old lingering ideology of “Just Say No to Drugs Campaign.”

It doesn’t work and the heroin epidemic is growing…

Nobody wants to hear the real truth..

SMOKING POT DOES NOT LEAD TO STICKING A NEEDLE IN YOUR ARM ANYMORE THAN IT DOES TO PUTTING A GUN TO YOUR HEAD.

The only way to fix this problem is to get real and understand this isn’t a drug problem this is a Heroin Problem.

We can help at CLR Counseling Group. We know what works.


Passion, Purpose, Profits: Turn Your Passion Into Your Profession.

passion

My Journey of turning my passion into a sucessful and thriving practice started with a big dose of humble pie.

I grew up with a twice divorced mother who never stopped asking me what I wanted to do when I grew up…she was relentless on this subject!

I can hear her now…

“Maybe you should be a nurse..there is always nursing jobs! But you better come up with something good because you can’t rely on a man.”

This was the running dialog in my home from 5th grade through college.

I decided I would be a speech pathologist. Got the degree. Realized that was not what I wanted to do… maybe a Cognitive Therapist? Got a Masters in that area too.. And I still had no clue what I was meant to do.

I went to Auburn graduated twice over.

And I learned I had no clue what I wanted to be in life..

Big Sigh… So Now what?

I have a bunch of degree’s, a hard bound thesis, fancy intership, and no clue what I want to do with any of it..

So, I did what most of us do at some point. I waited tables. I also sold insurance which I was not so great at and  I got married. After a couple young babies I knew I wanted a career or something to get me out of the house!

I applied for an entry level counselor position. I had all the qualifications except the experience. Full time pay. 7am-12pm. Great if you have kids.

Perfect. Sign me up.

I show up to my interview with my black pencil skirt and nude stilletos, prestigious resume, briefcase and I was hired for the job as an entry level Counselor..

At a Methadone Clinic.

I had no clue what that was..and frankly didn’t care. I was just going to faked it till I make it. It was my ticket out of the house!

I was an over educated,over the mountain private school girl that was working in Bessemer at a Methadone Clinic treating Heroin addicts.

I quickly traded in my pencil skirt for blue jeans and began meeting my 40 assigned clients that were battling opiate addiction.

 I was uncomfortable around these people and I had no clue what I was doing.

But for some reason they believed I knew how to help them.

And I believed it too..I became what they desperately needed.

 Someone who understood them…so  I studied, listened, worked harder than anyone to make sure my clients suceeded. It was personal. 

I was giving way more than 110% and no other counselor was even close. My clients knew it. They valued my time and they succeeded.

I had found my purpose working with these individuals. And as a result began to become passionate about their stories and struggles.

I decided to started doing something bigger than just being an underpaid methadone counselor.

I would get off work at noon..change out of my t-shirt and jeans and into a designer black suit. I knew my appearance and fancy degrees could get me in the door to talk to someone who could help my clients.

 So I did just that…My Passion became  Stoping The Stigma of Heroin Addiction.

I Advocated for my clients who were unable to do so for themselves. I reached out to Judges, Attorneys, Doctors, Family Courts, DHR officers you name it.

I was working my tail off. I wasn’t getting paid and I really didn’t care. Because I was making a difference in my clients lives.

All that hard work for no pay actually turned into the fanciest degree of all..

I now had 10 years counseling experience. Counseling the saddest, destitute, and most overlooked individuals in this world. I counseled the most difficult complex substance abuse and mental health cases imaginable.

It’s because of those individuals that I now actually profit from my passion.

I am now back in my stilletos in a fancy private practice, in a fancy part of town and I continue to advocate and treat those who struggle with addiction.

But now I work with individuals with the highest potential and richest income so they too can finally realize their own dreams of achieving their Passion, Purpose, and Profits. Everyone deserves the best most experienced counselor no matter the person or the struggle.

Passion. Purpose. Profit.

We Can Help you find yours too at the CLR Group, LLC. 


COMPACT2020: SAVING CHILDREN FROM HEROIN ONE TATTLE TAIL AT A TIME.

 

compact 2020 logo_previewIf you have read any of my past blogs then you know I am a little, well a lot, uneasy around cops. It may have something to do with me conveniently forgetting to pay a traffic ticket, which resulted in an arrest warrant, that resulted in me being fingerprinted in the police station. I cried like a baby and I am pretty sure all the police officers around me thought I was being a tad dramatic. Nonetheless, I learned my lesson. Pay your tickets on time.

I learned that lesson the hard way. But I survived.

Unfortunately, that is not the case for a lot of our kids these days. Your child can’t afford to learn the hard way with heroin. They won’t survive it.

 Parents listen up.

I spend a lot of time going to town hall meetings, neighborhood drug coalitions, city initiatives, to help stop this heroin epidemic and nothing is working. I know these communities are working hard to try to help. I am too. But we are not understanding the real problem.

This is not a marijuana problem.

This is not a gateway drug problem.

This is not a drug problem.

This is a heroin problem.

The devil will steal your child without asking permission first.

This is a heroin problem and it’s in your backyard!

This is the real honest truth parents: the devil loves to tempt the most innocent with pain pills, Lortab’s, and eventually heroin. Heroin and pain pills are first cousins. They are only one degree apart from one another. I know that you can’t imagine sticking a needle in your arm. Only a total idiot would actually get to that point, right?

Wrong….

 

Once the brain gets the taste of opiates it wants more. If it can’t find a pill to satisfy that craving then it will settle for anything similar. Which is why heroin becomes the next choice. The ability to withstand this craving is nearly impossible. Opioid addiction laughs at willpower. Once the devil has you addicted to his favorite drug he will not let go of you willingly.

Which brings me to this new program called Compact2020.

I had a young teenage male come see me and  all I knew before our session was that he was mandated to see me for a Substance Abuse and Mental Health Assessment.

So I asked…

“Why exactly are you here to see me?”

He stated ” I have no clue. Compact2020 sent me.”

Compact2020? I haven’t heard of that.

What is Compact2020?

“My friend was selling drugs and we texted each other. I think maybe the cops caught him and read our texts?”

So let me get this straight. Your friend got in trouble with the cops and they came to your house mandating you see me for two sessions before you can be off the hook for what exactly?

“I actually think my parents might have ratted me out.”

As you can imagine, this session immediately went from therapeutic to interrogation.

PARENTS RATTING OUT THEIR OWN KIDS??

That’s the most amazing idea I have ever heard!

Of course, I kept my poker face with this kid while trying to get as much information about this tattle tale program as possible. I needed to know more about Compact2020.

Although, this would require me having to call someone in law enforcement which yet again is not my favorite thing to do…..

I sucked it up and reached out to Alan Miller of Compact2020. I met up with the Compact2020 Team to learn more about this amazing program. By the way, they are not at all scary. They are a wonderful group of individuals working hard to do the same thing I am which is to save our children from dying.

The reality is that if your child is in the drug task force system then you are really close to losing the battle. It’s my job as a substance abuse specialist to tell you the truth. Your kid is in serious trouble.

Compact2020 is working to prevent your child from going down the road of no return. 

It is a new initiative that targets young teens 13-17 years old that are hanging out with the wrong people. More than likely these “friends” they are hanging around with are much older and dancing around the devils favorite stomping grounds.Compact2020 is an innovative program to prevent this from happening to your child or your child’s best friend.

Here is the skinny on how it all goes down!

Compact2020 will alert you to possible real drug problems or interactions that your kiddo may be involved or interacting in some type of way. Once they get wind that your child is “possibly” up to no good. They will contact you to give you a heads up that there may be a problem you are not aware of yet. It can also go the opposite way…maybe you suspect your kid is up to no good and need someone else to make them straighten up and see a professional. I am a parent. I know how teens operate. Whatever I suggest to my kids is immediately off the table.

Compact2020 is NOT going to call DHR.

They do not think your a bad parent. Your kid is not going to jail. Your child will not lose their college scholarship or have a legal record at least not yet…

Compact2020 is your alarm bell! They are cold cocking the devil on your child’s behalf. This program is a real solution to the terminal disease of opioid addiction.

If Compact2020 knocks on your door…YOU NEED TO LISTEN UP!

Have you told your child about heroin? Have you told your child about taking pills? Talk to your teenagers about pills. They need to know the details about all drugs.

DOES YOUR CHILD KNOW WHICH DRUGS WILL KILL THEM THE FIRST TIME THEY TRY THEM?

Are you willing to take the chance of not talking about what drugs will kill your kids and which will not?

IF NOT YOU MAY FIND YOURSELF CALLING COMPACT2020 TO TATTLE ON YOUR OWN KID.

Good news Compact2020 will send them to someone like myself who will not only tell your child all the dangers of drug use but also help them sort through the real struggles of being a teenager. Some times this is all they need to stop resorting to drugs to mask their underlying problems. If you don’t know how to talk to your kids about these issues I will be happy to help. Sometimes its easier for teens to talk about this stuff with someone else. They don’t have to worry about getting in trouble with me.

TATTLE ON A CHILD. SAVE A LIFE.

COMPACT2020.

SAVING LIVES AND MAKING A DIFFERENCE.

Please share this blog if you believe in this program. It can not operate without your support.

#INSTAGRAM #HEADWINDS #TAILWINDS #FINDYOURDIRECTION

INSTAGRAMINSPIRIES

 Guilt, shame, laziness..I have a confession.

 I have been paying somebody to write my blog posts for the last 6   months.

There I said it…

I did not write them. I bought them.

Why?

Because everyone says you need this number of blogs per month for Google to notice you.

I love Google. I need Google. I want Google to notice me!

But… I get tired.

I counsel people all day.  I am a mother and wife.  I have kids that ask “What’s for dinner?”before 3 pm.

I cheated. I took the shortcut.

I could not “find” the time to look for inspiration. So… I paid someone to blog for me.

Pitiful. I know. Shameless.

BUT..I AM BACK!!!!

Thank you to INSTAGRAM. 

I have spent the past couple months trying to work on increasing my Instagram followers.

Its what you do if you want to get people to notice you!!

Right or wrong.

Here is what I have gathered so far…(this is not scientific knowledge btw)

Instagram Rules:

#1 Have more followers than you follow. Not exactly sure why but that was what I was told.

#2 To increase followers you need to add a lot of random but “meaningful” hashtags after every post. #soccermom #yogagirl #motivation #whatever #doesn’tmatter #justhashtagit

#3 One post a day is better than multiple posts a day…Apparently less is more with Instagram?

As I am gloriously counting my new followers I found a post so good…I broke rule #1

I decided to follow tamlinmusic.

I do not know tamlinmusic..but these INSTAGRAM posts  inspired me.

Nobody can ever predict what may inspire you.

In the words of my 12 year old daughter..”Instagram is just cool pictures Mom. Quit thinking so hard about it!”

You may find inspiration from the sun, the moon, and the stars. But shockingly  I found some really great stuff by simply looking at Instagram.

 Tamlinmusic thank you for inspiring me to blog and to know the difference between a headwind and tailwind…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Perfectionist: Why Perfectionist Fall into Depression?

perfectionism 2

It’s a rarity if I go an entire day without hearing a client say “I’m such a perfectionist!”  It’s declared as a flaw yet it’s typically said with a smile and laugh as if they secretly take some pride in it?

In a job interview, the classic answer to “What’s your biggest weakness?” is “I’m a perfectionist”—a total cop-out that allows you to wear your “weakness” as a badge of pride. Thing is, people who have perfectionist tendencies are sometimes more than just detail-oriented high achievers. They are often racked with anxiety, depression, and fear, and in one 2014 paper published in the Review of General Psychology, researchers suggested that perfectionism may be a risk factor for suicide.

In fact, Anorexia is the poster child of perfectionism and is arguably the hardest mental illness to treat.

Personally I can’t relate to Perfectionist. Attention to detail has never been my strong suit. Which drives my husband bonkers.

In fact, he rarely asks me to help him with his projects around the house anymore. Any paint project is going to end up very badly if the paint brush is in my hands.  My hurry up and get it done philosophy can end up with some not so great results and a very bad paint job.

I am clearly the opposite of a perfectionist. I like to consider myself a Imperfectionist.

Here are a few signs that perfectionism could actually be holding you back — and simple ways to start letting go and live the life of an Imperfectionist.

1. You’ve always been eager to please

Perfectionism often starts in childhood. At a young age, we’re told to reach for the stars — parents and teachers encourage their children to become high achievers and give them gold stars for work well done (and in some cases, punishing them for failing to measure up). Perfectionists learn early on to live by the words “I achieve, therefore I am” — and nothing thrills them quite like impressing others (or themselves) with their performance.

Unfortunately, chasing those straight A’s — in school, work and life — can lead to a lifetime of frustration and self-doubt.

“The reach for perfection can be painful because it is often driven by both a desire to do well and a fear of the consequences of not doing well,” says psychologist Monica Ramirez Basco. “This is the double-edged sword of perfectionism.”

2. You know your drive to perfection is hurting you, but you consider it the price you pay for success.

The prototypical perfectionist is someone who will go to great (and often unhealthy) lengths to avoid being average or mediocre, and who takes on a “no pain, no gain” mentality in their pursuit of greatness. Although perfectionists aren’t necessarily high achievers, perfectionism is frequently tied to workaholism.

 

“[The perfectionist] acknowledges that his relentless standards are stressful and somewhat unreasonable, but he believes they drive him to levels of excellence and productivity he could never attain otherwise,” Burns writes.

3. You’re a big procrastinator.

The great irony of perfectionism is that while it’s characterized by an intense drive to succeed, it can be the very thing that prevents success. Perfectionism is highly correlated with fear of failure (which is generally not the best motivator) and self-defeating behavior, such as excessive procrastination.

Studies have shows that other-oriented perfectionism (a maladaptive form of perfectionism which is motivated by the desire for social approval), is linked with the tendency to put off tasks. Among these other-oriented perfectionists, procrastination stems largely from the anticipation of disapproval from others, according to York University researchers. Adaptive perfectionists, on the other hand, are less prone to procrastination.

4. You go big or go home.

Many perfectionists struggle with black-and-white thinking — you’re a success one moment and a failure the next, based on your latest accomplishment or failure — and they do things in extremes. If you have perfectionist tendencies, you’ll probably only throw yourself into a new project or task if you know there’s a good chance you can succeed — and if there’s a risk of failure, you’ll likely avoid it altogether. Studies have found perfectionists to be risk-averse, which can inhibit innovation and creativity.

For perfectionists, life is an all or nothing game. When a perfectionist sets her mind to something, her powerful drive and ambition can lead her to stop at nothing to accomplish that goal. It’s unsurprising, then, that perfectionists are at high risk for eating disorders.

5. You have a hard time opening up to other people.

Author and researcher Brene Brown has called perfectionism a “20-ton shield” that we carry around to protect ourselves from getting hurt — but in most cases, perfectionism simply prevents us from truly connecting with others.

Because of their intense fear of failure and rejection, perfectionists often have a hard time letting themselves be exposed or vulnerable, according to psychologist Shauna Springer.

“It is very hard for a perfectionist to share his or her internal experience with a partner,” Springer writes in Psychology Today. “Perfectionists often feel that they must always be strong and in control of their emotions. A perfectionist may avoid talking about personal fears, inadequacies, insecurities, and disappointments with others, even with those with whom they are closest.”

6. You know there’s no use crying over spilt milk… but you do anyway.

Whether it’s burning the cookies or being five minutes late for a meeting, the perfection-seeking tend to obsess over every little mistake. This can add up to a whole lot of meltdowns, existential crises, and grown-up temper tantrums. When your main focus is on failure and you’re driven by the desire to avoid it at all costs, even the smallest infraction is evidence for a grand thesis of personal failure.

“Lacking a deep and consistent source of self-esteem, failures hit especially hard for perfectionists, and may lead to long bouts of depression and withdrawal in some individuals,” writes Springer.

7. You have a guilty soul

Underneath it all, perfectionists are often plagued by guilt and shame. Maladaptive perfectionism — a drive to perfection that generally has social roots, and a feeling of pressure to succeed that derives from external, rather than internal, sources — is highly correlated with depression, anxiety, shame and guilt.

“Perfectionism is not about striving for excellence or healthy striving,” Brown told Oprah. “It’s… a way of thinking and feeling that says this: ‘If I look perfect, do it perfect, work perfect and live perfect, I can avoid or minimize shame, blame and judgment.’”

Brown’s remedy? Try practicing authenticity. Let others see you, exactly as you are, and let go of the protecting shield of perfectionism in order to express vulnerability.

“Authenticity is a practice and you choose it every day,” she says, “sometimes every hour of every day.”

 

We can help you at CLR Counseling Group to let go of your Perfectionism and find your happiness in being Imperfect.

 

 

 

Shedding Your Shame: Opioid Addiction

Shame is the hardest emotion for me as a counselor to see on a clients face. 

It always stops me in my tracks. 

It is a raw painful emotion that shows on some of the most expressionless faces. 

As a Professional Counselor, this vulnerability is palpable. You can feel the sadness and despair of shame more than any other emotion. 

I see this sadness most often with opioid addiction.

Why?

 Because this client could be my mother, your grandmother, our sister, our brother, or even worse my own precious child. 

I see all of those people’s faces in treating individuals with opioid addiction. 

So what do I do?

I bring hope! 

I teach my clients to start..

Shedding The Shame.

 It starts something like this…

Did you know that your brain views pain pills, and heroin exactly the same way?

Pain pills, and heroin are all from the same class of drugs called opioids. 

Did you know that the brain views this drug the exact same way as food and water?

Imagine for a minute, if you had zero access to any water source for 2 days would you be thinking about carpool lines, spreadsheets, or cutting the grass? 

Hell no..

The only thing you are thinking about is where can I get water! 

Your brain is telling you that you will die in one day if you don’t get water RIGHT NOW.

Your thirsty. Your dying. You must find water to survive.

Suppose,  I asked you at day 3 of no water to suck it up and use your will power to stop yourself from looking for water.

How much willpower can you muster to make your self stop looking for water when your dying of dehydration??

The answer is simple. 

You can’t. 

Your brain won’t let you. It will convince you to live and that means you keep looking for water!

This is the first step on how I help my clients understand their addiction. You can not will power your way through this. Your brain simply won’t allow you to. 

You need help and I can help. 

Shed Your Shame. 

We can help you.

The CLR Counseling Group, LLC.

Illegally Blonde: The Not So Great Approach To Stop Heroin Overdose.

I am about to be on the bad side of a whole lot of people.

I will most likely spend a lot of money on Starbucks gift cards to personally smooth things over with my Community leaders if they read this blog..
But the truth is that..

I CAN NOT go to another City Town Hall meeting and discuss the Emerging Heroin Epidemic In Our “Backyard” anymore!

And this is why…

The community discussion starts with lovely powerpoints and solid statistics of heroin deaths for about 5 minutes….

Then on que..The PTA Mom aka City Counsel Members stand up and remind everyone in attendance that we…MUST…wait for it..here it comes..

 “Begin open discussions on how to talk to our kids about bullying, alcohol, and marijuana. We need to have the grandparents more involved and have Saturday safe parties at our high schools…”

 [big sigh]

This type of discussion goes on for  the next hour with virtually no mention of Heroin. Just discussing the real evils of “gateway drugs.”

This is how you DONT Reduce The Heroin Epidemic.

It’s at this point during the town hall discussion that I am having sorority chapter flashbacks and thinking… 

Are they going to suggest we clean the stream this week in the name of Heroin..

Why the hell was I invited to discuss Heroin Abuse and the rise of Heroin in our Community?

I love my City. I love my Community. They truly do want to make a difference. 

But they have no clue what they are talking about.

 Reduction or abstence of alcohol and marijuana has zero direct correlation with the current heroin epidemic. 

Reducing alcohol and marijuana would be awesome! Less domestic abuse, child abuse, neglect, pedifiles, murderers, rapist..you name it..but that’s not reality.

Snowflake parents this is pure idelogy!

Stop it with the Michael Jackson ” We Are The World” mentality. It is counterproductive at best.

I know I sound really bitter and snarky. But this is not working people.

 Every kid over 10 yrs old knows exactly how a gun can shoot your arm straight off your body.

 It’s time we start teaching our kids about drugs like we do guns. Know what your doing before you pull the trigger. One wrong mistake and you could lose your life. 

We have got to stay focused on the real reasons behind heroin addiction. 

We are losing this war because of the old lingering ideology of “Just Say No to Drugs Campaign.”

It doesn’t work and the heroin epidemic is growing…

Nobody wants to hear the real truth..

SMOKING POT DOES NOT LEAD TO STICKING A NEEDLE IN YOUR ARM ANYMORE THAN IT DOES TO PUTTING A GUN TO YOUR HEAD.

The only way to fix this problem is to get real and understand this isn’t a drug problem this is a Heroin Problem. 

We can help at CLR Counseling Group. We know what works.