Counselors & Coaches

Post-Vacation Hangover | Orlando Counseling & Coaching

Post-Vacation Hangover | Orlando Counseling & Coaching

Work is starting back up, kids are returning to school, and the bills are coming in. Post vacation hangover is real! Once the high from pine needles, Christmas cookies, and decorations are gone, reality hits like a ton of bricks. It is relatively easy to feel overwhelmed, anxious, and dread as January sets in.

Here are a few simple tips to remedy your post-vacation hangover.

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  1. Routine, routine, routine. Setting yourself back on a routine can be a tremendous help. Implement bedtime routines, meal planning, and even leisure activities for yourself and your family. Nightly and morning routines are especially important. Feeling more awake in the morning and not being rushed out the door can make the difference between having a great day or crappy day.
  2. Taking it one day at a time. It’s important to plan and look towards the future. However, when the idea of tomorrow’s workload or next week’s bills sets your anxieties at an all-time high, then it will be best to focus on the here and now. Focus on being able to make it through today, the workday, the next few hours, or maybe the next few minutes. You need to build up your stamina and sometimes future thinking can be anxiety provoking and discouraging.
  3. Gratitude. Post-vacation blues can be most difficult because you are stuck living in your mental vacation wishing you were still there. Counting down to the next vacation can add onto the day to day dread. Identify the things you appreciate about the holidays, accept that they are gone, and move forward. […]

Real talk on Sexual Assault versus Trump’s “locker room talk” | Orlando Sexual Abuse Counseling

Real talk on Sexual Assault versus Trump’s “locker room talk” | Orlando Sexual Assault Counseling

The head-line this week was all about Trump’s leaked conversation with Billy Bush in 2005. A large group of people consider Trump’s words to be deemed as sexual assault while others consider it just “locker room talk”. A recent article by CNN titled “Trump’s ‘locker room talk’ stirs real talk about sexual violence” highlighted the domino effects Trump’s conversation had on several women. In the article, women tweeted story after story of their first sexual assault experiences.

According to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN), every 109 seconds, another person experiences sexual assault and one out of every six women has been a victim of attempted/completed rape in her lifetime. Trump’s conversation may have been just “locker room talk” but sexual assault is very real for many people, particularly women.

Sexual assault is a devastating and tragic occurrence that happens more frequently than what most people realize. People who have been sexually assaulted often times want to forget and move past the incident without letting it affect their lives. However, there is a series of long-term effects that can occur to individuals that have been sexually assaulted.

Here are just a few long-term effects:

  • Have more likelihood to use drugs than the general public
    • One way people choose to cope after a sexual assault incident is to numb themselves from the pain or […]

3 Ways To Break Patterns of Toxic Love | Orlando Relationship Counseling

3 Ways To Break Patterns of Toxic Love | Orlando Relationship Counseling

 “I’m so sick of that same old love, feels like I’ve blown apart — I’m so sick of that same old love, the kind that breaks your heart,” are the words from the popular Selena Gomez song titled, “Same Old Love.”  Have you ever considered your pattern in love relationships?  Have your relationships left you feeling empty, angry and lonely over and over again? The painful reality is that many people find it difficult to stop to observe what they accept, tolerate and come into agreement with in their love relationships.

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This could not be a better time of the year to examine your love relationship patterns as we approach Valentine’s Day.  If you discovered that you are sick of that same old love and that you have had enough, then here are three ways to break your pattern of toxic love:

1)        Take A Relationship Inventory:  We cannot break toxic love relationship patterns until we first become an observer of them.  It is important to stop and assess what relational repetitions you have continuously recreated throughout your history. This can be a very difficult and painful step to take in looking at your own behaviors in your relationships, and to also recognize the emotional template that you may be unconsciously reinventing.  The help of a trusted friend or a professional therapist may be very helpful in working this step because they can look at your relational history with an objective view point.

2)        Create a supportive network: When you are trying to make life-changing decisions to break old […]

4 Things You Need to To Know When Becoming a Dad | Orlando Parenting Counseling

4 Things You Need to To Know When Becoming a Dad | Orlando Parenting Counseling

In the short span that I have been a father I have discovered and come across a few truths that every new or soon-to-be Dad should know. I have compiled them here and I hope they help you as much as they have helped me.

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1. Aside from breast-feeding and actual child birth, there is NOTHING that Mom can do that you cannot do. Probably the most profound piece of advice ever given to me relating to becoming a dad. Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty and never shy away from your duty as a father. You can do anything and everything for your baby (with the exception of those first two, physically-oriented tasks). Don’t let anyone tell you that you don’t know what you are doing. You know just as well, and perhaps even better, than they do.

2. YOU WILL GET UPSET/ANGRY/FRUSTRATED WITH YOUR NEWBORN. Don’t feel guilty, it happens to everyone. What’s important here is to remember that the baby is just that – a baby. Your baby is helpless and cannot verbalize what’s needed. They will scream and they will cry. Add a sleep-deprived male in the mix and frustration is unavoidable. Have systems in place – if you feel you are becoming too angry to deal with the baby it is okay to gently put your baby down in the crib (or other safe place), take a step back and take a few breaths. You can then re-approach with a calmer mind. Some couples have a code word they use when they […]

The Murder of Our Children | Orlando Child Abuse Counseling

The Murder of Our Children | Child Abuse Counseling

The headlines for child abuse are glaring and unbelievable.  One story in particular has stayed with me and I haven’t been able to let it go.  In February of this year, a Detroit woman was arrested for murdering her two children and putting their bodies in a refrigerator.  At her trial, she showed no remorse.  Obviously, she is mentally ill.  Unfortunately, my search for ‘child murder refrigerator’ brings up too many other similar stories.  These are blatant examples of child abuse.  They are happening today, in our midst.

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For those of us who love our families and children, and live to make a sincere effort to give our families the best, these stories make our stomach churn.  This kind of evil is unfathomable.  I don’t have a hard time convincing anyone that the above story is a case of child abuse.  But, it is very often that I have a hard time convincing the wounded soul in front of me in a counseling session that they suffered from parental abuse, even when all of the evidence is there to prove it.

Abuse is not just the torture and murder of a child.  Verbal, mental, and emotional abuse happen along a continuum that can make it hard to discern exactly what abuse is.  After all, some people consider spanking to be abuse, others consider it to be a swift and just discipline for poor behavior.  A father believes he is doing his best parenting when he offers his children ways to improve and gives them what he believes are healthy critiques to help them succeed, but […]

5 Questions To Choose The Best Orlando Therapist

5 Ways To Choose The Best Orlando Therapist | Life Counseling Solutions 

Did you know that most consumers of therapy don’t take the time to learn about what they need to know about partnering with the best counselor or therapist who can help them be successful in meeting their therapeutic goals?

Firstly, YOU are the consumer so ask questions and “shop” around to find the best fit for you.  It is also best to highly consider referrals from family and friends who have had experience working with a particular counselor or therapist.

ORLANDOBESTTHERAPISTLife Counseling Solutions like many counseling centers offer a complimentary phone consultation or face-to -face meeting. You want to take advantage of this opportunity to briefly explain your problem(s) and ask the counselor or therapist to share how they would approach the problem. If possible, try to chat with at least three different counselors or therapists.   Here are a few questions that you can ask in that initial conversation:

  • How many couples or individuals with similar issues do you work with per week?
    • For example, the more couples that a couple’s therapist works with per week, the more experience she or he has working with couples. Therefore, if you are seeking counseling for your relationship, then you want a therapist who primarily works with couples.
  • Do you work with a couple together or in separate sessions?
    • Life Counseling Solutions believes that it is imperative to see couples together. The therapist can miss the dynamic of how the couple relates when they are seen separately. While there may be a good reason to have one or two individual sessions with each person in the relationship, this should be more the exception […]

7 Ways To Help Your Kids | Orlando Counseling & Therapy

How can anyone explain tragedies like the recent killings in Santa Barbara or the Connecticut murders to kids? There are a few things that parents can do to address any questions or any fears that may come up in children after being exposed to news reports or conversations from classmates.

Kids & Tragedies

1)   Be Flexible – it is important that you realize there is no exact right or wrong way to answer any difficult questions about any of these tragedies. What matters the most is that children know that they can talk to you about their feelings and ask questions (i.e. that it is safe to talk about it).

2)   Ask Open-Ended Questions – You want to ask kids open-ended questions such as, “what happened in school today? What did you see today? How do you feel about that conversation? This may help facilitate them expressing their feelings.

3)   Maintain Routines – Encourage your child to go to school if they want to stay home. When they are at school with other children and teachers, this can be the best place for them to confront any anxieties. If your child is really upset and wants the day off with you, that is ok too. Just make sure any changes in routine don’t become permanent.

4)   Be Reassuring – Use language to distance the child from the tragedy and reassure them that they will be safe at school. You can say things like, “that happened far away and I will do everything I can to keep you safe.”

5)   Use Developmentally Appropriate Language – Children as young as 2 can be aware that something is happening, but the amount of information […]

EMDR | Orlando Trauma Therapy

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a treatment used to “desensitize and reprocess” memories that have been stored in your brain as a result of traumatic experiences (this can be a small trauma to a larger trauma).  EMDR is  considered to be an effective therapy because of the quick and lasting relief clients feel from their emotional distress.  EMDR therapy repeatedly activates opposite sides of the brain, which releases emotional experiences that have become trapped in the nervous system and can be completed by the eye movement, audio to tactile methods.

EMDR is shown and used at Life Counseling Solutions to have effectiveness in treating the following conditions:

  • Anxiety 
  • Depression
  • Low Self-Esteem
  • Overwhelming Fears
  • Relationship Problems
  • Loss of a Loved One
  • Performance Enhancement
  • Post Traumatic Stress (Rape, Robbery, Natural Disaster, Car Accident, Fire, Earth Quakes)
  • Sexual, Physical, or Emotional Abuse

Orlando Trauma TherapyHow Does EMDR Work?

The EMDR therapist works with a client in revisiting the traumatic experience, the feelings about the experience, and any negative thoughts or feelings.  The therapist then uses bi-lateral stimulation (either eye-movement, tactile, or audio methods) to activate both sides of the brain to bring quick and vibrant images that are then processed by the stimulation bringing about relief and resolved feelings.  

Performance Based Self-Identity

Self-identity is the recognition of someone’s potential and qualities as an individual. When we have a balanced view of our self-identity, we can find the worth and value in the many facets that make us human. For example, a person can say I am smart, I am kind to others, I am attractive, I have a great sense of humor, I have a good work ethic, etc. However, many people find their self-identity, and their self-worth, not in who they are, but what they do. This is called Performance Based Self-Identity.

Performance Based Self-Identity creates two types of people: perfectionists and avoiders. Both of these types of people have the same mantra of “I must meet certain standards to feel good about myself” (taken from “The Search for Significance by Robert S. McGee- highly recommended!)

self-identity, performance, failing, workaholicBeing a perfectionist is often viewed as a good trait because perfectionists work hard, get things done, and are reliable; however, being a perfectionist means that impossible standards are set and never obtained. No one is perfect; therefore, setting out to be is impossible and frustrating when not achieved. The perfectionist’s thinking of him or herself looks like, “Today, I got a 100% on my AP test; I got the highest promotion at work; I am a mom who has it all together…therefore, I am good/valuable/worthy/etc.” While these are all wonderful achievements, situations and circumstances change on a daily basis, so if a perfectionist feels valuable because he got the highest promotion, what will happen to his self-worth if he gets fired or laid off? This is when the perfectionist spirals into a state of devastation and feels not […]

“Her Story” Orlando Infertility Counseling

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Orlando Infertility Counseling with Life Counseling Solutions highlights an Orlando woman who is stepping out as an advocate and writing about “Her Story”.  She is a voice for other women who are feeling alone and struggling with infertility.

“Her Story”

 When my husband and I started trying to get pregnant, we just assumed it would happen naturally and quickly…the way that 50% of women get pregnant within 3 months, 75% within 6 months, and 90% within a year.  After about 9 months of no success, I finally got a referral for a reproductive endocrinologist, and that is when our journey began.  We learned that we had some mild male factor infertility and a low ovarian reserve.  That was a blow to find out, because, at only 32, I still considered myself young and healthy.  Our doctor encouraged us to get started on fertility treatments soon since “time was not on our side.” We started our first round of IUI a few months later.  Despite everything seeming ideal that cycle, we did not have success.  I remember crying the morning I got my period and thinking that it might never happen for us.  It seemed that everyone I know was getting pregnant.  I dreaded going on Facebook because I just knew that someone else would be announcing her pregnancy, but yet I couldn’t resist checking anyway.

We did another round of IUI two months later and at the end of the month, we got the news we had been praying for…a positive pregnancy test!  My beta levels were rising just as they should and we quickly spread the word among our […]