Photo Credit :: Anne Ruthman
The holidays are now in full swing and merriment is ensuring… right…? For some of us, the holidays can be a difficult time – one that brings challenges around eating, saying no, family, and self-esteem. Not to mention the stress that can be induced by needing to find the perfect gift for the 18-year-old brother who wears pink sunglasses and studies biomedical engineering (ahem…). I say all this to remind you that holidays don’t necessitate happy. If you’re feeling stressed, tired, depressed, anxious, or even angry this season, then feel those things. It’s okay to skip a holiday party or decline a gift exchange or even (gasp!) take some time for yourself amid the chaos. Do what you need to do to get through the season and do it with confidence. And eggnog.
- The first of my Five for Friday picks is tangible (if you touch your monitor I guess…) evidence of what I bang my head on the wall reminding everyone during the season of pumpkin pie and glazed ham: You will not get fat from eating holiday food. The chairman of the Department of Molecular Physiology and Biophysics at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine says so (and he says it on NPR), so you have to believe it now. End of discussion.
- Molly Barker, the brilliant and dynamic founder of Girls on the Run, shared a letter to her younger self this week. The post also made me aware of a really phenomenal initiative and book series, Letters to My Younger Self, in which women are asked to consider what they would tell themselves as a young girl. What would you say to your younger self?
- Speaking of awesome women exposing me to awesome organizations (and who says you can’t learn anything valuable on the internet?…), Sarah Wilson brought to my attention to Because I Am A Girl, Plan International’s global campaign to fight gender inequality, promote girls’ rights and lift millions of girls out of poverty. Be sure to check out the website and find out how you can get involved this holiday season.
- And continuing on with the trend of having discovered amazing new sites this week, I somehow stumbled upon (though not through StumbleUpon… weird.) the site, Brave Girls Club and a post by Melody that will knock your socks off. She talks about seeing past what things seem. You will tear up and then you will marvel at the images. Really.
- Are you a foodie? A gourmet? None of the above? For a person with a history of disordered eating, this can be a complicated matter. Read more on the lovely Thighs and Offerings.
I think that any disclosures tend to help the therapeutic relationship. Clients/patients tend to look toward the therapist for an example of how to handle difficult situations, learn healthy rather than self-destructive/harming coping skills, and more. Client knowledge that the therapist has suffered with and is successfully dealing with their issues is something that can provide hope and encouragement to someone still struggling.
Clearly, the therapist should only disclose if the proper time arises when it seems like it would help. But I think a little disclosure can go a long way in helping the client open up more. Thinking your therapist “truly” understands from experience is a very big deal.
Have a lovely weekend. And just for kicks, let us know in the comments what you would say to your younger self.