1. Accepting Difficult Emotions

    By: Becca Hirsch Many of us spend a lot of time, money, and effort into making our tough feelings go away.  When someone says, “I’m feeling really anxious” (or sad, overwhelmed, depressed, etc.), a common response is to see your doctor for medication, talk to a psychologist to work through it, or go do something that will distract you from what you’re feeling.  The general goal of doing…Read More

  2. Marriage in Modern Life: Putting in the Effort

    By: Dr. Anne Brennan Malec If so many people crave a happy partnered relationship, why do so many struggle to maintain the relationship for a lifetime? According to Dr. Anne Brennan Malec in her book Marriage in Modern Life, “When infatuation inevitably diminishes and real life intrudes, your partner must remain a priority, or you will eventually run into trouble.” A relationship will not alwa…Read More

  3. Visualizing Your Emotional Landscape

    By: Margaret Reynolds, LCPC Part 1 (Navigating the Terrain) What follows is a visualization exercise to help you find perspective and develop awareness, appreciation, and authorship for your life’s journey. This will involve painting a mental picture for yourself and then looking at it in three distinct ways to learn and grow from the experience. Doing this will come naturally to some and will b…Read More

  4. 5 Healthy Responses to a Loved One’s Addictive Behavior

    By: Andrew McNaughton LCSW CADC A loved one’s addictive behavior can quickly become our own problem for which we make ourselves feel responsible. Whether the behavior involves alcohol, drugs, sex, gambling, pornography, eating, stealing, hoarding, or any other potentially destructive compulsions, when it becomes problematic for the individual, it will likely become a problem for their family an…Read More

  5. Keys to a Successful Marriage: 8 Tips

    In the July issue of Chicago Woman magazine, Symmetry Counseling founder and author of Marriage in Modern Life, Dr. Anne Brennan Malec offers a concise list of “Keys to a Successful Marriage.”  This advice comes from her years of professional training and practice as a marriage and family therapist, as well as from her own personal observations and experiences.   What follows are some sugges…Read More

  6. Learning to Heal Your Inner Child

    By: Rachel Koutnik, LCSW Do you listen to your inner child? As adults, we often become preoccupied with our “adult” roles and forget that despite the aging process, we were all once children. Your inner child is within you no matter how old you are, and this part now depends on your adult self for nurturing. If you struggle with mental health issues, even if it’s not depression with a capita…Read More

  7. Know Your Strength: Connecting the Physical and Emotional Coping Skills

    By: Jared Robl, LCSW   Situational mood problems like a temporary break up, money issue, or argument with a friend can seem devastating but anxiety or depression treatment can seem unfit at the time. Mood problems in general can create various types of distorted thinking like tunnel vision, all or nothing, and black and white thinking. I like to call this type of thinking “Rough Draft” thinki…Read More

  8. When is “Close” Too Close?

    By: Rebecca Hirsch, AMFT   Over the years, our culture has placed more and more emphasis on romantic love.  Relationships and marriages used to occur out of convenience and obligation. As the times have changed for the better, marriages have become more about building a relationship with someone who you have chosen to be “your person.” Therefore, our society has placed more emphasis and mean…Read More

  9. Change Your Vocabulary, Change Your Thinking!

    By Andrew McNaughton LCSW CADC   How we choose the words we use in expressing our thoughts to ourselves and others directly impacts how we make ourselves feel. I have previously addressed rational and irrational thinking in a previous blog, and this will expand on those concepts by demonstrating the benefit of exchanging the vocabulary of demands with preferences. The difference might, on the sur…Read More