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Laura Giles, LCSW

child abuse

What Does Child Abuse Look Like?

Schools closed for social distancing may take away some children’s only refuge from abuse. When a child is being abused at home, he may be too afraid to ask for help. He might not know that it’s an option. It’s up to the rest of us to look out for the children. We must keep our eyes and hearts open so that we may be of aid and comfort to the most vulnerable among us. What Does Child Abuse Look Like? Believe it or not, some people don’t know what child abuse looks like. They may have grown up with it and just thought that their behavior was “normal.” They reason that that is how some people parent.  So that there is no grey area, let’s look at some of the signs of...

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why we don't talk about our dreams

Why We Don’t Talk About Our Dreams

Dreams are a treasure trove of information! They are a free risk management tool that can make your life safer, more fun, and easier. Yet we don’t talk about our dreams – at least not outside the therapist’s office. Why? It Feels Self Indulgent Holding someone hostage while you divulge your nocturnal vision can feel selfish. It can seem like there is nothing in it for the listener. In our dream deprived/sleep deprived society, this could be so. We don’t spend a lot of time thinking about dreams nor do we value them. If this is what is stopping you, feel free to join my Facebook group. That’s all we do is talk about dreams. Your dreams will be appreciated there because they give everyone practice in learning the language of dreams. One more...

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Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe

If you are looking around and seeing things in your life that you just don’t like, it’s time to take responsibility. Your vibe attracts your tribe. This means that things that resonate at the same frequency are found together. When two similar things are in proximity, the vibration of the weaker follows the vibration of the stronger so that they end up vibrating at the same rate. This means that your environment could be bringing you down or keeping you down. So, this isn’t just some New Age mumbo jumbo. It’s a fact. If you don’t like what you see, it’s time to either change yourself, let some people or things go, move on, and open some space for new things to come in. Change Yourself It’s natural to change. We aren’t the same...

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How to Dream More

Dreams are the road to the unconscious. They can show you what is hidden from you. Dreams can direct you to your desires. They can warn you of danger. Your spirit ancestors and helpers can speak to you through your dreams. You can solve problems in your dreams. So, if you’re not dreaming, you may want to know how to dream more. Everyone dreams every night. The problem isn’t that we don’t dream. It’s that we don’t remember our dreams. Dreams have always been present. They are wired into the DNA of humans. They come whether we want them or not. It doesn’t matter to dreams if you are sleeping on a train, doing a sleep study, or are writing them down for your own personal use. They are just there. Dreams...

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Conquering the Two Faces of Anxiety

Anxiety has two faces. If you understand what they both are, you have a shot at overcoming them. So let’s start by defining the first face. This type of anxiety is a feeling of foreboding that shows up for no reason. You don’t know when it will start or when it will go away. This type of anxiety has a physical cause. The Physical Face When the body is in a state of dis-ease, it creates signs to let you know so that you can intervene and bring it back into balance. Examples of these types of things are pain, moodiness, sleeplessness, hunger, lack of hunger, or anxiety. That’s right. Your lifestyle has an effect on emotional health because the mind, body, and spirit are all one unit. Since these symptoms are caused by...

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Why You Need to Know the Difference Between Sensitivity and Reactivity

Sensitivity is not reactivity. Sensitivity is the ability to perceive stimuli. Reactivity is about responsiveness to stimuli. The two are not the same, nor do they always go hand in hand. Let’s take a look at them separately to see what I mean. Sensitivity As with all things, there an be too much or too little sensitivity. There is also a sweet spot that is just right. When someone is very sensitive, they notice things more readily than other people. For instance, the buzzing of a fly could be absolutely unbearable. Sunlight could seem really intense. Smells, changes in temperature, food texture or flavors might seem really noticeable to sensitive people. This person could have a really hard time coping with the environment because she’s frequently overstimulated. People with low levels of sensitivity...

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Why Did I Do That?

Everyone has times in their lives when they say, “Why did I do that?” and just can’t figure things out. When this is you, try applying a behavior chain analysis to shed some light on things. Not sure what that is? Read on! A behavior chain analysis is a method for looking at linked things to find out more about it. It’s usually used to change undesirable behavior. Here are the steps for using one. Define the Problem Every behavior chain analysis starts with a problem. You have to have something to analyze. Examples of problems are: gossiping, overeating late at night, anxiety in social situations, quick temper when someone asks me something I am not prepared to answer, or panic attacks when I am overworked. The more specific you are, the more...

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How to Deal With Stupid, Ugly, Hateful People

Are you surrounded by stupid, ugly, hateful people? Do you need some tips on how to deal with them. Keep reading. This article is for you! I hate to break it to you, but if you read this headline and thought, “Yes! I need those tips!” your number one problem is your thinking. If you are thinking that everyone else is the problem, and you’re labeling them things like stupid, ugly, and hateful, you’re definitely making your life a lot harder than it needs to be. Why? First, because you’re blaming. Blaming makes it someone else’s fault and someone else’s problem to fix. This makes YOU powerless. That’s not a great place to be. If I had a choice of whether to take responsibility for an issue and know that it will...

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Ten Pick-Me-Ups When You Don’t Have Time to Be Cranky

All emotions are normal. We all feel angry, happy, sad, worried, frustrated, cranky, and everything in between. But sometimes we don’t have the luxury of feeling what we are feeling. We just have to snap out of it so that we can focus and be effective. Here are ten pick me ups for when you don’t have time to be cranky. Get Outside Something about changing your environment can help change your mood. Going outside in the sunshine and fresh air is even better. Make it mindful. Tell yourself you’re going outside to breathe in a new attitude, then chill. Take a few minutes to let yourself be somewhere else. Enjoy it. When you go back to where you were, take the freshness with you. Smile Emotions are tied to physical states. Your brain...

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How to Meet Your Emotional Needs

Just about everything our soul needs can fit into these categories: safety, connection, novelty, significance, growth, and contribution. When our top two emotional needs are met, we tend to be pretty happy. When all of our needs are met, we are living our passion. Sounds great, right? But do you ever wonder how to meet your emotional needs? Most of us look outside of ourselves for this. We either try to find a person who fills us up or find it in our work. When those things are good, we’re good. This works for a lot of people a lot of the time. The problem is that it puts control of our happiness in the hands of someone else. There is actually a way to meet your emotional needs that puts you in...

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