Few Pointers On How To Mend A Broken Heart (Relationship Counseling)

People always struggle to find the best way to cope up with a broken heart. Because the truth is, it is a long and tiring journey that is quite time-consuming as well. Not only that. Mending a broken heart is extremely difficult because there are too many physical, emotional, and mental health issues to deal with. Sometimes, people can get enough of the pain that they ignore the damage.

But despite that, there are certain ways that individuals can do to heal mentally and emotionally. But they should note that the healing process does not happen over time. Some could find their light and recover from the heartache faster than anyone else. At the same time, some experience a wave of darkness that will continue to torment them for the rest of their lives.

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Here’s What To Do

Live Through The Pain

Some individuals tend to suffer an extreme level of heartache because they do not acknowledge the presence of pain. Usually, they deny it and pretend that everything is okay. They hide their true feelings by showing a fake smile. Some would say that they can easily get over the emotional pain in no time but still suffer in silence. This particular strategy doesn’t work. Because the only way people can start getting over their heartache is by living through the emotional pain and acknowledging the failure of everything in the relationship. They should allow deep emotions to come out because that is the first step to heartache healing.

Validate Emotions

People need to realize that heartbreak often affects both parties. Not because one is hurting, it does not mean that the other is not. There is always the tendency that someone else’s suffering is greater than the other. With that, people should learn to validate their feelings and consider the other side as well. Yes, there can be a stupid reason why people tend to break up. But factors affecting the relationship are always controlled by both individuals. Thus, it is significantly important not to become selfish when it comes to a realization.

Set Goals To Overcome The Heartbreak

Moving on is a common word people heard when a relationship ended. But it is agreeable that it is easier said than done. However, to make it achievable, people should at least try and create small achievable goals. They can consider focusing more on themselves rather than thinking too much of the failed relationship. Loving themselves is more important in this part. They can consider some of the following:

  • Get a hobby and be productive.
  • Exercise regularly to stay healthy and fit
  • Learn new things
  • Write poems, song, or create a journal
  • Play and learn some instruments
  • Learn to cook healthy foods

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Spend Time With Friends And Family

One essential factor that helps heartbroken individuals move on from a failed relationship is spending time with their loved ones. It is the best remedy that can eventually ease the heartache. That is because spending time with the right people can allow expression. With their help, there is a huge chance that people could vent out their unsettling pent-up emotions. Just having someone listening to the emotional pain one is having creates a difference in the perception of failed romantic relationship. And when people surround themselves with friends and family, there is an amplified feeling of acceptance, comfortability, love, and care.

Avoid Self-Destructing Habits

Of course, when people are hurt, it is easier for them to get caught in the middle of their emotions. That explains why they often tend to choose self-destructing habits. Others can’t blame them, though. It is most people’s way of distracting themselves from the pain they are having. But as much as possible, they should not emerge themselves to anything like it. Because not only is it unhealthy, some dangerous habits can cause greater health damages in the long run. Some of the things people should avoid doing are the following:

  • Relying on numbing substances
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Taking addictive drugs
  • Not having enough sleep
  • Not eating well
  • Ignoring proper hygiene
  • Isolation

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Seek Professional Help

Heartbreak is a normal thing that people experience in their lives. However, not everyone can handle it accordingly. But despite the potential health risk, people do not often seek professional advice when it comes to heartache issues. Perhaps most of them believe that the matter is a minor thing that they can easily get rid of. But frankly, heartbreak is an essential factor that often ruins emotional and mental stability. If not addressed properly, it can create many health problems that put people’s lives in danger. Some of these include isolation, self-harm, and suicide. To avoid that, consider a journey of self-discovery through counseling.

 

Why Do We Need Counseling?

Most of us deal with emotional and mental stress that does not often go away. Some endure the pain and agony of trying to figure solutions to treat the mental health problem. Meanwhile, others keep on enduring the excruciating struggle. Individuals have their fair share of torments and recovery.

But for most people who don’t seem to understand what they are psychologically going through tend to seek help. That is a good thing because it means they are aware of the changes in their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. With that, they turn to counsel.

But what is counseling? How does it help people with their mental and emotional health struggles? Are there any differences in talking to the counselor than sharing issues with a family member or friend? How come it is somehow recommended? And why do people look at it positively?

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Improved Communication And Interpersonal Skills

There are tons of issues that we deal with within ourselves that we do not want to share with others. Perhaps that is because we are scared that people might judge us. Or we somehow feel that our feelings are not permanent, so there is no point in discussing it. But counseling sees it differently. It helps us express our concerns privately. Thus, it allows us to engage openly in communication. Whether we are trying to understand ourselves, move on after a toxic romantic relationship, or build a healthier connection with other people, counseling ensures the importance of expression. There is a better expression and management of emotions, including sadness, helplessness, and anger.

Greater Self-Acceptance And Self-Esteem

One of the benefits of counseling is its ability to help us build mental and emotional resilience. It supports our need for a therapeutic alliance to be aware of ourselves and deal with core concerns better. We need counseling because it improves our self-esteem by making us realize our greater importance to the world. Counseling offers a realistic solution and achievable options to problems. It allows us to understand disappointments and setbacks much better. There is increased confidence and decision-making skills that we can master one at a time.

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Ability To Change Self-Defeating Behaviors Or Habits

When we are mentally and emotionally unstable, there are quite a lot of stupid things we do. Sometimes we do them not because we like it but because we feel the spur of the moment. When we are depressed, most of these behaviors or habits are self-defeating or self-destructing. These include using drugs, drinking too much alcohol, not eating well, not getting enough sleep, always spending time with bad-influenced individuals, and not taking care of ourselves appropriately. Counseling can change that. With the right encouragement from someone concerned with our health, we can look for a better alternative to coping with emotional and mental distress.

Overcome Fear Of Failure

Most of us are unable to deal with stressors in life, which makes us prone to mental health issues. As a result, we often do not try our best and end up failing big time. That is why we need counseling to help us align our goals and build a new reframed structure of success. We need it to help us figure where our fears are coming from. That way, we can learn to think positively and secure potential outcomes. We need counseling to guide us in looking at the worst-case scenarios of our every decision. We need counseling for our better development and self-improvement. When all goes well, and we managed to utilize our skills, we can have a backup plan. Because the only thing that will matter is the amount of learning we get from our failure.

Relief From Anxiety, Depression, And Other Mental Health Conditions

Truthfully, counseling is not a cure for mental illness. It does not claim to be the solution to a severe psychological problem. It does not guarantee to provide specific medications that ease mental health symptoms manifesting physically. But we need counseling to ensure that we are on the right track to recovery. We have to have the guts to continue working with ourselves and other people to provide us an optimum positive result. We need counseling to help us deal with some of the minor situations that we face every day.  We need it to have stable emotional health and use it as a stress grip.

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Insight

But we have to remember that even if counseling helps bring the best in us, we still need to exert a full effort in changing ourselves. We should not rely upon the hundred percent of the positive outcome of our lives to counseling. Counseling only provides us with coping strategies and healthy guidelines that we can use to change our perspective on things. Therefore, we must use it to move forward and look for our strength because it won’t bring us solutions to the table.

Frequently Asked Questions About Psychological Theories

For as long as I could remember, it had always been my mother and me against the world. My father, a soldier, died in combat when I was only three months old, so I never met him. Despite having many suitors over the years, my mother vowed never to marry again and merely devoted her entire life to raising me.

 As I was growing up, I observed the things that Mom had done for me. The first full realization of that happened when I was seven years old. I saw her washing three sets of uniforms – one was for a waitress, the other was for a tour guide, and another was for a taxi driver. I asked Mom whose clothes were those, and she said, “They are for my jobs, son.” I was initially shocked because I did not know that Mom had many jobs. I knew that she was a working mother (that’s why Gran Peggy often babysat me), but I was not aware that she juggled three jobs every day.

 Then, Mom would bring home a nice meal from a restaurant for my dinner. I would ask her to dig in with me, but she would watch me sometimes eat before opening a canned sardine or tuna for herself. It weirded me out whenever she said that those were her favorites, but I understood when I was older that it was because she could not buy another delicious meal for herself.

Mom was always there during school performances, clapping the loudest for me, even if I would only play the role of a newspaper boy or a tumbleweed. I used to be embarrassed about it because no other parents were as enthusiastic as her. However, when I understood my mother’s sacrifices for me, I reveled in her applauses and made sure to do my best all the time.

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Being Called A Mama’s Boy

My love for my mother became the center of unwanted attention in middle school. That was when kids were all acting tough and sneaking out of their houses to hang out at the park or go on dates secretly. My friends would often coax me to sneak out, too, of course, but my usual response was, “No, I don’t want Mom to get mad at me.” Because of that, I had been called a mama’s boy.

Did it upset me? Yes, initially. No one would enjoy being made fun of often just because you did not want to lie to a parent. It was as if I was the one committing a mistake when, in truth, they were awful to their mothers and fathers.

As time passed, though, I got over it. Being a mama’s boy was an excellent thing in the sense that I never did anything to make my mother cry. I could not say the same to those who bullied me in the past.

Finding Out Which Psychoanalytical Theorist I Liked

When I went to college to study medicine, I had to choose social science as a minor subject. Between literature and psychology, though, I would pick the latter any day, so I found myself in a psychology lecture room on a Monday.

(Note: Before anything else, allow me to clarify that I have never been to a psychology class in the past, so my reaction could be seen as too much by some. Still, it was my opinion, my experience, so here we go).

Going back, the cool professor told us to choose the psychoanalytical theorist whose early works we could relate to the most. Those theorists were Sigmund Freud, Carl Jung, and Alfred Adler. Then, we were supposed to discuss them in class on Friday.

Interested, I decided to do my homework that night. I had no idea who those guys were or whatever they did to be singled out in history psychology, so I did my research.

The first profile I saw was that of Alfred Adler’s. I thought he was an independent guy with an interesting perspective regarding what could drive people to make things better for themselves. I liked the idea, but I could not relate to it because I never had a distinct inferiority complex.

The second profile I saw was that of Sigmund Freud. Many of his theories had been studied and explained already, and I admired him a lot. Unfortunately, I was so appalled by his theory regarding a mother-and-son relationship, also known as the Oedipus complex.

 As a little background, Oedipus was a character in Greek mythology who got lost from the castle when he was an infant. When he became an adult, he barged into their castle and killed his biological father without knowing it. As for his biological mother, well… he married her.

Yikes! I know! I cringed some more when I understood that the Oedipus complex meant that men had an unconscious desire to sleep with their mothers. I never had that inclination; I was appalled to see how people could even think of doing the nasty with their mothers.

Hence, in the end, I decided to go with Jungian psychology, which stated that sons were close to their mothers due to love, not for carnal reasons.

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How do the theories of Jung and Freud differ? 

There are five main areas that set the difference between Carl Jung’s and Sigmund Freud’s theories.

  • Unconscious Mind: Based on Freud’s tripartite theory of personality, a person seeks pleasure first before becoming conscious of their behaviors and then finding a balance between the two. Meanwhile, Jung stated that the theory of personality states that the human psyche is divided into the unconscious (personal and collective) and conscious parts.
  • Sex: Sigmund Freud has always thought that everything we do is driven by sexual desire. In that sense, he created the psychosexual development and Oedipus complex, among others. The latter is perhaps one of the most controversial theories, considering it suggests that sons are sexually attracted to their mothers. Naturally, Carl Jung tried to oppose the idea by saying that the life force is the primary driving factor for people to move forward. Instead of sexual desire, he also believed that sons are close to their mothers because of the love and protection they provide.
  • Religion: Both individuals are not religious. However, though Jung claims that religion allows people to express their individuality, Freud believes that it is like opium that should no longer be allowed to spread.
  • Para-Psychology: Freud is skeptical about anything paranormal, while Jung is more open to it. The latter even attended seances regularly and had a cousin who worked as a medium.
  • Dreams: Both individuals believe that dreams are meant to be interpreted. However, Freud states that most – if not all – dreams depict our repressed sexual desires, while Jung argues that they can have different meanings.

Is Jungian theory evidence-based? 

Yes, it has been proven that the Jungian theory is based on evidence. Despite that, this has not been the case in the beginning, considering people in the olden days knew very little about psychology. As the years passed by, though, the experts who applied Carl Jung’s theories – particularly Jungian therapy – revealed that their respondents’ mental health improved significantly. 

What is Jung’s theory of psychological types? 

Carl Jung’s theory of psychological types refers to the idea that people can be categorized based on their attitudes (introversion and extroversion) and psychological functions (sensation, feeling, intuition, and thinking). He further proposed that every perspective has a matching function. According to him, the latter is the recessive trait while the former is the dominant trait. 

What is the Jungian approach? 

The Jungian approach involves exploring conscious and unconscious minds to help people figure out what’s going on in their heads. It is said to be a courageous endeavor, given that the person needs to be open to the possibility that their dreams may connote different meanings or that the paranormal realm may be affecting them. 

One of Carl Jung’s most celebrated theories is the theory of individuation. If you follow this idea, it states that a person should seek a sense of wholeness instead of perfection. 

What are the 12 Jungian archetypes? 

  • Caregiver: Caregivers are natural nurturers. You may often find them looking after and protecting others.
  • Creator: A creator is an innovative individual who uses their imagination to come up with meaningful things.
  • Everyman: An everyman is what we commonly know as the jack of all trades. They possess almost every trait, although the driving force behind their actions is their need for a sense of belonging.
  • Explorer: Explorers thrive in the unknown. Meaning, they feel fulfilled whenever they gain new experiences and discover new places, foods, etc.
  • Hero: As the term suggests, heroes are known for their bravery, chivalry, and other heroic traits. Because of that, many people turn to them for inspiration.
  • Innocent: An innocent individual promotes wholesomeness. They are often optimistic, youthful, and happy.
  • Jester: A jester is known as a fun-loving person who is not below creating mischief to make others happy. Despite that, they often mean well.
  • Lover: Intimacy is the primary focus of this archetype. Everything that a lover does aims to promote romance, commitment, and passion.
  • Magician: Magicians turn out to be visionary leaders who try to turn dreams into reality. They are quite spiritual, too.
  • Rebel: Rebels love to go against the rules. If someone tells them what to do, they may ask, “Why?”
  • Ruler: Every ruler always tries to put everything in order. Although some people may deem one as the controlling type, no one can argue about their sense of responsibility.
  • Sage: Someone with this personality tends to view the world thoughtfully. Their goal is to spread their wisdom to everyone.
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What are the basic concepts of analytical psychology? 

  • Anima and Animus: Based on Carl Jung’s theories, men have an unconscious female component (anima), while women have an unconscious male component (animus).
  • Archetypes: Archetypes appear to be psychological organs in Carl Jung’s mind in the sense that every archetype has a unique and vital function.
  • Collective Unconscious: This is the psychic stratum that discourages people from believing that people are born a blank slate. Instead, Jung believes that everyone already has innate knowledge, thoughts, and feelings, though they may remain repressed until someone or something pushes them to the surface.
  • Complexes: According to Carl Jung, a complex refers to two or more traits mixing with memories or experiences. One common example of this is the “hero” archetype.
  • Individuation: It refers to a person’s journey to find their individuality.
  • Persona: The persona is supposed to be an illusion that individuals create based on their social status. For instance, someone may be naturally loud, raucous, and fun-loving. However, if they turn out to be a doctor or lawyer, they need to act serious in front of others to be taken seriously.
  • Psychological Types: Analytical psychology states that a person’s actions or thoughts can be driven by their temperaments and rational or irrational functions.
  • Shadow: The shadow concept proposes that people tend to see themselves in the opposite way that others do. Say, they may claim to be unkind, but others insist that they’re kind.
  • Synchronicity: It entails that two people can deal with the same experience, but its meaning is different for every person. For instance, two people may be exchanging letters for years. After a while, one of them may burn all the letters, while the other decides to keep them.

What is Horney’s theory? 

Karen Horney’s theory focused on neurosis. Based on her theory, neurotic people practically started as anxious people. However, the more their interpersonal relationships became bothersome, the more the anxiety turned to neurosis.

The thing was, neurosis could most likely be caused by how other people treated a person. One perfect example of that was an individual who got deprived of love and affection since childhood. They were not emotionless; they wanted to feel like their loved ones cared for them. When they failed to earn such emotions from others, they ended up doing everything to feel loved. Unfortunately, that does not always work, though.

What are archetypes in psychology? 

Carl Jung developed four different archetypes in psychology. Those are: 

  • The Anima (or Animus): The animus is a representation of the masculine aspect of women, while the anima is a representation of the feminine aspect of men. The clear distinction between the two signifies that people have other sides that may not always align with their specific roles in society.
  • The Persona: It refers to how you present yourself to other people. In short, this is not your “true self” – it is merely a mask that you allow others to see. It is most apparent in situations wherein a person needs to act a sure way to be liked by the people around them or avoid conflicts.
  • The Self: The basic way of understanding the self – yourself – is by drawing a circle. That shape represents you as an individual. Then, when you draw a dot in the center, it signifies your ego. 
  • The Shadow: It practically refers to the repressed ideas that you cannot freely talk about in front of others in fear of getting shunned because of them. Because of that, they may appear in your dreams as creatures that scare you the most.
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What is individual psychology theory? 

Individual psychology consisted of theories created by Alfred Adler. He was an Austrian psychotherapist who believed that people could have different, distinct personalities. Such personalities resulted from diverse driving factors that were unique for every individual. However, Adler did not go as far as saying that a problem of one was not a problem of all, considering it could affect everyone.

What are the main components of Jung’s theory? 

The three components of Carl Jung’s theory are:

  • Ego: The ego refers to the information in your brain that you are aware of. You may have gotten it through observation, reading, etc. This is your conscious mind. 
  • Personal Unconscious: When you talk about the personal unconscious mind, it focuses on the scenarios you cannot forget. They may be pushed at the back of your mind for some time, but it does not mean that you have lost them forever. Some trigger factors may be able to bring them forward again.
  • Collective Unconscious: The collective unconscious technically refers to ideas that you have never known you have until they come to the surface. However, they may confuse you because you do not know how you have gotten them. But according to Carl Jung, these are possible ideas that your ancestors have passed down to you genetically.

Who was the first psychologist? 

Wilhelm Wundt had always been considered as the father of psychology, given that he was the first individual on the planet to give meaning to this term. He was also the first academic to build a laboratory that was specifically meant for psychology. Many scientists believed that the opening of the Institute for Experimental Psychology paved the way for every psychologist out there who wanted to make innovations in this field. 

Who proposed the theory of individual psychology? 

Alfred Adler was the name the Austrian psychotherapist and medical doctor who proposed the individual psychology theory. He went on to build the Society of Individual Psychology in 1912.

The reality was that the foundation of the said society would not have been possible in the beginning. The reason was that Adler and Freud were colleagues, and the latter published more popular psychoanalytic theories than the former. However, disagreements soon formed and caused a rift in their professional relationship, thus pushing Adler to step away from the organization that they both belonged to and make one of his own.

When was individual psychology founded? 

As stated above, the Society of Individual Psychology had been founded and established in 1912, with Alfred Adler on the helm. The ideation behind its foundation was quite interesting, considering Adler believed that every action that a person would make was fueled by the inferiority they felt somehow. He practically believed that people could use their inferiority complex to fuel their desire to be better and have better lives.

How did psychoanalysis influence psychology? 

Psychoanalysis has given people an idea that whatever they are thinking and feeling can improve in various ways, even though it may not seem possible in the beginning. This reality is highly useful for people dealing with high levels of stress daily. It entails that you can experience catharsis and find a way out of your problems in an unexpected manner.

For instance, when you feel overly stressed because of your new job, you may think of going to the park to get away from everything. Then, once you are sitting on the grass, you see a beautiful yellow flower blooming among the grasses. It was so out of place, but it seemed like it was meant to be there. You may then be able to relate to that wildflower and realize that you could be a part of the new company if you wanted to be.

Who is the father of experimental psychology?

The most popular father of experimental psychology was Wilhelm Wundt. People recognized that the construction of his Institute for Experimental Psychology made it possible for future psychologists to explore and innovate in the psychological world. However, what many may not know of was that Wundt had a counterpart in the United States. His name was William James.

William James published a book in 1890 called The Principles of Psychology, and he acknowledged that visuals could significantly affect how a person would perceive a situation. For instance, if you hear about a red sedan from a friend, you may not think much of it. However, when they mention a brand, and you recall what it looks like, you may start showing interest in the subject.

Final Thoughts

I enjoyed learning about three famous psychoanalysts (especially Carl Jung) so much that I took up an advanced level of psychology the following semester. There were still many theories that I did not – and might never – agree about, but it still felt incredible to assess how those people got to come up with their respective theories.

Frequently Asked Questions About Bibliography

Reading is a skill that is developed and enhanced as we age. Many people enjoy reading stories and novels as a form of hobby or pastime.

For others, reading works of literature and articles help alleviate their work-related problems and set their body into a soothing mood. While for a few individuals, reading is a way to expand and assist their ever-growing writing and communication skills.

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But did you know that reading any forms of books or literature can also help with your mental health?

A bibliotherapy is a form of therapy that uses reading and literary materials as a functional tool in addressing mental health problems. It uses a wide range of genres and themes of literary materials. This therapy seeks to aid some conditions such as depression, anxiety, and mood changes.

Dated way back in Ancient Greece, there has already been an idea that links reading to notions of healing effects and tranquillity.

But it was only in the year 1916 when Samuel Crothers coined the terminology. It means to define a set of literary materials and concepts that can be prescribed for different disorders.

If you are unaware of what to expect from your therapist, don’t fret. This therapy won’t require you to read stacks of books per day. The therapist will start with bibliotherapy by finding out more about you.

Specific questions will help assess and determine the mental or emotional problems you have. Your therapist then will recommend a set of books or literary materials related to your current mental state.

Choosing these literary forms is crucial and influential in bibliotherapy. So it is best to consult with a proven and licensed therapist in this type of psychological activity. Make sure too that your therapist is licensed and has enough background about this therapeutic methodology.

There are also various techniques that your therapist can use in a bibliotherapy session.

If you want to know more about bibliotherapy, its scope, definition, and how it can direct you to better mental health, check out the FAQs provided here below:

What is bibliotherapy used for?

Bibliotherapy is the therapeutic practice of using reading as a support tool in treating mental health issues. This is usually done as a supplementary treatment for depression, anxiety, and mood disorders. There is no definite genre used — it may range from fiction to self-help books.

What is cognitive bibliotherapy?

Cognitive bibliotherapy uses principles from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) to assist reading. Restructuring thought and emotions, as well as breathing techniques, are common. Materials may also be aligned with CBT techniques to be practiced.

Is bibliotherapy evidence-based?

There is substantial evidence that bibliotherapy is an effective emotional and mental health treatment tool. There are professionals in bibliotherapy to facilitate treatment and healing. Physical effects related to reading, such as lowered blood pressure and heart rate, are also extensively studied.

Does reading decrease anxiety?

Reading is linked to reduced anxiety and stress. As a form of relaxation, reading can provide headspace for focusing and keeping negative thoughts away.

Who created bibliotherapy?

Bibliotherapy and the idea that books can provide a healing effect can be traced back as early as the Greeks. However, the term itself was coined in 1916 by Samuel Crothers to describe literature prescriptions for different disorders.

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Who needs cognitive behavioral therapy?

Those undergoing treatment for diagnosed mental health conditions such as depression and eating disorders may benefit from cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) both as a tool or standalone treatment. Aside from this, people who want to manage their emotions and thoughts may also benefit from CBT techniques.

How much should you read a day?

About 15-30 minutes of reading a day are enough. Depending on your schedule and lifestyle, this short amount of time is doable for most people. You will see benefits such as better focus and improved mood from this short amount of time.

Can reading be therapeutic?

Studies have suggested that reading has similar effects to other relaxation methods such as yoga and meditation. A 2009 study from the University of Sussex shows that stress levels can be reduced to about 68% while reading. Physical effects include reduced muscle tension and blood pressure.

Does writing therapy work?

The results of using writing as a therapeutic method are well supported. Writing about stressful and negative events serves both as a record and allows the writer a new perspective on the situation. The act of writing itself is also a relaxation technique. A mental health professional may provide prompts and directions to assist in the process.

Conclusion

Reading helps in a variety of ways. Thus, it can be a very useful tool for maintaining a better perspective about mental health. A 2009 study found that at least 30 minutes of reading can decrease blood pressure, heart rate, and feelings of psychological distress.

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Reading does not only give you a distraction from your present conditions and problems. It can also provide you a new perspective about your life. Meeting fictional characters or even biographies from esteemed personalities can help one aspire towards a more positive outlook in life, hence an inspiration.

Bibliotherapy can work for everyone, especially those who are interested in reading in general. This type of therapy can offer you the best experience and a more comfortable position. Through this, you get to heal while doing something you love.

Moreover, bibliotherapy can also work for people suffering from a mental health condition or emotional instability. This therapy can be both a stand-alone treatment or a supplementary method. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Emotional Trauma

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I was never snobbish when it came to fantasy books. I learned early that many books with bad blurbs still had an exciting plot; it would be crazy to judge them by their cover. Despite that, one of the books that I refused to re-read was New Moon, the second book in the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer.

It was not because the writing or storyline was awful, all right? The plot focused on how Bella Swan’s character tried to cope with Edward Cullen’s lack – or any of his family members – in her life. It detailed how the heroin went as far as trying crazy stunts because that’s the only way she could somehow hear or imagine Edward. 

Objectively speaking, it was extremely good. Subjectively speaking, it was horrifyingly believable and hit closer to home than I would ever admit. You see, I was once like Bella. I got abandoned by a loved one; I did not know how to move forward for a long time. Unlike Bella, though, I was entirely alone – I did not have friends or family to gain support from. Hence, I went down the deeper end of the depression and emotional trauma.  

1. What can cause emotional trauma? 

 Emotional trauma can be caused by a single shocking, horrifying event that an individual witnesses or experiences.

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2. What are the three types of trauma? 

  • Acute: You experience one traumatic incident.
  • Chronic: You deal with the same traumatic event repeatedly.
  • Complex: You’ve been exposed to a broad range of traumatic events.

3. Can emotional trauma cause physical symptoms? 

 Yes, emotional trauma can cause physical symptoms, especially when you feel strongly towards a specific event. Your head may ache, and your chest may constrict, for instance.

4. How do you deal with emotional trauma? 

  • Let time heal your wounds. Avoid forcing yourself to get better – that will only result in the opposite.
  • Figure out the reason behind the trauma. No matter how painful it may feel, you must face your fears if you wish to overcome them.
  • Create and follow a schedule of activities every day. Doing so will allow you to move even when you don’t feel like it.
  • Open up about your traumatic experience(s). Family and friends may be the closest support group you can have. If that is not possible, you may look for organizations that cater to traumatized individuals.
  • Look for people who have been in your shoes before. Talk to them and learn how they have risen above the trauma.

5. How emotional trauma affects the brain? 

 Emotional trauma practically causes the brain to produce more cortisol – stress hormones – than usual. The longer you deal with it, the higher is the possibility of emotional trauma changing your brain function permanently.

6. What are the five stages of PTSD? 

  • Emergency: During the first stage, you have a fight-or-flight response to everything. You cannot stay still and may often react intensely.
  • Denial: The second stage occurs when the individual refuses to deal with his feelings and memories. This is when they drink, party, and try various activities to avoid confronting reality.
  • Intrusive: It is technically the scariest PTSD stage, considering nightmares and flashbacks may appear at this point. As a result, you may get more anxious than ever. The silver lining is that severe anxiety and stress may push you to accept your trauma.
  • Transition: Acknowledging PTSD serves like a balm to your trauma-addled brain. The path towards healing most likely becomes apparent in the fourth stage. Ideally, you also sign up for a recovery program.
  • Integration: When you reach this stage, it entails that you have graduated from the program and are ready to face life with new coping skills. It’s okay if it takes months before achieving it – what matters is that you’ve gotten here.
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7. Does trauma ever go away? 

 Given that trauma can alter brain function, it may never go away. However, if you learn to deal with the symptoms, they may become manageable over time.

8. Can Trauma be cured? 

 No, trauma is one of the many mental conditions that cannot be cured at the time of writing. Despite that, you can try various treatments to manage their symptoms.

9. How would you know if you have unresolved trauma? 

 If you have unresolved trauma, you may experience the following:

  • Black-and-white way of thinking
  • Irrational fears
  • Spacing out
  • Hypervigilance
  • Guilty for living
  • Attachment issues
  • Depression symptoms
  • Nightmares
  • Flashbacks
  • Suicidal thoughts

10. How would you know if you have repressed trauma? 

 If you have repressed trauma, you may experience the following:

  • Unexplainable physical pain
  • Mood swings
  • Heightened sensitivity
  • Lack of self-confidence
  • Insomnia
  • Nightmares
  • Worthlessness

11. What mental illness is caused by childhood trauma? 

 Childhood trauma can cause depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, eating disorders, and other mental illnesses.

12. What does emotional trauma feel like? 

  • Everything makes you anxious or depressed.
  • It is impossible to trust or get close to another person.
  • Terrifying flashbacks come to mind.
  • You become closed-off when you see or hear anything related to your traumatic experience.
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Source: pexels.com

13. How long can it take to heal from emotional trauma? 

 It is impossible to mention how much time it takes to recover from emotional trauma. Every sufferer is different, so the answer depends on how much you’ve accepted the issue and how easy you cope with it.

14. How do you release trapped emotions?

  • Recognize that there is perhaps an emotion or two that you don’t want to deal with. Figure out what those are and accept them.
  • Learn how to express your emotions, even if you are not ready to use your words to do that. For instance, you may dance, smash things, paint, draw, exercise, or even cry. Many have also benefited from going out and taking a deep breath.
  • Look after your mind and body. Whatever you’ve done in the past most likely isn’t enough – you need to prioritize yourself this time.

Final Thoughts

You might be wondering, “How did you get over the emotional trauma, writer?”

Well, for starters, I moved to another state. I left everything behind that would remind me of that person who abandoned me. I also cut ties with all the people who kept telling me, “I told you so.” Once I got settled in my new home, I went to therapy. It was a long and challenging process; it took me more than a year, to be honest. Despite that, it was worth the effort as I managed to regain self-control and self-confidence and leave the past in the past.

Why Reading Fantasy Books Is Ideal For Your Mental Health

I have been collecting books for over a decade now, so the two floor-to-ceiling shelves that I had custom-made in my room were already filled to the brim. It started when I went on a book sale to accompany my best friend, who was a bookworm at the time. While browsing through the shop, I got interested in the fantasy book series that I found. However, some books were missing, so I begged my mother to let me visit the local bookstore. That’s where I bought a complete set of Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling — the first ones I loved and will forever cherish. Still, I did not consider fantasy as my favorite genre back then.

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I only realized that I loved fantasy books when I read The Hunger Games, Max Rider, Alex Rider, and even Goosebumps, and I wanted more. Soon enough, I was the one pulling my best friend to books sales and bookstores, looking for other novels I might not have heard of before. That did not stop even when I went away for college and could not take all my paperbacks and hardbounds with me. I would re-read the old ones whenever I was at home, but I added more stuff to my collection as I felt the need to buy more books while I stayed in the apartment.

The thing was, when I started working, and my parents realized that my love for fantasy books did not fade, they teased me for being childish. They wanted to donate or sell everything, saying that my room already looked like a storage unit because of them. Of course, I refused, that’s why I ended up calling a carpenter to make the shelves for me. I thought, “Mom and Dad were only like that because they did not understand the benefits of reading fantasy books for a person’s mental health.”

In case you haven’t got a clue either, let me share a few of them.

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It Keeps Your Imagination Alive

Being imaginative is an excellent skill to keep even when you are already an adult. It livens up your life; it helps you think outside the box, especially when you face a problem that seems too impossible to shake. Without a healthy imagination, you may be stuck in your head while trying to fix your worries.

Before I found the fantasy books that I loved, I was a whiny kid. I always cried to my parents whenever I could not get something done. However, it all changed once I began reading fantasy novels and seeing that other kids around my age could resolve huge problems without much help from adults. I started using my imagination to get out of a rut I was in; when it worked, I no longer had difficulty dealing with my issues.

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It Prevents Your Mind And Heart From Growing Old

I have always been a fan of Peter Pan and the fact that he will never grow old. I loved the story even before I even knew Harry Potter, Alex Rider, or Katniss Everdeen. I remembered crying to my mother back then because I was afraid of growing old and dying.

Well, I have overcome my dreams of never growing old years ago. It was partly because I figured out that it was inevitable and because I found a way to keep my heart and mind young – by reading fantasy books. True enough, although another decade passed, I managed to look at the world with a wide-eyed expression and not feel jaded by my experiences, no matter how much they try to drain the life out of me.

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It Takes You In Another (Worry-Free) Realm

Although I am only in my mid-20s, I already know that being an adult and taking on many responsibilities is enough to keep my stress level high. It is impossible for me not to worry about rent and other bills, especially when the end of the month comes and my salary has not arrived in my bank account yet.

I hate that feeling more than anything in the world. Luckily, I have my fantasy books to take me into another realm all the time. Even if it’s only for a few hours, it’s enough for me to be able to sneak away from reality and realize that even the fictional characters have more significant problems than I do. That’s how I have kept myself sane while waiting for a promotion and making ends meet.

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Bottom Line

People always say that life is not like a fairytale, and I have always believed them. What happens in the books does not always – or may never – happen in real life. Despite that, it does not mean that you cannot enjoy fantasizing about living in another world once in a while and learning from the characters whose travails you are reading about.

Try reading fantasy books before you turn your back on it. Cheers!

What The Twilight Book Series Taught Us About Family

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Source: flickr.com

I was 18 years old when I got copies of the Twilight Saga, written by Stephenie Meyer. In truth, I had been asking my parents to let me read the series the first time it came out several years back. But they always said that the scenes were not for underaged teens like me. When I finally got my hands on the books, therefore, I went through all of them in less than a week.

Did I learn anything from the Twilight series?

Yes, of course.

  • Vampires shine bright like diamonds (literally).
  • There is no conflict that a sound explanation cannot resolve.
  • True love always wins.

Aside from those, I gathered a few family-related lessons that everyone could apply in the real world.

Note: The following ideas contain book spoilers regarding characters and plots. 

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Source: pxfuel.com

You Don’t Have To Be Blood-Related To Become A Family 

From the early chapters of the first book, it has been known that Dr. Carlisle Cullen and his wife Esme adopted a few kids who were all around the same age. That’s among the few things that they can be honest about, and they genuinely care for each other like a regular family. They can also live under the same roof without fighting, which is unheard of in any coven.

What it tells us mere humans is that you need not share the same blood with another person before you can claim that you belong to one family. Blood relation does not mean that you love each other, after all. Some parents abuse their kids to death; other family members even try to send one another to jail due to long-standing issues. But the Cullens were unrelated by blood and still managed to show respect towards their newfound family.

Even If You Don’t Like Someone’s Partner, You Try To Understand Them For Your Family’s Sake

Edward Cullen’s sister, Rosalie, was incredibly vocal about her disapproval about his relationship with Bella Swan. The primary reason is that she is human, and they are vampires. She worries that this union might jeopardize their secret and put their entire family in danger.

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Source: pxfuel.com

Rosalie always had sassy remarks about Bella and showed no interest in helping to save her in the first book, but she came around in the next ones slowly but surely. When I reached the third book, she already accepted that Edward would want Bella forever and vice versa.

That’s what typically happens in a household, too. Your sibling may date someone you find revolting, but you can’t do anything to throw them out. All you can do is try to understand them, primarily if they treat your brother or sister well. It is the only way to avoid conflicts at home.

You Can Love Your Family Despite Their Quirks

When Bella and Edward found out that there was a baby on womb, and Renesmee came into the world, the entire coven was generally happy. Bella already transformed into a vampire, which used to be a significant issue in the first three books. Even the wolf pack welcomed the baby, considering she turned out to be Jacob Black’ s—the alpha— his soulmate.

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Source: pxfuel.com

One thing the family must do, though, is let Charlie, Bella’s father, visit them. That made the new vampire freak out since she did not know how much self-control she had to avoid draining her Dad’s blood. Besides, there’s Renesmee, who had the couple’s features, but they could not precisely say that she is theirs biologically.

Hence, when Charlie arrived, he immediately noticed that his daughter never looked better, but she also looked different. They talked some more, and Bella even got comfortable in her seat after realizing that she could control her thirst with flying colors. Once Edward introduced Renesmee as his niece that they legally adopted, Charlie seemed confused because the little girl had Bella’s eyes. Still, he did not want any of them to leave the town, so he accepted everything and asked no further questions.

In reality, Charlie’s behavior is no different from that of people with quirky relatives. No matter how crazy or unbelievable someone’s actions are, you tend to have their back since you are a family.

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Source: pxfuel.com

There’s Nothing You Can’t Do For A Loved One

The Cullens’ effort to protect each other amplified when they realized that the Volturi would come for Renesmee, thinking that she’s a young vampire. Two of them went thousands of miles away to look for evidence that half-vampires like her were harmless to their kind; the others asked their friends to stand as witnesses to the child’s speedy growth. And once they faced the Volturi, everyone was ready to fight if things went south.

Although a battle did not ensue, the events proved that there’s nothing you couldn’t do for the people you love.

Final Thoughts

It is challenging to find a fictional book series that can tickle your imagination and take you in their little world. If you can get ahold of the Twilight books, you should read them and see what I’m talking about.

Cheers!

 

 

A Guide To Your Storyline About The Pandemic

 

 

Source: minot.af.mil

A lot of stories have been written at this time about the recent case counts, projections, narratives of heroism, and politics. However, there is a specific story that is of interest to everybody. It is a story of looking back into the COVID-19 pandemic – what you have experienced, what it has done to your family and significant others, the lessons you’ve learned, and how you have surpassed this global crisis. It may be written from your conscious or subconscious mind, but ultimately, you are the story’s author.

During these challenging times, it is easier to feel pummeled about by coincidence and circumstance. Undoubtedly, the present pandemic and the consequential economic turmoil are not in your control. You may be striving hard to manage a team of online workers while you’re dealing with your crawler, which doesn’t want to sleep or with your teen that insists on playing video games instead of doing her online homework. Or perhaps you are all by yourself, dealing with a Skype meeting while being troubled with the current numbers, anxious and depressed about your high-risk family members and friends. There have been situations before this that have been out of your control. We all are facing our own helplessness amidst these COVID times.

Nevertheless, you are responsible for the way you engage with the circumstances that you are being confronted with. You are capable of making decisions about how you act and where you put your efforts as you traverse the storms of ambiguity. How you behave and think during this crisis will influence the narrative that you will tell. Do you want to play the hero or the victim? The victim usually asks herself, “Why does it have to me?” Being the author of your own story will help you climb out of that victim role, although it’s also not always being about the hero. The key is to take the creative view of things, overcoming the crisis with a humble heart and becoming the wiser, better version of your previous self.

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Deciding to author your own story involves the ‘by me’ format of leadership. You decide to utilize creativity, not reactivity, being positive and open rather than being defensive and fickle-minded. You own up the task of responding to situations that are uncontrollable. You can create your own story as you have lived and led in the time of COVID-19. Imagine your future self and use that imagination to influence your decisions now as you live into and create your narrative. But how?

Here’s something you can try. Envision yourself traveling through time, perhaps into the summer of 2021, when the global crisis has subsided, and some normalcy has been regained – or a new normal has been established. Imagine having risen to the occasion and overcoming everything, making you feel so proud, thankful, and fulfilled. Ask yourself these questions:

  • What small or big ways did you do as a community member, a friend, spouse, significant other, parent, or a leader for the common good? Did you perhaps volunteer cooking and giving meals to seniors? Sharing your expertise to help others?
  • What principles or values were you able to learn and practice? Did you stand up for anything?
  • What influenced your actions? Was it optimism or pessimism that drove you to become more determined to surpass the challenges? What habits were you able to learn under the circumstances?
  • Were there relationships broken or established because of the situation? Which relationships became stronger? Which ones faltered?
  • Was there an experience that affected your life and the way you see life now?
  • What are the things you were thankful for during the pandemic? What are you grateful for today?
  • Did you discover new strengths (and weaknesses)? What traits did you rely on while you were trying to survive and thrive? Do you think these traits should be retained?
  • What did you discover about yourself and your relationships?
  • How did you grow as a person, parent, friend, leader, or community member?
  • Do you think you can surpass any challenge that will come into your life?

 

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These are components of your story that you should consider when you write it. Let these questions hopefully guide you on your venture. What could your story be? Could it be one of tragedy or hope? Failure or growth? Stagnancy or transformation? It is all up to you.

 

 

 

What To Write About During The COVID-19 Pandemic

 

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If you look around you now, you’ll realize that the COVID-19 pandemic, including work in one way or the other, impacts almost everything. And if you are one of the many people who are fortunate to be working at home as a writer, your goal now would be to write something that would be suitable to the times, and of course, a topic that readers would be interested in. We spent time gathering opinions from different content makers and the readers themselves, and we found out that there are several topics that one can be inspired to write and read about.

Travel. This is one of the most affected by the pandemic and one which a lot of people miss doing, which is why they would be interested in reading about it. As most, if not all, flights around the world are canceled, tourists and travel enthusiasts are devastated at the thought that they will not be able to visit their dream destinations for a long time. In the meantime, it would ease some of their frustrations if they had the chance to read about the different places that are waiting for them to visit when this global crisis subsides.

Relationships. Reading about love, friendships, and other kinds of relationships will always be enjoyable no matter what weather or season it is. Love stories inspire the romantics and give hope to those who are broken-hearted. In the midst of tension and anxiety, it is essential to reevaluate one’s relationships, and reading about it may help people find ways to protect, maintain, or strengthen the relationships that they have.

 

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Homeschooling. All students are currently not being able to continue going to their schools because of the quarantine and social distancing guidelines that are being imposed to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Parents are worried about their children’s education and the fact that it will be both a hassle and a difficulty for them to be stuck in the house doing nothing. The necessary process of homeschooling is a beautiful idea that will help parents understand what it will be like for their children to be studying at home.

Work From Home. Writing about this topic will perk the interest of many, including both executives and employees who are looking to earn or improve productivity despite these trying times. Content around this topic could be about setting up your home office, how to find a job through the web, or what types of jobs provide the biggest salaries.

Entertainment. People spend most of their time at home, and sometimes they have done everything they could think of from cooking, cleaning, and decluttering. It’s nice to give them some ideas on how to entertain themselves. Write about the best movies to watch on Netflix so they’ll have something to look forward to before they head to bed or after they’ve finished their chores. You can also suggest some ways on where to stream videos and how to do it in the first place. Affordable digital games are also trending these days.

 

Source: wallpaperflare.com

 

Health And Fitness. Aside from being physically clean and hygienic, people now are very eager to learn some new tricks on working out at home. Providing content on how to keep in shape while quarantined seems to be on top of the list, as everyone was initially surprised, and their lives paused for a moment when the outbreak hit the country and the whole world. So now they’re determined to stay healthy physically and mentally, so they’re looking for some indoor workout strategies, yoga poses for relaxation and other ideas that are fitness-related.

Boosting The Immune System. We are all concerned about strengthening our immune systems so that we are protected from easily getting infected. There are many studies and articles about discoveries that can help improve the body’s defenses, and everyone wants to get hold of these. In addition, perhaps you can delve into past medicine and gather ideas on how to strengthen the body naturally.