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How to Encourage Your Child to Talk About its Emotions
Category: Blog,MENTAL HEALTH,Motivation,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 5 days ago Comments: 0
How to Encourage Your Child to Talk About its Emotions

When a child learns how to positively express its feelings, it develops effective emotion management skills. Here are a few useful tips that will show you how to encourage your child to talk about its emotions.

How to Encourage Your Child to Talk About its Emotions – Kids also have feelings like adults

How to Encourage Your Child to Talk About its Emotions

Whether you realize it or not, your child also has the same emotions as you do. They also get jealous, nervous, excited, frustrated, embarrassed, angry, worried, frightened, and sad. But they don’t possess the tools to cope with these emotions as their vocabulary isn’t as developed as ours. Therefore, they express their emotions in their own ways.

By their own ways, we mean body language, play, and overall behavior. That’s why kids sometimes act out in problematic, inappropriate, or physical ways.

As soon as they are born, kids learn how to identify, manage, and express their emotions. This learning process starts with the people who are closest to them (parents, siblings, grandparents). Meaning that you as a parent, play an extremely important role in your child’s emotional development. By emotional development, we mean learning how to cope with their emotions in a constructive and positive way.

Learning how to cope with emotions in childhood leads to positive behaviors and attitudes as a grownup

A child that knows how to cope with and express its feelings in a positive way is more likely to:

  • Become supportive and empathic with others
  • Advance in school and career later
  • Have stable and positive relationships
  • Be mentally healthy
  • Have fewer problems with bad behavior
  • Gain coping and resilience skills
  • Be more confident, capable, and competent
  • Gain a positive sense of itself

Your role in your child’s emotional skills development

How to Encourage Your Child to Talk About its Emotions

Here are a few useful tips on helping your child learn how to express its emotions:

Pay attention to cues

When they are young, it’s hard to identify what your child is feeling. That’s why you need to pay attention to listen to what your child is saying, how it’s behaving, and the body language its displaying. This will help you in figuring out what your child is feeling so that you can help it manage and express those emotions in a healthy way.

There’s a feeling behind every behavior

Keep in mind that behind every behavior your child displays, there’s a certain feeling. Once you know which emotion is behind the behavior, you can help with teaching your child to express it in a proper way.

Naming the feelings

It is important to teach your child how to name each emotion. By knowing how to name an emotion, your child expands its emotional vocabulary and finds talking about it much easier. This helps them in identifying their emotions and channeling them in a healthy way.

Recognizing emotions in others

Teach your child how to identify emotions in other people. You can talk with your child about what it thinks a certain person (whether a real person or a cartoon character) is feeling right now. This is a great way to make your child relaxed and open to discussing feelings and learning to recognize other people’s feelings, based on facial expressions.

Turning yourself into a role model

Children learn emotions and how to cope with them by observing their parents and people close to them. Therefore, you are the one that has to set an example and show your child what it’s feeling in certain situations and how to channel those emotions.

Praising your child to encourage positive behavior

When your child talks about its feelings or expresses them in a healthy manner, you should praise it. This way, you will let your child know that it’s normal to have feelings and talk about them, as well as encourage it to repeat that positive expression.

How to encourage your child to talk about its emotions and express its feelings in a positive way

When kids are frustrated or angry, they usually throw toys. Also, they find it hard to settle down after they’ve had an exciting day. This is a great opportunity for you to teach your child how to express its emotions in a healthy and positive manner. Here are some useful tips for coping with their emotions:

  • Teach your child to take deep breaths when angry or frustrated
  • Let it know that it’s okay to ask for support or help
  • It’s okay to take a break if something isn’t going their way
  • Sometimes doing certain things means finding more ways to solve the problem, not just one
  • Problems can be solved with words
  • Don’t act out, say what you feel
  • Grownups understand what’s happening
  • Asking for a cuddle or a hug when feeling bad is always okay

You play an important role in your child’s emotional development

The first step in teaching your child in managing its emotions is helping in identifying the feelings. A child that is capable of identifying, understanding, and coping with a wide range of emotions, is more likely to have a healthy mental state and better overall wellbeing as a grownup. If you need some help in knowing how to encourage your child to talk about its emotions, feel free to ask us, we will gladly help.


The Effects of Stress on Your Memory
Category: Blog,MENTAL HEALTH,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 5 days ago Comments: 0
effects of stress on your memory

Memory and stress work and don’t work well together, depending on the situation. This relationship is all but just black and white. For example, small doses of stress can help you in remembering or “pulling out some memory, information or facts. However, huge doses of stress will not be helpful at all when it comes to memory. So, what are the effects of stress on your memory?

A good example of this stress/memory relationship is studying for the test. Students are more motivated when they are slightly stressed out, therefore, information is stored in memory better. On the other hand, if you are freaking out (high dose of stress) you won’t be able to remember anything you learned just a few days ago. When exposed to constant stress, in time, our memory structure in brain changes. To understand this, we actually need to explain how memories are created and “pulled out” when we need them.

With each sensory experience, the part of the brain that is in charge of processing emotions (amygdala) influences the part that is in charge of processing memories (hippocampus). This way, hippocampus knows to store this emotionally charged memory. As you might have realized by yourself by now, both negative and positive, emotionally charged events in our lives turn into strong memories. And, later, when we want to pull out those memories, the prefrontal cortex takes charge of the “computing” part. This is a never-ending circle, directly affected by stress.

Memory and Chronic Stress

effects of stress on your memory

When we are under enormous stress, like when our lives are in danger, the amygdala sends a high amount of warning hormones (circulating stress hormones) through our whole body. Therefore, both the body and the nervous system are in a state where we are ready to either attack or run.

When this doesn’t happen too often, memory processing is not in danger. However, studies showed that when constantly exposed to highly stressful situations (soldiers fighting in a war) people suffer from hippocampus shrinking. This means that the ability to process and store memories drastically degrades.

Furthermore, in such highly stressful situations, the amygdala also blocks the prefrontal cortex activity. This is actually not a bad thing when you are in danger because your body is more prepared to defend itself and survive than to have the ability to listen to reason and process higher thoughts.

However, most of us are not in constant life-threatening situations, and we don’t need our muscles filled up with oxygen and glucose, and ready to attack. This is not useful, for example, for a school test or a job interview, right?

Also, stress-activated body, in the long run, only brings normal life functioning inability, and damages our memory storing brain structures.

Hippocampus and Trauma

effects of stress on your memory

Certain studies have shown that being exposed to trauma, leads to a low volume of both hippocampus and amygdala. The study used coal miners, more specifically, miners involved in life-threatening situations, such as unplanned explosions.

The results showed that those miners suffered from PTSD. In addition, their amygdala and hippocampus volumes were significantly lower than those of miners that didn’t suffer such traumas. This directly shows that chronic stress and trauma reduce the brains capability of storing and pulling out memories.

Is There a Solution that Will Save Your Memory?

As a matter of fact, there might be a solution! Our brain actually has the ability to change as we live. Also, certain studies that have shown that the effects of stress on your memory can be reversed. One study showed that with the use of antidepressant therapy, and increment of serotonin levels in our brain, leads to reversing the damage done to the hippocampus, thus reversing the inability to store memories.

What can You do on Your Own to Reduce the Effects of Stress on Your Memory?

Well, the first step would be reducing the levels of stress. Avoid situations that cause constant stress and both your body. Soon, the part of the brain that is in charge of keeping the memory intact will heal. You will start feeling better and you will start storing and pulling out memories much easier. In addition, options you can likewise consider include regular exercising, psychotherapy, support groups, and doctor-prescribed medication.

 


Food addiction – It’s a Real Problem Not a Myth!
Category: Blog,Recommended,Self improvement Author: Feel Better Date: 5 days ago Comments: 0
food addiction

For many people, eating healthy represents a huge problem because unhealthy food is easier to find, cheaper, and offers more “comfort”. Even though they know it’s not good for them, many people still eat large amounts of junk food daily. But, the truth behind this is that certain foods (in most cases bad, unhealthy food) have an addictive effect on the brain and people suffer from food addiction, even though they know it’s bad for them.

Food addiction is a serious problem that is very hard to overcome. Therefore, we created this article to help you realize if you are a food addict and how to overcome it.

What Is Food Addiction?

Like drug or alcohol addictions, food addiction is an addiction and a problem. Even though this type of addiction is relatively new and lacks clinical studies and statistics, it is a real problem and can trigger many health issues.

Furthermore, food addiction can be placed in the same category as compulsive overeating, bulimia, binge eating disorder, and other unhealthy food relationships.

Effects on Your Brain

food addiction

Again, just like drug addiction, food addiction stimulates the same neurotransmitters as drugs. Therefore, the bad food you are addicted to provides pretty much the same feeling as drugs (dopamine).

The problems come from eating standard junk food such as deep-fried food, sugar products, and bad fat food. But what you need to know is that food addiction doesn’t come from not being strong enough to say no, but because of the dopamine that “takes over the control” of your brain.

Food Addiction Symptoms

Like with other addictions, what defines food addiction are symptoms in behavior:

  • Frequently cravings for certain foods, even though you just had a healthy full meal.
  • Eating the food you craved much more than you thought you would.
  • You feeling excessively stuffed.
  • You start feeling guilty but you still eat more.
  • Making excuses for why you should eat that food.
  • You tried quitting eating bad food but didn’t quit.
  • Hiding the fact that you crave bad food from others.
  • Lack of ability to control yourself around bad food you “love” even though you know it can cause health problems.

How to Overcome Food Addiction

In order to successfully overcome food addiction, you have to prepare yourself with a few steps so that the whole process is easier.

Here’s what you need to do:

Trigger Food

Create a list of foods that you know is bad for your health but you can’t help yourself around it. This is called “Trigger Food” and you have to avoid it completely.

Healthy Food Places

Create a list of restaurants or dinners that prepare healthy food. Reach for this list every time you crave for something unhealthy or don’t feel like preparing your meal, and opt for a place that serves healthy meals.

 What to Eat

Create a habit of thinking about healthy food instead of unhealthy. This will help you gradually stop craving bad food and focus on what’s good for your body.

 Healthy vs Unhealthy

Make a comparison list of all the good things about health food vs cons of bad foods. Make more copies and put it in places like the fridge, kitchen elements, or even your purse or wallet so that you can reach for it every time you get the “munchies”.

Don’t Go on a Diet!

The most common mistake people make when trying to get out of their food addiction is going on a diet. This is not a smart idea because overcoming food addiction is extremely hard on its own and when you add starving yourself into the equation, you are just setting yourself up for failure.

Final Thoughts on Food Addiction

All addictions are problems that can’t disappear overnight or resolve on their own if you just leave the things the way they are. Therefore, you have to make hard choices and stick with them. Otherwise, you won’t overcome food addiction and it will only get worse and worse as time goes.

The first step to success is making an unbiased list of the pros and cons of not eating unhealthy foods. It’s best if someone else who is not addicted to junk food makes this list for you. Next, you have to make a list of good foods and stick to it and set a date when you will start.

The road to improvement is a hard one and you might also consider getting some help. There are plenty of support groups that help and make you realize that you are not alone with this problem and that it’s possible to beat it.

 


When is Psychotherapy Not Good for You – Here’s What to Keep an Eye On
Category: Blog,MENTAL HEALTH,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 5 days ago Comments: 0
When is Psychotherapy not Good

When looking for a psychotherapist, you must keep in mind that finding one that can offer appropriate therapy for your needs. So, when is psychotherapy not good for you? What do you need to keep an eye on when choosing a psychotherapist? In this article, we will mostly focus on mood disorders. Such disorders include, for example, bipolar disorder and melancholic depression, and in most cases are genetic and reflect primary biological changes in your brain. Therefore, here is what you need to pay attention to when seeking the right psychotherapy.

When is Psychotherapy Not Good for You – The Wrong Model

when is psychotherapy not good

When it comes to mood disorders, talking therapy is pretty much useless as these problems require medication. So, if you choose a therapist with a narrow treatment approach, he won’t do you any good. Unfortunately, you will find many therapists that simply don’t want to admit that they simply cannot provide the right treatment. They will “reassure” you that your ongoing depression needs to be experienced first before he/she can work on helping you. The truth is, you could have most likely responded well to antidepressant drug a while ago…

This is one of the examples, where choosing the wrong model brings indirect harm to a patient. It is ineffective and inappropriate. On the other hand, there are types of depression where talking therapy is the most appropriate therapy. However, the therapist chooses the wrong model and prescribes ineffective and inappropriate drugs, which, unfortunately, bring distressing side effects…

Components and risks

Dynamic psychotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy, are psychotherapies with powerful specific ingredients. They were developed with an underlying logic. For example, derived from psychoanalysis, dynamic psychotherapy, is designed to identify the early formative events. This leads to the development of psychological problems. On the other hand, cognitive behavioral therapy challenges wrong thinking patterns. Which leads to seeing yourself and the world around you negatively.

However, what all psychotherapies have in common is the fact that the lack or presence of certain non-specific therapeutic ingredients harms the patient. Therefore, an ideal therapist will significantly contribute to the patient’s improvement. But if he or she lacks those ingredients, the therapy will be toxic.

When is a Talking Therapy Bad?

The most common bad therapy style includes lack of respect or empathy for the patient, and when the therapist doesn’t have the patient’s interests at heart. Also, there are therapists that are “preoccupied” and make their patients feel powerless and alienated. Or, you have therapists that are “controlling” and make you feel like you depend solely on them. Finally, you have therapists that lack credibility or are inexperienced. Therefore they are inactive, passive, and don’t contribute to the patient’s improvement.

Now, the point of the story is that while wrong drug therapy generally comes with physical side effects, wrong talking therapy style brings psychological harm. The patients tend to blame themselves for their problems, they feel demoralized and helpless, or in some cases self-absorbed or self-centered, and are all dependent on the therapist even though he or she doesn’t actually help them.

When is Psychotherapy Not Good – The Solution?

To avoid all of the upper mentioned problems with wrong psychotherapy, all health practitioners should be evaluated by their clients. When we say evaluated, we mean both for their substance and style. It is normal, or even mandatory to look for a therapist that is technically proficient and caring. However, in most cases, when people choose a therapist, they choose the “caring” one, not knowing that the actual “warmth” they feel is not helping them with their problem. Unfortunately, a formal evaluating process doesn’t exist and it is impossible to have an independent observer that would judge the effectiveness of the therapist. However, there’s nothing stopping the patient from seeking a second opinion and determining if the first therapy is professional and actually helping with the improvement.

The moral of the story is – Even though you may have psychological problems, you should trust your gut. A therapy that fits your needs and just feels good and makes you feel better is always better than the one that makes you feel even worse and full of doubts.


How to stop temper tantrums in 3 steps
Category: Articles,Blog,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 4 weeks ago Comments: 0
How to stop temper tantrums

Having problems with your toddler’s temper tantrums? Do you want to know how to stop temper tantrums in 3 super-simple steps? Keep on reading and you will find out how to prevent your child making a scene before it gets out of hand.

Some might call this approach Positive Parenting, or “Toddler Hack”, but the fact remains, whatever you call it, it ACTUALLY does the job! And that’s what’s most important, right?

 

“What the heck did I get myself into?!?”

You have to admit that every time your toddler throws a tantrum in public, this is the first thing that comes to your mind. In that moment, you start feeling like this whole parenting thing is not what you expected and that you are bad at it, right? It also makes you think (at least in that moment) “Did I really want this??”. Of course, that is just the heat of the moment and once it’s over you are back to loving the parenting but it does drain the emotional energy…

 

The key to stopping temper tantrums?

What you need to realize is that in order to stop your little angel from turning into a screaming, floor-crawling “demon”, you need to apply the “I don’t negotiate with terrorists” tactics before the tantrum starts.

Here is how to do it.

 

How to stop temper tantrums in 3 steps

How to stop temper tantrums

Yes, all it takes are 3 simple steps and you will quickly, simply, and effectively stop the tantrum from happening.

 

Step 1 – “Get on Your knees”

 

Of course, we don’t mean literally getting on your knees but rather going down to your child’s level. You have to understand that it’s easy for a kid to act mad when they practically don’t see your face “high in the clouds”. However, it is much harder to keep it pushing their way when there’s a serious grownup face right in front of them.

 

Step 2 – “Look me in the eye child!”

 

After going down to their level, it’s time to make eye to eye contact. This step will throw your kid off guard and most likely distract it and break the tantrum urge. You will, therefore, have a chance to start “negotiating”. Whether you know it or not, making eye contact with your kid makes it realize that you show respect. Sure, they don’t have a clue what respect is, but they understand the feeling they get from that moment and that is – respect. The chances are much higher, that your child will listen to reason.

 

3. Stay Serious but Calm

 

Once you got your kid’s attention, it’s time to use the “serious” voice. By serious, we don’t mean raising your tone or yelling. No, quite the opposite! What you need to do is to actually lower your voice, and have a calm and serious tone. Talk firmly, steady, and slow. You have to remain calm, otherwise, the situation will become much worse, FAST. If the child senses your anger, it will become angry as well and then all hell will get loose.

And, for the end, remember that when we talk about stopping a temper tantrum, less is definitely more…

If you want more useful tips, we recommend checking our YouTube channel as well.


How emotional neglect in childhood can affect your relationships?
Category: Articles,Blog,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 4 weeks ago Comments: 0
emotional neglect in childhood

Have you ever wondered how emotional neglect in childhood can affect your relationships? Unfortunately, nothing good comes out of it. When someone goes through emotional neglect as a child, there will be many problems once that person becomes an adult – especially when it comes to having a normal relationship. The main problem happens when that person becomes emotionally invulnerable and lacks trust that other people will fulfill their emotional demands.

How emotional neglect in childhood affects romantic relationships?

Healthy adult intimate relationships are difficult to maintain if one side has been emotionally neglected as a child. Such a person has problems trying to connect with someone. They feel like they are going to be abandoned, therefore, they don’t respond well to support or care gestures.

Furthermore, because a parent that emotionally neglects its child, is usually inconsistent. Meaning, that child will have problems when it grows up in the form of not being able to trust its partner. He or she won’t know what to expect even if their partner seems quite trustworthy. There will always be fear that love and trust will be replaced with rejection or disappearance.

People who were emotionally neglected as kids always think that they are “not worthy of love”. Therefore, since they didn’t have love as kids, as adults, they think that something is wrong with them. They are convinced that they are “bad” or “damaged goods” because they weren’t loved.

 

Treatment?

When it comes to the treatment of people who were emotionally neglected as kids, the therapist needs to build a trusting, solid relationship. He sets the boundaries and explains what a dependable, nurturing relationship is supposed to look like. Also, there are strategies that help with coping with anxiety when they experience abandonment. In addition, cognitive-behavioral therapy helps with changing how they see love and worthiness.

 

How emotionally neglected people behave as parents?

emotional neglect in childhood

Many think that kids who were emotionally neglected, turn out to be same as their parents when they grow up and become parents themselves. However, it’s quite the opposite. In fact, emotionally neglected people know how painful it was for them as kids. Therefore, they do everything they can to become better than their parents. They become very involved and protective as parents, and always meet the emotional needs of their child.

There are also cases when people who were neglected during their childhood, have a fear of having kids of their own. They feel like they lack the necessary emotional skills and that they wouldn’t be able to love their kids as they should.

 

Is emotional neglect similar to emotional abuse?

emotional neglect in childhood

Abuse is similar to neglection in ways that both have damaging effects on the child in terms of both emotional and physical development later in life. In cases where emotional neglect is extreme, it can turn out to be even more damaging than abuse. In such cases, the child will fail to thrive or have serious problems with cognitive impairments.

If you ask a therapist, he will tell you that a neglection is a form of abuse. However, it is much dangerous because it can go on much longer. This is because there are no physical signs and kids tend to suffer in silence. The result? An emotionally neglected child won’t get the proper treatment in time and become more “damaged” in the long run.

 


What is Narcissistic personality disorder
Category: Blog,Public,Recommended Author: Feel Better Date: 1 month ago Comments: 0
Narcissistic personality disorder

Narcissistic personality disorder, or NPD, is a disorder that causes people to have a distorted image of themselves. People who suffer from NPD have intense and unstable emotions and they are obsessed with power, prestige, personal adequacy, and vanity. They also have less empathy than most people and their sense of superiority is exaggerated.

This disorder is very closely related to egocentrism, where people think that their opinion and interests are the only things that matter. In addition, people with NPD in most cases don’t care about other people’s feelings. They don’t have empathy and don’t care about feelings other than their own.

Diagnosis

Narcissistic personality disorder

Before someone can be diagnosed with NPD, there’s a wide range of criteria that needs to be met. Though there are no lab tests that can determine that someone suffers from NPD, blood tests and X-rays will help in ruling out some other health problems that might cause such a condition.

Likewise, there is a wide range of personality disorders and people can suffer from more than one. But, when it comes to NPD, the diagnosis must have the following:

  • Eager for attention
  • Always jealous
  • Demand special treatment
  • Exaggerate their importance, talents, and achievements
  • Extremely sensitive and are easy to get hurt or feel rejected
  • Can’t maintain healthy relationships
  • Fantasize about their own power, success, intelligence, and appearance
  • Don’t feel regret when taking advantage of others to achieve their goals
  • Don’t feel empathy or understanding of other people’s feelings
  • Believe that only special people (other NPD people) understand how unique they are
  • Think that they are romantic
  • Don’t react well at all to criticism
  • Always demand positive reinforcement and praise from others
  • Expect that everyone has to agree with them
  • Always looking for “the best”

Narcissistic personality disorder treatment

For now, there is no cure for NPD. However, with proper psychotherapy, people who suffer from this disorder can learn to understand the problem and positively relate to others around them. They can learn how to change their attitude and have more constructed behavior. This leads to building self-esteem and having realistic expectation from both themselves and others.

There are 3 types of therapy for this disorder:

  • CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
  • Family therapy
  • Group therapy

For NPD treatment, all three therapies are necessary. But the CBT is the most important one because patients learn how to identify their negative behaviors and beliefs. Also, they learn how to replace negativity with positive, healthful thoughts and actions.

Causes

Doctors haven’t discovered yet what causes the NPD. Some say that this disorder can be related to very high parental expectations during childhood, or abuse, neglect or over-pampering or so-called toxic parenting styles. Also, it can come from growing up with parents or family members with manipulative behaviors and learning from them.

Likewise, if a child learns that being vulnerable is completely not acceptable, it may not develop the ability to understand or feel other people’s feelings as a grownup.

Narcissistic personality disorder complications

People who suffer from a narcissistic personality disorder and don’t treat it, have higher chances of becoming alcoholics or drug abusers. Or suffer from depression as well, have problems with relationships, school, work, and even start having suicidal thoughts.

In addition, studies have shown that male NPD patients have a higher level of cortisol in their bloodstream. This means that they are constantly under stress. Also, a higher level of cortisol means that cardiovascular problems can develop.


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