Thursday, June 28, 2012

It is time for weight loss

 Image from

 A few years ago I was extremely overweight and unhappy and I finally decided to do something about it. So I joined the gym and starting going 5-6 days a week at night (because they didn't have childcare!) and I started counting calories (I ate about 1800 daily). Fast forward 4 months later and I was down 38lbs. I was still working out 5 days a week and I was still counting calories yet the scale was NOT moving. My weight stayed the same for a month which turned into 6 weeks which turned into me not giving a crap. Now I can see it for what it was...a weight loss plateau but then I was pissed off and discouraged that I wasn't losing weight that I began to eat more crap and not go to the gym as I was.

Fast forward 3 years and 35lbs and here I sit starting all over. I am unhappy with my body and the fact that I gained back all the weight that I literally worked my ass off to lose the first time around. Slowly the last few weeks I have gotten my head lined up with my heart in that I am ready once again to start my weight loss journey. I joined the gym (that has childcare yay!) and today I ran. I didn't run the whole time but I ran and you know what it felt really really good!!!
Oh yes that is a craptastic gym picture..but hey it's a picture! So tomorrow I plan to repeat today and repeat that day the day after until I have lost 35lbs. Expect to see a few more posts related to weight loss on my blog in the coming months ;)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

To my husband...........

I love you. I am so grateful that I found you and that you choose me to be your wife. At times I have most likely acted as I didn't care and at times I have been hateful, ungrateful, nasty, and sometimes just down right mean yet you have continued to love me in ways that I can't begin to understand and I only hope that one day I can show you the love that you have shown me over the last 10+ years and show you how much I really do appreciate you and everything that you do for our family.

I wanted to say more but I think that is the best and most that I can say right now. I hope you know that I will continue to love you always.

Image from search. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

People can change but you can't make them do it

 As much as the majority of us would love to believe that we are capable to making or pushing a person to change it simply is not the case. I have sat and listened to countless stories told by people often times verbalizing the same past mistake they had shared just a short while before. Humans are creatures of habit and habit dictates that we follow the same pattern or behavior repeatedly often times until we have slapped our faces against the brick wall 27 times before the message that it ain't working finally kicks in.  Being creatures of habit means that most of the time we are on auto pilot and we partake in behaviors that we don't really stop to think about.
How many times do you need to slap your face against this before you realize it ain't working for you?

Can people change? Of course they can! If I didn't believe that I wouldn't be going into a profession that rest almost entirely upon the human ability to adapt and change. But guess what.....YOU can't make them nor can I.  People create change most often because the crap that has been going on in their lives has finally reached a point that they can no longer accept the outcome so they begin working for something better. The problem with change is this.....

NO ONE wants to admit they are/were/continue to be WRONG/MAKE MISTAKES.

There is something about saying and then starting to believe that you have been wrong/made mistakes that makes you dig in your heels. Change is hard freaking work people and it doesn't happen overnight. It can take days/months/years of continuous effort to change something and even then something else comes up. I personally believe that the majority of us are in a constant state of changing and growing and if we understood this better making the big changes that can change our lives would be so much easier! Sadly we don't give ourselves credit for the daily changes we tolerate but instead focus on the bigger things within our lives that need changing yet are so HARD to complete.

As I sit here typing this post I wonder what would happen if we stopped digging in our heels and just embraced change? Is that possible? What do you think would happen if you just allowed change to happen? What would happen if you stopped fighting so hard for something that probably isn't right for you to begin with? Something that is holding you back from being your true self.....what would happen???

All pictures are from a search

Monday, June 25, 2012

Gestalt Theory

"Change occurs when one becomes what one is, not when one tries to become what one is not."  ~ Arnold R. Beisser

 Remember a while back when I posted about my theoretical orientation? Well ignore every single thing that I wrote (well most of it). You see in theory (without actually practicing) the theories that I listed seemed to "fit me" however upon receiving feedback about my style and actually seeing a style in action I have come to understand that the best fit for me, my personality, views and goals for my future clients that I should use Gestalt and Reality theories as my base.

 I spent a week learning and growing from an instructor who used these theories from a systems perspective and I have to say it was natural and exactly WHAT I NEEDED. I didn't have to think about what I was doing and if I was using this or that technique correctly I was able to FEEL that I was. Trust me when I say that you want a counselor to FEEL and not think as when you are feeling you are 100% present with the client. Thinking leads to not empathizing and not fully connecting with a client at least for me it does. 

Gestalt therapy wants to bring awareness to the client and have them focus on the here and now and how to interact at the same time maintaining their personal awareness and staying in the here and now. Working from this perspective means that as counselors we try to get our client to experience today and not live for tomorrow or wish for yesterday. Today is what matters most and today you will become okay to be who you truly are and not who you think someone else wants you to be or who you have been lying to yourself to be. Your goal is to become your authentic self by removing all the bullshit. What is not to love about that??? 


Personal Growth

 I spent 8 days at Adams State last week, 8 long exhausting growth filled days. Going into my intensive week I wasn't sure what to expect but coming out the other side I am amazed of all that everyone accomplished in 8 days. I started that week one person and left it someone else.....for the better and I hope in the coming months I will continue to make positive changes.

As counselors we have to continue our personal growth and we have to continue working through our crap. We all have some crap and if you are sitting there shaking your head...well your either in denial or more messed up than the majority ;). The differences lie in the levels of crap we all have. Some people suffer from deciding between where to attend college and some of us suffer from hiding our true selves from the rest of the world. In some aspects the problem and issues it creates is a very personal thing and one is not worse than the other. They are all problems for the person and it is all about perspective.

I honestly want to say thank you to all the wonderful soon to be counselors that I came into contact this week and a big shout out to the members who were in my group and pre-prac classes who allowed me to work on my own issues. Issues that I have been struggling with for years yet pretended I was okay with. In the coming weeks I will be opening up some more about my own personal issues and what I intend to do about them but for now just know that I am not immune and I have work to do!

Oh and I am finally fully admitted into my program!!!!!!!! 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Counselors Are Humans First

The last few days have been extremely intense and when I say intense I say it meaning emotionally. I came to my intensive not really knowing what to expect and a bit apprehensive about the process. Today I realize just why they are called intensives. THEY ARE INTENSIVE. As up and coming counselors I think it is hard to realize just how much crap you still have that you need to deal with. I for example have learned so much about myself in the last 2 days and I am still growing and will continue to do so as long as I am breathing. Everyday is a new days for growth and better choices. Today I am not sure I made the best choice.

I witnessed something this evening that as I am sitting here reflecting after the fact, I am not sure was a very counselor thing to do. Within our classmates there are a variety of people from all walks of life some with faith backgrounds some without. I would say I place myself somewhere in the middle. Tonight I saw a girl who very openly almost intrusively offensively so places her self in the religious category take at least 2 hours of people confronting her about her religious beliefs with the intent to prove just how wrong they are. These people who are counselors are in training in all honestly were not acting as a counselor should. I saw no empathy, no compassion and no unconditional positive regard.

As I sit here and reflect back to what I witnessed this evening it drives home the title of this post. Counselors are humans first. We make mistakes. We do things that we should not. We treat people in ways we should not. We hurt people in ways we should not. We watch things happen we should not. We say things we should not. We behave in manners that are not consistent with our profession. We are not perfect. WE ARE HUMANS.WE MAKE MISTAKES. Mistakes are a very human thing to do and counselors are after all human first.

Tomorrow is another day. A day that I will begin to make a fresh start and a day I will reflect and work on the things of today. Today has been a challenge and quite honestly I am so emotionally drained right now that I can't write anymore.

Sunday, June 17, 2012


Let me say that I am sorry for my lack of postings! I haven't been inspired to write or didn't feel I had anything meaningful to share.

However I started my intensive (week long on campus visit) today and my first reaction is WOW. My afternoon course was truly inspiring, eye opening, and a source of learning. It was also validation for me. You see if you knew me in real life, if you were one of my friends you would know that I am a tough cookie. I am controlling, out spoken, I don't sensor my mouth and often times I can be abrasive however under neath all that is a truly loving caring empathic person but you have to get through all of the above before you get this.

So I walk into my afternoon class not fully knowing what to expect as what we can expect is kept hush hush by any student before me and I am going to honor being asked not to share specifics however I felt validated today and here is why. My instructor. He is so much like me and my personality and it was refreshing to see that I can be me..without feeling the need to be or become someone else and still be a damn good counselor. Holy crap. I went into counseling believing that I was going to have to learn to be more gentle, kind, censored, etc and today I learned I don't have to at least to the degree I was believing I would. For me this is liberating as I have wondered how I was going to be authentic and genuine with clients if I felt I had to be something that didn't come natural to me. Today I learned I don't and I can't explain how freeing that is.

Tomorrow we have the same courses we did today and I am honestly looking forward to them and I can't wait to see how I grow in the next week. I promise to post more starting next week as I will have new material and thoughts from this week I am sure!!!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Internship and Intensives

Stressful.....yes one word stressful.

I have started the process of looking for an internship even though I do not start interning until January. I am hoping to have my site by the end of October. I sent in a ton of information and a crappy resume on Thursday to my hopeful job/intern site and will be on pins and needles until I get a response if I even get one. Who knew that looking for an internship would be like looking for a job. I didn't expect it to be such a process....apparently it is. I mean who wouldn't want to mold someone while having them work for free?????

Next week on Friday I will leave to head to Colorado for my one week intensive that is required as part of my program. I have to say that I am a bit nervous as I have no clue what to expect. I know I will be doing my candidacy interview and will spend all week from 8-4 in classes and we get to practice counseling with other students but other than that it is like getting into Fort Knox when it comes to getting info as the other students are not allowed to talk about it.On top of not knowing...I will be taking the MAT.......

 Enough said....

Source 1, 2, 3,

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


I am repeating this phrase as much as it takes to make me believe....

Nothing in life worth having comes easy.

Monday, June 4, 2012


Such a touchy topic and especially when you're a woman. I haven't met a woman alive yet even the ones who are as thin as a stick who want to talk about weight. I am no exception. I have struggled with my weight for over 10 years and only once (and for maybe 6-8 months at that) in those 10 years have I been somewhat comfortable and happy with my body. See example below of a "happy" time for me...

I weighed about 172-175lbs in this picture....and I thought I was so "fat" of course now I would KILL to be this weight/body shape again. To get that body I worked out 4-6x weekly and I ate about 1800 calories a day. I have since gained back about 35lbs from my lowest weight which was about 162lbs. This is the most recent picture of me that I am willing to show you and trust me when I say I am heavier than this picture would lead you to believe.

So if you are asking the reason for this post?? The reason is to admit that I am unhappy with my weight/body shape and I have decided once again to do something about it. Believe it or not this does go along with I have to be happy with myself don't I? Bless my husband who says he loves me no matter what and quite honestly the man has got to as I have been many different weights over the last 10 years but what really counts is my own self image doesn't it?

So I am joining the local gym and I intend to take myself there at least 4-5x weekly and hopefully in a few months I will be running...I <3 to run and I am going to watch what I put into my mouth just as I have before only this time instead of focusing on the number on the scale I am going to try really really really hard to focus only on my clothing and the way I feel/look when I look into the mirror.

Hopefully this blog and posting this will keep me accountable! I am shooting for losing between 25-30lbs which will put me close to that picture up there. So add this to another thing you will be following along with... i will post updates from time to time and I believe this falls under self-care which is ever so important for those of us in the helping profession :)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

A Hodge Podge of Theories

Our discussion in our crisis intervention course this week asked us to identify a theory we felt we most aligned with (Adlerian was not a choice!) and thought might be useful in crisis counseling. Many students chose one or two theories but a few didn't want to choose and this got me thinking . One student went so far to say that she thought selecting only one theory was unethical because it was a disservice to your I thought about this for a bit. Is it? Or is having a  hodge podge of theories running around in your head in which you haven't truly mastered being unethical? Unethical in the sense that you are not providing the best service you can for your client. So let's look at both sides (very briefly) shall we?

For those who only practice using one theory be Adlerian, Psychoanalytic, Humanistic, CBT or a number of others feel mastery of said theory gives them a hand up. Many also believe that using one means they learn all their is to know about said theory and this is what is best for their clients. You also have counselors/therapists out there who believe so wholeheartedly in a theory and believe all others are wrong or do no fit with their own worldview. 

On the other side of the coin you have eclectic counselors/therapists who know a little about a lot of theories but yet truly haven't mastered one. These counselors believe knowing at least something about all of the major theories gives them a hand up because they feel they can help anyone by tailoring their method of treatment to the client. This all sounds good in theory but reality might be a different story in my opinion.

So where am I at? Glad you want to know :) I am in the middle of course. I don't believe only knowing one theory is best for my future clients, it is to narrow minded and limiting for me personally. However I also don't believe you can truly know/master the significant number of counseling theories that are out there. For me personally I plan to pick 3-4 theories and focus on learning any and everything I can about them so that I have at least 4 in my tool bag for use with a variety of clients. The sheer amount of information about each theory makes it impossible I believe for a new counselor to master them for me pick a few now and maybe add a few later and roll with it while being ready to refer to another counselor that might know a theory I don't.

We can't help all clients....let me say that again...we can't help all clients. We are humans and our ability to really know/learn counseling theories both by learning and practice takes time. There is no need to believe you need to know all theories right out of the gate. Not possible nor will it  be serving your clients best in my opinion.

Source 1,

Friday, June 1, 2012

Close minded And Small Towns

Lately after moving back to my hometown I have realized how narrow/closed minded this town is and how much I am not. I like to think that I am open minded and up for most change (as long as I plan it!!!) and this town seems to be stuck. It has grown the last 10 years yet only when it comes to buildings as their way of thinking hasn't changed.Their still seems to be issues with many areas that I don't give much thought to namely race and being gay. Both of which are not really accepted.

Naturally it has got me thinking.....about my views of the world, the people in it and counseling of course. To be an effective counselor don't you think you have to be open minded and okay with pretty much everything? Our job is to hear and help people work through many issues and I wonder how living in this town will affect my ability and I wonder how it will hold some back from being totally honest in a counseling relationship for fear of what will come. This town is on of those places where a lot of people know a lot of people and I question if the closed minded town affords the opportunity for many to seek the help they need?

What are you thoughts? Does living in a small town hinder those who seek help? Does living in a town where lifestyles, race, and a variety of other things seem to be unacceptable affect those who seek help? I am still pondering......