I was once told that talking about myself and my feelings was self-indulgent, that it was unnecessary and that I needed to toughen up. For many years I held that belief and it caused me significant harm. I’m so grateful that the stronger voices in my life enabled me to see beyond the opinion of one. In a strange way, I’m glad that I experienced the adverse response to ‘feeling feelings’ in my childhood as it’s only opened my eyes more to the importance of recognising our emotions and doing something about them.
In recent years mental health has become less stigmatised but there’s still a long way to go. I heard Natasha Devon speak about the ‘1 in 4 people will experience mental health issues’ myth. She rightly said, if you have a head you are likely to experience some sort of mental health issue at some point in your life. Of course this is a spectrum, but I don’t believe that anyone is immune to experiencing feelings of anxiety, depression or low self-worth. We all need to work on our minds to stay mentally healthy, then if we are hit with a personal crisis we will be equipped to manage it more successfully. It’s an ongoing necessity, just like going to the gym once or eating healthily for one day won’t give you the body you want immediately (more’s the pity!)
As educators, we have a vital role to play in helping the younger generation through this crisis. It’s not going to be easy and when we do come back to school, we’ll be rebuilding our community before we can even begin to think about teaching. Surely every school will be putting the emotional needs of the children first, and any of those special ‘visitors’ we have will also recognise that it is vital. Adults will need to model to children the emotional processing that we are doing, and to be honest with them in an age-appropriate way.
Throughout my teaching career, I’ve believed that if I place the child at the centre of my decision making I can’t go far wrong. As we walk through this unfamiliar territory, we need to remember what matters most to us; to ground us, and to keep us looking ahead in a solution-focused way. I know that feeling my feelings and doing something about them will be the way that I manage lockdown, and beyond.
Some children chew non-food items which can cause damage to their clothes or toys. They may chew their fingers or nails to the point where the skin looks sore. Sound familiar to you? Are you thinking of a child who exhibits this behaviour?
Chewing is a sensory need as much as it is a habit. Basically. chewing is used as a way to cope and to self-regulate. It may help the child to stay focused. Chewing provides pressure to the gums and oral motor sensory input.
Each child's sensory needs are individual so it is important to pin point the exact reason for the need to chew. But here are some ideas that might help to reduce the need to chew!
A wide range of foods
By eating foods with a variety of textures, the child may have their sensory needs met through their diet. Chewy foods like bagels, dried fruit, fruit chews mean that the jaw has to work harder. Crunchy foods like carrot, raw veg and nuts also provide good sensory feedback.
Other sensory activities
The child's sensory needs might be met through doing different activities such as using a wobble board, squeezing dough, climbing at the playground or playing catch with bean bags.
If the child is experiencing anxiety or worry, they are likely to chew more frequently. There are many strategies to encourage a child to manage their worries in alternative ways. It's important to be mindful of the child's age and ability as some will respond better to understanding the physical reasons for worrying, whereas others will prefer social stories or a worry box.
Some children NEED to chew and there are lots of safe (and groovy!) chewing toys specially made for kids. We all have different needs that need to be met to help us to function at our best, after all.
Which is your favourite cigarette of the day? The first one of the day? The one when you've had a tough time at work and you finally get a break? The one with a glass of wine or cup of coffee with a friend?
Whichever cigarette you like the most, it's habit that is causing the desire to smoke it. That's good news, by the way! Habits can be altered.
We all know about the health implications of smoking. The human body isn't designed to smoke, we are all natural non-smokers. A study by the University of California (2000) showed that each cigarette reduces life expectancy by 11 minutes. Think back to your favourite cigarette of the day... is it worth 11 minutes of your life?
The majority of smokers WANT to give up but they believe that they can't, that it would be too difficult, that they'll gain weight. Perhaps they are waiting for the next round of New Year's Resolutions.
Hypnotherapy is synonymous with quitting smoking; many people have heard of hypnosis being an effective way of giving people the valuable support they need to STOP SMOKING.
Want to take the first step to saving your life? Want to save money? Get in touch with Amy if you want to STOP SMOKING in one session.
How many times have you heard this phrase, or even said it yourself?
We all have things in our lives that we want to change, whether it be to lose some weight, quit smoking or stop skin-picking. Whatever it is that we want to change, we seem to find excuses to put it off for another time.
We rationalise keeping a habit or routine that we actually want to change. Maybe there's a family meal at the weekend which means that the diet cannot possibly start until Monday, or perhaps a summer of pub garden trips that means that quitting smoking can wait until the winter.
Our subconscious mind likes to keep routine and habit, even though consciously we may be wishing to change. Our subconscious doesn't know what is best for us, it just likes to keep things the same way. As hypnotherapy works with the subconscious mind, it is the ideal therapy to help to make positive changes.
Give yourself a fighting chance to reach your goal and stop making excuses. Find the right hypnotherapist to support you towards beneficial change...