Jessica Beckman M.A., LCMHC, LCAS, NCC
Hello wonderful people! If you are new here, welcome. If you have been reading along for a while or since the beginning of this journey in October, thank you! I have gotten such wonderful feedback from many of you, and it is so encouraging. I’m beyond thankful to be able to pass into your inbox and share a little bit about what’s going on in the practice and other tidbits that might be helpful. I finally feel comfortable saying Happy Spring! NC had me doubting it would come but here we are. There are a few announcements for April and for the schedule in general. Next week, there will be no in-person appointments. All scheduled appointments April 3rd through 6th are telehealth only. The next announcement is to make sure and schedule appointments in advance if you do not have a regular recurring appointment. I am maintaining a small waitlist for some folks who have not been able to schedule in the timeframe needed. Let me know if you need to get added to the list and/or you are having trouble getting on the schedule. The schedule is still self-serve from my website. This is also a gentle reminder to please make sure and cancel appointments in advance so that appointment times can be released and offered to others on standby. The requirement is 24-hour notice to avoid being charged the session fee. However, I kindly ask for notice as soon as possible as a courtesy so that I can offer the appointment time to someone else and serve as many people as possible 😊 As for insurance, I know many of you following along have been unbelievably patient in awaiting BCBS approval. It’s still not approved, and it means more waiting. It’s like a slow-moving line at the DMV…WHEN WILL THEY CALL MY NUMBER!? Hang in there, and I’ll keep hanging in there too.
Bits of Joy, Purpose, and Balance
Seeking balance in your mental health is less like the justice scales that you put on your 4th-grade
presentation of the different branches of government and more like a soundboard. I am for sure making a leap here and my only experience of actually using a soundboard was with high school theater…so this metaphor may not work 20-something years later. BUT as I remember it you moved those switches up and down (I told you it’s been awhile!) to synthesize the sounds to come out of the speakers so that the performers wonderful voices and melodies could be received by the audience. In life, things aren’t always going to be perfectly balanced. Sometimes you will have to turn parts up and turn other parts down. You may have to step back or out of relationships at times and lean in more to ones that are healthy and stable. Maybe it’s turning the “volume” up on boundaries with relationships, work, health, family, etc. If the image of the scale stressed you out before and felt too out of reach for you personally then maybe the soundboard would be better suited for you.
Self Care Corner
So you’re like me and have accepted that spring has finally arrived and we are out of the gloomy winter days. Isn’t that great? So, what’s next? Just like a bear, come on out of hibernation. I couldn’t help myself. The well of therapy metaphors runs DEEP for the season of spring. One article (https://www.livescience.com/24728-spring.html) even called it “The season of new beginnings”. Can you even blame me?? This is too good not to use in therapy. Clients this month ---these metaphors are coming in hot for you by yours truly 😊 “Spring is the season during which the natural world revives and reinvigorates after the colder winter months. During spring, dormant plants begin to grow again, new seedlings sprout out of the ground and hibernating animals awake.” Mic drop. Okay, okay. I will contain myself. Connecting this back to you and your mental health and how to care for yourself. Flowers don’t rupture out of the ground in full bloom at springtime. Those beauties sprouted, stretched, budded, and then burst into bloom. This is your time to stretch, breathe, exhale yourself back into the rhythms that you had to set down during winter while you cared for yourself during the cold and when you started and ended your day in darkness (both literally and metaphorically speaking here).
Another way to improve mental health this spring is to focus on self-care. With the longer days, it's easier to find time for activities that bring us joy and relaxation. Take a bubble bath, read a book in the sunshine, or try a new hobby. Remember, self-care is not selfish, it's necessary for our well-being.
Spring is also a great time to connect with others. After a long winter of isolation, many of us are craving social interaction. Plan a picnic with friends or family, have a barbecue, or take a weekend trip to explore a new place. Connecting with others is important for our mental health and can bring joy and laughter to our lives.
Finally, remember to be kind to yourself. Spring can be a busy time, with new responsibilities and opportunities. Don't put too much pressure on yourself to achieve everything at once. Take things one day at a time and celebrate the small victories. Remember, the most important thing is to take care of yourself and prioritize your mental health. Spend more time outside, try new outdoor activities, focus on self-care, connect with others, and be kind to yourself. Embrace the season and all the opportunities it brings. Remember, mental health matters, and taking care of yourself is the first step towards a happy and healthy life.