What’s Your Relationship with Alcohol?

John Koop Harder

relationship with alcohol, alcoholism, addiction, substance use, substance abuse, self-care, resolution, mental health, counselling, therapy

Recently my family had a fantastic new experience – an all-inclusive trip to a resort in Mexico where a great time was had by all. Near the end of the trip, my 15-year-old son expressed his need to eat nothing but kale and carrots after overeating during the trip. For many people, vacations can encourage over-indulgence in both food and … Read More

Bingeing and Purging: Breaking the Bulimic Cycle

Amber Dalsin

bulimia, bulimic, bingeing, purgine, binge, purge, disordered eating, eating disorder, self-image, self-care, mental illness, mental health, counselling, therapy

The cycle of bingeing and purging is exhausting and demoralizing, yet it is a pattern that many people with bulimia seem powerless to control. Stopping the cycle can be immensely difficult. As someone who has struggled with this cycle, Linette describes her experience: I have committed I won’t eat my trigger food, cookies, because gaining weight is unacceptable to me. … Read More

10 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Treatment Program

Wilma Schroeder

treatment program, self-care, counselling, therapy, family, family therapy, mental health, mental illness

Help! My spouse/partner/child/parent/friend needs mental health or addictions treatment! Where can they go? How do I know if a program is right for them? For family and friends of a person experiencing a mental health crisis (and for the person themselves), finding one’s way through the health care system can be incredibly difficult. It is hard to know what is … Read More

How to Change Your Relationship with Alcohol

Amber Dalsin

alcohol, relationship with alcohol, alcoholism, alcoholic, addiction, mental health, substance use, substance abuse, counselling, therapy, harm reduction

This is the year you are ready to change your relationship with alcohol. With some preparation and a good plan, this could be your year. Maybe last year you had some clear moments that your relationship with alcohol had to change. Maybe friends or a loved one pointed out some concerns with your drinking. Other people may have had an … Read More

Helping Those Who Self-Injure

Trish Harper

self-injury, self-harm, self-injury behaviour, mental health, self-care, counselling, therapy, support, anxiety, depression

Self-injury behaviour is a complex and often misunderstood act. When a person is cutting or burning their own flesh, picking and interfering with the healing of wounds, or hitting themselves, it can be confusing and scary for their loved ones, and even for the professionals who try to help. It is critical that we attempt to understand the function that … Read More

5 Tips for Managing Your Anxiety

AnnMarie Churchill

anxiety, depression, mental health, self-care, counselling, therapy

Anxiety is a normal part of human life, as well as a common mental health issue. It’s normal for people to feel worried or nervous about new or challenging situations such as public speaking, job interviews, or a first date. However, anxiety can become problematic when the level of distress is extreme, and the nervousness and worry reoccur or are … Read More

How to Be a Strong Family When Facing Mental Illness

Wilma Schroeder

mental illness, family, togetherness, mental health, self-care, counselling, therapy

Serious illness often lands like a bomb in the middle of the family system, disrupting routines and scattering the family members. When it is a mental illness, the impact can be particularly severe, compounded by stigma, fear and social isolation. What can a family do to maintain strong relationships with each other when mental illness has joined the family? Family … Read More

Depression – 2 Key Insights for Helpers

Sheri Coburn

depression, mental health, anxiety, self-care, counselling, therapy

The word depression gets thrown around a lot. Socially, the word has become an overused synonym for sad, annoyed, frustrated, or simply disappointed. People often make offhanded comments like “I am so depressed that sweater hasn’t gone on sale,” which shows little thought or regard for those who bear the true weight of the word. The flippancy of its use … Read More

A Conversation with Grief

John Koop Harder

grief, loss, mental health, therapy, counselling, self-care

In my work as a counsellor, I am often asked about strategies to move past the grief.  Grief is uncomfortable and painful and takes time and effort to deal with it.  However, if grief was a container and we had the opportunity to look into it, we would see that it can teach us about what is important in our … Read More

Anticipating Loss – Exercising Grief Muscles

John Koop Harder

grief, loss, anticipating loss, mental health, self-help, counselling, social work, therapy, self-care

  Sorrows are our best educators.  A person can see further through a tear than a telescope. -Lord Byron   Reflecting on loss and grief can teach us a lot about ourselves, our values, and our hopes if we have the courage to look loss in the eye.  As a therapist, I work a lot with others’ grief.  Loss is … Read More