10 Amazing Self-Care Charts You Need to See

We always talk about self-care—after all, how are you meant to live a full and meaningful life if you don’t take care of yourself? But we know understanding self-care can be a bit overwhelming. Add to that, when you search the term on line, thousands of lists, inspirational quotes and ideas come back to you, suggesting you practice it a certain way.

The most important part of self-care is understanding how it best works for you. Some people may find journaling therapeutic, while others would prefer to sweat it out at the gym—and that’s okay.

We’ve found some of our favourite self-care charts from the Internet and curated them for you below. Take a look and see what strategies and ideas work for you, then give yourself permission to rest. Self-care is important, and this is your invitation to practice it today and everyday.

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Credit: Fiorenza Rossini

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Credit: Michelle Lynn Studies

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Credit: Sacred Self Love

4. 

Credit: Pure Wow

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Credit: Brianna Fae

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Credit: My Naked Ego and Viva La Me

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Credit Blessing Manifesting

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Credit: Blonde and Ambitious

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Credit: The Truth Practice

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Credit: The Truth Practice

Do you want to slow down and take care of yourself? Would you like to learn more about self-care? Here’s what you need to do: Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW.

Seven Lies ‘The Bachelor’ teaches us about Relationships

Seven-Lies-The-Bachelor--teaches-us-about-Relationships

There’s something captivating about reality TV, and when it comes to The Bachelor (or The Bachelorette), we seem to be drawn in to these ‘real’ stories of love and lust more than ever. While some people watch The Bachelor for the drama and cat-fights, many watch it because we want to see a love story unfold.

Ultimately, we want to see the quintessential, attractive ‘good guy’ find his soul mate, and this tends to justify his means of finding them. But did you ever pause to think about the lies The Bachelor tells us about relationships? Here are seven lies to be mindful of next time to tune in. Remember, reality doesn’t always equal real.

  1. The perfect partner exists

Even with 22 potential partners at his disposal, The Bachelor will never find the perfect partner. Why? Because no one is perfect. It’s easy to miss someone’s flaws when we first fall for them, but after awhile our idiosyncrasies, differences and emotional baggage come to the fore.

The Bachelor does a great job of editing these ‘imperfections’ out, making us believe that once we’ve found the ‘one’ everything is smooth-sailing. But no one is perfect; so don’t expect your partner to be. Instead, love them for who they are, and support each other as you grow and change.

  1. Relationships are always romantic

Multi-million dollar yachts, cheese platters and designer dresses—The Bachelor is the ultimate recipe for romance. In fact, every date seems to be bigger and better than the last!

Every relationship needs some romance in it, but expecting it all the time (especially on such a grandiose scale) is not normal by a long shot. Healthy relationships ride out the seasons of romance, the mundane moments and navigate any conflict that arises. Don’t expect your partner to always have a red rose for you, but remember to add a touch of romance in every now and then. It’s good for you both.

  1. Love has a timeframe

Every season of The Bachelor begins with the question: Will our hero find the woman of his dreams and get engaged? And after 3 months of dating on-and-off (and with a bunch of other women in tow), the answer is nearly always yes. There is a proposal, an engagement ring, and the press report they’ve broken up within the next year.

The Bachelor works on the idea that love—and marriage—has a time frame. But in reality, it’s impossible to be ready for such a huge step without truly knowing who the other person is in real life. Some people fall in love and form a long-term commitment seemingly quickly, for other people, it takes months and years of getting to know each other.

Don’t pressure each other into a long-term commitment early—give your love time to develop so it has a chance to endure long after the puppy-love is over.

The-Bachelor-Australia-S5-Ep1-Matty-and-the-Top-20-Bachelorettes

Bachelor Matty Johnson is looking for love on this year's The Bachelor. Image courtesy tenplay.com.au.

  1. You have to change for true-love

Any relationship requires compromise and sacrifice, but on The Bachelor we see this taken to a whole new level. Instead of meeting the Bachelor and seeing if they’re compatible, the women will strive for his attention and affection, modifying their behaviour, conversations and appearance to please him.

If a person is worthy of your life-long love, they need to accept you for you. They will be naturally drawn to your personality and find you attractive inside and out. Don’t modify yourself to become what you think they want. Just be you. You can’t build a healthy relationship on anything else. 

  1. There is a dominant player in every relationship

When it comes to finding ‘the one’, the Bachelor has the ultimate power. He can offer roses to whomever he chooses, kiss who ever he wants, and select whatever woman he wants in the season finale. In real life, a relationship is two-way.

Unlike The Bachelor, a healthy couple will each have equal say over their status and future. No one is more powerful than the other, and each work to make their partner happy—while remaining true to their own identity and self-worth.

  1. Love just happens

Love seems easy on The Bachelor. There’s a spark between the couple the first night, and on each unfolding date they grow closer until their engagement at the finale. In real life, love doesn’t just happen like this. Sure, when you first fall in love these feelings can sometimes seem sudden and out of the blue, but lasting love requires work.

You have to make time for love, and this requires intentionality. Unlike reality TV, dates aren’t set out for you, and they certainly don’t come scheduled. So make a point to set aside time for dates, conversations and generally just being together. Life doesn’t stop, so make your relationship a priority each day.

  1. People stay the same

The Bachelor promotes the idea that no one changes; who you are, and the person you fall in love, with will always remain the same in values, appearance and demeanour. In three months we don’t necessarily change all that much, but over three years or 30 years, any couple will tell you a lot of change happens.

Life circumstances, crisis, conflict and general development happens to all of us over time. When you make a long-term commitment to someone, you’re not just committing yourself to who they are now; you’re choosing to navigate the future with their changing-self as well.

This is why long-term relationships need a solid foundation—not just a TV series, to build a future on.

Are you looking for love and need some support? Are you experiencing conflict in your relationship? Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW.

On Chester Bennington and how to identify someone at risk of suicide

On-Chester-Bennington-and-how-to-identify-someone-at-risk-of-suicide

Photo credit: Jonathan Denney

When news broke that Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington died by suicide last week, tributes to the iconic singer poured out online. And whether we lose someone who is beloved on a global scale, or a member of our community, the ripple effects of such a tragic event often lead to questions like “What could I have done?” and “How could I identify the signs they were struggling”?

In light of this, we wanted to share a previous blog with you, giving you five questions to ask someone you believe may be at risk of suicide. We hope this equips you to help your family and friends if you are concerned for their safety. 

Five questions to ask a loved one at risk

It can be scary to ask a loved one if they are at risk of suicide. There is a stigma within society that insists asking someone about suicide attempts, thoughts or plans will perpetuate the act of suicide—but this is simply not true. In fact, asking someone if they are struggling, and giving them the opportunity to share their pain with you, can actually alleviate the risk of the behaviour occurring.

If a friend or loved one has been acting uncharacteristically, either withdrawing from people or acting irrationally and stepping out in risk-taking behaviour, then you may need to ask them if they have thought about suicide.

Other indicators they are thinking about it are unexplained injuries, death or self-harm related content being posted on their social media, increased substance abuse, previous suicidal thoughts or attempts and a sense of hopelessness.

Here are five questions that will help you assess the risk of a loved one carrying out the act of suicide.

  1. Have you had any suicidal thoughts?

The presence of suicidal thoughts doesn’t mean a person will act on them—but it is still essential you know they are there. Suicidal thoughts will often perpetuate and can become more vivid as a person feels a greater sense of hopelessness.

Asking them this question doesn’t imply they want to suicide. Actually, finding out when the thoughts began and how prevalent they may be allows you to understand the weight of what your friend is experiencing.

  1. Do you have a suicide plan?

Asking a loved one if they have a plan in place to carry out the act of suicide is essential. If they do have a plan to suicide, either a carefully constructed and well thought out plan, or a fleeting idea of what it would look like, you know they are high risk and immediate action needs to be taken to care for their wellbeing.

A person who has a set time and place for the act of suicide, and who has begun putting their affairs in order (writing letters, cancelling registrations etc.) is at extremely high risk of carrying out the act of suicide.

  1. Do you have access to any weapons or means of suicide?

A person who has already acquired a weapon or means of suicide is at serious risk. Other people who know weapons or tools are available in their work place or at a friends or relatives place are also in danger.

If your loved one has access to a weapon, ask them how regularly this occurs, if they have considered how they would access it and the likelihood of this.

  1. Have you felt like this before?

Understanding if your loved one has struggled with suicidal thoughts in the past will help you to support them and keep them alive.  Ask if they have attempted suicide in the past, or thought about it. See if they have previously harmed themselves, and if they’ve created a suicide plan in the past.

If this has occurred in the past, the risk for your loved one increases, but this does not mean they won’t be open to help.

  1. Why have you chosen to stay alive?

Up to this point, your loved one has made the decision to stay alive. Irrespective of their struggles, they have chosen to remain. When people have suicidal thoughts, they resist them for any number of reasons: their love for family and friends, obligations, fear, the hope that things will change.

Take this reason and run with it. If a person is afraid of dying, they don’t want to die—they are likely exhausted and don’t know how to fight anymore. If family or friends is their motivation, remind them of the profound love they experience and the future events and moments they want to witness. If obligations are keeping someone alive, ask them what these mean and how they affect the people near them.

If a loved one answers yes to one or more of these questions, they need further help. Please call 000 or 911 in an emergency. If they are experiencing thoughts of suicide, or you are concerned for their wellbeing, call Lifeline on 13 11 14.  For crisis hotlines in other countries, visit Hope Movement’s International database here.

Your G.P. and/or a Professional Counsellor can give you the additional support you need. For a FREE 10 minute consultation as to how we can help you, ring Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 or you can book an appointment press Book Now to book in our online diary.

How one father explains mental illness and parenthood

How-one-father-explains-mental-illness-and-parenthood

Comics about mental health have been making the rounds on social media for the past few years, and artists like Toby Allen and Gemma Correll have changed the way many of us talk about mental illness. Now there’s another artist to add to the mix—but with a point of difference.

Toronto based teacher Chris Grady is the creator of Lunar Baboon, a series of comics depicting his everyday life. His comics are simple and sweet, showing the moments he interacts with his wife and kids. Notably, they also poignantly depict his struggle with mental illness.

In an interview with The Mighty, he explained that he began drawing to cope with his own struggles.

“After the birth of my first son, I was going through a really hard time. I wasn’t sleeping and started getting really depressed and found myself in a dark place. I needed something different, I was having a lot of negative thoughts and I needed a place to put them so I started drawing in a moleskin notebook and it’s taken off from there,” he said.

From comics about cheeky interactions with his son, to honest encounters with his wife, and brave attempts to find humour as he lives with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, there’s something instantly relatable about Chris’s work. What’s more, it shows how to healthily communicate in family relationships and what we can do to support one another.

To see more of Chris’s work, visit LunarBaboon.com. His book Lunar Baboon: The Daily Life of Parenthood is out now.

Are you a parent? Would you like support so you can manage a mental illness? Here’s what you need to do: contact WatersedgeCounselling on 0434 337 245 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how we can best help you, or press book now to book in our online diary.

How to stress less and find happiness

How-to-stress-less-and-find-happiness

It’s hard to get through a typical day without experiencing stress, right? From money concerns to worries about work, 7 out of 10 of us feel extremely anxious or stressed each day.

When we’re stressed, we experience physical fatigue and tend to take out our concerns on others. We see it damage relationships and create tension in ordinary situations. So how do we beat stress? The fact 85% of what we’re stressed about never happens is a great stat to comfort us when we’re agitated, but it’s not always easy to let stress ‘roll of our back’.

The great news is that there are some simple ways to reduce stress in our every-day life. Talking to a friend or colleague, seeing a counsellor—even putting a pot plant on your desk can all help to re-establish your own well-being. Add some exercise, meditation or fun activities into your schedule and you’ll also begin to feel less stressed.

Take a look at this infographic by Happify and see what methods you can use to reduce stress in your life. Let us know your favourite relaxation techniques in the comments!

How-to-stress-less-and-find-happiness-infographic

Are you stressed? Would you like to break free of your anxiety and worries? Here’s what you need to do: contact WatersedgeCounselling on 0434 337 245 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how we can best help you, or press book now to book in our online diary.

 

How the Enneagram leads to self-discovery

How-the-Enneagram-leads-to-self-discovery

We’re big fans of the personality theory of the Enneagram at Watersedge and are always on the look out for new resources to learn more. This week we discovered a podcast and book we can’t wait to share with you.

In episode 4 of the Shauna Niequist podcast, Shauna interviews priest and author Ian Cron about the Ennagram’s ability to aid in self-discovery.

Ian just released a new book titled The Road Back to You: An Enneagram journey to self-discovery, and he chats to Shauna about the basic elements of each type, how they influence culture and people across the world, and why knowing ours can enhance our spirituality.

Whether you’re a newcomer to the Enneagram or a long-time follower, have a listen and find out some new and interesting things about the fascinating theory and what it means in your own journey to self-discovery.

Insert link/audio: https://relevantmagazine.com/podcast/s01-episode-04-ian-cron/ 

You can purchase The Road Back to You: An Enneagram journey to self-discovery by Ian Cron now.

For more details on The Enneagram, head to our Enneagram page for free downloads on each personality type. You can also see our blog on the basics on the Enneagram in relationships here.

Do you want to know more about the Enneagram? Would you like to better understand yourself and the people around you? Here’s what you need to do: contact WatersedgeCounselling on 0434 337 245 for a FREE 10-minute phone consultation on how we can best help you, or press book now to book in our online diary.

The Long-Term Effects of Crystal Meth

The-long-term-effects-of-Crystal-Meth

People once assumed that the drug Crystal Methamphetamine was typically used by young adults in night clubs. Today we know that it is actually used by people of all ages, ethnicities and classes either recreationally to experience a high, or to make it through the day.

Typically known as Meth, Ice, Tina or Glass, Crystal Meth has a number of short and long term effects on the body, and many people begin using it to alleviate depression (because meth increases the rate of dopamine in the brain), lose weight and feel a prolonged sense of euphoria.

Meth is extremely accessible and popular, and most of us have heard about the Ice crisis and potentially know someone who takes the drug themselves. But far from a simple feel-good drug, Crystal Meth actually has some deadly effects that can not only impact the individual, but also the people around them.

This infographic by Addiction Blog details how Crystal Meth works in the body, and shows the way in impacts long-term health, employment, self-esteem and relationships. Take a look and see if you learn anything new.

Crystal Meth is a highly addictive drug, and by it’s nature it can transform a whole, healthy person into someone almost unrecognisable. However, there is hope. It is possible to recover from Crystal Meth addiction, and the first step is to ask for help.

Long-Term-Effects-of-Meth-Addicton

Do you rely on Meth to get you through the day? Are you concerned that a loved one may have an addiction? Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW.

10 Mental Health Accounts You Need To Follow on Instagram

10-Mental-Health-Accounts-You-Need-To-Follow-on-Instagram

Instagram has it all—cute cat videos, hilarious memes and way too many photos of food. But did you know that there are also some great mental health accounts on there?

In recognition of the millions of people who share their stories around mental health every day on the social media platform, Instagram started the #hereforyou hastag. To celebrate, we decided to share some of the best mental health accounts with you. Here are some of our favourites…

@gemmacorrell

Gemma is an illustrator living in the UK, and you may have seen her drawings on cards at your local gift shop or bookstore. Known for her hilarious and accurate portrayals of life with anxiety (and frequent cameos from her pug dogs), this is a cute and encouraging addition to your news feed.

@dallasclayton

Not so much a mental health account, Dallas’ Instagram feed is a feel-good vault of his artwork. Fun, whimsical and always filled with a positive message, this gets some colour into your day and puts you in a good head space.

@themelodyh

We’re big fans of Melody’s #BecauseHonestly series, but her account is also worth a follow because her lettering communicates the vulnerability and weakness we all feel at some point in our lives. Taking everyday thoughts and feelings, she reminds us that we’re not alone in our struggles.

@introvertdoodles

While this account is made for introverts, anyone with social anxiety will love these illustrations by Maureen ‘Marzi’ Wilson. Endearing and fiercely accurate, each pic is a comforting reminder that it’s ok to enjoy your own space and recharge.

@buddyproject

Existing to connect people across the globe to prevent suicide, The Buddy Project uses their account to ask questions about mental health, promote conversation and educate their followers around different disorders.

@beating_binge_eating

If you’re looking for some body positivity and self-confidence, Beating Binge Eating is sure to boost your self-esteem with its validating and truthful messages. Forget taking the perfect selfie, give this account a follow instead.

@happify

Happify empowers individuals and organisations to build resilience and mindfulness, and their account is a collection of interesting facts about the benefits of mindfulness, ways to practice it and inspiring quotes to motivate you each day.

@beautiful_mandalas

Mandalas are a unique tool for mindfulness and relaxation because they can created, drawn, coloured in or found in nature. This account has over 215,000 followers and curates the best mandalas posted on Instagram, encouraging you to relax and connect with the world around you.

@bymariaandrew

Maria’s illustrations are cute, though provocative and immediately relatable. Her drawing range from communicating the pain of relationship break ups to the non-linear path of recovery and thoughts on grief. This account is essential to your follow list.

@makedaisychains

Make Daisy Chains is Hannah Daisy, and she specialises in her #BoringSelfcare pictures—reminding us that even the most basic acts are important when we don’t feel 100 per cent, are struggling with mental health issues or experience chronic illness.  Follow this account for reminders to take care of yourself and fun suggestions on how to do it.

And last but not least…@Watersedgecounselling

That’s right, Watersedge is on Instagram! Follow us for our latest blogs and inspirational quotes that will motivate you to achieve wellness in your self, relationships and work life.

Do you struggle with a mental illness? Would you like to learn about day-to-day strategies you can use to soothe yourself? Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW and you will be able to access Watersedgecounselling’s online appointment diary.

 

12 Songs to Motivate You in the Morning

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Now that winter is well and truly in the air, chances are you’re struggling to get out of bed in the morning. We know the feeling all too well, and while there’s no one solution to changing up your morning routine, we think having an epic playlist is a good first step.

Whether you need some tunes to wake up to, some catchy (but not annoyingly perky) songs to play over breakfast, or motivational tracks that will get you through a morning yoga session or run, this is for you.

Have a listen to our new playlist on Spotify here .Who knows, maybe the early bird really does catch the worm (or, in this case, a good song). Let us know what motivates you to get up in the morning below!

12-songs-to-motivate-you-in-the-morning

Are you lacking motivation in the morning? Do you need some help to change up your morning routine? Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW and you will be able to access Watersedgecounselling’s online appointment diary

13 Reasons Why: 10 Resources you need to see before you watch the TV show

13 Reasons Why

When hit TV show 13 Reasons Why debuted on Netflix on March 31, viewers quickly devoured the teen drama. Based on the 2007 novel of the same name by Jay Asher, it depicted the story of a Hannah Baker, girl who committed suicide and left 13 audio tapes for people in her life, explaining why she died.

Public response to the show has been varied: some viewers praised it for openly discussing mental illness, while others found it triggering due to its graphic portrayals of suicide, sexual assault, gun violence and bullying.  Several episodes include warnings, however some people don’t believe this is enough, prompting Netflix to include more. Despite this, it is likely a second season of the show is on the way.

If you have yet to watch 13 Reasons Why, or know someone who is watching it, it’s essential you know what the series is about so you can make an educated decision about if you will watch it, who you will do this with and when this will happen.

Here are 10 resources we found discussing the pros and cons of 13 Reasons Why. Take a look at each one and talk to a friend, mentor or colleague about how you will approach the series. By being educated about this pop culture phenomenon, you can better care for yourself and the people around you.

  1. To Write Love On Her Arms
    Blog: In response to 13 Reasons Why
    A non-profit that presents hope and help to people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and thoughts of suicide, founder Jamie Tworkowski discussed the show in a recent blog. Expressing concerns about the way it vividly portrayed suicide and the negative connotations it aired about seeking professional help, they praise people who “put [their] recovery first” by making the choice not to watch it.
  1. Headspace
    PDF: How to talk to young people about 13 Reasons Why
    After an increased amount of queries once the show aired, this Australian mental health service for young people released a PDF that clearly identifies the concerns people have raised about its content (eg. suggesting suicide is reasonable due to the ’13 reasons’). It also lists the research to support or dismiss each point, and suggests strategies to talk to young people about each topic.
  1. ABC
    Article: 13 Reasons Why: How to talk to teens about suicide and mental health issues raised in the Netflix series
    Dr Fiona Wagg a psychiatrist at Royal Hobart Hospital, discusses how parents can best approach their children and teens about the series.
  1. NY Mag
    Article: Teens explain what adults don’t get about 13 Reasons Why
    This piece by NY Mag is unique because it goes straight to the target audience of the TV show: teenagers. Revealing a variety of perspectives, you’ll find this enlightening as teens point out what they did and didn’t like about the series, and how it has impacted them individually, in their family and how its been received by the wider community.
  1. The Mighty
    Blog: 13 Reasons Why archive
    Mental health website The Mighty has published numerous articles on 13 Reasons Why. With blogs highlighting the impact it has on someone with PTSD and chronic illness, a parent’s point-of-view, how it has helped people find safety and overcome shame and even a piece where a young person discusses their regret upon watching it, this is an invaluable archive for personal responses to the show.
  1. Associated Press
    Interview with producer Selena Gomez
    This short interview with teen icon and producer Selena Gomez gives some insight into the purpose of the series.
  1. Vanity Fair
    Op Ed: 13 Reasons Why writer: Why we didn’t shy away from Hannah’s suicide
    Series writer Nic Sheff wrote this exclusive piece for Vanity Fair, detailing the very personal reasons he took on the controversial TV show. While this is important reading, it is extremely descriptive and graphic as Sheff talks about his own suicide attempt. Read with care.
  1. The Guardian
    Article: 13 Reasons Why ‘not helpful', suicide prevention summit told
    This piece by the Guardian gives a fantastic oversight of the response from the Australian mental health community, as well as a more general overview on the impact of suicide in society. Keep an eye out for quotes by Lifeline Chief Executive Pete Shmigel, who explains why they believe 13 Reasons Why has gone ‘too far’ in their depiction of suicide.
  1. CNN
    Long form article: Why teen mental health experts are focused on '13 Reasons Why'
    This extensive piece gives a thorough over view of the public’s response to 13 Reasons Why. Referencing the responses of mental health services across the world, the intentions of the show’s creative team and referring to appropriate statistics and research, if you’re looking for a single, overall piece to read, this is it.
  1. Netflix
    Documentary: 13 Reasons Why: Beyond the Reasons
    Also available on Netflix, this documentary accompanies the 13-part series and shows exclusive interviews with the cast, creators and mental health professionals, giving more context to the story. Please note that this documentary is rated MA15+ and could be triggering to viewers due to audio and visual content.

Have you watched 13 Reasons Why and had a strong, emotional response to it? Are you concerned about a loved one who is watching the TV show? Call Colleen on 0434 337 245 or Duncan on 0434 331 243 for a FREE 10 minute consultation. To make an appointment, go to BOOK NOW and you will be able to access Watersedgecounselling’s online appointment diary.