Learn effective methods to make lasting changes, not just January promises.

Hi everyone, and Happy New Year to everyone. I’m very excited to share this article. Back at the beginning of October, we interviewed Angela Mitchell and she has been kind enough to share her thoughts in this article. As a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, she can provide some interesting insights into life.

Hello, my name is Angela Mitchell and I have a Master’s Degree in Professional Counseling from Lindenwood University I am a Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor (LCPC) who has had the privilege of gaining counseling experience for over 14 years in a variety of Mental Health settings.

I have experience in counseling individuals, and couples and facilitating groups. Some of the modalities that I may include in therapy are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Solution Focused Therapy.

My goal is to encourage you and walk with you to help aid you with finding balance in your life. Change for the better can sometimes be challenging but the payoff has the potential to resolve issues and experience greater clarity, confidence, and certainty.

Angela Mitchell, guest writer

So sit back and enjoy Angela’s thoughts and see if it can help your coming year. Take it away Angela!

When the new year rolls around, there is the saying “New Year, New You”.  I like the saying but at the same time, I think if we are doing the work, all year, there is a new you showing up all year long. Before or just shortly after the new year, people come up with ideas for their New Year’s resolutions. Here are some examples of what they say and think.

Example 1

“Oh, I quit doing that a long time ago because I just fell off after so long and before I knew it, nothing had been accomplished.”

So why not…say instead….

         “I am going to write down short-term goals that I can accomplish.”

Example 2

“I am going to start working out at the gym”, Then these thoughts start creeping in,

“I don’t like everyone staring at me at the gym.”

“It takes too long to get ready and there’s never enough time in the day.”

“I don’t want to be around people who are lifting weights”

So why not write down…

          all the reasons you don’t want to go to the gym: Sometimes, when you clear out what’s blocking you, the path opens up to see what may not block you. Maybe you could go to a gym that has a room where you’re in a designated area that isn’t too out in the open. Alternatively, you could stay in an area far enough away, if possible, from the weights.

Example 3

“I am going to decrease or quit drinking.”

         So instead of grabbing an alcoholic drink, grab your favorite soda, tea, or latte to allow that to be a source of satisfaction.

Example 4

“I am cutting people out of my life because they get on my nerves”

So instead, try this…

(although they don’t know it because I haven’t told them-wink wink) instead maybe say, “I am going to think about what gets on my nerves.”

And take some time out to think about who I need to have a conversation with and see if things get better or who is it that I feel our relationship does not have a future.

Example 5

“I am going to walk a mile a day”

 So instead…

maybe say, “Whenever I go anywhere, I am purposely going to park further away from the entrance”

Harnessing Incremental Growth: Mastering Skills Step-by-Step

These approaches remind me of what a colleague of mine told me in one of the many conversations we have had over the years. When your parents bought you a bicycle, did you start off with a tricycle first and then work your way up to the bicycle?

When you started brushing your teeth as a child, did you one day just wake up and start brushing your teeth? no. You had to have someone show you and then you practiced until you worked your way up to master the art of brushing your teeth.

When a  young person starts driving, did the instructor say, hop in? or did you have to first make an appointment with the school counselor, go over your classes a semester ahead of the driving semester, plan out the time of the class, learn the rules of the road first, then if you passed the class, moved on to actually getting behind the wheel?

I feel that there are some great New Year’s Eve resolutions. Most, don’t come to full bloom because we start with the goal in mind of the goal versus building up to the finished result.

Embracing the Journey: Continual Progress Towards Your Goals

So, when you have goals (no matter what time of the year they start), remind yourself that reaching those goals means that it is a process. Whenever you set or start your goals and you haven’t reached a point of satisfaction, remember your teeth, your bicycle, driving for the first time, and the examples mentioned above.

New Year, New continued You!!!!!

Angela’s contact information:

angelas@findingtheforest.org

618 515-5158

Hours

Monday – closed

Tuesday through Friday – 10 am – 6 pm

Saturday – by appointment

Sunday – closed

We hope you are enjoying these articles and are willing to continue to follow along as we share our adventures of learning about life in southern Illinois, This is an exciting area and we are so happy to be part of this area. Our lives are being fulfilled by the people we are meeting. Bruce & Karen.