Easing Back Into School

  As the calendar moves from July to August, both parents and children start thinking about the end of summer and the beginning of a new school year. While it is normal for both parents and children to feel anxious, here are some tips that can reduce the anxiety and help to get the school year started on the right foot.   Create a Routine – Start getting your children back into their regular schedule for dinner, bath, bedtime and wake up time An easy way to get this done is to put together a checklist or a chart of tasks. I suggest starting at least a week prior to the first day of school. This will give them and you time to adjust to the new routine.  Be Prepared – Make sure that you have purchased school supplies, clothes and shoes in advance. Try not to wait until the last minute as this will create stress and anxiety for both you and your children.  Celebrate – Create a family ritual that coincides with the start of the new school year. It could be as simple as allowing your children to choose their favorite for dinner or it could be a family “New Year’s” party. Be creative with this. It will get the children excited about school.  Take a “Test Drive” – Whether you will be driving your children to school or they will be riding the bus, plan out the route and run a test drive. This is especially important if your children will be attending a new school.  Stay Positive – It is important that no matter what happens the first day or first week of school, stay positive. Your children will follow [...]

5 Tips for Handling Holiday Stress

  From Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas or Kwanzaa, this time of year can be stressful.  During this time, most if not all stress is caused by these three things; money, people (family and friends alike) or time. This year, you can make the holiday season less stressful by following these 5 tips: 1)    Plan Ahead: Put together a schedule for shopping, baking, decorating, parties and visiting. By putting it in writing, you can see any areas of overlap or times when you have overcommitted yourself and can move items prior to them occurring. If you are going to be cooking, baking and wrapping gifts, use a shopping list to make sure you have all ingredients and materials on hand. That will help alleviate the late night shopping trip for forgotten items. 2)    Set and Stick to a Budget: During this time of year, we have a tendency to want to do all things for all people. By putting together a budget, you can identify how much you will be spending on gifts, food, travel and other items. 3)    Be Realistic: Let’s face it; your holiday is not going to be perfect. Striving to make everything just so, just like last year or just like your neighbor’s holiday is only going to make you stressed out. Take joy in the quirks or mishaps that will occur to make this holiday season unique for you, your family and friends. 4)    Just Say “No”: It is okay to say no to additional holiday commitments. While you may think that saying yes is expected or the “right thing to do”, it can end up making you feel overwhelmed and in some cases downright resentful.  By [...]

By |December 7th, 2012|Categories: Anxiety, Blog, Stress|Tags: , , |0 Comments

12 Characteristics of Adult Children of Alcoholics

Alcoholism, known as “alcohol dependence syndrome” is a disease that is characterized by craving, loss of control and physical dependence. Alcoholics, as well as being victims themselves, have an adverse impact on those with whom they associate. Research has shown that children of alcoholics develop some personalities traits that may impact their lives as an adult. Here are 12 characteristics of adult children of alcoholics described by Woitiz (1988): 1.Adult children of alcoholics guess what normal behavior is. 2.Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty following a project through from beginning to end. 3.Adult children of alcoholics lie when it would be just as easy to tell the truth. 4.Adult children of alcoholics judge themselves without mercy. 5.Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty having fun. 6.Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty with intimate relationships. 7.Adult children of alcoholics over-react to changes over which they have no control. 8.Adult children of alcoholics constantly seek approval and affirmation. 9.Adult children of alcoholics usually feel that they are different from other people. 10.Adult children of alcoholics are super responsible or super irresponsible. 11.Adult children of alcoholics are extremely loyal, even if in the face of evidence that the loyalty is undeserved. 12.Adult children of alcoholics are impulsive. Research shows that adult children of alcoholics are at risk at becoming alcoholics, abusing drugs, attempting or committing suicide.  Also, they may develop patterns of compulsive behavior such as overeating and other eating disorders. And adult children of alcoholics tend to marry alcoholics partners. If you are an adult child of an alcoholic remember that you are not alone. Millions of people have grown up in families with alcohol-related problems. Because of the environment you grew up in, you had to develop [...]

5 Tips For Coping With Anxiety

Do you know what anxiety feels like? Anxiety can manifests in many different forms and it varies from person to person. A friend described her anxiety as an inability to breathe and chest tightness. Others may have anxiety symptoms such as muscle achiness, chronic fatigue, dizziness, and accelerated heart rate. We can experience anxiety almost everyday of our lives. We worry about a speech we have to give in front of an audience, we stress about our deadlines at work and school, and we get scared when we have to face a difficult situation. Anxiety is our body’s automatic response to danger; it’s like an alarm that goes off every time we feel threatened. According to Shallcross (2009) anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the nation, affecting 40 million adults or 18 percent of the adult population. Some of the well-known anxiety disorders are panic disorder, social disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and specific phobia. When we experience anxiety on a daily basis, it can have a negative impact on our relationships and activities, ultimately causing even more anxiety. Robert L. Leahy, author of Anxiety Free explains that our life-style today is very demanding, which is leading to the increase of anxiety in our society. We have to have the latest gadgets, we are driven by unrealistic ideas about our relationships and appearance and we demand more and more of ourselves. Also, the news from TV and newspapers are bombarding us with messages that say that we are in danger. However, it’s not about what the people or the news say that counts, but it’s about what we think that really counts. Change your perception and you will change the way that you feel. Here are [...]