November 16th is “International Day for Tolerance”, for which U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon declared: “I call on all people and governments to actively combat fear, hatred and extremism with dialogue, understanding and mutual respect. Let us advance against the forces of division and unite for our shared future.” November 21-29 is “Social Inclusion Week”, which […]
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“Your meals are disgusting!” she shouted. A look of deep hurt flashed across his face before anger kicked in. “You don’t need to be cooked for anyway,” he retorted. “Your bottom’s gone way beyond cute!” Does anything familiar echo here? What about in the following exchange? “Darling,” he said, repeating his familiar compliment, “You’re beautiful.” […]
Q. I am a non-Indigenous practitioner counselling Indigenous clients. Can I really do this effectively and what is the best way for a non-Indigenous therapist to counsel Indigenous clients? A. Many non-Indigenous practitioners “genuinely struggle” when working with Aboriginal people. They may lack the degree of cultural competence necessary to effectively counsel Indigenous clients (i.e. […]
Familiar with this scenario? The idiot cuts in front of you, causing you to nearly crash into him. Your pounding heart, flushed face, tight chest, and gritted teeth tell you: you are angry. Or, maybe someone you know violates you in a despicable way, steals from you or betrays you. You are a “nice” person, […]
Your phone rings. You grab it to answer but as the caller’s number flashes on the screen, you hesitate. It is someone you’re not sure you want to continue being friends with. Maybe the person has broken promises to you, cancelling get-togethers at the last minute, or perhaps — as entertaining as they can be […]
Whether you love it or hate it, most people will agree that the mother-child relationship is one of the most significant relationships in a person’s life, affecting your wellbeing throughout your life. At the same time, many of us will not have the perfect relationship with our parents. In fact, one psychologist estimates that 85% […]
When discussing happiness, one attitude/belief that deserves special mention is the art of accepting ourselves on an “as is, where is” basis. For us to be peacefully in relationship with our own humanness — our own combination of strengths, growing edges and unique quirks — means to have less stress from the source of our […]
Right from an early age, we get a clear message from the world around us that being old isn’t so great, at least in Western society. Our mothers worry about getting wrinkles and use day creams, night creams, vitamin creams and highly scientific, or perhaps natural and organic, concoctions to cover up the visible signs […]
Kaya and Mark have been in a relationship for a little over a year now and are attending couples counselling. Halfway through the session, the therapist asks for more information about the fights they are having. Kaya reports that Mark recently pushed her into a wall, and that he sometimes viciously pulls things like her […]
If you have a friend, family member, or other acquaintance struggling with bereavement of suicide, how can you best offer support? What attitudes, translated into caring actions, can best facilitate the bereaved person’s coping in the immediate and short term, and their healing in the longer term? Because of the remaining societal stigma and also […]
A counsellor has been working with a client over a period of 9 months assisting with inner child therapy work. During the period, the client also talks about her relationship issues, sexuality as well as a relationship with another person. The counsellor, who also happens to be in a same sex relationship and going through […]
You have been working with a male client who has been experiencing anxiety and depression issues. He said that he came to see you after his wife asked him, because she said he was “suffocating” her when anxiety is a major feature in his life. The first session revealed that the anxiety may be persistent […]
The World Health Organization estimates that about million people die by suicide each year (World Health Organization, 2004). Understanding what drives people to take their own life is not easy for those who are not enmeshed in intolerable pain themselves; thus, myths and misconceptions tend to proliferate about this very final act. It is important […]
You have been working with a client for the last 3 months on rebuilding his life and re-integrating into society after having spent 6 years in prison for sex offences. For the last month, you have been working on issues of him frequently stealing money from his girlfriend’s wallet for drinks with his mates, him […]
The saying that “no man is an island” seems not truer anywhere than in the realm of resilience. Happiness author and business coach Alvah Parker lists ten traits of resilient, happy people. In the very first one she notes that resilient people “are strong people who realize the importance of having a good social support […]