Tunes, ooh how much I need them!!!

musicToday’s daily prompt is asks: What role does music play in your life? 

For me music is needed on a daily basis.  If I am hearing the upbeat music, with my earbuds that means I am getting a run/workout in (which also means that I will be a happier person after I am done.)  If I am listening to music during the day, it usually means I am taking a break between clients.  Some of the other clinicians I work with listen to NPR, I however don’t want to listen to anything that makes me think.  I want to get out of my head whether it is a quick 5 mins between clients or as much as 1 hour between clients.  I just want to relax.

While in a session with a client recently we were talking about his coping skills he uses when he gets overwhelmed.  He suffers from an ear issue with creates vertigo very easily and creates a lot of anxiety for him because he is always concerned about how things will affect him.  Anyway, he reported that he has found instrumental music played at a low volume, very peaceful and calming.  I think the only reason I found this a little odd because I was concerned that due to his vertigo that he would find music overwhelming but good news, that is not the case.  Proof that music can be a good coping skill hence the reason us therapist recommend it! music1

I also find music makes me cry.  Most of the time because I am reminiscing about the moment I heard the song or it is a story I can relate to.  Some of the songs that make me cry the most are songs like any version of Amazing Grace, Halleluiah, Rascal Flats “My Wish”, Martina McBride’s “Teenage Daughters”, and that is just to name a few.

In saying all this, the role music plays in my life is huge.  It is included daily.  Sometimes it makes me cry, sometimes it makes me smile (most songs by Brad Paisley), sometimes it gives me energy to run a little farther, and other times it just helps take my mind off of things and relax.  

How about you?  Is music a vital part of your life?music2

Quotable Quotes

quotesDaily Prompt: Do you have a favorite quote that you return to again and again? What is it, and why does it move you?

Each day on my facebook page I post a quote for the day as my status.  I have been doing this as long as I can remember (which might not be saying much because I can’t remember yesterday!).  But really I do post quotes daily (oh wait, I just said that!) and when I read today’s question/prompt the quote that came to me automatically was “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”.  I am beginning to think this quote is over used but let me tell you it means a lot to me.  Why?  One, I’m human.  Two, I’ve faced quite a bit of difficulty throughout my short 40 years (like how I said short because I still feel there is a lot to get done and I AM NOT OLD! No matter what my young clients think).  And finally the quote moves me by keeping things in perspective.  I return to this quote fairly often to just remind myself that I can make it through this challenge too, unless of course it kills me but it hasn’t yet!  It also gives me the confidence to continue. quotes1

My partner-in-crime has a two year rule which I think is very fitting with this quote.  The rule is to ask yourself when faced with a stressful situation, “will this affect me two years from now?”  I have found that this question really puts things into perspective for me.  Most of the time I find that I stress about things that really won’t affect me in two years from now and I just need to calm down and gain a better perspective on things so in turn, obviously it won’t kill me but once I make it through, I will be stronger!

How about you?  Do you have a favorite quote?  Please share…..quotes2

The Role of Faith

Tell us about the role that faith plays in your life — or doesn’t. – Daily Prompt

faith (2)Merriam Webster defines Faith as:

1.a : allegiance to duty or a person : loyalty

(1) : fidelity to one’s promises (2) : sincerity of intentions

2a (1) : belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2) : belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion

(1) : firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2): complete trust

3: something that is believed especially with strong conviction;especially : a system of religious beliefs <the Protestantfaith>

Faith to me is first a belief in a power greater than myself.  I define mine as God and have faith that there is some rhyme or reason to why things happen the way they do!  There have been many reasons I have this faith and they all date back to growing up in a Christian home with strong values.  My faith in God is and has always been strong especially through the challenges I have faced in 40 years of life.

More recently faith in myself has been what I have been working on.  Not to say I do not have self-worth or self-esteem, I’m just saying that as I try new things (like whether to train for a marathon or starting a new job after grad school) I tend to lack faith in my abilities.  I am starting to really understand that it is these challenges that make me grow and give me more confidence but it’s hard!  I know because each day I meet with people face to face who describe these challenges/trials/insurmountable obstacles and ask me for help.  I waiver in my faith in myself that I can do it and sometimes I can’t but I have found that I am just a director, a person to help steer them to grow and face their problems on their own helping them to have faith in themselves.  It’s crazy how that word keeps popping up in my day to day life.  So how can I not have faith? faith (1)

Right now I am challenged because I want to do something more with my running.  I am pretty sure I want to run a marathon (the longest distance ever in my life!) but my faith keeps wavering.  Nice questions pop up in my head like, “Really, do you think you can really run that far?”, “Are you crazy?” (that one’s my favorite because I know the answer is yes), “Once you get out there 13.1 miles you have to get back do you think you can do that?”.  So this is where my faith in myself and my ability to train and prepare need to get me through.  I feel like the little engine that could, “I think I can, I think I can.”

And isn’t that what Faith is really about anyway?!  Thinking we can, trying it, and whether we succeed or fail at least we tried and that in and of itself builds our faith.  Every day I am unsure whether I can give the right advice or really hear what a Client is trying to say, yet I try it anyway.  I do no harm and have faith in my ability to empathize.  Every day I am challenged to continue my faith in a power greater than myself, God, and I continue to believe that He will give me the words to say and the abilities needed to make it through.  Every day I am challenged to get a run in to keep training for the next race or just to stay in shape and when I am finished with that run/workout I have stronger faith in my abilities.  This is how faith plays a role in my life.  How about yours?faith

My Hero

hero1So today’s daily prompt is to write about your hero.  When you think about it, it sounds like it could be really simple but I am not sure it is really that simple.  As I look at my life and think about the people in my life who have helped me get to where I am, I can think of many people I consider my hero.

My first thought is my grandfather.  He died when I was just 19 but I remember spending so much time with him. One of my favorite moments was making cinnamon rolls on the weekend and then giving them out to people in the neighborhood because really there is no way we could eat 8 pans of cinnamon rolls (or maybe we could we would just be 3000 pounds!)  What I loved/love about him was his commitment to God and how he would practice his faith on a daily basis.  He also would go and preach/speak at nursing homes on Sunday morning to those who could not leave and go to church.  When he passed away I was lucky enough to get his bible.  Every once and awhile I open it up and really feel his presence.  I feel so blessed to have him in my life (I can still feel his presence on a somewhat daily basis).

A career hero I have is my friend Ed.  He was my internship advisor as I plugged along through grad school and tried to make my way.  He was/is always there to challenge me and help me to become a better Clinician.

My daughter is a hero of mine too.  She is courageous for all she has gone through in her short 18 years on this earth.  She is a constant performer and when she gets on stage to dance, I am overwhelmed by her courage, grace and ability.  I love to watch her and feel blessed that I have been given such a wonderful human being to raise and be a part of her life.

Another hero of mine is my partner in crime, Dave.  We have been together for a long time and have been through many, many ups and downs.  I admire him for how he provides for our family and how he would do anything for all of us at any time (even going out and getting gas when it is freezing and I don’t want to get to cold!).  Also that he has been there for me when I have been challenged to the point where I don’t think I can go on.  I know that he is my rock and even though I am strong and could make it, I would never want to try without him! hero

These are just a few people I consider my heros.  It is so hard to name just one.  Do you have the same problem?  I guess I just get a lot from the people in my life and I believe that that is how it is supposed to be!

Who is your hero?  Why?

Daily Prompt: Oasis: My Sanctuary

Daily Prompt: (from WordPress): “A sanctuary is a place you can escape to, to catch your breath and remember who you are. Write about the place you go to when everything is a bit too much.”

lake1Sanctuary = safety, a place to relax, a place to reconnect with self, with a higher power, with our self-confidence.  When I find myself overwhelmed I use a trick I teach quite a few of my clients with anxiety.  It’s called visualization and using your favorite place makes the visualization that much easier.  Here is where I go….

Our family lake house.  It is on an island so the trek begins via a small boat and short ride across to the island.  As we move across the water, I can see to the bottom.  The water is so clear and you can see the rocks that line the bottom.

Once we make it to shore at the island, I find myself drawn to sit at the edge of the dock.  It is here that you can hear the gentle lapping of the water against the dock and the rocks on shore.  Sticking my feet in the water, I can feel the refreshing coolness of the water.  It is also here that I can see to the bottom of the lake which is only about 3 feet deep.  The small sunfish are swimming around and every once in a while one will be brave enough to approach your toes and even take a nibble.  A gentle breeze blows through the trees and you can hear the rustle of the leaves.  The smell of the wind and water is so clean and refreshing.  lake2

I lay back on the dock with my feet hanging in the water and feel the warmth of the wood on my back as the sun beats down on my face.  Closing my eyes to hear the sounds of the loons and the nearby ducks.

I feel like I am there right now!  This is where I go when I can’t actually go.  And when I can it is that much better.

My other option is for a run.  Another place to just let go of the stress and overwhelmingness of the day and refocus.  Whether it is at the gym on the dreadmill or outside in my neighborhood, nothing beats a good run!

Maybe you can try the visualization next time you need to escape or better yet I hope you can go to your sanctuary!  Where is your santuary? lake




Please don’t say that about me!!

Today I am trying something new… I am using the daily prompt from Daily Post at  I thought it would be fun to try something new and the question/prompt was very intriguing.

Here it is: “What is the one thing you hope other people never say about you?”

Seems like it would be a pretty easy question to answer just start with the fact that I want everyone to like me.  But is that what I want others to never say about me, “I don’t really like her”.  Not really.  I am sure there are people who may not like me (even  though I am a pretty likeable person!).

So I look towards my professional career and wonder what I wouldn’t want my clients to say about me.  And that seems to be the answer for my overall life.  I would never like anyone to say that I didn’t listen to them, that I didn’t hear them.  I believe everyone has a story to tell and can benefit from a listening ear.  So when it comes down to the core of things, I want people to always say, “She listens and cares.”

What would you want others to never say about you?