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Top tips to manage social media and your mental health

18th March 2024

Social media is part of our everyday life and how we experience it can directly impact our wellbeing and mental health.

Accessing social media platforms can be a real positive, it can help us stay connected with, family, friends, community, network with likeminded people and social groups, keep us up to date with news and gives us instant access to worldwide resources.  With mindful management it can be a powerful addition to our lives.

However, it can negatively impact our moods, self-worth, confidence, self-perception and social expectations. Furthermore, it can increase feelings associated with isolation, loneliness, anxiety, depression, addiction, stress, eating disorders, inequality and FOMO (fear of missing out) etc. Such negative influence can lead to devastating consequences for some.

Everyone is responsible for their own health and emotional wellbeing, but we all need to be mindful of the impact of social media exposure and viewed content on ourselves and how what we share can impact others.  So, let’s consider ways of finding balance and healthy management.  Below are some tips and suggestions to consider, so that you can engage more mindfully and positively with social media:


SAD - more than the winter blues?

26th September 2023

I think most of us are affected by the seasons, temperature, daylight, weather and events held at particular times of year in one way or another.  Such factors have a direct effect on our moods, emotional state, mental health, physical capabilities, motivation, outlook, energy levels, sleep, eating patterns and general wellbeing.

It’s relatively normal to be affected by the seasons, but if you feel it’s more than just the winter blues and it’s interfering with your everyday life, especially if symptoms are consistent with the same time each year, it may be worth considering if you are experiencing Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

So, what is Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that can be experienced during particular seasons or times of the year. Most will experience SAD during the autumn and winter months, but some people are affected during spring and summer too. SAD doesn't mean you 'just feel a bit low in winter'. It can be debilitating and affect us just as much as other types of depression and mental health issues.

It can be frustrating and upsetting if people don't understand SAD and how it makes you feel. Knowledge and awareness are key, if you feel you are experiencing SAD it is worth gaining a good understanding of the disorder and learning ways in which you can support yourself. It can also be helpful if you live with or know someone affected by SAD to have a general understanding, so you can offer the right support.


The Benefits of Meditation

19th July 2023

Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years and is widely recognised as an effective aid for mental, physical and spiritual wellbeing.

Through meditation an individual can learn to achieve a state of deep relaxation to calm the mind and body, centre and ground, feel more balanced and in alignment and feel a deep sense of peace and clarity.  Anyone can meditate, there’s no right or wrong way, it just takes time and practice and finding a way that works for you. However, just 10 minutes a day can have such a positive effect on your wellbeing that you are likely to want to practice it more and more!

There are many forms of meditation which can be practised as an individual or within a group, each bringing their own health benefits.  I explore below some of the benefits of meditation, along with different types of practices for you to consider, give it a try!


What are holistic therapies?

17th January 2023


The term ‘holistic' originates from the Greek word 'holos', which means 'whole'. Holistic therapies refer to therapies that treat a person as a whole; mind, body and spirit. It is an overall term for a wide range of therapies and practices that treat the entire person and underlying causes of issues, considering physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual states of health and wellbeing. 

Holistic therapies are often referred to as complementary or alternative therapies, which of course can be used alongside traditional medical approaches or on their own. Such therapies often allow individuals to better see the connections between mind, body and spirit and how this affects their mental health, physical health and overall wellness. This approach differs to ‘conventional medicine or therapies’ that often treat symptoms and issues in isolation, without considering root causes or the overall effect on the person. 

Holistic therapies can provide support with:


Struggling with the thought of Christmas?

15th November 2022


Christmas can be a wonderful time of year for many, but for some it can be a particularly difficult, anxious and stressful time. You may be finding this poignant time of year especially difficult if you are bereaved, no matter how long ago this was, Christmas has habit of opening old wounds and hurts.  It can also be challenging if you have experienced the loss of a relationship or going through life changes, health issues or traumatic circumstances.  With the current world/financial climate and rising cost of living, many will find this Christmas a worrying time, may feel anxious and stressed about world affairs and managing extra expenditure or adjusting to more realistic expectations.

With the festive season being publicised widely many weeks beforehand and cards and gifts filling the shops, it’s extremely difficult to avoid and not feel ‘pressured’ to be having a wonderful time. Often, powerful emotions, expectations and memories are bought to the surface, making it hard to keep rational and control anxiety and stress levels.

So, if you are amongst those who are struggling with the thought of Christmas, for whatever reason, here’s a few suggestions to help you survive the weeks ahead:


"The impact of extreme heat on our mental health"

12th July 2022

So, we are experiencing a bit of a heatwave! Whilst getting out in the sunshine and enjoying the weather can bring many health benefits, extreme heat on the other hand can adversely affect those with medical health issues, the elderly, the young, the vulnerable and those with mental health issues.

Whilst the latest hot weather is not the usual for the UK, it is predicted that with current climate change these periods of extreme weather are likely to become more frequent and temperatures may increase generally over time.

Let’s explore the impact of extreme heat on our mental health, especially behavioural and psychiatric conditions, and consider some positive strategies that can help you cope with the heatwave.


The cost of therapy?

06th April 2022

Most therapists in private practice charge set fees for their therapy services, often depending upon the type of therapy offered, for example counselling, CBT, hypnotherapy etc, and length of the sessions. I am sure many people that access therapy, wonder what their session charge covers and how therapists arrive at their therapy fee.

Below are factors to be considered and costs which, in turn, may form part of the therapy charge:


Dry January - do you have an alcohol dependency?

14th January 2022

For some people stopping consuming alcohol for January is just part of a wellbeing drive at the start of the year. However, alcohol can become a real dependency, a habit and lead to addiction.

It can be hard to accept you may have an alcohol dependency and lots of people remain in denial for a long time.  Acknowledging you may be dependent is the first step and talking with family and friends can be helpful.  Sometimes, however, these relationships can be strained and issues simply beyond family help - this may when professional support is needed.  If you feel alcohol is controlling your life or you’re being affected by someone who is struggling with addiction, here’s a few suggestions to consider for support:


The importance of 'self-care'

08th January 2022

Self-care, something so important, yet how often do we take time for ourselves?

When you think of self-care, what do you think of, how important is it to you?

Often, I talk with clients about the importance of taking time to care for and nurture themselves.  Frequently, people don’t even know where to start, yet self-care is so vital to help us de-stress, relax, sleep well, maintain positive moods and cope with everyday anxieties. 

Here’s a few suggestions to get you thinking what you could do to improve your self-care:


''The Empty Chair''

01st December 2021

During the festive season, the empty chair around the dining table can be a poignant reminder of the loss of a loved one.

The pain of grief presents itself in varying degrees each day, but is most likely to be heightened during festivities such as Christmas with potential ‘triggers’ everywhere, in shops, on the television and on seeing family and friends. The build-up can evoke powerful memories, emotions and feelings and just getting through the festive season can sometimes seem impossible.

Tears, sadness, reminiscing and missing your loved one are normal parts of the grieving process, but if you are amongst those who are anticipating a difficult festive season here’s a few suggestions to support you:


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Jen Brown

Dip Couns, Adv Dip Hyp, Dip NLP, GQHP, MBACP Reg, GHSC Reg, GHR Reg, CNHC Reg, UKRF Reg, Bupa (MHW) Reg Therapist

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