Author: staceyhellman319

A Strengths-Based View of Addictions

While traditional treatment approaches addiction as a “disease” that needs to be managed, I’ve found that taking a strengths-based approach yields more meaningful, lasting change even for people who have been labeled “chronic relapsers.” I see addictive behaviors simply as coping strategies that end up causing harm unintentionally.  No one means to develop a dependence […]

Anger: Harmful or Helpful?

Here’s what I’ve found to be true across the board with regards to anger: 1) Anger is a naturally occurring emotion for human beings. 2) Anger is a defensive response to feeling threatened, hurt, or vulnerable, 3) Anger can be an important step in healing trauma, injustice, or betrayal. 4) Anger is message from yourself […]

Finding Your Way to Secure Attachment

Attachment theory (created by the work of John Bowlby) is the foundation of my therapy practice and the more I learn about it, the more I want to share the information with clients. I can’t tell you how many times a client has had a profound “A-Ha!” moment when I explain some aspect of attachment […]

Making Peace With Your Inner Critic

The idea of making peace with your inner critic isn’t a new idea and there are already whole books written on the topic. However I’ve found it to be such a transformative aspect of the therapy process that I wanted to write a blog about it.  My approach isn’t unique; it falls under the framework […]

Create a comfort routine using your 5 senses

When we experience emotional discomfort, we also experience it in our bodies, and thus we can use physical means to effectively create comfort. These physical means can be very simple but powerful by utilizing the five senses. The more senses we use in combination, the more effective the comfort routine will be.  The more often […]

Using Yoga to Heal the Effects of Complex Trauma

The word “Yoga” means “to yoke”, as in “to unite” and refers to the union of body, mind and spirit. Yoga is an ancient practice originating from India that combines physical poses, breathing techniques, and mental focus.  When it comes to using yoga in a therapeutic session, getting a great workout isn’t the goal, though […]

Internal Family Systems

When people are asked what they want most in life, it’s fairly universal that “inner peace” or “true happiness” are in the top five.  We are all familiar with these terms but what’s less familiar is how we go about achieving this goal.  In my clinical practice, I have begun using a method of therapy […]

Improve Depression and Anxiety without medication

Many people struggle with anxiety and depression but are resistant to trying medications due to common unpleasant side effects. For folks with severe, chronic and debilitating symptoms, medication may end up being necessary, but for mild to moderate symptoms, there are many non-medication strategies that can really help. I’m not a huge medication fan. I […]