Emotions, Anxiety, and Stress Management
What separates us humans from the rest of our animal kingdom is our inherent ability to experience complex thoughts and emotions. Although this is a great strength that has allowed us to evolve into the multifaceted species that we are, it can also complicate our lives and even make day to day life much more difficult. Being able to think so critically can create stress, anxiety, fear, depression, and suffering. However, it can also open us up to abundance including feelings of joy, compassion, love, and bliss. In our Emotions, Anxiety, and Stress Management group we spend time exploring our thoughts and emotions and how they shape our behavior and experience of the world.
In order to fully understand our thoughts and emotions some psychoeducation about the parts of the brain and various hormones and neurotransmitters that come into play when we are experiencing certain emotions are introduced and discussed. Having a full range of emotional expression is necessary and natural. We actually need seemingly undesirable emotions such as fear and stress for motivation, creativity, learning, and our own survival. Unfortunately, sometimes stress can become harmful and overwhelming to our equilibrium and nervous system if not managed appropriately. We’ve all heard how prolonged stress can lead to long term physical, emotional, and mental health problems. The same can be said about chronic anxiety, depression, and fear.
Luckily with some guidance, understanding of our minds and bodies, and the use of CBT, DBT, and mindfulness skills, we can build more healthy connections between the areas of the brain that are active during stressful and difficult times to slow down the negative reactivity and increase our awareness to our bodies as a whole. This makes us more resilient, lessening the negative ramifications of stress and difficult emotions, and potentially negating their impact all together. During this group we discuss our emotions and practice emotion regulation skills so that we can all gain greater emotional tolerance and the capacity to endure the ups and downs of life, work, school, and our relationships.
More mind-body awareness also strengthens the parts of our brain that are associated with the interpretation of emotions and our ability to relate to others which can increase our empathy and make us more likeable and agreeable humans to interact with. We also explore the presence of positive emotions and learn ways to cultivate more of them into our lives, because we could all use more love, compassion, joy, and bliss- am I right?! Through interactive discussions, educational videos, and group member support we learn to embrace our human condition and appreciate our unique ability to experience such higher cognitive and emotional functioning. Our goal is to leave the women in our program with feelings of empowerment and confidence so that they can handle whatever curveballs life throws their way with grace and resiliency.