Posts tagged ‘anxiety’

THE ART OF SELF-COMPASSION

BE GOOD TO YOURSELF

It might surprise you to hear that one of the best ways to cultivate a hopeful, optimistic outlook is to practice some radical self-compassion.

Frequently people confuse self-compassion with self-indulgence or even selfishness. But being kind to yourself is just as important as being kind to others, if not more so.

Self-Compassion Makes You More Optimistic

Being kind to yourself means you can stop that vicious cycle of self-blame and recrimination. It prevents you from ruminating on past mistakes and builds your resilience and confidence so you can pick yourself up and get back on track.

When you are kind and encouraging to yourself, your anxiety levels drop, your mood lifts, and you become more optimistic and hopeful about the future.

Cultivate Mindfulness

Perhaps the best way to start your self-compassion practice is to adopt a more mindful attitude to life. Mindfulness focuses on the acceptance of who you are, where you are right now. With all your faults and all your glory. Accept that whatever you’re experiencing and feeling in the present moment is okay.

Mindfulness and self-compassion help you to overcome denial and hesitation in your reality. It allows space for hope to come in.

Accept that Hard Times Are Part of the Deal

Self-compassion accepts that all human lives are a mixture of hard times and good times. Often the bad things that happen are out of your control. All you can do is decide how you’re going to react. Will you be overwhelmed, or will you be angry? Or will you roll with punches, learn from your experiences, and get back on the horse?

In times of fear or illness or natural disasters or any other of life’s stressors, self-compassion allows you to take guilt or blame out of the equation and deal with whatever you’re faced with.

Treat Yourself As You Would A Friend

Take a moment to look at how you’re reacting. What is your self-talk saying to you? Are you reassuring yourself that things will work out okay, or are you beating yourself up for something you did or didn’t do? Would you talk to your best friend like that? How would they feel?

Be as gentle in your self-talk as you would to a loved one who is in crisis. Be loving and kind, and reassuring. Extend the hand of hope to your own heart, and help yourself on the first steps back towards better times.

If you want to create a better world for yourself and others, you need to become an active participant in studying the past to avoid repeating the mistakes others have previously made. Remember, the day you were born you became a character in history. Study the past, avoid its mistakes, learn its lessons, and create a better future for everyone.

“If you don’t know your history, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” http://www.LittleMissHISTORY.com

PIECES OF OURSELVES #fragments

In partnership with The Children’s Book Review and Big Ideas Press

ABOUT THE BOOK

Fragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection

Written by Maura Pierlot

Ages 12+ | 126 Pages

Publisher: Big Ideas Press | ISBN-13: 978-0645099805

I feel like I’m a piece, a fragment that’s missing all the good bits, but I don’t know where to find the rest … the parts I need to work properly. I bet they wouldn’t fit anyway. (Lexy, age 17)

Publisher’s Synopsis: Eight young people navigating high school and beyond, each struggling to hold on – to family, to friends, to a piece of themselves. Perhaps you know them. The bubbly girl who keeps telling you she’s okay. The high achiever who’s suddenly so intense. The young teen obsessed with social media. The boy challenged by communication. Every single day they, and others, are working hard to keep it together. So hard, they don’t see their friends are struggling, too. Through eight imagined stories, Fragments moves from a place of disconnection to connectedness.

The action of Fragments takes place in the minds and hearts of an ordinary group of young people. Their stories encompass anxiety, depression, neurodivergence, gender dysphoria, social media, bullying, family dysfunction, cross-cultural diversity, and more, culminating in a sense of hope. Although set in Australia, their stories could take place anywhere.

From the Playwright: Rarely presenting as neat packages, mental health issues often involve feelings and behaviors with jagged edges and blurred origins. Fragments embodies the theme that stress at home, at school, and in life is challenging young people beyond their usual coping abilities, leaving them disenfranchised and vulnerable. So much of adolescent life is spent looking inwards that it’s perhaps not surprising that mental health issues are often internalized. I wrote Fragments to start a conversation. It’s only when we speak openly about mental health issues – without fear or judgment – that we can chip away at the stigma that prevents many people from seeking help. It is my hope that the work will find its way into schools in Australia and overseas. The publication includes a comprehensive Study Guide, detailing activities and curriculum links for English, Drama/Arts, Health & PE, Civics, and more.

A powerful and timely mental health resource for young people and their families. Essential reading for high school.

PURCHASE LINKS

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3gZPBCJ

Bookshop.org: https://bookshop.org/a/2078/9780645099805

Book Depository: https://www.bookdepository.com/Fragments-Maura-Pierlot/9780645099805

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Maura Pierlot is an award-winning author and playwright who hails from New York but has called Canberra, Australia home since the early 1990s. Her writing delves into complex issues including memory, identity, self, and, more recently, mental health. Following its sellout 2019 season in Canberra, Maura’s debut professional theatre production, Fragments is being adapted for the digital space, supported by artsACT. The work is published online by Australian Plays Transforms and in print by Big Ideas Press.

Maura is a past winner of the SOLO Monologue Competition, Hothouse Theatre for her play, Tapping Out. Her plays have been performed in Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney, Brisbane, and Hollywood. A former medical news reporter and editor of Australian Medicine, Maura also writes for children and young adults. In 2017 she was named winner of the CBCA Aspiring Writers Mentorship Program, and recipient of the Charlotte Waring Barton Award, for her young adult manuscript, Freefalling (now True North). Maura’s debut picture book, The Trouble in Tune Town won the 2018 ACT Writing and Publishing Award (Children’s category) along with international accolades.

Maura’s poetry, short stories, microfiction, and essays appear in various literary journals and anthologies. Maura has a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctorate, each in philosophy, specializing in ethics. When she’s not busy writing, Maura visits schools and libraries as a guest reader and speaker, serves as a Role Model for Books in Homes, and contributes reviews for the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s online magazine, Reading Time.

For further information on Maura and her work, Fragments please visit: https: //maurapierlot.com and https: //fragmentstheplay.com.

GIVEAWAY

Enter for a chance to win a copy of Fragments and a $50 Amazon gift card!

CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY

https://gleam.io/bJGIX/fragments-giveaway

A copy of Fragments

A $50 Amazon gift card

Four (4) winners receive:

A copy of Fragments

The giveaway begins September 6, 2021, at 12:01 A.M. MT and ends October 6, 2021, at 11:59 P.M. MT.

MY REVIEW OF FRAGMENTS:

FRAGMENTS: Journeys from Isolation to Connection

Written by Maura Pierlot

Fragments is a series of monologues that lend a voice to issues of mental health faced by teens all over the world today. In these monologues, readers follow the struggles of eight teens who seek hope as they fight mental health challenges. Each fight to maintain their connections to family, friends, and the community in which they live. The monologues are representative of the issues faced by youth and adults in the challenging times of which we live.

The actors represent young people around the world struggling with emotional, social, physical, and mental issues during their teenage years. As they reveal themselves, readers at once laugh, cry, feel their pain, and empathize with one or more of the issues described. The actors may appear to be disconnected, but in truth, they are seeking the possibility of connecting with one another.

The study guide included delineates themes, the background of characters, summaries of each monologue, and curriculum guide. While the monologues are matched to the Australian curriculum for high school studies, it can readily be adapted to standards used around the world.

Pierlot’s play provided her audience an opportunity to witness the problems and challenges facing youth today. Now readers of Fragments are given the opportunity to read and ponder the insights of these teens into the causes of mental issues and the realities they present for those who are suffering. Highly recommended read and discussion opportunity for teens and adults.

TOUR SCHEDULE

Monday, September 6, 2021The Children’s Book ReviewTour Kick-OffFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Tuesday, September 7, 2021Over Coffee ConversationA guest article fromMaura Pierlot
Wednesday, September 8, 2021The Fairview ReviewA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Thursday, September 9, 2021Tales of a Wanna-Be SuperHero MomA book giveaway ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Friday, September 10, 2021A Dream Within a DreamA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Monday, September 13, 2021icefairy’s Treasure ChestA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Tuesday, September 14, 2021Life Is What It’s CalledA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Wednesday, September 15, 2021Barbara Ann Mojica’s BlogA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Thursday, September 16, 2021Satisfaction for Insatiable ReadersA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Friday, September 17, 2021The Momma SpotA book review ofFragments: Journeys from Isolation to Connection
Saturday, September 18, 2021The Momma SpotAn interview withMaura Pierlot

TAKE A DEEP BREATH

I Feel Anxious: Children’s Book About Overcoming Anxiety For Kids 4-8.

Written by Aleks Harrison

Illustrated by Ferlina Gunawan

Max is a little boy who feels overwhelmed and anxious. He is moving with his parents to a new town two states away. As he rides in the moving truck, worries crowd his mind. What will his new school be like? Will the new children like him? Who will be his teacher?

Max’s parents encourage him to draw and write about his feelings. That makes him feel better. Perhaps, things won’t be so bad.

Through beautiful illustrations and expressive language, Max calms his fears and reaches out to children who may find themselves in similar situations. Recommended for preschoolers and primary grade children.

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Check out learning opportunities for the entire family at http://www.LittleMissHISTORY.com

ANXIETY CURE FOR KIDS

CALM DOWN

A Little SPOT of Anxiety: A Book about Calming Your Worries

Written and Illustrated by Diane Alber

This short book is a good introduction to the topic of anxiety for children. Readers learn that feelings of anxiety stem from being anxious, worried or scared. Alber presents a few common situations that may cause anxiety in children like separation from parents or meeting new people for the first time. She illustrates a simple technique of imagining grey spots on the fingers and a calming green spot in the center of the palm. By taking a deep breath and blowing the spots away, children can release their fears.

After reading a few of the reviews, I noticed some readers complained of layout issues, but I did not find issues when reading on my Kindle. I believe this book might be a useful tool for parents and social workers, but it needs to be read with the careful guidance of an adult.

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ANXIETY OVERLOAD

Anxious Ninja

Written by Mary Nhin

Illustrated by Jelena Stupar

Anxious Ninja is a talented runner who wins every practice race. When the big day arrives, Anxious Ninja begins to worry what if he doesn’t win. He loses confidence in himself and the race as well,

Gritty Ninja offers some advice. Remember the 3 R’s. On race day, Recognize that you can’t control the situation, relax and take deep breaths, and Refocus on the goal of winning, What do you think will happen when Anxious Ninja decides to take his advice?

This book is part of a series that teaches young children how to deal with their fears and emotions. I heartily recommend this one, especially for primary grade children.

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FREEDOM AT A PRICE

One Step at a Time

Written by Sara Y. Aharon

Illustrated by Bryn Pennetti

 

Emma loves butterflies. She is elated to find out the new class pet is a beautiful rainbow butterfly.  Even though her teacher has warned the class not to open the lid of the tank, Emma cannot resist. The butterfly finds its way to the top and escapes to freedom.

Emma feels sad and anxious. She confides in her dad, who tells her she must be brave and tell her classmates what happened. His advice is to put one foot in front of another. Emma does just that, stomping, jumping, and twirling her way to school. When she arrives, she explains what happened. How will her teacher and classmates react?

This book teaches elementary school children to be brave and honest. Emma shows empathy toward the feelings of her classmates. She provides a good example for children who are afraid to admit their mistakes. The illustrations are bright and multicultural. Recommended for children ages four through eight.

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A BOOK YOU NEED TO READ – BOOK BLAST

Megan'sbook

 

Synopsis

Megan’s book, Who Am I?  How My Daughter Taught Me to Let Go and Live Again, is about her journey into post-partum depression, anxiety disorder, panic attacks, stays in the psych ward, divorce, emotional abuse, domestic violence, law school, how she managed to graduate from law school and a beautiful little girl who emerged from all of this chaos.  

Author Bio

Megan Cyrulewski has been writing short stories ever since she was ten-years-old.  After attending Grand Valley State University, Megan eventually settled into a career in the non-profit sector for eight years.  She decided to change careers and went back to school to get her law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School.  While in school, she documented her divorce, child custody battle and postpartum depression struggles in her memoir. Megan lives in Michigan with her 3-year-old daughter who loves to dance, run, read, and snuggle time with Mommy.  Megan also enjoys her volunteer work with various organizations in and around metro-Detroit.

Excerpt

On January 18, 2012, we all convened in the courthouse for the Motion for Parenting Time hearing. My dad and I arrived with my attorney, but Tyler loved an audience so he brought his dad, step-mom, and his new on-again off-again girlfriend, Heather. Tyler walked in with his posse in tow, cocky as hell. It took all of two minutes for the judge to knock him off his feet.

The Judge addressed our respective attorneys. “Why are we here?”

“Your honor,” Tyler’s attorney began, “my client has clearly been denied his parenti—”

The Judge didn’t even let him finish. “How?” She turned to my attorney. “Don?”

“Your honor, as you can see in the divorce decree, there was supposed to be a review when the minor child turned twelve-months-old. The Defendant has ignored that review.”

“I—if I may, your honor,” Tyler’s attorney sputtered.

“I see the review in the decree. It’s here in black and white,” she told Tyler’s attorney. “What is the problem? Why didn’t you understand the review? Your client signed the divorce decree.”

Tyler’s attorney tried again. “But your honor—”

The judge cut him off. “There is to be a review conducted by the Friend of the Court referee assigned to the parties. Until then, the Defendant will continue his parenting time schedule as agreed upon in the divorce decree. Dismissed.”

And that was it. After eight police reports and numerous harassing text messages, phone calls, and e-mails, we won. As Don and Tyler’s attorney went to speak with the clerk to file the necessary paperwork, Don told us to wait for him outside the courtroom.

As we exited the courtroom, the hallway was so packed with people that my dad and I were only able to find enough space to lean against the wall. We were talking about the court proceedings when we looked up at saw Tyler and his new girlfriend standing right across from us.

“Why do you lie about everything?” Tyler screamed.

Heather walked up to me and stood about an inch from my face. “As a mother myself, you should be happy that Tyler is the father of your child.”

My jaw dropped. “I’m sorry but I don’t know you.”

She smirked. “Well you’re going to get to know me, bitch.”

Tyler made a big show of pulling her from me like I was going to punch her or something. By this time, everyone in the hallway was watching us. We were pure entertainment.

Heather continued her rant. “Two times in the psych ward, Megan? What a great mother you are.”

“Where is your mom, the real mother of our child?” Tyler screamed. “She’s the one who takes care of Madelyne.”

My dad and I tried to move away from Tyler and Heather but they followed us.

“Awww…” Heather mocked. “Do you have to take a Xanax because of your anxiety?”

“Go take your Xanax and sleeping pills, you drug addict,” Tyler shouted.

Finally, Don emerged from the courtroom and pulled us into a quiet corridor. He explained that I needed to call our referee to set-up a meeting to discuss a visitation schedule. I told Don about the verbal assault by Tyler and Heather. Don said he would call Tyler’s attorney to let him know that Heather would not be allowed in my house.

Upon leaving the courthouse, Heather screamed, “See you on Sunday, Megan.”

I turned toward her and said calmly, “I don’t know you, but you are not welcome in my home.”

That night, Tyler sent me multiple texts attacking my mothering skills, my supposed drug addictions, how he was going to fight for joint custody of Madelyne, how Heather would be accompanying him for his visitations, and a barrage of other insults:

  • “Get a life already”

  • “Don’t you have something better to do than wasting your parents’ money?”

  • “Go take your pills and relax, oh yeah, then your parents would have to watch our daughter. Oh yeah, they already do.”

  • “Go talk to your friends. Oh yeah, you don’t have any because of how crazy you are.”

  • “Interesting to know you’ve been to the hospital a couple of times. You really need to get it together.”

  • “Better go call your lawyer and make up some more stuff about me.”

  • “Don’t be mad at your sorry life.”

  • “I am sure living with Mom and Dad the rest of your life will be fun.”

  • “When you get a job, then you can pay me child support. Fun.”

I finally had to turn my phone off at midnight.

BUY LINKS:

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