July’s Mindfulness Exercise

Mindfulness involves observing and accepting the things around and within us in the present moment, without judgment.  In therapy, Johanna may involve mindfulness skills to build awareness of various issues and to develop coping strategies.   The exercise below is not individualized to your needs as it may be in therapy, but is rather intended as a general exercise that you may find useful.

July’s mindfulness exercise:

Mindfulness is the nonjudgmental awareness of the present moment. Today we will focus on metaphors.  Every day, we use metaphors to expand our understanding of the world, describe our experience, and connect with others.  Today, pay attention to how you use metaphors.  Write one or two down throughout the day, and pay attention to the thoughts and feelings you have about this metaphor.  If you’d like, write down what this metaphor means in your life.  It could be a journey, or something as simple as “the elephant in the room.”  Try to observe your thoughts and feelings without judging them as good or bad.

NOTE: This is not intended to replace therapy.  Please contact Johanna at (585)406-3012 if you are interested in individual or group therapy.

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Perspectives Monthly Journal Exercise – June

Journaling can be a therapeutic exercise.  In therapy, Johanna may encourage you to journal or keep a diary in a specific way, to raise awareness of specific activities, thoughts, or feelings.  This monthly journal exercise is in no way individually prescribed, but meant to offer food for thought that may be useful for anyone.

June’s monthly journal exercise:

Write a letter to your past self.  What have you learned from yourself?  What would you want to share with your past self that you know now?  Be kind to your past self. This does not need to be a polished piece of writing, but rather a brief exercise to get yourself writing and thinking about yourself in a new way.

Perspectives Monthly Journal Exercise – April

Journaling can be a therapeutic exercise.  In therapy, Johanna may encourage you to journal or keep a diary in a specific way, to raise awareness of specific activities, thoughts, or feelings.  This monthly journal exercise is in no way individually prescribed, but meant to offer food for thought that may be useful for anyone.

April’s monthly journal exercise:

Spring is coming!  As we head towards a change in the seasons, what are you looking forward to?  Take five minutes to write down your thoughts on this time of transition in the natural world, and what aspects of the coming season you may feel grateful for.  If you start to feel stuck, spend a few minutes outside – even if it’s walking up and down the block to breathe in the fresh air of a new season.  Write down what you notice, using your five senses, if you need help getting started.

 

Perspectives Monthly Journal Exercise – January

Journaling can be a therapeutic exercise.  In therapy, Johanna may encourage you to journal or keep a diary in a specific way, to raise awareness of specific activities, thoughts, or feelings.  This monthly journal exercise is in no way individually prescribed, but meant to offer food for thought that may be useful for anyone.

January’s monthly journal exercise:

It’s a brand new year.  What are your hopes for the coming year?  Take five minutes to free-write without stopping (unless your hand hurts, or you find yourself in emotionally distress, in which case you should engage in another form of self-care).  Consider what you are looking forward to about 2016, as well as what you might be worrying about.  Write it all down without pausing.  This is not meant to be a polished piece of writing or a list of New Year’s resolutions, but rather an exploration of your hopes and fears as we move into a new year.

Perspectives Monthly Journal Exercise – November

Journaling can be a therapeutic exercise.  In therapy, Johanna may encourage you to journal or keep a diary in a specific way, to raise awareness of specific activities, thoughts, or feelings.  This monthly journal exercise is in no way individually prescribed, but meant to offer food for thought that may be useful for anyone.

November’s monthly journal exercise:

The holidays are coming.  What do the holidays mean for you?  Take five minutes to free-write without stopping (unless your hand hurts, or you find yourself in emotionally distress, in which case you should engage in another form of self-care).  If the holidays are a difficult time of year for you, use this time to write down the things that will help you to get through them.  This is not meant to be a polished piece of writing but rather an exploration of your thoughts on the holidays and your own coping skills.

Perspectives Monthly Journal Exercise

Journaling can be a therapeutic exercise.  In therapy, Johanna may encourage you to journal or keep a diary in a specific way, to raise awareness of specific activities, thoughts, or feelings.  This monthly journal exercise is in no way individually prescribed, but meant to offer food for thought that may be useful for anyone.

June’s monthly journal exercise:

For a week, write down one thing every day for which you are grateful.  Pick a time of day – maybe even set an alarm to remind yourself – and jot down either a sentence or just a word to describe your gratitude.  This can be something big (ie. my family) or something very small (ie. the smell of a new flower in bloom).  Try to get in the habit of doing this every day for a week, and take a moment at the end of the week to notice how you feel when you do this exercise.