Helping you find balance in the flow!
None of us at Therapy Austin blog for a living, but every once in a while we like to compose an offering that serves to inform, uplift, remind or resource you. Enjoy!
November 14th, 2023
Recognizing and Responding to Domestic Violence: A Guide to Support and Safety
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
Domestic violence (DV), often referred to as intimate partner violence (IPV), is a grave and pervasive issue that affects millions of individuals, transcending age, gender, socioeconomic status, and culture. Understanding its signs and knowing how to respond can make a world of difference to someone trapped in a harmful situation. In this post, we at Therapy Austin aim to provide insights and resources for recognizing and assisting those ...
October 12th, 2023
Understanding the Intersections: Identities and Mental Health
In our journey towards a more compassionate and inclusive society, it's essential to recognize that each of us wears many hats. We aren't just our jobs, hobbies, or family roles; we're a blend of cultures, backgrounds, identities, and experiences. In the world of mental health, understanding these intersections is crucial. At Therapy Austin, we believe in the power of holistic care — and that begins by acknowledging the ...
September 28th, 2023
Understanding Postpartum Depression: The Latest Insights
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
Postpartum depression (PPD) isn't just the "baby blues." It's a significant mental health condition that affects numerous new parents, worldwide. Although the understanding of PPD has deepened in recent years, misconceptions persist. In our dedication to provide the most up-to-date mental health information, we're delving into the latest insights on postpartum depression.
1. Extended Timeline for Onset
While PPD has traditionally been understood as emerging within the first few weeks ...
September 19th, 2023
Navigating the Emotional and Organizational Landscape When a Beloved Co-Worker Departs
Workplaces, at their best, are not just sites of productivity; they are micro-communities. They’re places where connections, collaborations, and shared memories are formed. So, when a beloved co-worker announces their departure, it isn't just an organizational shift, it’s an emotional one too. Let’s explore the multifaceted implications of such a transition.
1. The Grief of Saying Goodbye
Losing a co-worker, especially one you've grown close to, can stir up feelings ...
August 22nd, 2023
When Others Can't Fill the Void: Understanding Loneliness and the Path to Self-Connection
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
It's a familiar feeling for many of us, that deep-seated sense of loneliness that doesn't always vanish when we're with friends or surrounded by family. This paradoxical feeling, where you can be in a room full of people and yet feel alone, is more common than we might think. At Therapy Austin, we understand the complex emotions that surround loneliness, and we believe it's essential to explore ...
August 8th, 2023
Hidden in Plain Sight: Understanding Why Depression Can Be Difficult to Recognize in Ourselves
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
As your dedicated mental health partners, we at Therapy Austin always strive to unravel the complexities of mental health issues and provide insight into the often misunderstood aspects of them. One such topic is depression, a common but serious mood disorder that can have a profound impact on how we feel, think, and handle daily activities.
Depression affects millions globally, yet it can be an elusive condition to identify, ...
July 31st, 2023
Mood and Food: The Interplay of Nutrition and Mental Health
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
As a community-focused practice, Therapy Austin is continuously dedicated to enlightening you about the comprehensive nature of mental health. There are numerous factors influencing our emotional and psychological well-being, and today, we want to discuss a factor that's often overlooked - the connection between our food and our mental health. It’s fascinating to know that how and what we consume can have a direct impact on our minds ...
July 24th, 2023
Interviewing Your Prospective Therapist: Questions to Ask and What to Look For
DeLinda Spain, LCSW, CGP, CEDS
Finding a therapist can be likened to finding a life partner; you're searching for a trusted confidante who understands you, supports you, and guides you on the journey of self-discovery and healing. It's a personal process, and it can take time to find the right fit. One useful tool to help you along this path is to "interview" your prospective therapist. Here are some questions to consider and ...
July 13th, 2023
The Value of Local In-Person and Online Therapy over Nationwide Online Platforms
Ellen Lindsey, LCSW
The Value of Local In-Person and Online Therapy over Nationwide Online Platforms
In this age of digital connections, there's an abundance of choices when it comes to mental health support. We have nationwide online platforms like Better Help at our fingertips, but opting for local in-person therapy, or a blend of local in-person and online therapy, will offer a more personalized, community-oriented solution. This article explores the unique ...
July 7th, 2023
Self-Pay vs Insurance Pay: Navigating Your Therapy Options
Whether you are venturing into therapy for the first time or are a seasoned therapy-goer, understanding your payment options can feel confusing and overwhelming. Two common methods of payment for therapy are self-pay (out-of-pocket) and insurance pay. Both have their pros and cons, and your personal circumstances will largely determine which one is right for you. Insurance Pay: The Pros and Cons Using insurance to pay for therapy is common, ...
April 24th, 2023
Stress Protective Habits
In America’s modern hustle culture, the baseline has become stress. People might not always use the word stressed. They instead say they are so busy, they haven't slept in days, or quote a 60+ hour work week. All of this adds up to the same thing: I’m stressed, I’m run down, I’m lonely and I’m not sure how long I can keep this up because important things like ...
March 28th, 2023
Burnout has become familiar in today’s hustle culture. If you are unfamiliar with the word, you’ve likely felt it or something similar after a deadline, project, or busy season. For those struggling with burnout, the short breaks are not enough. Instead of feeling rejuvenated and ready to return to their routine, individuals with burnout might feel dread or resentment at returning to work or parenting. These thoughts and ...
December 5th, 2022
Introducing Our New Careers Newsletter: Career Talk, Therapy Austin
Check out the first edition of our careers-focused monthly newsletter that went out at the beginning of December 2022. Find a link below to sign up for the newsletter, or head to our careers page to learn more about joining the Therapy Austin team.
Howdy and welcome to the inaugural edition of Career Talk, Therapy Austin! We’re launching this monthly(-ish!) newsletter to help you stay abreast of all ...
October 7th, 2022
10 Years of Therapy Austin
Celebrating a Milestone!
Therapy Austin opened in 2012 with a mission to provide outstanding training to counselors so that our clients would receive excellent services. In ten years, we’ve grown from three therapists to a hundred, filled up five locations serving clients seven days a week from early to late, and developed a matching system and level of responsiveness that is unmatched in our community.
Today, over half of our ...
May 24th, 2021
From Languishing to Flourishing
A few weeks ago, the New York Times published an article about the feeling of “blah” people are experiencing during the pandemic, which they attributed to languishing. A few days later, a sister article discussed moving from languishing to flourishing and offered coping skills.
While many things can contribute to a feeling of languishing (some of them are systemic and not a matter of individual responsibility to overcome) the ...
April 22nd, 2021
More to Diversity than Meets the Eye
April is #DiversityAwarenessMonth, but more than awareness, we believe it’s important to talk about true diversity, which offers support, equity, and if necessary, repair. Just bringing in folks from different backgrounds, and doing nothing else to change the systems that created homogeneity in the first place, is at best, cosmetic, and at worst, harmful....
March 10th, 2021
Whether You're a Royal or a Regular Jo/Joe
You Deserve to Be Seen, Be Heard, and Get Help!
During #WomensHistoryMonth, it feels important to talk about a woman who has been in the news prominently over the last week. Meghan Markle has spoken publicly about her need for support, and her suicidality. No matter who you are, these are deeply personal and difficult issues to navigate. We hope that hearing Meghan speak about her troubles encourages other folks to share their struggles and to seek help....
February 14th, 2021
"The True Hard Work of Love and Relationships"
Krista Tippett's Interview with Alain de Botton
Valentine’s Day in a pandemic has even more potential to be fraught with challenges than usual. Some of you may be struggling to find ways to make new romantic connections during this time, and some may be feeling the frayed nerves of TOO. MUCH. CONNECTION. ALL. THE. TIME. Still others may be put off by the holiday—or by the idea of love—altogether. No matter what camp you’re in ...
November 5th, 2020
Need some stress relief?
In this strange time as we await the results to the U.S. presidential election, it's more important than ever to take care of yourselves! Need ideas of what could be helpful?
If you are longing for a wider sense of community, The Center for Mindful Self-Compassion is hosting free "United in Self-Compassion" group meditations. You can sign up here. Humans aren't built to go through stress alone. Be sure ...
June 22nd, 2020
Left-Brain Buddha's "Mindful Summer Bucket List"
The summer of 2020 is proving to be very different than usual. With vacations hit or miss, pool parties on hold, and heat waves still abounding, it's a good time to step back and tune in with yourself with some self-compassion. Check out this "Mindful Summer Bucket List" from the blog Left-Brain Buddha. Here's a sampling of the ideas:
Eat an entire meal in silence — pay attention to ...
June 12th, 2020
Our Promise to Our Community
As the pain and rage from centuries of racist-driven violence gushes out of every corner of our county, our hearts are breaking. It’s not enough to say “We stand with you,” to our counselors and clients who suffer aggression and oppression stemming from racist minds, privileged bias, and structural discrimination.
We want to be real.
We want to be open.
We want to create safety for our counselors and provide that ...
June 2nd, 2020
Mindfulness Monday: 5 Senses Game
Welcome to our Mindfulness Monday series where we learn tips for grounding and mindfulness from Therapy Austin therapists.
Join our counselor Molly Mayberry, LCSW, practice the 5 Senses Game. This grounding exercise is a great way to regulate yourself and bring yourself back into the present when you feel out of control.
May 1st, 2020
Ted-Ed Mental Health Awareness Video Playlist
May is Mental Health Awareness Month! TED-Ed offers videos on all sorts of scientific ideas, including some engaging and enlightening ones on mental health, which are helpfully cataloged into a mental health awareness playlist. Check out this brief video that explains how some traumas lead to the ongoing physical and emotional symptoms that we call Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. If you're into psychoed, you might end up deep diving into the ...
March 22nd, 2020
Soothing Your Mind During a Pandemic
World, we are going through a really rough time right now. There are so many things to worry about, and so many great, big unknowns. It's at times like this that we have a keen sense of something that is actually always true—there is very little that we are in control of! This graphic from The Counseling Teacher Brandy and Carrie Stephens Art reminds us that it's okay to ...
February 14th, 2020
Podcasts and Audiobooks for Livin' & Lovin' in 2020
February always seems to arrive with chocolate-coated advice on how to have more steamy romances. Are you looking for something deeper that will bring insights into your relationships, past, present, and future? The staff of Therapy Austin has some recommendations! Check out these tried-and-true podcasts and audiobooks handpicked by our counselors to help you learn about healthy relationships, attachment styles, and connection.
Therapist Uncensored: Podcast hosted by local ...
January 8th, 2020
"...But, Have You Considered Therapy?"
Today’s resource comes from our own Melanie Dyer. She hosts a podcast in which she interviews people and mental health professionals about their experiences in therapy, or their experience as a therapist. It's called ...But, Have You Considered Therapy? Mel shared, "The entire point of the podcast is to make going to therapy less scary by normalizing it, talking about it, and helping people learn about different kinds of therapy ...
December 10th, 2019
Science-Based Sleep Tools
From Psychology Today
Psychology Today article The New Science of Sleep offers helpful tips on getting into a sleep routine and normalizes some of the common sleep issues that people experience in our busy, modern, and often dysregulating society. This article on sleep hygiene provides helpful psycho-education purposes and can be used to cultivate healthy sleep practices that in turn help regulate mood.
This Resource Rec was brought to you by Emily Bray, ...
November 12th, 2019
Trans Wellness Local Resource Guide
The Trans Resource Guide for Austin and Central Texas was published by Transgender Wellness, a program of OutYouth, in October. We wanted to share it because it includes recommendations for mental health, medical, social and legal services from people in the trans community who have received these services and people who are knowledgeable about culturally-competent providers. Please use it and share it with others who might benefit from these ...
October 2nd, 2019
What Does it Mean to Love Yourself?
We hear the phrase “self care” thrown around a lot. Often in our culture, it’s mentioned in conjunction with numbing out behaviors like drinking or binge-watching Netflix, or with the beauty industry activities such as face masks, mani/pedis, and bubble baths. There’s a time and place for activities like this, and they can certainly bring about relaxation and stress relief. Yet sometimes they come with a cost—a Netflix ...
July 22nd, 2019
Polyvagal Theory and Intimate Relationships
In this video from PsychAlive.org, Dr. Stephen Porges discusses how polyvagal theory is involved in forming romantic relationships. (If you haven’t heard of polyvagal theory yet, start here.) The formation of safe, healthy, successful romantic relationships works a little like a combination lock that takes a specific order of code to unlock it. The first step of the code is the activation of the social ...
June 7th, 2019
Viva Las Vagus Nerve!
A Polyvagal Primer
Have you ever heard of the vagus nerve? Maybe or maybe not, but no matter: If you have a breath and a heartbeat, this nerve is doing some heavy lifting for you every day.
The vagus nerve is the 10th cranial nerve. Its name means “wandering” in Latin, and it takes a long, meandering journey throughout the body. It starts in the medulla oblongata—the low brain—just behind the earlobes, ...
April 30th, 2019
It Doesn't Take Long to Shift Thought Patterns Toward Happiness
Happiness researcher Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage and Big Potential, contends that making small changes in our daily routines can transform our thought patterns, yielding greater life satisfaction and meaning. It only takes 21 days—three weeks of daily practice—for a new activity to become habit, Achor shares in an interview on the 10% Happier podcast. He identifies five evidence-based daily activities that can quickly increase gratitude, meaning, ...
March 5th, 2019
High Functioning Autism (AKA Asperger's) Part 2
In Part One of the High Functioning Autism (aka Asperger’s) blog series, we explored the unique strengths and common traits of the Asperger’s brain setup.
In this post, we will continue to celebrate neurodiversity (which is the idea that we all have neurological differences in how we think and learn) by sharing some of my favorite books on Asperger’s.
An important key to success for many people with Asperger’s is ...
February 4th, 2019
High Functioning Autism (AKA Asperger's) Part 1
A Brain Setup With Many Strengths
We know that everyone is different, and science shows us that everyone’s brains are different too—in how they process information and how they function in work, school and relationships.
The What is Asperger’s? Information Sheet below is intended to celebrate some of the differences—especially the unique strengths and abilities—commonly found in people with High Functioning Autism (also known as Asperger’s).
WHAT IS ASPERGER’S?
It can be helpful to think of High Functioning Autism, ...
November 20th, 2018
Surviving The Holidays
'Tis the season for hustle and bustle, friends and family, presents and treats—and for loneliness, family conflict, budget crunch, and social anxiety. Do you ever struggle with how to handle the "most wonderful time of the year"?
First, know that you are not alone. Difficult family dynamics, grief and loss, and memories of past stressful events come up for many people at this time of year, and may be ...
November 10th, 2018
Gratitude in a Season of Darkness and Light
Daylight Savings is done, the sky grows dark, and yet it is also a season of celebrating light and giving thanks. In India and Nepal, November 7 marks the beginning of Hindu celebration of Diwali, the joyful festival of lights, symbolizing the victory of light over darkness. In Thailand, Yi Ping, a celebration of the full moon, will take place November 22, with the launch of thousands sky ...
April 27th, 2018
Counselor Spotlight: Sarah Akunebu
Welcome to the Counselor Spotlight series, where clinicians at Therapy Austin share what inspires them, how they take care of themselves, and what influenced them to work in this field. First up we have the brave Sarah Akunebu. Enjoy!
For Sarah Akunebu, showing up as a professional counselor is important, but she also places great emphasis on being her most authentic self while doing healing work. She laughed, “I’m ...
December 15th, 2017
The Gift of Receiving
“I want to learn how to be the best receiver that I can ever be. Because I think graceful receiving is one of the most wonderful gifts we can give anybody. If we receive what somebody gives us in a graceful way, we’ve given that person a wonderful gift. ” — Fred Rogers
When was the last time you really received something? And I mean that in the truest sense ...
October 3rd, 2017
Keeping a Pillow Book
Is there any form of writing more overlooked and disposable than the list? Perhaps cereal box copy or graffiti. Fleetingly relevant, the list is written to be scrapped. Yet, astonishingly, the lists of one Japanese noblewoman have endured for a thousand years. While serving as a lady-in-waiting, Sei Shōnagon famously compiled a loose collection of musings and narratives in list form known as The Pillow Book.
We associate lists ...
September 14th, 2017
Living with Loss: The Value of Grief
I wondered if this was a helpful time to write a blog about loss, being at the tail end of our sunny Texas summer and months away from the holidays. However, I quickly remembered the heart of the message I want to convey in this piece; that being human is an inherently vulnerable experience, and loss is an inevitable part of being alive, no matter the season.
The ability ...
August 30th, 2017
Look for the Helpers
We know many of you have friends or family impacted by Hurricane Harvey. It can be frightening and overwhelming to see the news about the destruction happening across the Texas coast. In scary times like these, it can be helpful to do what Mr. Rogers suggested and look for the helpers. Wherever there are disasters, there are also good-hearted people who do their very best to provide aid. ...
July 5th, 2017
Changed for Good
A Love Letter to My Clients
Don't worry, neither of us is the good witch or wicked witch. We contain both sides--just like Glinda and Elphaba.
I know, I know, I know. Just the title of this post sounds a little too mushy to keep reading. But this is the FEELINGS business, people! And so I’d like to discuss one of the feelings that comes up often in the therapist-client relationship – L.O.V.E.
One of ...
June 5th, 2017
Trust Your Process
In Praise of Slow Growth
One of my favorite movie scenes is from Good Will Hunting. After only a few months of therapy, Will, the main character, has a major breakthrough in his therapist’s office. Then, he weeps into his therapist’s arms, he walks out the door a changed man, and changes his life.
It’s such a moving scene. We’ve been rooting for his character, and it’s touching to see him transform and live ...
March 31st, 2017
The Sensation-Emotion Highway in Highly Sensitive Persons
Maybe you remember hearing it on the playground. “Stop being a baby.” Or after crying at work. “You need to learn how to not be so sensitive.” Undoubtedly, you’ve seen the debates in opinion columns. “Was everyone this sensitive before the internet?”
There is no shortage of cultural messaging that equates sensitivity with weakness. But it turns out, all humans are sensitive in that we all experience the world ...
February 10th, 2017
There's No I or You in Team
"HUMAN BEINGS ARE INHERENTLY RELATIONAL AND RELATIONALLY DEPENDENT” -HARVILLE HENDRIX, FOREWORD IN WIRED FOR LOVE
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and although many brush off the holiday as a Hallmark holiday, there are also those with high expectations for this special day. The expectation might be that your partner remembers something you subtly or not so subtly hinted at six months ago or it might be that you ...
December 12th, 2016
A Light in the Dark
Finding Gratitude in Difficult Times
This isn’t a post on positive thinking, or how to find the silver lining in your heartbreak or crisis or tragedy.
I’m not saying that silver linings are nonexistent, but it’s certainly the last thing we want or need to hear when we are suffering.
This is a post on remembering the goodness life offers us, because you are inherently good and deserving of life’s goodness, no matter how ...
November 17th, 2016
Family Boundaries at the Holidays
How’s everybody feeling about Thanksgiving? Are you ready for some family bonding, planning to spend it with friends who make up your “chosen family,” or anticipating some time for solitude? Even without an election, the holiday season can bring up feelings of anxiousness, anger, fear and grief. This year as our country faces some major upheaval, I personally have been worried about the conflicts that might arise at ...
August 16th, 2016
Anger, and the Monsters Under our Bed
Anger gets a bad rap, and I don’t quite understand why. We’ve all heard that anger really only hurts us in the end, and that the first person to get angry loses the argument, and that we have two wolves inside us and we can’t feed the angry one.
Yeah, yeah. Sure. Those things are all probably true on some level.
But, humans have had anger as an emotion for ...
May 18th, 2016
On Fighting Sensitive Stigmas
When I was in grad school, we had to attend 10 therapy sessions of our own, because the best way to learn is to experience it for yourself. I remember very adamantly telling my counselor that I was in therapy because it was required for school, not because “anything is wrong.” And, because she was a great counselor, she gently called me out.
“It seems like it’s important to ...
January 27th, 2016
The Elusive Pack of 100 Colored Pencils
Why Do We Love Adult Coloring Books?
Coloring books are just about everywhere right now. If you didn't get one as a gift over the holidays, you've definitely seen them in Target or Barnes and Noble. Adult coloring books are so popular that they were partly responsible for a spike in printed media in 2015 in the US.
So what's the deal? Why are our grown-up friends and family members (not to mention our therapists!) curling ...
October 19th, 2015
The Beauty of Introversion
I’m standing in line at Strange Brew in South Austin last week, reading the board and trying to choose a sandwich to go with my latte. I’m looking forward to settling down for a few hours of research and catching up on paperwork. Before I’m ready, the barista calls me, never standing still as he flits between the register and the myriad other jobs he’s doing behind the ...
October 19th, 2015
Extroverts are Awesome
Born on the east-coast, transplanted to west-coast and now a “native” (hey, over 15 years, it counts!) Austinite, I had an interesting experience outside a subway station in Washington DC, several years ago. Loving the public transit option, I was caught off guard as I saw a mass of people heading towards me as they exited the Metro. My first thought was, “Now, how am I going to ...
September 4th, 2015
On Bean Clams and Existentialism
The beach is one of those go-to relaxing images for many of us. I don't know if I've ever seen a white-noise machine that didn't come with the sound of waves, or a laptop that was sold without a stock image of the beach as a screen-saver option.
I sat on the shore of Atlantic Beach, Florida last week and thought to myself that it's no wonder we use ...