Alden Carroll, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, has been in the mental health field for 18 years, and has worked with clients of all ages and from diverse backgrounds and cultures. Before entering private practice, she provided counseling services in a variety of settings, including non-profit outpatient clinics (La Frontera, Jewish Family Children’s Services, and The International Rescue Committee), the VA hospital, and residential treatments centers. Most recently, she worked as an EMDR trauma therapist at Sierra Tucson Residential Treatment Center.

Since 2006, she has also offered trainings, groups, and consultation to therapists, treatment center residents, clients, and community members on a variety of mental health topics, including stress management, trauma treatment, and EMDR for children. She currently offers trainings in the community about self-care and stress management approaches.

Simple self-care practices

Take care of your mind:

1. Mind your thoughts

Watch your thoughts and notice if they are positive or negative. If they are negative, especially about yourself, try to create positive alternatives. Ask if the negative thought is 100% true. 95% of the time negative thoughts aren’t 100% true.

2. Write

Journal about your feelings to lighten your burdens.

3. Pat yourself on the back

Give yourself credit for all you do. Notice how it feels when you have completed a task.

4. Express your feelings

If you have feelings you need to process, reach out to loved ones you can talk to about what’s going on. Find a good therapist to provide you support so you can focus on your healing.

5. Connect to positive emotions

Think of things that help you feel peaceful, comfortable, happy, proud, loving etc.

Writing them down helps.

6. Decide differently

Listen to your heart and intuition instead relying only on logic and reason.

7. Focus on the positive

Create a file of helpful thoughts and compliments. Have loved ones help if needed, and read it during the week.

8. Remember that it’s not permanent

Challenging situations and stress are not permanent. This too shall pass.

9. Practice compassion

Be kind to yourself and others. We are often our own biggest critics, so invite in some self compassion.

10. Read or listen to uplifting material

Read positive books or articles. Listen to TED talks or different motivational speakers that you can be inspired by. Listen to soothing music.

For more information, visit Alden's website, www.aldencarrollcounseling.com