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Welcome to the blog site for Destination Greatness! Destination Greatness is a mental health and substance abuse psychotherapy agency dedicated to assisting individuals and families in maximizing their level of functioning on all life domains in pursuit of Greatness.

Destination Greatness provides individuals and families with the opportunity to live more fulfilling and meaningful lives.

Destination Greatness strives to enrich each individual and family through greater self-awareness, focus on strengths, and belief in a greater destiny.

 

 

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The Powerful Black Women: Part 3

Yanla Vansant

Part 1 of this discussion of Guilt and Shame concentrated on reasons why women harbor guilt and shame which included: Past Experiences of Abuse or Trauma; Feelings that she has to be all things for everyone; and being Physically and Mentally oppressed.  These reasons keep women trapped which will ultimately jeopardize her health.

Still I Rise

Part 2 of this discussion was reasons to Let Go of Guilt and Shame that increases the risk for women to experience morbidity problems of: Anxiety; Depressed Moods; Self-loathing.  Holding on to guilt and shame can cause unwanted health concerns.  Guilt and Shame may appear that she is barring all things and keeping it all together to the outside world, but all the while jeopardizing her physical and mental health.

Finally Part 3: The Break-Through

There is a Misconception of Black Women that states:  To be Strong Black women suggests a superhuman trait rendering Black women capable and obligated to take on and handle all the burdens of the world (Walton & Oyewuwo-Gassikia, 2017).

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Strong Black women have gone through some stuff…

 The Powerful Black Woman

  • Recognizes that she has limits:
    • May not have the answers, out of control, emotionally spent, and powerless;
  • Recognizes when to solicit help from others:
    • Enlists a support system (family, friends, faith community, social resources);
  • Takes responsibility for her actions and completes the tasks:
    • Sets clear boundaries;
  • Finally, she shares her story!
    • Helping others by being transparent.

 

 

2 CORINTHIANS 13:9

We are glad whenever we are weak but you are strong;

and our prayer is that you may be fully restored.

 

Peace and Blessings!

By:  Kristen Pettaway, MA LPC Liberty University |

Clinical Case Manager Intern Destination Greatness, PLLC

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Office Sites

http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org

https://www.facebook.com/thedestinationgreatnessfoundation

 

 

 

References

Walton, Q. L., & Oyewuwo-Gassikia, O. B. (2017). The case for #blackgirlmagic: Application  of a strengths-based, intersectional practice framework for working with black women with depression. Journal of Women and Social Work, 32(4), 461-475. doi:10.1177/0886109917712213

7 Nuggets: Faith and Mental Health

Are your spiritual or religious beliefs hindering your mental well-being? For some, there seems to be a dichotomy between mental wellness and religion.  “Prayer changes everything.” “Mental illness manifests because of sin.” These prophecies will only further compound and complicate the real struggles that those whom live with mental health challenges experience.  Mental health challenges are just as real as physical health challenges.

Faith Without Works is Dead.

Churches and other places of worship should take a more prominent role in the discussion, advocacy, and action as it pertains to dismantling the mental health stigma. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), 1 in 4 Americans experience a mental illness. Thus, in any given congregation, you will have many that have experienced a mental health challenge.

A Candid Conversation

I recently had the opportunity to present on the topic “Faith and Mental Health” at Mt.Pisgah I.M.C. in Clyo, GA. Our candid conversation included a discussion of what mental health challenges are, what mental health challenges look like, and triggers of mental health challenges.

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Are you ready to commence the conversation on role of faith and the church in addressing mental health challenges?

7 Tips to Improve Your Faith and Mental Health

  1. Keep God first.
  2. Forgive yourself.
  3. Seek professional help.
  4. Make the decision to be happy.
  5. Engage in self-care.
  6. Never give up.
  7. Turn your pain into purpose.

Faith&MentalHealth

Professional Services

As a psychotherapist, I understand the many challenges those experiencing a mental illness encounter including shame, a lack of support, and denial. You are not alone.

Destination Greatness also offers convenient, confidential online and telephone therapy to residents of NC, SC, and GA. No insurance required. Limited office sessions available in Atlanta, GA and Greenville, SC.

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To arrange a confidential, online or telephone session, schedule your appointment online at http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org.  Or call 1-800-647-3345.

Testimonial

This young lady speaks from the heart and with God on her side. Give her your ear to receive a much needed word of encouragement.-Sebrena Holmes Gibson

For bookings, contact pr@shannajefferson.com.

Shanna A. Jefferson

Is Your Therapist Effective?

In an age where mental health awareness is at an all-time high, many still have questions about the topic. One of the most important parts of someone’s journey with mental illness, is a person’s counselor.

 

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Below is an excerpt from NAMI’s website about effective therapist and things to look for.

“Do They Guide You To Your Goals?

Be wary of any therapist who makes promises like: “I can get you to recovery in six months” or “I can help you get rid of your anxiety.” Therapists should guide you towards reaching your goals, not make guarantees about when and how you will reach them. How you improve should be at your own pace. Additionally, they are not there to set your goals for you. This is your treatment—you’re in the driver’s seat.

Do They Show Acceptance And Compassion?

It’s one thing for your therapist to show concern or recommend against certain behaviors, but you shouldn’t feel judged or ashamed after a therapy session. Christine, a young adult living with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), tells a story of when she felt shamed by a therapist:

“I went to a therapist to talk about a relationship I was having a hard time getting over. I told her I would do outlandish things to keep this relationship alive, even though this guy made it clear he wanted nothing to do with me. This therapist responded by saying, ‘Christine, men don’t like clingy women. You need to be coy and play hard-to-get.’ She completely invalidated that my fear of abandonment had been triggered; to her, this situation had nothing to do with BPD, I was just making myself too available.”

The most effective therapists make you feel accepted and validated, showing understanding and sympathy/empathy for whatever you’re going through. They will approach you with compassion and kindness, and build enough trust for you to share your darkest thoughts and memories with them.

Do They Challenge You?

It’s important to recognize that therapy is not synonymous with friendship. An effective therapist will challenge you and help you see things from a different perspective, even if it’s hard to hear. They will give you homework that you may not like. For example, when I feel anxious, my reaction is to try to get rid of that anxiety any way that I can. So, my therapist often tells me to “sit with anxiety, accept that anxiety has visited you and observe how you feel.” She pushes me out of my comfort zone to help me overcome my fears and work towards my goal of managing anxiety.”

 

The full article can be found at, https://www.nami.org/Blogs/NAMI-Blog/February-2018/How-Do-I-Know-if-My-Therapist-is-Effective.

 

Keep on, keeping on.

 

 

Katheryn Burton

Clemson University, BS Psychology ’18

Case Management Intern

Destination Greatness, PLLC

 

 

http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org/

 

 

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Finals Week and Mental Health: How to survive.

Being a student is stressful, many times students are juggling classes, extra-curricular activities, and jobs. The week after finals is always a time to stop and recollect for myself, as I know it is for others too. Sometimes juggling so many things, we forget to maintain our feelings and mental health during the semester, and especially during the last two weeks of a semester.

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I always tell myself how to stay stress free throughout the semester, but sometimes that is easier said than done. There are many ways one can maintain mental health. However, students differ from other people because we are usually on a tight budget, tight time frame, and most of the time you cannot just drop your school obligations and go for a spa weekend (regardless how much you want to procrastinate).

For students, simple things like making to do lists and taking naps are essential. Creating to do lists, will keep you on a schedule and keep your stress and anxiety levels down. Taking naps will ensure you are getting enough sleep, even when you pull three “all-nighters” a week.

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Students should call home to their family and friends. Even though you will be reunited with them soon, calling home will lower anxiety and stress levels for most students.

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Even though, as a student you cannot go on a weekend spa retreat, doing things like taking long showers and simple sugar scrubs will take your mind off school, grades, and everything else.

Though the fall semester has officially ended in many schools, remembering these tips for spring finals week will ensure that you are mentally prepared to do well on all your finals.

 

Keep on, keeping on.

 

 

Katheryn Burton

Clemson University, BS Psychology ’18

Case Management Intern

Destination Greatness, PLLC

 

About Destination Greatness

Destination Greatness is a mental health and substance abuse psychotherapy agency dedicated to assisting individuals and families in maximizing their level of functioning on all life domains in pursuit of Greatness. Destination Greatness provide individuals and families with the opportunity to live more fulfilling and meaningful lives. Destination Greatness strives to enrich each individual and family through greater self-awareness, focus on strengths, and belief in a greater destiny.

 

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http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org/

 

 

Healing Yourself of Shame

Everyone feels shame at some point in their lifetime. An essential part of shame,  is how you deal with it. Below is an excerpt from NAMI’s blog post, “How I Healed Myself Of Shame” by Beverly Engel.

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“I can’t remember a time when I didn’t feel shame. But I do have evidence that there was once a time when I was shame free. I have a photograph of me as a little baby, smiling with a twinkle in my eye. I look radiant and filled with joy. I have another photo of me at four years old, in which I am frowning, and I look defiant and lost. The twinkle in my eye has been replaced with a dark, empty look.

What had occurred that had taken away the joyous smile on my face and replaced it with darkness, emptiness and hatred?

The answer: shame. Shame replaced my innocence, my joy, my exuberance for life. Shame caused me to build a wall of protection and defiance. Who was I defending myself against? My mother, a woman who was so full of shame herself that she couldn’t help but project it onto me.

After being neglected and emotionally abused by my mother, sexually abused at nine and raped at twelve, I found myself riddled with shame and the belief that I was unlovable and rotten inside. I began acting out by shoplifting. I was angry at my mother, the men who had abused me and at all authority figures. I wanted to get back at everyone who had taken advantage of me. After I was finally caught and brought home in a cop car, my mother gave up on me.

Fortunately, I didn’t give up on myself. I knew there was goodness in me and I fought to find it. I turned to solitude and introspection and began to find the pieces of myself I discarded when trying to shield myself from further harm.”

The full article can be found at, https://www.nami.org/Blogs/NAMI-Blog/April-2018/How-I-Healed-Myself-of-Shame.

 

Keep on, keeping on.

Katheryn Burton

Clemson University, BS Psychology ’18

Case Management Intern

Destination Greatness, PLLC

About Destination Greatness

Destination Greatness is a mental health and substance abuse psychotherapy agency dedicated to assisting individuals and families in maximizing their level of functioning on all life domains in pursuit of Greatness. Destination Greatness provide individuals and families with the opportunity to live more fulfilling and meaningful lives. Destination Greatness strives to enrich each individual and family through greater self-awareness, focus on strengths, and belief in a greater destiny.

 

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http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org/

 

 

 

 

Mental Health and High School Students

There is no doubt that people who suffer from Mental Health issues, need extra support. Regardless if it comes from a parent, friend, sponsor, or teacher, just having one person to believe in you can drastically increase self-confidence. Increasing self-confidence will increase self-wellness over time.

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In particular, students need someone who is willing to call and check in on them once or twice a week at most. This is true for students of just about any age, but high school students in particular. High school can be a rough time and even harder for students who are suffering from mental illnesses that may or may not be diagnosed.phone.jpeg

 

By checking in on the student you are showing them they have someone who cares about them and that they are important to someone.

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Parents, make sure you talk to your kids about their mental wellness. Try to understand what they are going through, but also understand they may want to talk to someone other than you about issues related to mental health. Try to encourage them to make the best decisions for their lives. However, if they do not make the best decision, remember they are still your child and support them no matter what comes next.

 

Keep on, keeping on.

 

 

Katheryn Burton

Clemson University, BS Psychology ’18

Case Management Intern

Destination Greatness, PLLC

 

 

http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org/

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About Destination Greatness

Destination Greatness is a mental health and substance abuse psychotherapy agency dedicated to assisting individuals and families in maximizing their level of functioning on all life domains in pursuit of Greatness. Destination Greatness provide individuals and families with the opportunity to live more fulfilling and meaningful lives. Destination Greatness strives to enrich each individual and family through greater self-awareness, focus on strengths, and belief in a greater destiny.

 

 

 

 

 

Self- injury According to MHA

The topic of mental health in America can still be uncomfortable for many people. However, the topic of self-harming, seems to be even more uncomfortable for many Americans.

Below are some statistics and knowledge I felt many people can benefit from gaining, on the topic of self-harm. The full post of this information can be found at http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/self-injury.

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“Self-injury, also known as self-harm, self-mutilation, or self-abuse occurs when someone intentionally and repeatedly harms herself/himself in a way that is impulsive and not intended to be lethal.

The most common methods are:

  • Skin cutting (70-90%),
  • Head banging or hitting (21%-44%), and
  • Burning (15%-35%).

Other forms of self-injury include excessive scratching to the point of drawing blood, punching self or objects, infecting oneself, inserting objects into body openings, drinking something harmful (like bleach or detergent), and breaking bones purposefully. [1] Most individuals who engage in non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) hurt themselves in more than one way.

How Common is Self-Injury?

Research indicates that self-injury occurs in approximately as many as 4% of adults in the United States. Rates are higher among adolescents, who seem to be at an increased risk for self-injury, with approximately 15% of teens reporting some form of self-injury. Studies show an even higher risk for self-injury among college students, with rates ranging from 17%-35%. [2]

Why Do People Self-Injure?

People who self-injure commonly report they feel empty inside, over or under stimulated, unable to express their feelings, lonely, not understood by others and fearful of intimate relationships and adult responsibilities. Self-injury is their way to cope with or relieve painful or hard-to-express feelings, and is generally not a suicide attempt. But relief is temporary, and a self-destructive cycle often develops without proper treatment. Self-injury can also be a way to have control over your body when you can’t control anything else in your life. A lot of people who cut themselves also have an eating disorder.”

 

 

Hopefully, this information will educate you on a topic that so many people suffer from.

 

 

Keep on, keeping on.

 

 

Katheryn Burton

Clemson University, BS Psychology ’18

Case Management Intern

Destination Greatness, PLLC

 

 

http://www.destinationgreatnesspllc.org/

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About Destination Greatness

Destination Greatness is a mental health and substance abuse psychotherapy agency dedicated to assisting individuals and families in maximizing their level of functioning on all life domains in pursuit of Greatness. Destination Greatness provide individuals and families with the opportunity to live more fulfilling and meaningful lives. Destination Greatness strives to enrich each individual and family through greater self-awareness, focus on strengths, and belief in a greater destiny.