Counseling and Therapy Notebook

Woman Wearing Brown Cardigan and Black Hat

Reparenting Yourself: Steps to a Kinder Inner Voice

Reparenting is a profound journey of self-healing and relearning, crucial for those who have endured emotional wounds or traumas in childhood. This process, central to our emotional development, involves revisiting and mending the scars left…
Man with Two Beautiful Women Outdoors.

Polyamory by Design: The Kitchen Table Approach

Today's relationship landscape is changing, moving away from traditional monogamy. Polyamory, where people engage in multiple consensual romantic or sexual relationships, offers a new path. It encourages connections, community, and mutual respect…
Sweet LGBT couple

How to Navigate Codependency in Relationships

Codependency in relationships is a term that describes a set of behaviors and dynamics where one person becomes emotionally reliant on another for validation, self-esteem, and identity.  It often involves one partner supporting the other's…
Vulnerability in relationships

Rebuilding Bonds: A Guide on How to Fix a Relationship

Life's most cherished treasures often require consistent care and attention to maintain their luster – and relationships are no exception. Think about relationships as the stories we weave together with the people we care about. Just as every…
month of Pride

The Rainbow Revolution: A History of Pride Month

Pride Month, an annual commemoration revered by the LGBTQ+ community and allies alike, stands as a testament to the remarkable progress achieved in the pursuit of equality and the unwavering determination to break free from the shackles of discrimination.…
Day of Silence

5 Things Everyone Should Know About the Day of Silence

The Day of Silence is a student-led national event that takes place in the United States to raise awareness about the bullying and harassment faced by LGBTQ+ students. On this day, participants take a vow of silence to represent the silencing…
couple drinking coffee

How to Build Boundaries for a Healthy Relationship

Romantic partners often struggle with an essential element: setting boundaries. Relationship boundaries can be difficult to establish and carry out. Social conditioning, not having the necessary knowledge, or worrying about the other person’s…
group of friends looking towards the horizon

How to Make Friends as an Adult: Tips and Strategies

Did you know there’s a scientific reason why most of us struggle to make friends as adults? Many of us find it challenging to open up and connect with someone right off the bat. However, this doesn't stop us from looking for ways to make…
couple kissing at sunset

Love Chemistry: The Science Behind Attraction

Love is often thought of as a mysterious phenomenon that cannot be boiled down to just one definition. The "invention" of love is often attributed to the 12th-century French poets who introduced 'l'amour courtois' (courtly love) to the world.…
Inclusive Fitness Culture

Creating an Inclusive Fitness Culture

Prefer to watch? Join me and Kel Haines, a bodybuilder, personal trainer, and trans man working hard to help LGBTQIA+ folks navigate the challenges of a cisgender-dominated fitness world. We discuss Kel’s journey and how he and others are…
The Dos and Don’ts of Dating Someone with Anxiety

The Dos and Don’ts of Dating Someone with Anxiety

Anxiety can impact a relationship in more than one way. People who experience anxiety disorders often tend to have a challenging time self-regulating, and they’re prone to other maladaptive behaviors like over-analyzing, always coming up with…
family with narcissistic mother

How a Narcissistic Parent Can Affect Your Mental Health

Narcissistic parenting is a form of parenting where the parent puts their own needs and desires above those of their child. Narcissistic parents tend to be highly controlling, overly critical, and demanding. They may also be emotionally distant,…
HIV Positive

Why HIV Support Groups Are Essential for Our Society

The AIDS pandemic has had a devastating effect on humanity, both physically and psychologically. It has killed more people than any other disease in history, and it is still killing people today. AIDS is a deadly, preventable disease caused…
woman with insomnia

How a Good Night’s Sleep Can Help with Anxiety

A good night's sleep is essential for our physical and mental health. Whether it's chronic anxiety or acute anxiety, the effects of anxiety on our sleep can be profound. In fact, anxiety is one of the most common reasons why people have difficulty…
three friends hugging

The 4 Attachment Styles: Do You Know Your Type?

Humans have been designed to be social beings. This means that we need, want, and long for connections with others. Some may say it's in our nature, while others will confirm our brain is wired this way. But what happens when we feel disconnected?…
trans flag
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Transgender Day of Remembrance – Explained

On November 20, 1998, Rita Hester, an African-American transgender woman, was murdered in her apartment in Boston. She was stabbed 20 times and was still breathing when the police found her. Tragically, she died the same day at the hospital.…
LGBTQ community

Why Do We Celebrate LGBTQ History Month in October

The LGBTQ community since the beginning has had to fight for their rights and visibility in America. And it hasn't always been easy. In fact, the LGBTQ community has had to fight for every inch of progress they've made. The origins of the…
lesbian couple looking into each other's eyes

Understanding the Aces and Aros Identities

Aromantic and Asexual are two terms that might be a little new to you, but they represent a broad spectrum of the LGBTQIA2S+community. Aromantics and Asexuals, or Aros & Aces, are individuals who do not experience romantic attraction/desire…
LGBT couple hugging

Gender, Sexuality, and Religion Can They Co-Exist?

Prefer to watch? Below is the full interview with special guest Dr. Marie Fang. Dr. Fang is a clinical psychologist in San Diego passionate about empowering folks who are often misunderstood or marginalized by the church. She loves helping folks…
couple who love each other holding hands

How to Work Through Your Fear of Emotional Intimacy

We often think of intimacy as physical closeness, but it goes much deeper than that. Emotional intimacy is about sharing your innermost thoughts, feelings, and experiences with someone else and being able to be vulnerable without fear of…
intersex flag
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Why We Should All Learn About Intersex

You might know that the I in LGBTQIA2S+ stands for intersex, but you may not know very much about the experience of individuals who are intersex. You might not even be sure what the definition of the term intersex is, and while it is easy to…
A woman making a heart shape with her hands.

The Continuous Struggles of the Two-Spirit People

In many Indigenous and Native communities and traditions, there were folks welcomed and celebrated for being Two-Spirit people. Native people and tribal communities considered Two-Spirit individuals to be divine. Indigenous cultures saw Two-Spirit…
Trans Pride
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Trans* Pride Los Angeles 2022

Trans* Pride Los Angeles (transpride.lalgbtcenter.org) is an annual event that celebrates the diversity and strength of the TGI/ENBY+ community. It is always a joy and privilege to attend this exuberant and colorful event that promotes a world…
burnout

The Warning Signs of Burnout & How to Prevent It

We keep hearing about the dangers of work-related stress and the importance of work-life balance. However, many of us struggle to participate in self-compassion and self-care. We struggle with “taking care of our needs.” High achievers,…
LGBTQ Pride Parades
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Why Are LGBTQ Pride Parades Important?

LGBTQ Pride Parade, also known as Gay Pride parades, events, and festivals take over the United States during the month of June. Colorful floats, participants, and a plethora of fun activities and workshops accompany what we know now as the…
Tolerance

How to Expand Your Window of Tolerance

"Window of tolerance" is a term introduced by Dr. Dan Siegel in his book, The Developing Mind. The term is now commonly used to define and understand the zone of arousal of individuals where the brain functions normally and the body reacts healthily…
Polyamory

What Is Polyamory: Rules and Challenges

As our society evolves and understands that behind the concept of awakening hides, in fact, our truth and the only path to mental health, more and more people dare to share their stories. Stories that shatter prejudice and stomp over social…
grief

How to Deal with Grief: The Grieving Process Explained

Grief is a natural part of life and loss, which can affect many aspects of life. Understanding grief and the grieving process can help you cope with grief in a healthy and sustainable way. What Is Grief? Grief is your natural response to loss…
therapy session

How to Find an Inclusive Therapist Who Gets You

Mental illness does not discriminate. Unfortunately, some therapists do. Finding an inclusive therapist is often a daunting mission for marginalized individuals struggling with mental health issues caused by racism, sexism, homophobia, or transphobia.…
Support a friend

How To Help a Friend with Depression

Depression is a serious mental health condition that may affect anyone at some point in their life. It doesn’t discriminate and has no favorites. It can affect young and old people, and no one is really immune to its symptoms. However, depression…
Managing Mental Health During the Holidays

Managing Mental Health During the Holidays

Often the holiday season is seen as a wonderful time of the year, however that doesn't have the same joyous impact on everyone. People struggling with mental health issues and unaccepting families may find the holiday season quite difficult…
progressive flag

Cultures With Multiple Genders Around the World

The concept of gender identity refers to how individuals perceive themselves, how they express themselves, and what terms they use to identify themselves. An individual in our society can identify as male, female, both, neither, or something…
Gender Pronouns

Gender Pronouns in Social Media

Our world is incredibly diverse. No two humans are alike, and we do, after all, refer to each of us as individuals because we are unique! And this is a wonderful thing. Limiting this extraordinary world of uniqueness and individuality into only…
Trauma

What is Trauma-Informed Care?

As current generations open the dialogue about mental health issues, the word trauma keeps popping up in conversations. We keep hearing it so often that, I'm concerned at some point, most people will get used to it and trivialize it. We should…
Long Beach Trans Pride Ceremony
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Long Beach Trans Pride Festival

This past weekend, on September 18th, I had the privilege of attending the Long Beach Trans Pride Festival. I wanted to take a moment to share a little about the event and why it's so important to me. As you know, I'm an LGBTQIA+ affirmative…
Girl taking deep breaths

Deep Breathing Benefits & Exercises

“Take a deep breath!” How many times have you heard this whenever you were feeling anxious, stressed, worried, or even annoyed. So many people around us encourage us to take deep breaths, but why? Why is deep breathing important for our…
Paying for HIV Care

How to Pay for HIV Care in California

Prefer to watch? Below is the full interview with special guest Ernesto Ayala that served as the original inspiration for this article. Access and adherence to medication also known as antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV/AIDS has allowed…
telehealth phone

What is a Telehealth Visit and How to Prepare

Many of us dread going to medical offices. It may not be the medical consultation per se but rather the traffic we have to face to get there, the nuisance of finding a parking spot and sitting in a waiting room next to other people. Often when…
woman exercising
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Exercise and Mental Health – Just the Facts

You already know exercise is good for your physical health. The numerous benefits of exercise have been praised for decades now. It helps you burn calories and stay fit, protects your heart health, and improves your quality of life. But did…
What is LGBTQ Affirmative Therapy?

LGBTQ Affirmative Therapy – Be Who You Are

In a world where heteronormativity, prejudice, and harassment continue to run rampant against the LGBTQ community, meeting with an LGBTQ affirmative therapist is imperative. An LGBTQ affirmative counselor can provide the tools for unpacking…
Girl on Rock with High Self Esteem

7 Most Effective Self-Esteem Tools and Practices

While the belief that we can achieve anything we set our mind to is not enough to fulfill all our dreams, it is one of the important factors that contribute to healthy self-esteem. The luckiest among us are taught by our parents to believe in…
Psychologist having session with patient

What to Expect from Counseling

Therapy, also called counseling or psychotherapy, is a journey. And like all the other journeys it can feel like an incursion into the unknown. The goal of therapy is aimed at decreasing overall emotional stress and other factors that may interfere…
Self-Care
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5 Self-Care Activities To Do At Home

We were taught to be kind to others, turn the other cheek, and work hard. Helping others has always been seen as a noble and praiseworthy thing to do. The thought of putting oneself first was unbearable for many and an act of selfishness for…
Girl with emotional trauma

Emotional and Psychological Trauma

Studies show that about 60% of the US population has reported experiencing at least one trauma symptom in their lifetime. The good news is that this is not a permanent condition, there are effective treatments! Read on to learn more. What is…
Man watching sunset
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Your Guide to Mindful Self-Compassion

What is Mindful Self-Compassion? Why do so many people stumble or struggle with being kind to themselves? Why is it often easier to be kind to others and not to ourselves? A common fear around self-compassion is that it’s merely a form of…