The beautiful Pacific Northwest summers are unrivaled and often a time when people come to therapy less often. With such gorgeous days to take advantage of, we often feel more energized and less distressed. With kids home from school, day trips and vacations to enjoy we also often find ourselves at home and available for appointments less often. Ahhh…the joys of summer!
Summer can be the perfect time to read material or practice skill building relating to the issues or concerns you have been working on. You can pick up a book, journal or workbook and put it back down at any time. Each of the therapists at Bluestone have contributed to the following reading list. See if any of them interest you and let us know if you would add any you have found particularly helpful.
Julie Hanson, Psy.D., LMHC Recommends:
Dr. Hanson is so grateful to a client for reminding her of this book. Healing From Trauma is written by a therapist, who is also a trauma survivor, for trauma survivors. This author did a wonderful job explaining the way traumatic experiences of all kinds impact us biologically, emotionally, cognitively, and interpersonally. There are question prompts and other suggestions by the author that can be helpful but should be considered only if you are far enough along in your recovery. Otherwise, save the exercises for when you can also meet with your therapist. Whether you do the exercises or not, this can be helpful for any trauma survivor.
Rather than shaming ourselves with judgments against our moral character, Dr. Hanson encourages her clients to understand their repetitive patterns in terms of habits. This can be difficult to accept as true. Reading this book will give you another perspective on how we form these habits and why they are so difficult to break. Based soundly in research about how and why habits (one’s we appreciate as well as ones we wish would go away) develop this book also gives sound suggestions on ways to change and then maintain new habits.
Veronica VanCouwenberghe, MA, LMHC, CMHS Recommends:
Raising kids today is not easy. Veronica recommends this book (either volume and workbook too) to help parents raising kids from toddlers to teens. Parents get help identifying their parenting and family values, how to coach more and preach less, and create greater family closeness by understanding their children’s behavior more.
Veronica also recommends reading, reading, reading with your children. Especially fun can be finding a series that is appropriate for your child’s age level, reading skill, and interests. Talking to your local children’s librarian or the children’s book department specialist at a book store can yield many ideas. Your child’s school teacher or school librarian can also be great resources.
Mysti Coccia-Eddy, MA, LMHC, CMHS Recommends:
This is a workbook I often recommend to clients as an adjunct to counseling. In this book, the “gremlin” is a metaphor used to help conceptualize the way in which we think and talk to ourselves that sabotages our progress or keeps us stuck in places we wish to move out of. Simply noticing, choosing and playing with options, and being in process are the main tenants of gremlin taming. Carson takes us through these with activities, case examples, interesting drawings and humorous anecdotes, which I find helpful when exploring what can be challenging territory.
In this book, Dr. Brown helps us explore the “shoulds”, and to uncover what our true values are. Oftentimes, the same things we view as “imperfections” can instead be viewed as strengths, and seeing them this way can lead us towards a fuller, more joyful existence. Dr. Brown leads the reader through a series of guideposts (such as “Cultivating Authenticity; Letting Go of What People Think”) towards living a wholehearted life.
Terri Buysse, Ph.D. Recommends:
This slim volume is perfect for all families with a new baby. Perinatal (pregnancy and postpartum) mood disorders are the most common complication of the transition to parenthood. This book outlines the risk factors, symptoms and treatment for women dealing with pregnancy or postpartum complications.
This book is available for free upon request through the Warmline: 888-404-7763 (PPMD). This line is sponsored by Postpartum Support International.
This is a different kind of parenting book. It examines how the psychological life of the parent affects the next generation, and what parents can do to facilitate healing in themselves and attachment with their children.