The Mantra Helping Me Deal with Anxiety Over Becoming a First-Time Mom

The Mantra Helping Me Deal with Anxiety Over Becoming a First-Time Mom.jpeg

By Kate Kole

Without ever labeling it, I began struggling with anxiety in college. It was the first time in my life that I was overcome with a desire, which felt more like a need, to be perfect. I hit the gym at 6 am for the perfect body, and I studied like crazy for perfect grades. It became an almost addictive pattern. The more control I felt I had, the more control I craved.

And so, it didn’t stop with graduation. It only intensified. I had all the classic symptoms that came with it: excessive worry, trouble sleeping, stomach issues, and a lot of inexplicable sweaty panic. But I justified my anxiety as a good thing. Because as much as it destroyed me, I’d convinced myself that it simultaneously drove me to be my best. Until it didn’t. Continue reading

When the Holidays Bring More Pain than Joy

By Cece Flores

The holiday season is one that brings images of togetherness, comfort and joy to mind…depending on whose mind you’re examining. For some of us, the seemingly immediate jump from Halloween to Christmas feels like someone stomped on the panic button in our brains. The transition is so quick it can feel subtly violent, like a month of your time has just been erased from your life. Why do we Eternal Sunshine the month of November? Not cool.
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Blowing My Own Cover

Blowing My Own Cover

By Kate Kole

Growing up, I struggled to learn math. From long division in elementary school to algebra in high school, I had to work relentlessly to comprehend equations and formulas. I went in early, met with my teachers during lunchtime, and often stayed late to receive the extra help I needed. Even after getting loads of specialized one-on-one attention, math still felt difficult.

My struggle frustrated me. I spent hours in my bedroom at home, textbook open, tears welling up in my eyes, overcome by the feeling that I was failing. It came so much easier to my classmates, and in comparison, I felt like I was lacking some essential book smart gene. Continue reading

Self-Care Is An Inside Job

Self-Care Is An Inside Job

By Catherine Miele

Nowadays, “self-care” is as ubiquitous as gym selfies and Instagram-worthy slices of avocado toast.

That is to say, self-care is everywhere.

As the wife of a licensed professional counselor and as somebody who lives with my own mental health issues, I believe that practicing self-care is a critical component to living a well-balanced life.

But are we taking the concept of self-care too far? Are we misunderstanding what it means to care for ourselves deeply and compassionately? Continue reading

How Meditation Has Changed My Life

Meditation

By Kristina Baltutis

Recently, my partner and I went on a two night camping trip with our dogs. The second morning, I was lying on a picnic table, looking up at the trees, and pondering the irony that this place was a beautiful spot to meditate, but I hadn’t stopped to meditate once. Letting out a wistful sigh, I commented as such to my partner.

You’ve been on vacation relaxing, I think you’ll be fine,” he responded.

Looking back on it now, his response doesn’t seem that absurd. He’s seen me meditating, and since we hadn’t talked about it, how would he know that within my quiet outward appearance, my mind is always a swirling war of distraction. But in the moment, I was very confused because his response didn’t make any sense. To me, relaxation and meditation are barely related. They’re more like distant cousins who occasionally see each other at Thanksgiving dinner. After a few moments of staring at him in confusion, my mind landed on the stunning conclusion: He has no idea why I meditate. Continue reading

5 Simple Ways to Be Kind To Yourself in 2017

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By Christine McLean

Life can be a b*tch. One minute you’re up, the next you’re down. It’s a rollercoaster ride that you never really signed up for. You have two choices: enjoy the ride, or grip on for dear life hoping that the ride will end safely. Let 2017 be the year when you choose to enjoy the ride. You only live once, and life will pass you by if you don’t loosen the grip a bit. Here are five ways to be kinder to yourself in the coming year. Continue reading

Addressing My Addiction To Anxiety

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By Julie Winsel

So much of my anxiety revolves around fear. Fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of people finding out about my failures (linked to fear of rejection). But I also fear the anxiety itself and what it could or has already done to me or my relationships. My depression, in conjunction with this fear, leaves me unmotivated to face these fears and, in fact, makes them into reality. Continue reading

George Michael’s Death Made Me Come Out

coming-out

By Cece Flores

For as long as I can remember, Last Christmas has been my favourite Christmas song (yes it’s a Christmas song, that’s not up for debate because the word is right in the title). I don’t know what to tell you, I’m extremely emo and love a good falsetto. But more than just for the fact that it’s a poignant ballad about a holiday that always makes me feel alone, it meant a lot to me because George Michael wrote it.

I put myself onto George Michael after watching him perform Somebody To Love at a tribute concert for Freddie Mercury, my hero. I remember sitting there in complete awe hearing him crush those vocals, something I was sure no one was going to be able to do. That performance was only the beginning of my love and appreciation for George. Continue reading