It’s already half-way through Pride Month! We wanted to take the opportunity to highlight some of the upcoming events happening in our community, share some resources, and talk about UIC’s commitment to providing a safe space for all. Pride Month recognizes the impact LGBTQ2S+ individuals have had locally and across the globe. It means many different things to people, it can be a celebration, but also a time of mourning and activism.
It seems that most people recognize gratitude as generally positive. However, not everyone may be aware of how gratitude is associated with happiness, or how gratitude can be intentionally cultivated. Fewer still, are likely to engage in regular gratitude practices. Hopefully, the following information can help change that in a beneficial way for you!
I have no doubt that over the past 2 years of living with Covid-19, feelings of fear and anxiety have surfaced for most of us. Sometimes these feelings can be overcome by anger, a natural response to a perceived threat. When anger takes over, our ability to reason and think logically decrease, while our instinctual motivation toward action can lead to confrontation.
Through the past couple of years stress has been accumulating for many of us and our strategies for coping have been limited. Planning social time is difficult when the weather doesn’t accommodate outside gatherings and limitations are required for meeting indoors.
Do you engage with news and/or social media on a regular basis? If so, have you ever noticed yourself feeling angry or anxious after watching, reading or listening to the news? Or have you ever noticed yourself feeling inadequate, depressed or outraged after scrolling through your social media feed? If so, you are not alone.
Understanding, patience and kindness. These are three simple modes of relating to ourselves and others that can be especially valuable in stressful times. Unfortunately, stressful times are also when these virtues can be most difficult to conjure up.
Increasing our ability to be mindful throughout our day-to-day lives is extremely beneficial. Research into mindfulness has shown that there are many benefits that can result from a regular mindfulness practice. These include reductions in stress, anxiety and depression, among others. One way to understand how mindfulness is helpful is to learn about how it can change our relationship with our thoughts.
A stressor refers to something in the environment that evokes an internal stress response. This environmental stressor could be something that poses a threat or challenge to your health, family, finances, schedule, or routine. When a stress response shows up it can be acute and intense or chronic. Your personal stress response is a dynamic process influenced by many variables including; coping style, support system, previous exposure to the stressor, underlying mental health concerns, personality traits, and cultural or systemic pressures.
What do you think of when you imagine a boundary? A gentle stream meandering through two fields; a fortress wall guarded by armed soldiers? A boundary at its most basic can be described as a dividing line. When we consider boundaries in relationships it can feel more unclear. When I experience feelings of discomfort, resentment, or guilt, they provide a clue that a boundary has been crossed, even if I didn’t realize it was there.
What do you do in life when you’ve tried all “the things” – the strategies, the suggestions, the desperate measures – but nothing seems to work. I feel like I face this challenge daily in parenting (more often than not), at least with my oldest child. I’ve read all the books, scoured all the journal articles, talked to all the experts (wait, aren’t I an “expert”?), and still I come up short. When all else fails, and I feel close to ready to rip my hair out, here are my fail-safe, back-to-basics approaches: