Thriving During Stressful Situations

How to manage stress

Your body feels tense, sleep is up and down, time feels like it is slipping and as soon as you feel like you have a bit of a footing on life, one more thing comes and demands your attention.

It’s hard to know what a social life looks like before COVID – but now?

It feels like survival is the only option. Thriving during stress appears to be a far-off, whimsical idea.

Well, if you somehow squeezed in the chance to read this – pause – resist the urge to skim through and think “that had some nice thoughts” and continue buzzing through your day.

Pause.

Close your eyes, if you’d like, and let yourself rest and notice all the ways in which your body and mind have been on overdrive.

As you observe the places where tension and tiredness is sitting – ask yourself how those parts of yourself have been serving you.

Are your muscles stiff and joints aching? Does your head feel like it’s swimming? Are you to the point it feels like your eyes want to close but they can’t? Does it feel like you are carrying more than you feel able? You’ve been giving so much of yourself that your body is starting to hold what you have not had time to process. Or maybe you feel if you slowed down you worry there is too much to process, and it’s easier to just keep going?

You don’t have to just “get by.” It’s time to ask for help and unburden yourself. Challenge the idea that there is nowhere to turn to. Question the thought that it’s not worth reflecting on the matters at hand. Ask yourself – is this sustainable? It’s time to move from “surviving” to thriving!

Here are some suggestions.

Turn towards your faith.

Maybe it’s been some time since you’ve felt connected to your faith or you’ve fallen away. You’re not alone! Many people fluctuate with their connection to their faith identity for many reasons. Here is a great book to look into on this: “It’s Not Supposed to Be this Way – Finding Unexpected Strength when Disappointments Leave You Shattered” by Lysa Terkeurst

Find a way to renew yourself.

Give yourself permission to care for yourself and your needs. It’s not selfish! If you ever have been on a plane, the flight attendants will inform you that in case of emergency, you need to put on your own oxygen mask before you help the person beside you. What is your best way to “get some oxygen,” so to speak? Is it a day trip to the beach or the mountains? Painting? Gardening? Building a puzzle while listening to your favorite music? Is there a way to build silence and rest into your day?

Ask for help.

Many people feel they have to endure trial alone – that what they are experiencing is “too much” or a “burden” for others. Others feel they will be judged and misunderstood. Not relying on others means spreading yourself thin and is a recipe for burnout. If this is true for you, please reach out. What does your support system look like? If you are not sure who to trust or are struggling to find healing, make an appointment with a counselor who seems like a good fit for your needs – that’s what counselors are here for!

You are not meant to go this alone. If you feel like you are trying to survive and are struggling to get by, know this – you are meant to thrive, even when times are stressful!

Jessica Block MA, NCC, LCMHCA

Is Your Family Struggling With Staying At Home? Family Therapy In Raleigh, NC Can Help

Family Therapy Raleigh

When will the coronavirus threat pass?

When can I safely make plans with my friends again?

How will the economy turnaround?

At this point, it seems like we have more questions than answers. There are so many unknowns as we continue to move through these challenging times. Lockdowns and regulations are starting to take an emotional toll on families. But even during these uncertain times, there are plenty of ways your family can move forward in positivity and strength.

Communication is Key

Being part of a family unit is hard and COVID-19 has made that strain even harder for some families. We are all imperfect individuals coming together trying to connect, engage, and balance multiple personalities, goals, dreams, demands, and constant changes. What we crave is connection, support, love, calm, and acceptance.

Some families are adjusting to telework and may find it difficult to get their work done due to lack of childcare, confined spaces, technological issues. Other families are struggling with lack of social freedom (especially in teens). We all have unique struggles as a family.

With all of these additional stressors, communication is more essential than ever! It helps provide clarity, respect, and understanding during these challenging times. Sometimes we miscommunicate. Other times we forget to say important things. Help your spouse and family members by communicating what’s important to you. And, on the flip side, don’t forget to listen to what’s important to them.

Anger Is A Secondary Emotion

Oftentimes kids will show anger on the outside, but on the inside, there is usually a lot of fear or sadness. All of the COVID-19 transitions and adjustments can add to the anger and confusion kids experience. At Foundations Family Therapy, we can help angry kids manage their behaviors, express their feelings in a healthy way, and increase
their communication. Your child is struggling right now. Child counseling at our Fuquay Varina our Raleigh counseling office can help.

How To Bridge The Distance Gap


Now, some families are separated from loved ones like grandparents because of COVID-19 safety regulations. Humans are wired for connection and affection making self-isolation and loneliness rising concerns. The good news is there are ways you can connect, communicate, and nurture relationships from miles away.

Our Family Therapists help families learn to communicate better and reconnect from near or far. We treat the entire family as a unit to help each person feel heard and valued within the family system. Through family counseling, you can move through these difficult times and come out on the other side even stronger as a family.

Above all, it’s important to remember that our current state is temporary. The world has gotten through pandemics before and sooner or later this too will pass. Find the good in each day and use this time of ‘togetherness’ to cultivate healthy, stronger relationships with those you love. We’re here to help strengthen your family unit so you can move forward in positivity and love.

How Christian Counseling Can Help You Overcome Fear

Fear and anxiety are real challenges in life.

Perhaps we face them now more than ever as we continue to live in uncertainty surrounding COVID-19. Sometimes, the thoughts in your head can be so overwhelming and disruptive that it’s hard to sleep at night. It seems like your mind is working in overdrive with no way to calm down.

This is what it’s like to live in fear.

How To Move Forward In Faith

Fear has a lot to do with perception. The Bible teaches us to develop courage and faith to allow us to embrace the unknown. As Dr. David Calvert, Pastor for Creative Arts at Grace Community Church in Angier, NC said,

“The gospel tells us of God’s overwhelming love for us, proved in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus – but sometimes we need help remembering God’s forgiveness and remembering God’s deep love.

Dr. David Calvert

A Christian therapist can help a client remember what is true in the gospel.

How Our Faith Impacts Counseling

Our faith influences our worldview. Therefore, we are open and honest about our beliefs as they influence how we understand healing, pain and hope. However, at Foundations Family Therapy we work with individuals with different perspectives and backgrounds.

“Many people are crippled by shame or the perceived inability to forgive themselves or others, and faith-based therapy is equipped to break down those perceived barriers to help Christians live in ways that bear the fruit of the Spirit,” said Dr. Calvert.

When you begin therapy, your counselor will meet you wherever you are in your faith journey. Faith-based therapy can work very well within the context of discipleship, coming alongside pastors and others making disciples by helping provide key insights and training for emotional health.

Finding God in your struggle

As we head into Easter Weekend, take moment and evaluate your relationship with God. Maybe you’re struggling with your faith and having doubts about God. Maybe you’re wondering “where God is” in the midst of your circumstances. You know he’s there but you can’t feel or sense him and you feel lost, hopeless and disconnected.

Our Christian therapists can help you learn from God’s promises that he will not leave you or forsake you. Christian counseling could help you find hope in your circumstances and identify purpose in the midst of your pain.

Coronavirus Update: Online Counseling Only

A woman types on a laptop as she holds coffee in one hand. Contact an anxiety therapist in Wake Forest, NC for support with depression treatment, family therapy in Fuquay Varine, NC and more!

In a time where so much is unknown, take comfort in knowing our team at Foundations Family Therapy is here for you! Social distancing and limiting human contact are essential when it comes to flattening the curve and we’re stepping up to do our part.

​Effective Wednesday, March 25th, we will be servicing our clients via online sessions only. Book Your Session Today ​

​Online therapy offers secure, convenient, and easy to access care in a time when you need it most. Also, many major insurance companies have agreed to pay for Telehealth services the same as they would pay for in-office visits. This means your out of pocket cost should be the same for Telehealth services as it is for in-person office visits. They have agreed to continue this throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

​Our team at Foundation’s Family Therapy remains committed to doing everything that we can to provide you a safe and comfortable environment for wellness. We look forward to connecting with you and moving forward together in health and happiness.

​Jamie Criswell MS, LMFT

The Lifelong Benefits of Family Therapy

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Relationships are hard.  

Family dynamics can be complicated. And when everyone in your family has their own personality, a unique set of personal values and wants to be independent?  Well, life can get complicated sometimes.

When families enter therapy, they commit to moving forward in growth together. Your family therapist at Foundations Family Therapy will meet you and your family where you are.

We will get to know your family…

And look for patterns in how you communicate…

We’ll work to identify common conflicts and talk about the problems bringing you in.

So, if you and your family ready to start functioning as a unit again, here are a few ways our Family Counseling services can help.

Improved Communication

One of the most critical skills in developing relationships is communication. Family therapy helps families in the development of spiritual, intellectual, and emotional roles of life. Challenges for families have changed with addiction issues being high across the country. Therapy can assist with teaching coping skills for family members and opening a dialogue for communication regarding serious matters of concern.

Communication within a family can sometimes be challenging. Family therapy is available for these situations to assist with the learning of better communication techniques while learning to resolve issues as well. Teaching strengths and weaknesses of a family it is crucial to keep an open mind to growth and the potential for positive change. 

Lower Risk of Conflict

Lowering the risk of conflict within a family is a valuable skill. While conflict is never desirable, even one member under stress can wreak havoc within a family. Learning the skills to communicate with multiple generations improves family life, teaches about respect, problem-solving, and responsibilities within the family dynamic.

Family therapy has become a widespread need for families throughout the country and our Raleigh, NC community is no different. Families face many challenges that could include issues with addiction, multi-generation homes, divorce, teenage rebellion, and so much more.

Your Family Can Get to a Better Place

Through family therapy, you can increase your sense of connection and begin to enjoy one another again. Our therapists work with your family to improve communication, resolve long-standing conflict and teach conflict resolution skills.

Not only will you find ways forward around the sticky issues you are sick of rehashing but you’ll feel ready to face future conflict together as well. Your therapist helps you clarify your values as a family and then apply those as you problem solve major issues in your life.

You don’t have to stay stuck in the same old patterns. It is possible to enjoy one another and feel like you can have a conversation together. Family therapy can help. Contact our office today

Salt, Sugar, and Your Mood During The Holidays

Hand decorating cookies. Foundations Family Therapy in Raleigh, NC 27606 provides family counseling in Fuquay Varina, NC 27526. Online therapy in North Carolina is also available with an online therapist in North Carolina from Foundations Family Therapy!

A sprinkle of salt here and a dash of sugar there… it sounds like a pretty common scenario, especially around the holiday season!

Do you find yourself adding a few spoonfuls of sugar to your morning coffee?

How about a dash or two of salt to season your holiday dinner? Add to that the existing sugar and salt in processed foods and you have a recipe for both physical and emotional health problems.

The physical complications of exces\s salt and sugar in your diet are rather well known. Too much salt, or sodium chloride, may put yourself at risk for health complications like heart disease and diabetes whereas excess sugar intake could lead to obesity. As if that weren’t bad enough, sugar and salt can also affect your mood in a negative way.

Sugar & Your Brain

Did you know that your brain uses more energy than any other organ in the human body and glucose is its primary source of fuel?

But, in the case of sugar, there is such a thing as too much. In fact, excess sugar impairs both your cognitive skills and sometimes self-control. For many people, having a little sugar triggers cravings for more. T

Sugar can actually have a drug-like effect on your brain.

In fact, science tells us that sweet, salty, and fatty foods can stimulate the reward center in our brains which creates a downward spiral of overeating, weight gain, and loss of self-control…just like any other addiction. Our bodies can adapt to crave these elements

The Effects of Inflammation On Your Mood

Both excess sugar and salt can lead to inflammation. You can start to feel bad physically and mentally. Inflammation from high sugar consumption can affect your memory and cognitive skills.

Furthermore, inflammation can have a tremendous impact on your mood. Sugar consumption has been linked to an increased risk of anxiety and depression in many studies.

The good news is you can still enjoy the holiday season (and all the delicious
meals that come with it) if you fuel your mind and body with healthy foods.

Remember, an indulgence here or there isn’t the real problem. Take note of the refined sugars and overly processed foods you find in your daily diet and get a healthy jumpstart to 2020.