What’s in this blog?

The resources, tools, and ideas in this blog come from my many years of reading about and attending therapy for Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and the effects of trauma. Through therapy and personal research, I have learned skills from Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy with Exposure and Response Prevention (CBT with ERP), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness, and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).

I began this blog as an outlet to express the challenges and victories I was trying to navigate as I moved through the difficult journey of finding the mental wellness tools that worked for me. After joining the mental health community on social media in 2014, I soon realized that there were many people searching for their own mental wellness path. In late 2018, I decided to make my posts public in the hope that it would help at least one person.

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Rock Songs to Heal the Mind: New Music by Jason Didner

For many people I know who live with a mental health diagnosis, music has been an essential part of their healing and recovery. Songs have the capacity to make us feel connected to others, less alone, heard, and understood. They can ignite joy on heavy days and inspire moments that bring us back to feeling grounded. This is especially true when the people behind the music write with the intention of bringing awareness to the many aspects of striving to be mentally healthy, mindful, and compassionate towards one’s self. Jason Didner is a rock-inspired singer/songwriter who is doing just that.

Those of us who are on this mental health journey will find themselves mirrored in Jason’s lyrics—reminders of the value of presence in the here and now, the steadying nature of those we love, the catastrophic thinking that distorts our thoughts, and much more. For those who are just beginning to understand the importance of mental health, Jason’s music will inspire a sense of curiosity to learn more about the many ways to construct a mentally healthy life.

I had the opportunity to get an early listen to Jason’s soon-to-be released album “Salt and Sand: Rock Songs to Heal the Mind” and was immediately drawn to the compassion and honesty of lyrical choice with which Jason (and fellow writers) discussed the topic and told stories through music. As someone who has been keeping a journal for most of my life, the song “A Different Kind of Zen” reminded me to “keep the truth flowing” (I actually listened to it while doing my daily gratitude journal). While I found a personal mirroring effect in all of the album’s songs, the last song. “A Moment of Loving Kindness” stood out the most to me. Metta meditations are my favorite types of meditations and Jason, who is accompanied by the lovely voice of Leslie Masuzzo, skillfully combine a soothing melody to lyrics that spread love towards self, others, and the world ……After I’m done writing this, I’m going to encourage Jason to put this song on Insight Timer 😉

If you’d like to learn more about Jason and his upcoming album, you can connect with him on Instagram at @jasondidner or at www.jasondidner.com

Happy listening,

V

7 personality tests to get to know yourself better

On my way towards healing and mental health work, I realized that I had so much self-discovery I needed to embark upon as part of my journey. One personality test can’t truly define who we are (we’re far too complex and unique for that) but they do help us construct the language to better define our values and identities. Even if the results of an online test are not accurate, the fact that we’re reacting to the inaccuracy guides us towards who we are. Sometimes the easiest way to figure out who we are is to have someone tell us we’re something when we know we’re not. Plus, they’re fun. Here are a few I love…..

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On self expression

My sense of expression has been internal for much of my life and reflected in the stories, poetry, and drawings I kept hidden away in notebooks as a child. In the last few weeks I’ve been deep in thought about the concept of personal expression—wondering how much of my expression and creativity was rooted in who I am and how much was internalized fear. Did I love to read, write, and draw as a child because I liked those activities or because they were the safest activities available to me? This has been a reoccurring question I’ve been mulling over.

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