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Counseling, Therapy & Life Coaching by Dr. Jean Pollack

Mindful Psychology

Mindfulness is about learning to live in the moment and enjoy the present while living a balanced life.

Learning, Practicing, and Being Mindful

EDITOR’S NOTE: In our ongoing series showcasing professional life coaches, this week’s feature is from Karen Jones, an ICS Counselor. She reflects on her recent learnings on mindfulness and how to practice it as a way of being.

Upon returning from my latest mindfulness retreat, I find myself continuing to contemplate some of the discussions that included the term, habit energies. As I understand it, habit energies are those patterns, responses, and ways of being that we develop after observing, learning, and practicing them. We then begin to use them in our lives without much conscious intention; perhaps… Continue reading

Overeating: The Smiling Cupcake

Smiley-Face-CupcakeMany times overeating is linked to a numbing that results from psychological pain or trauma. Eating becomes a way of dealing with everything without feeling painful memories.

In one case documented in an article, a female patient was asked to visualize her overeating during her third therapy session. A technique known as “empty chair,” a gestalt therapy technique, was used while the client wore a headset producing a bilateral beep-beep sound.

This sound is presumed to assist the brain in processing information. The basis for this alternative technique is that bilateral stimulation adds to the therapy’s effectiveness by evoking neurological… Continue reading

Addictive Thinking vs. Mindful Thinking

An excerpt from Stephen Levine’s A Gradual Awakening. This Chapter is called The Wanting Mind.

…seeing the scope of my wantings showed me how deeply and subtly dissatisfaction created my personal world, and that seeing freed me from much grasping, from thinking that all my wants had to be satisfied, that i had to compulsively respond to everything that arose in my mind. I saw that things can be a certain way without needing to be acted on or judged or even pushed aside. They can simply be observed.

Gradually, seeing the unsatisfactory nature of much of… Continue reading

Learning Mindful Eating Before Bariatric Surgery

Let’s start with what Mindfulness is.

It is deliberately paying attention, being fully aware of what is happening both inside and outside yourself — in your body, heart, and mind — and outside of yourself in your environment.

Before bariatric surgery (weight loss surgery), clients are referred to me for a psychological evaluation as part of their pre-operative testing and requirements. Some of the other requirements are: a medical examination, a visit with a psychiatrist, blood work, visits with a dietician, and six months of a medically monitored weight loss program.

Recently, two women were referred to me for psychological… Continue reading