Self-Care During the Holiday Season

The month of December, specifically the upcoming stretch until New Years, can feel festive and exciting, but they also can come with a lot of stress and anxiety. Below are some tips so that you can make the most out of the holiday season.

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Elizabeth Cobb
Get Out of the Mirror and Into Your Life

Accepting ones body in its natural, ever changing form, is NOT an easy task. We live in a society that glorifies weight loss, transformation, and the ‘thin ideal’ (which by the way is always changing). Body acceptance, therefore, means ‘going against the current’ of society and making peace with your natural shape, even if it doesn’t fit into the narrowly defined ‘current’ ideal.

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Elizabeth Cobbbody image
Handling Grief Around the Holidays

As the old Christmas carol goes, the holidays are often considered “the most wonderful time of the year,” and are typically associated with positive feelings and “Christmas cheer.” For many people, however, the holidays are a reminder of what has been lost, whether it be the passing of a loved one, someone currently in critical condition medically, or experiencing stressors that have ruined old, nostalgic traditions that we have looked forward to in the past. I know from my own experience that the holidays lose their sparkle a bit once a major loss is experienced. Here are some ideas for how to cope with grief around the holidays by being true to your emotional experience and bringing in self-care. 

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Elizabeth Cobb
Working Hard to Work Well

Many of us spend the majority of our time working, spending more time with co-workers than we do with our own families. So, it is understandable that many clients in therapy talk about their jobs —difficulties navigating their role, their colleagues, and their stress. Here are some tips on doing a good job, fulfilling your role, and feeling good while doing it.

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Post-Thanksgiving Gratitude: A Daily Practice

Even though Thanksgiving is over, that doesn’t mean that the focus on gratitude should end too. Gratitude can have a positive impact on your overall wellbeing, and it doesn’t even require a lot of a time (and it’s free!). While many of us know how good it can feel to give thanks, it is easy to forget once we get back into the rhythm of daily life.  Here are some ways to incorporate gratitude practices into your life. 

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Elizabeth Cobb
Surrendering to Holiday Travel Stress

There are so many situations in our everyday lives that we have no control over, such as subway traffic, long lines at the airport, waiting for a late friend or arriving too early to plans later in the day. In these situations, we tend to become inpatient, frustrated and on the verge of an anxiety attack. These situations tend to become more common around holiday time, especially while traveling.

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Elizabeth Cobb
Rewiring the Brain with CBT

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a treatment that is notorious for its benefits in treating many types of mental disorders, most notably anxiety and depression. The premise of CBT is that the way we think influences our mood, and thus our actions. When unhelpful thinking patterns plague us day in and day out, we are bound to experience lower self-esteem and increased stress. In my work, I frequently use a metaphor to describe how CBT eventually helps shift these thought spirals. First, I think it’s necessary to provide an overview of CBT in order to understand how those changes will occur.

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Elizabeth Cobb
Sleep Hygiene: What is it and Why is it Important?

When people are struggling to get a good night’s sleep, it can affect many aspects of their life, including their mood. Often times people talk about “sleep hygiene” and how we need to improve it, but what does sleep hygiene actually mean? Rather than cleanliness, like hygiene usually suggests, sleep hygiene refers to good habits and practices relating to sleep.

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Elizabeth Cobb
Transference in the Therapeutic Relationship: What Is It and How Can We Use It?

Your relationship with your therapist is a professional one, but it is still a relationship. So it is important to recognize that you will have different feelings come up during your time together. Think about who we choose to be our therapists. Do we choose someone around our age for relatability? Someone older for wisdom? Someone of our gender, ethnic background, or shared religious views?

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Elizabeth Cobb
Single in the City

Being single can be challenging (especially in a big city like New York).  Dating apps have made it easier to meet other people, but do not necessarily secure relationships.  Since dates are so simple to get with modern technology, most people do not invest the time and energy into creating a meaningful relationship. If you are no longer interested in going on infinite first dates, try the following tips and hopefully you will see improvements in your dating life.

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Elizabeth Cobbrelationships
How to Respond to Others With Empathy

Have you ever struggled to respond to someone when they tell you bad news? Or despite trying really hard to make someone feel better, you seem to only make them feel worse? Responding to other people's pain is difficult, so how can we learn to respond more effectively?

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Elizabeth Cobb
Your Imposter is the Fraud, Not You

I’m a creep. I’m a weirdo. What the hell am I doing here? I don’t belong here. Sound familiar?

The thoughts we have about our abilities and accomplishments that lead to self-doubt begin to become conclusions about ourselves and our situations that are not based in reality.

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Elizabeth Cobbanxiety
What a "Bad" Haircut Reminded Me About Body Acceptance

We live in a society that glorifies weight loss and thinness. From a young age, we receive messages that equate our worthiness to how closely we fit to the conventional standard of beauty and the “thin ideal.” It’s no surprise that many of us are plagued with negative thoughts about our bodies that can wreck havoc on our self-esteem and ability to live a fulfilling life.

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Elizabeth Cobbbody image
Calm: An App Recommendation for Better Sleep

We all know insomnia is a problem, but what can we do to fix it? If you’re like me, you’ve tried everything! From exercise, to reducing caffeine, to natural supplements, to sleep apps — I’ve done it all. After an exhaustive search for solutions, I’ve finally found one that works (at least for me) and I’d encourage other insomnia sufferers to try it. It’s a sleep app called Calm and it actually works! I like Calm because it has multiple tools for helping you get to sleep. So if one stops working there are other tools in the toolbox. 

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Elizabeth Cobb
Being Your Own Best Friend

Developing and improving self-esteem is a common goal in therapy. Low self-esteem can often be a result of the things we tell ourselves. Often times, we are our own worst critics, listening to our internal negative voice. So, how do you work on being your own best friend? Self-compassion is about treating yourself with respect and kindness. Through self-compassion, clients begin to see their strengths, skills, and attributes rather than their flaws and insecurities. Like with any skill, it is important to practice. Here are some ways to rehearse self-compassion:

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Elizabeth Cobb