Gooden Center
A residential drug treatment center for men located in Pasadena, CA. The Gooden Center is a proud member of the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP).

(626) 356-0078
191 North El Molino Avenue Pasadena, CA 91101 US

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Posts Tagged ‘coping mechanisms’

Is There Room for Humor in Mental Health?

Posted on: June 13th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

Humor In Mental Health

Laughter and humor have existed in every society as a means of human well-being, divinity and society. Everyone feels uplifted after a good laugh with friends or just watching a comedy. Humor can help us forget our troubles temporarily but it can also help change our mental attitudes in a way that can improve our health. Laughing and appreciating humor can also have numerous benefits to people who are struggling with a mental illness.

Many studies have proved that humor not only is laughter good for overall mental health, but a strong coping mechanism for a number of mental disorders. Evidence based research from the science of humor concludes humor can “relieve pain, strengthen immune function, improve positive emotion, moderate stress, dissociate from distress and improve interpersonal processes.”

Laughing is a way to improve our mind, body and spirit and even bring us together so that we connect with others in a meaningful way. Humor has been proven to cause physical and emotional changes in the body that can help heal people. Laughter can relax the whole body, relieve stress and tension, release endorphins, boost the immune system and may even extend our life span.

Humor can have immediate mental health benefits by stopping distressing emotions such as anxiety, anger and sadness. It can act as a great coping mechanism to relieve stress and prevent tension from building up. Most importantly humor can shift your perception of situations so that things can seem less serious or threatening.

Someone who is able to develop a humorous perspective can create psychological distance from feelings of depression, anxiety or being overwhelmed. Humor can quickly diffuse difficult feelings and conflict while lifting a person’s mood. Laughing with other people can strengthen relationships, foster a sense of closeness and help diminish feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Achieving good mental health is a combination of many different factors, but humor can play an important role in maintaining and developing positive feelings. Sharing humor with others and keeping a humorous mentality in life can make day to day struggles much easier and prevent depression from escalating. When it comes to mental health, laughter really is some of the best medicine.

5 Ways to Break Free From Addiction

Posted on: May 14th, 2018 by The Gooden Center No Comments

5 Ways to Break Free From Addiction

Addiction doesn’t have to be a life-long battle. You have the means and the tools to change that. You just have to know where to start. It’s important to note recovery cannot be forced upon, a person needs to choose recovery for themselves.

Reaching Out: The best place to start is with professional help. Get yourself into an addiction treatment facility as soon as you are open to recovery. Addiction treatment facilities help people from all walks of life get to the root of their issues and provide them with the tools on how to break the cycle of addiction.

Finding Help: Admitting that you are struggling and that you want to get well is the first step. Denial can be a detriment to breaking the cycle of addiction.

Detox:  This part of recovery should never be overlooked and can propel someone to fully recover. When you cut out the actions that are contributing to the deterioration of your health your body starts to heal itself. Detox and rest is needed  for one to rid the toxins from their system and be fully present in recovery.

Participation:  By staying active in the treatment and recovery process you will give yourself a better chance to achieve long-term recovery. By participating in groups and activities in treatment you are able to build a common bond with those around you to start to build the foundation of support that is necessary for long-term recovery.

Healthy Coping Mechanisms:  Learning new ways to cope with the problems that life presents is all part of the process of recovery. Without these healthy ways of coping with issues like triggers you will be less likely to maintain long-term recovery.  

Recovery is attainable for everyone so long as you’re willing to put everything you’ve got into getting better.  

What to Do When You Have a Panic Attack

Posted on: October 16th, 2017 by The Gooden Center No Comments

What to Do When You Have a Panic Attack

Most people experience bouts of anxiety occasionally when they have an important interview, a date, a test or anything that they feel nervous about. For people with anxiety disorders however, they can experience a sense of panic in certain situations that can be overwhelming enough to interfere with their life. A panic attack can escalate and become difficult to recover from and people may feel that they have to simply leave the situation entirely.

If you suffer from panic attacks it does not mean that you have to avoid people, places or situations that make you nervous. There are ways to cope with feelings of panic and bounce back enough to return to your normal self. Having a plan with how to cope with your panic attacks can make you feel more prepared so that you can face the anxiety when it occurs instead of having to avoid anything.

Dealing with Symptoms of Panic

A panic attack is usually characterized by sudden and intense feelings of anxiety that can take over your mind and body. Panic attacks often have physical symptoms such as:

-Shaking

-feeling disoriented

-nausea

-rapid breathing

-racing heartbeat

-sweating

-dizziness

The symptoms usually aren’t dangerous but they can be very frightening and make it hard for people to focus on easing their anxiety.

When you experience the symptoms the best option is to try to understand that they are only temporary, they are not harmful and they are simply caused by your anxiety. Instead of trying to distract yourself or put your mind on something else, the best option is to acknowledge what you are experiencing. Tell yourself that although you are having these symptoms you are not in any danger but are simply feeling afraid.

Although your first instinct may be to leave the situation, it can actually be more beneficial to ride out the attack. If you run away you won’t have the chance to see that nothing bad is actually going to happen. Confronting your fear can help you become less sensitive to the situation as you realize that it is completely safe.

Eventually the more intense symptoms will begin to pass and you can start to focus on your surroundings and get yourself grounded again. You can simply accept the fact that you are having these symptoms and feelings instead of wishing you didn’t or praying that they will go away. The acknowledgement and acceptance of the fear can help the attack begin to fade.

Breathing Exercises to Reduce Panic

The reason acceptance is so important is that resisting your feelings of panic will only make the attack worse. Your most powerful urge may be to flee but instead you can wait it out and maybe work on some exercises until the attack subsides. Breathing techniques can help get you more focused and aware of what you are feeling so that you will be less likely to run away or resist.

Breathing exercises can also be helpful because one of the characteristic symptoms of panic attacks are short quick breaths which can create more tension and stress in the body. If you become aware that you are breathing very quickly then you can work on deep breathing strategies. Start by breathing in very deeply and slowly through your nose and then breathing out slowly through your mouth.

If you count your breaths, close your eyes and focus on your breathing you can start to calm yourself down physically and bring more awareness to your body. Focusing on your breath not only reduces the kind of short, choppy breaths that generate tension but it also helps you turn down some of your anxious thoughts. Deep breathing can help you feel better quickly so that you can ignore the urge to run away.

Observe Your Reactions and Become Aware

When an attack is happening sometimes to helps to become very aware of your symptoms and even write down what you are experiencing. Writing about your anxiety can help you distance yourself from the feelings and be more observant of how you are reacting instead of being lost in the experience.

Writing down or talking to someone about what your are going through can help put things into perspective. You might read what you wrote later and realize how distorted your ideas were at the time. Or a friend might listen to your fears and help you understand that they are unfounded and that you are safe.

The important thing to remember about dealing with panic attacks is to do your best to ride out the symptoms until they subside. When you let yourself acknowledge the anxiety you will realize that it is only temporary and you will be able to return to a calm state of mind again. The more you learn to accept your anxiety, the less powerful it will become.