Grief is often pushed aside quickly in American culture.  You lose a loved one, you have a funeral or memorial service within a week and people go back to their regular schedules. I’m sure most people reading this have lost one or many loved ones in their lifetime. Do you remember the “fog” you were in? Do you remember the disbelief you felt that the person died? Some people go into shock which is a way for the body to protect itself. These experiences are normal when a death occurs. Then comes...

There are infinite ways to practice mindfulness. Well-known mindfulness practices include breathing exercises, sensory activities, meditation and mindful movement like yoga. But any activity can be made mindful by “paying attention, on purpose” to it and maintaining non-judgmental thoughts about the activity. My strong interest and belief in the power of mindfulness for families stem from my role as a child therapist with CHRIS 180’s School-Based Mental Health Department and as a parent myself. I know the value of doing mindful practices together to model the behavior we want to see...

We all need rest to function well in each area of our lives. Sleep, exercise, video games and spending time with loved ones are a few examples of activities commonly used to recharge. But sometimes, what you think is a break is actually a form of escapism that saps your time and energy. CHRIS 180 clinical experts Chris Haider-Bardill, LPC, CPCS, and Rob Collins, LCSW, LSSGB, discussed escapism and its role in our lives during a Lunchtime Live episode in May 2021.   What is escapism? Typically, escapism involves engaging in an activity to...

Children are small people with very big emotions. Although they can show you what they are feeling, most children have yet to attach a name to their feelings and have not learned healthy ways of dealing with their emotions. As children grow, they face many challenges and obstacles. Therefore, it is important to promote healthy social and emotional development by helping children identify and name their feelings, and sharing methods to help them cope effectively.   Why should I promote emotional awareness in my child early?  Promoting early emotional awareness helps your child...

For Johnny Brown, Fatherhood Session Coordinator at CHRIS 180’s Cure Violence Atlanta program, helping fathers is a calling. “All of us are on this journey of being fathers,” Johnny shared. “We work with participants to learn the life skills to be able to work, stay out of trouble and start talking about what it takes to be a good parent. When we help them show up in their child’s life, we are breaking the cycle of generational violence.” Every Monday from 11:00 A.M. – 1:00 P.M. at the Cure Violence Atlanta office,...

The cool breeze in the mornings lets us know that autumn is around the corner. I have not always been ready for this newness because I love the summer months and do not want to say goodbye to the warmth of the sun, the flowers, butterflies, lightning bugs, BBQs, late evenings and beach trips. There of course is nothing I can do to prevent the inevitable seasonal change. During the summer I embrace all I can as I know autumn is coming! I tackle projects, make the most of the...

Out of habit and routine, I begin my day with a fresh cup of coffee (or two). I like it rich and strong, with the perfect amount of cream and sugar. While the coffee is brewing and my home is filling up with that comforting aroma, I tidy up the kitchen, and scroll through social media on my phone. If I’m feeling ambitious, I may do some quick exercises or stretches.  Then I can enjoy that cup of warm goodness! After that first sip, I am alert, can think more...

In times of uncertainty and discomfort, it’s important that we depend on our routine and structure more than ever for self-regulation. You may ask, what is self-regulation?  Self-regulation refers to our feelings, our energy level and our ability to send and receive information. Think of a time when you’re relaxing outside, listening to the birds, and feeling the sun on your skin compared to when you’re stuck in rush hour traffic and someone just cut you off.  There is a difference in your energy, your feelings, your ability to send...

During this collective traumatic experience, we are all doing the best we can to manage, respond, and survive the crisis of pandemic. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic’s disruption of our daily lives and routines, many of us are spending more time in the role of caregiver.  As we face stress and overwhelming feelings, we may find our self-talk moving towards criticism or doubt more than ever. We are human beings and we cannot be perfect.  One of the best things we can do for those that we care...