Welcome to the new Krause Counselling Services website! I am very glad to have you join me on today’s blog post as we strive to be a community that promotes mental health, and is supportive and warm towards one another. To start this journey together I will discuss Understanding self & well-being, using my business logo to demonstrate three mains concepts.
1: Do you see the outer ring of the logo pictured to your left? There are 5 sides to it, each a difference colour and each connected to create a whole circle. These 5 sides/colours represent the 5 parts of the self that many holistic approaches acknowledge: physical, emotional, intellectual, relational and spiritual. It is in each of these realms that we understand and express ourselves. We need all 5 areas to be healthy in order for us to function and be the best version of ourselves.
Below are some tips for caring for your 5 parts of self:
Your physical self can be maintained by eating right, getting exercise, maintaining proper sleeping patterns, etc
Your emotional self can be taken care of by be being honest and expressing your feelings in a healthy way. You can also take a soothing bath with some calm music on, practice journaling, meditation, etc
Your intellectual self can benefit from growing in knowledge, learning something new. However, it can also benefit by learning to turn your brain off by getting lost in a Sudoku puzzle or a movie for a time.
Your relational self needs connection with others, some people’s need is higher than others but truth is we all need it. This can be fulfilled by connecting with a friend over coffee, a phone call or spending time with your partner.
Finally, your spiritual self is a reality how that is defined is unique to everyone so it will differ depending on one’s belief system. Some examples of spiritual self-care could consist of reading a spiritual book, praying, being out in nature, etc.
It is important to note that going through the motions will not satisfy these parts of self, and that identifying how your particular need can be met is essential to care effectively for yourself - this process will look different for different people. Wellness is experienced when all 5 manifestations of self are taken care of.
2: Did you notice the shutter appearance of the logo? In a camera the shutter allows light in, it exposes an image and impacts the focus. This relates to the importance of acknowledging the situation, your part, your skills and focusing on hope for one’s mental health. It also parallels a goal of counselling, where within the counselling context, we can focus on areas of a person’s life without distractions to shed light on an individuals strengths. Identifying strengths is important because it allows us to take a solution-based approach to areas that are causing damage. Doing this allows us to deal with, learn from, and change what we can.
3: Do you recognize the inner shape of the logo? It is shaped like a house. This is to represent that the goal of counselling is to have the best, healthiest home! This could be in relationships with a partner, children, or friends, it can also be just within yourself… that your house (the inner you) feels healthy and taken care of no matter where you are or your circumstances.
Life is full of storms and if we want to be safe inside our homes we need to be taking care of ourselves on all 5 sides. If we have a hole in our roof, or if a wall is missing, or if our flooring is cracked then the storm can come in and make a mess. That is why we need to focus in on the areas where there are holes and find out what is causing the leak so that we can repair it to live in safety and peace regardless of what is happening outside. If this concept is challenging to grasp, read the story below which illustrates the importance of your home.
There once was a storm. Outside it was very wet, and cold. The strength of the wind made it difficult to even stay upright. Walking home felt like a struggle and many dangers appeared, trying to deter and discourage a safe arrival. The appearance of puddles in your shoes made evident the holes that exist. The inability to focus your eyes on what is ahead due to the consistent presence of rain hitting them made crossing the street an ordeal. ‘Am I seen? Am I considered?’ Thoughts that surfaced as you cautiously and urgently crossed the street on the path out of the storm, the path to safety.
Success, the front door is in sight and your pace quickens. The realization that soon the storm, though still existing, will no longer have such a direct affect on you. The door opens, the door closes. The dirty shoes and wet clothing are removed. Your body is dried off, warmed up and you are able to sit. Sit and think about your experience, sit and feel protected, sit and adapt.
In this space, your home, there is an environment of safety. Feelings can be processed and expressed. In this space, the weather is unable to affect you in the same way. Next time, it will be different. Adjustments will be made and next time on a stormy day appropriate footwear will be worn, an umbrella will become a companion and if need be, the same environment can be avoided.
We can’t always control the weather around us, but having a home that is safe, is essential because it allows us to find refuge, process, adapt and survive. It is my desire for counselling to be that safe place, where feelings can be expressed and processed, repair work can be done, adjustments made, and tools learned so that your home can also be that safe, peaceful place
Thank you for reading today’s post. I hope that my explanation of Krause Counselling Services’ logo has allowed you to find a better understanding of who you are, areas to focus on and why a sense of self is important. Please return for more monthly mental health insights!