Blog Items

Looking after yourself and your relationships over the holiday season

It's a challenge at the best of times to achieve an optimal state of balance - time for yourself, time as a couple, time to complete paid and unpaid work - and if you have kids, time as a family and ideally some 1:1 time between each child and parent. The festive season adds a few more challenges to maintaining a relational balance, the lead-up to Xmas particularly often feeling like a mad scramble to get everything done and honour commitments to catching up socially with friends, colleagues and extended family.

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Tuning Relationships with Music: free counselling for parents and teens

Tuning Relationships with Music is a form of counselling for parents who have a history of abuse or other relationship trauma,  and their teens who want to improve communication and reduce conflict in their relationship. It uses music as a fun and engaging way to focus on the nonverbal parts of how we communicate, as well as the words that we use. Because this is a new method, a research trial will look at developing it further by asking interested parents and teens to participate.

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Why respecting your ex-partner is good for the kids

Managing the demands of shared parenting after separation can be complex - juggling competing schedules of children and families, communicating and negotiating arrangements with the person who you maybe would prefer to have nothing more to do with it it weren't for the fact you have children together. In the face of these challenges, it can be tempting to cope by simplifiying your thinking -your 'ex' is the one with the problem - s/he isn't parenting in the way I'd like, s/he is hopeless or defective in some way.

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Relationship Breakdown and Post-traumatic Growth


It is perhaps not talked about enough, but many people actually respond to distressing events by experiencing post-traumatic growth - that is, they may become stronger personally. They may say things like "I wouldn't ever have chosen to go through that painful break-up with my partner, but because of it, I have changed in some powerful and profound ways". I think an unfortunate aspect of being human is that we often don't make changes until the level of discomfort and stress in our lives, for whatever reason, compels us to do so!

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Let's say NO to violence against women in our community

Today is White Ribbon Day - a day where as a community we say 'Not one more'. Let's not only dare to dream, but work together to actively create a society where we ALL ensure that not one more woman or child is killed or hurt by a violent man. What's particularly exciting and important about the White Ribbon Day initiative is that it asks men to pledge their commitment to eradiating violence against women. How powerful when men speak out and give their support!!!

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Using music to help parents tune into their kids.

Music is an elegant way of communicating what often cannot be said so well with words. It can also provide a way to focus on the non-verbal elements of the way we relate together. Dr Stine Jacobsen, a music therapist from Denmark, has developed an innovative way of looking at how parents and children interact, using simple musical exercises to see how parents tune into their children's emotions, and how they respond to their children's nonverbal signals.

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Five steps to helping your child develop emotional intelligence

Emotional intelligence, or EQ, is very important! Research has shown that people who score highly in EQ do better in all areas of life - not just in their relationships and social worlds, but in their careers as well. So what is it? Emotional intelligence is the ability to be aware of our own and other people's emotions, to respond to emotions with kindness and compassion, to use this awareness to inform problem solving, and to manage intense emotions well - this may include controlling when and how we express our emotions.

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Cultivating Emotionally Intelligent Relationships

Emotional intelligence (or EQ) is perhaps not the first thing we think of, when reflecting on what we need in our intimate relationship. But emotional intelligence has been found to be the most powerful predictor of success and happiness in life. In fact, people who score highly on EQ advance further in their careers, as well as enjoying more connected and meaningful relationships. So what are the skills that make up EQ?

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Finding the love you long for - an attachment perspective

Whether you are single and wishing for an intimate relationship, or you are in a relationship that is not meeting your core needs, the longing for attachment and connection to a special other can be overwhelming and painful. For many, this type of love may feel unattainable. Often there are many practical reasons for this in the here-and-now - a lack of suitable potential partners to choose from, for example.

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Mindsight - the benefits of mindfulness practise for relationships

What is mindsight? In the words of the author, Dr. Daniel Siegel, a renowned psychiatrist and teacher, it is a kind of focused attention that allows us to see the internal workings of our minds…without being swept away by them.” Mindsight is essentially Siegel’s term for mindfulness meditation.


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