Grief Support With Hurricane Harvey Relief

Grief therapy is traditionally known for helping individuals and families when a loved one passes away. Pastors know this process well with funeral arrangements, coordinating food for after the service, and discussing proceedings while the loss is fresh and painful.

But grief therapy includes so much more than after someone dies. We want to explore specifically how pastors and mental health professionals could work together when crisis events like Hurricane Harvey come about.

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International Overdose Awareness Day Stats And Stories

Per yesterday’s post, tomorrow is International Overdose Awareness Day. To help with the awareness, we wanted to share some statistics and a video via our site to help develop awareness of substance use and overdoses. These statistics come from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

If you or someone you know struggles with substance dependency, I’d encourage you to simply go talk with a counselor. If you are not sure where to find one, talk with your insurance company for a referral for who they cover. If that’s not possible, use this services locator.

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Is Google Search Helping With Identifying Depression?

Several news organizations are reporting that Google is currently beta testing a depression screener for people to take if they are Google’ing ‘depression’ or ‘clinical depression.’ After several attempts in Chrome and Edge browsers, I was unable to find it, but if you look on the right-hand side where it talks about what depression is, what the symptoms are, and treatment options that are effective, it has a non-invasive button to look for it.

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Mental Health Awareness

It would seem that every thing gets a day of the week, including little things like donuts and coffee. So it would not be a shock to find out there are several periods of time throughout the year dedicated to awareness of mental health and substance abuse disorder.

Below, we have a list of the mental health and substance abuse awareness days, weeks, and months we could find. We’ve also linked to the corresponding organization that is hosting the day.

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Resources

Professionals have a saying when it comes to difficult clients, “work within your competency.” If you have never worked with someone who is suicidal, refer out. If you do not feel equipped to help someone that struggles with bipolar or schizophrenia, refer out. To refer out, you need to know who you will need to have a resource list of people and resources to utilize.

This document will be a part of our resource page that will be constantly updated as new resources are shared.

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Professionals Ask: Does Burn Out Happen To A Calling?

Professional: As a counselor, we constantly talk about self-care to our clients, even being ethically required to take time off if we are not in a good space. What happens if a pastor is not doing well with self-care?”

I began working at a church plant a few years ago with the intention of becoming full-time eventually. I felt called to ministry and wanted to work at a church that was going to make a difference in the world! When the church started, we obviously did not have any funds so I had to fundraise 100% of my “part-time” salary and also work another job. While I understood this would be difficult, I knew in the long run I would eventually become full-time (hopefully).

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Pastors Ask: Where Do Professionals See Faith In Their Practice?

Pastor: “I have always heard that you cannot be a Christian in our counseling sessions which makes me not want to refer anyone to counseling. Is this true?”

Faith and spirituality play a crucial role in the therapeutic process. If we have defined what mental health is, we need to now look at the collaboration of the Church and pastors with professionals. It is my belief the two organizations can walk together and do more for people who struggle with mental health than either can do by themselves.

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What Is Mental Health?

Mental health is a very defined practice which for the past one hundred years has been established, refined, regulated, and researched. The formal definition says “a person’s condition with regard to their psychological and emotional well-being.”

One common misconception is mental health workers see disorders in everything. While mental health symptoms that make up a disorder may be present in areas of a person’s life, a person has to meet a specific set of criteria that is defined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The current version is the DSM-5.

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Shame Of Mental Health

The pain of a physical wound is difficult. Think about the last time you smashed your toe on something, gave yourself a paper cut, or bruised yourself from some physical activity. But we have doctors who can actually see the problem, diagnosis it, and provide a remedy. We see the wound, accept their treatment plan, and follow through with it.

With mental health, we are not so lucky. You cannot always see the wounds and the treatment plans may not lead to healing as fast as you want.

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7 Scriptures Of Hope

The past couple of articles noted some shortcomings with the Church and mental health. The reproach may be necessary, but we should have hope in our faith and in our salvation. The Scripture below are verses to help inspire hope in whatever pain or suffering you may have at this time. My suggestion as a counselor is to use these as points of motivation and encouragement for you. As a fellow Christian, I ask that you use these as reminders of God’s promise and implement them into your prayers.

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